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Really? Beleagered taxpayers buying all kids breakfast?
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My grandparents - who married in late 1939 - were deeply affected by the Depression. They were dirt poor in the beginning but prospered later. Now at 91, my Nana's eyes well up with tears as she recounts their first year together. Times were tough; dinner often consisted of "cornbread mush" or beans. Her tears are not of self-pity, rather tears of fondly remembering that love prevailed and that adversity welded them stronger. Surprisingly, it was the best year of their marriage, she said.

My grandfather had dreams and aspirations but was content to work as a ranch hand. Anyone enduring the Depression felt successful if they had food on the table for there was a time when there was none.

My grandparents were of a different stock than today. They worked very hard, scrimped and saved, pulled their own weight, provided for their four children, sacrificed self, helped others and believed in the principle of self sufficiency. They wasted little. They lived life quietly, often asking God to supply their needs.

Even though poor, my mother or her brothers would never be sent off to school without breakfast. Times have certainly changed. Ceres Unified School District Asst. Supt. Fred Van Vleck said "when we're dealing with 80 percent who qualify for free lunches, many parents are not feeding their children (breakfast). That's a reality."

Because of the problem, CUSD is offering free breakfast to all students - even if they come from well-to-do families. CUSD's intentions are good and understandable. Who could argue against eating breakfast? Research shows that students who come to school with food in their stomachs are less disruptive, more attentive and less likely to visit the school nurse. But the nagging question is: Why aren't parents already doing this? How much effort and expense could it cost to sit a child - the most precious commodity of any household - down to a bowl of sweetened or unsweetened oat meal or cereal and maybe a piece or toast or fruit? How much cost and effort would it take to send along a tuna sandwich and a banana and a pint of milk?

I've seen the EBT cards passed out like candy. There's really no excuse with today's welfare network.

One has to question the quality of parents today. I could spend a whole as to why I think parents miss the mark today but primarily it's the blurring of the lines as to who should take care of the children brought on by the "nanny state." It's almost as if parents don't recognize they are responsible for their children because the state has taken over for them. The vast majority of Americans have grown dependent on government like a heroin addict depends on his drug.

News flash: It's not the role of feed your children breakfast or lunch! Why would anyone want it any other way than a parent to provide for their children?

We're accustomed to government kicking us out of the driver's seat of our lives and relegating us to the back seat. And we let them every time we elect someone to office who has adopted the mindset thatf an over-reaching government is okay. It's not okay.

It is not okay for government to tell you that you can't give your kid a happy meal if you happen to visit McDonald's.

It's not okay for government to forbid you from circumcizing your baby boy.

It's not okay for government to provide parenting classes.

It's not okay for government to restrict women from breast-feeding their infants in public.

It's not okay for government to dictate the contents of a snack vending machine.

On and on it goes.

It's not okay for government to order motel operators to use fitted sheets over flatted sheets.

And it's not okay for a city to dictate how a company should market its abandoned store building and hold it above its head for an approval of a newer and bigger project down the road after they've jumped through all the hoops.

See what's happening? Government has grown so big it's a monster that thinks it can dictate whatever it wants! And we most certainly are to blame as willing accomplices! It is our job to keep things in check. Benjamin Franklin was credited with being asked "Well, Doctor, what have we got-a Republic or a Monarchy?" and he replied, "A Republic, if you can keep it." Instead our complacency paves the way for the Trojan horse - the insidious politician whose power thrives off of giving to create a dependency to attract allegiance of voters who receive.

Most Americans are content in a pasture of bleeting sheep, led around by the ever watchful shepherd of government to show them where, when and what to eat and protect them because they are too stupid and helpless to care for themselves.

Too many Americans enjoy playing sheep because being a sheep requires little effort. A sheep escapes hard work and responsibility. You don't have to think when someone else is always thinking for you. Sheep endorse the idea of stealing from the one who has more (he earned it), so it can be given to them (who didn't earn it). Far too many want equal outcomes, not just equal opportunity. If someone is successful, they want them taxed heavily just to make things fair. Well, if you want fair, go to Turlock in July.

While government makes sheep feel secure, in reality sheep are shackled in movement and liberty. It reminds me of many of the thousands of slaves who were emancipated by Lincoln only to chose to stay on the their masters' farms because they were too comfortable being "cared" for.

It's a nice thought that CUSD wants to help. But there is no such thing as a free lunch. Rest assured, it may be free to the recipient but somebody paid for it. How are these free breakfasts paid for? Because there is a bit of "profit" in the subsidies offered by the state and federal governments for each meal provided to a child from a poor family. The federal government pays CUSD $2.79 per "free" meal and 29 cents for every meal which is paid by a child. The state kicks in $1.80 and 27 cents respectively. So there are enough taxpayer subsidies to pay for breakfast for all.

Really? When half of American households are not paying taxes at all, can't parents supply a basic need like breakfast and give the taxpayers a break?

The taxpayer and generations of taxpayers to come are being buried with debt since the government is spending more than it takes in. Elected officials are going crazy with our credit card when we can't pay the bills. As of this writing, the U.S. government's debt clock reached $14,619,780,131,049.19. That's a debt of $46,981 on the head of every American (311.2 million people). The national debt has continued to increase an average of $3.94 billion per day in the past four years.

We can't afford to be the nanny state and we should not want a nanny state. Every liberty loving American needs to say enough is enough. Let us take care of ourselves and let us keep more of our money as we do it!

How do you feel? Let Jeff by e-mailing him at