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I Am Getting Sick and Tired of Conservatives Telling Poor People What They Can and Cannot Eat

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Here we go again.

I am talking about the systematic oppression of poor people.

State legislators in Texas are in the process of banning SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) users, previously known as Food Stamps, from purchasing soda, candy, and other junk food. In March, State Rep. Briscoe Cain (Republican) filed a bill in the House Committee. He proposes that this bill is a way to help stop widespread health issues such as diabetes.

There are millions of Americans who benefit from SNAP. According to a study done by the United States Department of Agriculture, more and more SNAP users are using SNAP to pay for junk food. Yes, it is known that the United States has a health care crisis. More and more Americans are being diagnosed with chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and other illnesses related to poor diet. It is also known that it is not just poor people who are contracting such illnesses.

Oh, I am not done.

This is not the first time state legislators have tried to ban SNAP users from purchasing junk food. A state legislator in Florida tried to propose a bill that would ban sugary drinks from being purchased with SNAP dollars back in 2012, according to The Washington Post. This bill did not pass.

I am getting sick and tired of Republicans telling poor people what they can and cannot eat. Why are republican legislators desiring this ban so much? Do they feel that tax payers are being conned? Are they jealous? What is it exactly. Majority of SNAP users have jobs, therefore, they are also tax payers who are buying into the program. The real question here, is banning SNAP users from purchasing junk food really going to help the bigger issue?

No, it is not.

Can we discuss how this crooked food system needs a total overhaul? Can we discuss food deserts? Can we discuss how stores market junk food more heavily to SNAP users? Can we propose a bill that will limit junk food being sold in corner stores and convenient stores, which are the primary grocery outlets for many who live in impoverished communities? Can we propose a bill to ban companies, like Aramark, from distributing sugary treats to kids in public schools? Oh, how about funding for nutrition education in schools? I can think of many more ways we can use this energy to really fix this health crisis. Banning SNAP users from buying junk food is not going to fix the health care issue. It is just another way for conservatives to oppress poor people into a state of disenfranchisement. I am not saying that limiting junk food isn’t needed. I wish everyone would limit junk food purchases.

And I mean EVERYONE.

If this bill pass, it will take effect in September.

Written by

I am a food/nutrition educator by day and a writer, activist, traveler, creator, and diner by night (weekends too).

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