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Let churches do the welfare work

2012-10-26T03:30:00Z Let churches do the welfare workConnie Smith, LeClaire The Quad-City Times
October 26, 2012 3:30 am  • 

When I was growing up, the Democratic Party was the party of the working class. I was proud to be a Democrat. Officials that we elected were to make policy that would ensure fair pay, safe working conditions, and benefits and equality in hiring and promoting. It was never meant to be a party that would create a way of life for people to not have to work. The federal government provides free and reduced housing, monthly stipend checks, food stamps, medical care (which states provided before Obamacare), WIC and even cellphones. This should not be the job of the federal government.

Churches, their congregates and like-minded individuals provide and pay for shelters, soup kitchens and food pantries. Some of these places provide bags of groceries — you can find a meal any day of the week here — haircuts, clothing, household goods, car seats, day care, dog and cat food, money for bills, transportation, the list goes on. These organizations can provide these services more efficiently and at a lower cost than the federal government.

I know my grandfather would never have voted for anyone who would promote this way of life. It was a different party then; now it’s the entitlement party. My hope is that people do their research and make sure their party is what they think it is. The Democratic Party of my grandfather’s day has definitely changed, and that is why I will be voting for Mitt Romney.

Connie Smith

LeClaire

Copyright 2015 The Quad-City Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(21) Comments

  1. aequitas
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    aequitas - October 29, 2012 11:04 am
    Gaius Baltar, you're reading something into my comment that is simply not there. I acknowledged Romney's charitable giving, which is commendable. My comment was simply pointing out the flaws in the "private charity can take care of it" idea that is promoted by many in the Republican party.

    ANY charitable giving should be applauded whether it's to a close friend or a complete stranger.
  2. aequitas
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    aequitas - October 29, 2012 11:00 am
    Klaatu, I have listened to the remarks in their entirety, and he absolutely put the scope of the "entitlement class" at 47% of the country. There's no way to slice and dice his comments to show anything different.

    "Audience member: For the last three years, all everybody's been told is, 'Don't worry, we'll take care of you.' How are you going to do it, in two months before the elections, to convince everybody you've got to take care of yourself?

    Romney: There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it. That that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what. And I mean, the president starts off with 48, 49, 48—he starts off with a huge number. These are people who pay no income tax. Forty-seven percent of Americans pay no income tax. So our message of low taxes doesn't connect. And he'll be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich. I mean that's what they sell every four years. And so my job is not to worry about those people—I'll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives."
  3. geniekcl
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    geniekcl - October 27, 2012 6:40 pm
    Connie – When did Democrats start “creating a way of life for people to not have to work”? Since it only happened in your mind, Sweetie, do try to determine when it was that you became so aloof, grasping and bitter. If YOU’d done a little research, you’d already be aware of Wheezy’s numbers below. You’d know too that if churches did everything alone, it’d require at least $50,000 more per church (large & small) annually, plus lots more volunteers. Democrats haven’t changed-- Republicans have. They have gotten greedier. Only neo-cons justify not wanting to help people by painting them all as undeserving. Your grandpa knew better…. and I doubt he'd be proud of your 'conversion'.
  4. conniesmit
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    conniesmit - October 27, 2012 6:11 am
    Thank you, I apparently did not explain myself well. Connie
  5. Report Abuse
    - October 26, 2012 7:46 pm
    Silly boy, with your talk of angels. we are a secular, NON-CHRISTiAN country, and proudly wrote it into law in article 11 of the Treaty of Tripoli, passed by congress UNANIMOUSLY.

    we must first stop your ongoing push to become a theocracy.
  6. twiggy
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    twiggy - October 26, 2012 7:43 pm
    Which church actually "teaches men to fish"? The government does help educate and train unemployed individuals, but churches? Not so much. Jesus, on the other hand, multiplied the loaves and fishes, and gave them away freely. No strings, no questionnaires to fill out, no proof of income to provide. But churches don't actually work like Christ did, do they? Christ was not judgmental, kind and unquestioning in his generosity. Today's Christians are judgmental, skeptical, and mean spirited in their giving.
  7. Gaius Baltar
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    Gaius Baltar - October 26, 2012 4:52 pm
    So is there now going to be a prerequisite for authentic charity that the recipient be a "stranger"?
  8. Gaius Baltar
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    Gaius Baltar - October 26, 2012 4:46 pm
    I second an Amen Connie, your point (misunderstood & distorted by many) is right on. It's rather simple, "teach a man to fish", this gives him purpose, independence and self-worth. At its root, this is all about limited government. As James Madison elequently wrote: "It may be a reflection on human nature that such devices should be necessary to control the abuses of government. But what is government itself but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this:
    you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next instance oblige it to control itself. A dependence on the people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions."
  9. Jackiebop
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    Jackiebop - October 26, 2012 4:19 pm
    Hate to burst your bubble there Connie, but the rich don't pay FICA, and the biggest welfare queens are corperations. Look it up.Not to mention the fact that social security and medicare are classed as welfare.What little is spent on programs to help people is a drop in the bucket, if you bother to do a little research you would find that out.
  10. Wheezy
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    Wheezy - October 26, 2012 3:30 pm
    The 47% that Romney (and presumably Connie) disparaged:

