Tenn. Lawmakers Hurt Poor Kids, Mum on Greedy Corporations

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It remains to be seen whether taxpayers will get any of that money back. But what’s obvious is that when big corporations fail with public money, not much outrage, if any, comes from Republican lawmakers like Campfield and Dennis.

But let the talk turn to people on welfare.

That’s when the righteous indignation kicks in. That’s when people who survive on the chump change of TANF and food stamps become villains, not victims.

Never mind that they didn’t ask to be poor. And never mind that the solution that Campfield and Dennis are proposing is worse than the problem.

Poverty, in and of itself, is a major stressor for children. It means not knowing where they may be living next, as poor families move a lot. And studies too numerous for me to name in this column show that children who show up for school hungry and ill-clothed perform poorly, and are at risk for repeating grades.

So where in the world do these two lawmakers get the idea that by placing the burden of preserving the TANF benefits on the backs of the children, or in other words, making children responsible for the fate of their entire family, is supposed to make them perform better in school?

If anything, that kind of stress may cause them to perform worse.

But obviously, Campfield and Dennis don’t care about that. Apparently, all they care about is scoring ideological points with constituents who wrongly believe that people who are surviving off taxpayer dollars – you know blacks, Latinos and Obama voters who want stuff – are at the root of the nation’s problems.

Never mind that wealthy corporations use millions in tax dollars and incentives too. Not because they need it to survive – but because they can.

Tonyaa Weathersbee is an award-winning columnist based in Jacksonville, Fla. Follow her at @tonyaajw. Or like her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/tonyaajweathersbee.

(Photo: AP)

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