Republicans continue their assault on the poor. In both Oklahoma and Wisconsin, conservatives are trying to make individuals on food stamps take mandatory drug tests. Scott Walker, for Wisconsin, has gone so far as to file a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Argiculture (USDA), the governing body that oversees the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in order to ensure his requirements.
Such drug testing policies have already been struck down as unconstitutional elsewhere in the country.
Walker’s and Oklahoma’s efforts will undoubtedly meet a similar fate, but not before conservatives get to put their two cents in about just how terrible the poor are.
The Oklahoma GOP made a post on Facebook that “compared those receiving food stamps to the feeding of animals in national parks, where officials discourage such behavior because it can result in dependency on handouts.”
The Oklahoma Department of Human Services took note of the despicable post from the Oklahoma GOP and sent a harsh response:
Shame on you for comparing people in poverty and with disabilities to animals! That was an appalling and uninformed comment. Obviously you did not bother to know the majority of the 604,000 people receiving food benefits in Oklahoma are people who are aging, people with disabilities (including disabled veterans) and the working poor who are raising children. …The people who need this meager benefit are dependent upon it in order to keep themselves and their children from starving. Is that the kind of dependency you are suggesting we discourage?