    28.3% - Workers who pay payroll taxes but have enough exemptions and deductions to legally pay no net income tax. These could include your child care workers and teaching assistants.
    10.3% - Elderly on social security who don't have enough other income to qualify for income tax.
    6.9% - non-elderly people who make less than $20,000/year. These could include the cooks at the restaurants you go to and the home health aides that take care of your elderly parents, and would probably include Connie's "entitlement people".
    ~1% - others, including 7,000 millionaires who paid no tax in 2011 due to tax-free investments
  11. alpapy
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    alpapy - October 26, 2012 2:50 pm
    I bet when you were growing up, the working class had good paying union jobs. Those good things you speak of were not put there by our elected officials. They were bargained for in the work place. Then the party of the rich, the Republicans, got greedy, closed plants in the US, and sent those good paying jobs to China. Instead of a manufacturing economy, we became a service economy at half the pay. One third of Americans today report that they seldom or ever go to church. Do you really think churches can provide the help that the 46 million people with incomes below the poverty line need?
  12. willydz63
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    willydz63 - October 26, 2012 1:24 pm
    So, how's that church attendance doing on the US? And if the economy's so bad, how does that effect donations? And how much does Mitt have to contribute to get his own planet in the afterlife, complete with underlings? And the best estimates for Mormon church charity expenditures is under 8% of total tihing (costs a bunch to build and maintain temples and Salt Lake City business center). My church of the Agnostics cost very lttle, and I'm happy to have my tax money spend to help the US citizenry that is less fortunate.
  13. Klaatu
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    Klaatu - October 26, 2012 1:23 pm
    No, if you listen to the remarks in their entirety he made it clear that there is a permanent class of people who don't want to be self sufficient and that is the people he was talking about. It is understandable that you are desperate for an issue but this one won't stick because anyone with common sense knows exactly what he meant. I don't believe the churches can completely take over welfare and I don't want them to anyway. We need a safety net for those who truly need help, but if we are going to have one we also have an obligation to ensure that every precaution is taken to keep welfare from being a permanent way of life for anyone but the permanently disabled. Anyone who is young and healthy shouldn't be on welfare for the long haul.
  14. aequitas
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    aequitas - October 26, 2012 11:55 am
    The 47% of individuals to whom Romney was referring are the 47% who pay no income taxes. The vast majority of the 47% are not dependent and not lazy. They are students putting themselves through college who do not earn enough to be subject to income tax. They are members of the armed services fighting overseas who are exempt from federal income tax. They are seniors. They are the working poor who aren't paid enough to be taxed.

    I will absolutely concede that there are bad apples out there. However, portraying 47% of the country as moochers on society is extraordinarily disrespectful and quite frankly not accurate.

    You're also right that Mitt Romney gives a considerable portion of his income to charity, but his personal interventions seem to be reserved for people of his own faith and individuals he knows personally. His altruism doesn't seem to extend to people he doesn't actually know or with whom he shares a common faith. A prime example is his refusal to intervene to save a profitable Bain-owned Sensata Technologies plant in Freeport, Illinois. His record of charitable giving is reflective of the larger problem with relying on private charity alone to provide the social safety net. Private charity was ill-equipped to get us through the Great Depression. Private charity still leaves many people falling through the cracks. Anyone who knows how government works knows that it's extraordinarily difficult getting government to act on anything. It requires a demonstrable need. In the case of social safety net programs, they were created because private charity could not meet the demand and need for services.
  15. Klaatu
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    Klaatu - October 26, 2012 10:41 am
    Nice try to take something completely out of its context. If you were a bit more honest you would acknowledge the millions of dollars in charity donations by Romney and his personal intervention to help people in need. And you know there is a huge element of truth in the real meaning of those comments. We DO have an entitlement mentality and he was speaking about the people we ALL see on a daily basis who are not interested in helping themselves but only want a handout. They exist and you know it, and it there is nothing wrong with forcing them to take some personal responsibility. We cannot exist as a nation with a majority of the population dependent on government.
  16. pta mom
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    pta mom - October 26, 2012 10:31 am
    "I'm not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there." —Mitt Romney (January 2012)

    "All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. ... My job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives." -Mitt Romney, in leaked comments from a fundraiser in May 2012
  17. freesenior
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    freesenior - October 26, 2012 9:43 am
    The government has become the costly middleman for the distribution of confiscated charity that would otherwise be distributed as true charity by alternative institutions. The government does not act out of love. It is an entity that is not supposed to have a heart and the sooner it gets back to being a servant instead of the manorlord, the better. So much for the politheology of socialism. I might add that the enlightend Scrooge chose to act upon his own and by his own heart rather than concluding that he should joyously open his purse for more greedy govenment fingers. As has been noted many times already, there is no prohibition against contributing more money to the Federal Government of the United States on a voluntary basis. What is ironic remains the notion that there are those that cannot bring themselves to offer anything unless it is a mandated tax which is saying make a law so that I will be forced to do good? Makes me wonder who has a conscience and who has an agenda to replace it..
  18. Wheezy
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    Wheezy - October 26, 2012 8:51 am
    If federal entitlements are so lucrative, why are people still going to soup kitchens and homeless shelters?

    Good one, PTA mom.
  19. Report Abuse
    - October 26, 2012 8:08 am
    Unbelievable - great attitude - let them die. Fortunately, most of the country has some compassion, unlike yourself.
  20. pta mom
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    pta mom - October 26, 2012 7:05 am
    'I wish to be left alone,' said Scrooge. 'Since you ask me what I wish, gentlemen, that is my answer. I don't make merry myself at Christmas and I can't afford to make idle people merry. I help to support the establishments I have mentioned-they cost enough; and those who are badly off must go there.'

    'Many can't go there; and many would rather die.'

    'If they would rather die,' said Scrooge, 'they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population."
  21. Contemptio
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    Contemptio - October 26, 2012 6:31 am
    Amen Connie. I blame the far left liberal baby boomers for their fall.
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