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Letters: Food-stamp cuts and America's compassion deficit

November 05, 2013
  • Two-year-old Ausara Mudahy eats dinner, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on wheat bead, in Culver City last week. Her mother, who works two jobs, receives food-stamp benefits.
Two-year-old Ausara Mudahy eats dinner, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich… (Los Angeles Times )

Re "Millions to feel food stamp cuts," Nov. 2

Cutting the food stamp and other domestic programs is contradictory to the image that the United States wishes to present to its citizens and the world as a generous and caring nation.

This ideal image is further contradicted by the enormous spending on the defense budget and the military/industrial complex, far surpassing the defense budgets of all other countries.

Looking at the statistics rather than the label "United States," our country's spending priorities do not show a benign nation.

This disparity in spending priorities reminds me of the former Soviet Union, where domestic spending — providing enough food and decent housing for its citizens — took a back seat to the defense budget. This is a disastrous model to emulate.

The concept of "defense" needs to be enlarged to include defense against hunger, squalid living conditions and huge disparities in opportunity.

Gretchen Hays

Pacific Palisades

Food-stamp recipient Najuah Mudahy, profiled in the article, needs help to feed her daughter. But she needs to have no more children until she can give them some kind of a decent start in life. People have to be responsible for their decisions.

In addition, we need to start taxing the Wall Street big shots at regular rates, not the 15% many pay because their income comes mostly from capital gains. There needs to be fairer income distribution, not the roughly 350-to-1 pay ration between chief executives and rank-and-file workers we have today.

In other words, reasonable solutions have to come from both sides, and there are plenty to be had if the pols would stop promoting divisiveness.

Carole Cruz

San Diego

The Republicans in Congress evidently believe poor people are lazy moochers. They don't understand why the poor don't get better jobs, why they don't go back to school or why they aren't rich. Those Republicans fail to grasp the definitions of "conditions" and "circumstances."

And the ones who call themselves Christians have no idea what that word actually means.

It is a sign of a failed democracy when we spend so much on our many wars and our national security and surveillance states, and so little on the food-stamp recipients who have to struggle to survive.

Zareh Delanchian

Tujunga

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