The following is my opinion as a member participating in this discussion.
Yeah... using the mod box to reply means that a subject has inspired my emotions. I'll do my best to not come across too passionate on the
Yes, there are some poor people who abuse the system. This is a fact. I grew up in extreme poverty, the child of a working single mother who was
denied all public assistance because she made just a few dollars over the legal limit for receiving such benefits. We went hungry often. We had
nothing. Meanwhile we did have neighbors who were worse off than us, many of them on public assistance.
And a few who fit the stereotype of welfare abusers. They, however, were the exception and not the rule.
The title of this thread says "uneducated poor". That, to me, is a misnomer. I have spent much of my adult life working with the mentally ill ( A
category I fall into myself ) and have seen the vast majority of those people struggling with poverty. Even those who receive benefits only receive
enough to lead a meager life. Almost all of the people I have known, in this pursuit, have either had college degrees or a record of military service.
These were not slouches. I know... I know... We all hear stories about people on welfare living in mansions and driving brand new, high end SUV's. In
my experience the people I have encountered who match this descriptive were not getting rich from public assistance - they were criminals. They were
drug dealers, prostitutes, etc.
And when the got busted? They lost their benefits. Plain and simple. I don't know the law off hand, but a drug conviction, for example, bars that
person from receiving public assistance for I believe two years - the first time - and ten years the second.
As far as the woman on the radio show you discuss. It doesn't strike me as legitimate for a few reasons. First off, if she were receiving benefits,
she said three distinct things that could lead to her benefits being revoked and which could merit prosecution for fraud. First, that her kids were no
longer living with her, second that her boyfriend was, and third that she was asking for donations so publicly ( she would have to report them as
income if she did receive any - and, due to the nature of the venue, surely there was a chance that she would draw attention to herself ).
This leads me to several thoughts:
The entire call and premise could have been propaganda or an attempt at satire.
The caller was lying about her situation entirely in an attempt to commit fraud.
The caller was severely mentally ill and, therefore, easily tricked or confused.
Those are just a few possibilities that spring to mind.
If this woman was being honest and forthright? Then she needs to be prosecuted. Having said that, society, at large, needs to understand that she is
the exception and not the rule. Most people who receive benefits of any kind have to jump through hoops just to get it and barely get enough to
scratch by on. It is no life of Riley.
As an ATS Staff Member, I will not moderate in threads such as this where I have participated as a member.