We were sitting at a traffic light the other day, and there was a fellow standing on the curb with one of those “Homeless, Please Help” signs. Not an uncommon sight, you can see somebody asking for a handout on every other street corner in America, it seems like. And, not at all that uncommon, this fellow was smoking a cigarette.
Now, I have no problem with people who smoke, as long as they don’t do it under my windows. It’s their lungs and their money, and none of my business. But no matter how benevolent I may be feeling, I’ll be damned if I’ll give somebody who is begging for money a penny, if they are smoking. Obviously, feeding that nicotine habit takes priority over food and shelter. Maybe that’s why some of these people are “homeless” in the first place, because I would suspect that work isn’t very high on their priority list either.
Do-gooders in Kentucky are upset because the state is considering making welfare recipients submit to random drug testing. They say it is humiliating and a violation of peoples’ rights to privacy. Michigan tried to enact a similar law in 1999, but an appeals court ruled it unconstitutional.
Why? The last time I checked, drug dealers don’t give their poison away, they make their customers pay for it. If somebody needs public assistance, what are they paying for their drugs with? And why should taxpayers subsidize their addiction?
Now a lawmaker in Florida has suggested that recipients of unemployment benefits must work at non-profit organizations or perform some type of community service work at least four hours a week to qualify for benefits, if they are physically capable of it. Of course, there are those who think this too is unfair. Why am I not surprised?
Those opposed to this measure say that since people paid into unemployment when they were working, it’s really their money they are receiving. I have known many people who work for a few weeks and get fired, then collect unemployment for months. I know, because I fired a lot of them over the years. They didn’t want to work then, and they don’t want to work now. Ask any small business owner, and I bet he will tell you the same thing.
I understand that a lot of Americans are out of work and need help these days. I sympathize with their situation. But really, four hours a week? They can’t get off their rear ends and give something back to society? I’d be so darned bored that I would want to do it just to keep busy.
The welfare state has become a welfare nation, and the sense of entitlement that so many of these people exhibit is a big part of the attitude that is ruining our nation. Why should taxpayers foot the bill for somebody who wants a free ride? I don’t want to do it, any more than I want to give some panhandler any money to support his bad habits.
All of these slugs need to stand up on their hind legs and start doing for themselves, instead of wanting somebody else to take care of them. But then again, why should they, when somebody else (the taxpayer) is picking up the tab?
Tags: addiction, begging for money, collect unemployment, community service work, court of appeals, drug dealers, food and shelter, homeless, lawmaker, nicotine habit, non-profit organizations, panhandler, public assistance, random drug testing, small business owner, smoking a cigarette, taxpayer, taxpayers, unemployment benefits, unemployment recipients, welfare recipients, welfare state