Mail and Commentary Nov. 24, 2010 

Pass Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, Restore Food Stamp Cuts

During the lame duck legislative session, Congress should pass the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (S. 3307) and restore SNAP (food stamps) cuts.

The $56-billion Food Stamp program is America's most important anti-hunger program, helping about 42 million low-income Americans to buy a nutritionally-adequate diet.

The average family receives about $133 a month--$4 a day--for each household member. For food stamp eligibility, contact Idaho's Care Line: 211, 1-800-926-2588 or idahocareline.org.

Idaho Food Bank's study "Hunger in Idaho 2010," found more than 65,500 (about the population of Meridian) of the Gem State's children--under age 18--are not sure of where their next meal will come from. 

While Congress debates making Bush's tax cuts permanent, it's discussing food stamp cuts to increase funding for child nutrition.

The "people's" government pays for the food, and 50 percent of Idaho's Health and Welfare administrative costs. Food stamps provide instant economic stimulus: 80 percent are used in two weeks, 97 percent in one month.

With one in four children at risk of hunger and one in three overweight or obese, Congress should make passing the Hunger-Free Kids Act and restoring SNAP cuts its top 2010 priority.

Our children cannot afford to wait.

"You can judge a society by how they treat their weakest members," said Mahatma Gandhi.

Congressional contact info: Sen. Mike Crapo: crapo.senate.gov, 208-334-1776; Sen. Jim Risch: risch.senate.gov, 208-342-7985; Rep. Mike Simpson, District 2: simpson.house.gov, 208-334-1953.

--Bill Kibble,Boise


If Rall Is Gonna Pick on Christians, Count Me Out

As a long-time reader and vocal proponent of Ted Rall, I was disappointed to read his latest comic strip. Without merit it avidly attacked the Christian faith, which is more central to myself than anything else in my life. To read something like that made me lose all respect for Rall, and more than that it felt like a slap in the face, something I can forgive but I will not forget. Mr. Rall, I wish you had more class. It's inflammatory comments like these that cause prejudicial injustices in the world. I will no longer be reading your column. Shame on you.

--Jessica Honnen,Boise

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