Country Living Series

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Put me in charge

A reader sent this. Apparently this appeared in the Waco Tribune Herald, Waco, Texas, on November 18, 2010.

Put me in charge ...

Put me in charge of food stamps. I’d get rid of Lone Star cards; no cash for Ding Dongs or Ho Ho’s, just money for 50-pound bags of rice and beans, blocks of cheese and all the powdered milk you can haul away. If you want steak and frozen pizza, then get a job.

Put me in charge of Medicaid. The first thing I’d do is to get women Norplant birth control implants or tubal ligations. Then, we’ll test recipients for drugs, alcohol, and nicotine and document all tattoos and piercings. If you want to reproduce or use drugs, alcohol, smoke or get tats and piercings, then get a job.

Put me in charge of government housing. Ever live in a military barracks? You will maintain our property in a clean and good state of repair. Your “home” will be subject to inspections anytime and possessions will be inventoried. If you want a plasma TV or Xbox 360, then get a job and your own place.

In addition, you will either present a check stub from a job each week or you will report to a “government” job. It may be cleaning the roadways of trash, painting and repairing public housing, whatever we find for you. We will sell your 22 inch rims and low profile tires and your blasting stereo and speakers and put that money toward the “common good.”

Before you write that I’ve violated someone’s rights, realize that all of the above is voluntary. If you want our money, accept our rules.. Before you say that this would be “demeaning” and ruin their “self esteem,” consider that it wasn’t that long ago that taking someone else’s money for doing absolutely nothing was demeaning and lowered self esteem.

If we are expected to pay for other people’s mistakes we should at least attempt to make them learn from their bad choices. The current system rewards them for continuing to make bad choices.

Alfred W. Evans, Gatesville


  1. Sounds like a pretty generous offer for people who make bad choices and refuse to be productive.

    A plan like this might encourage Christians to intervene as well, on behalf of the poor who are poor not because of their own bad choices. I think of the mom with 3 young kids whose husband ditched her for another woman. Or, the blue collar dad who is laid off and no matter how much pavement he pounds, can't find a job.

    As Christians, WE should be helping these folks. However, the government does such a good job, we often don't bother.

    I wouldn't want my abandoned single-mom friend to live in military barracks. She doesn't deserve that. I guess I would just have to help her...which would be a good thing!

  2. Patrice for president 2012!

  3. I agree whole-heartedly with your comments! My only thought is that sometimes people fall on hard times and, as much as they want to work, the jobs just aren't there in their community. My husband experienced this about 3 years ago. We were right up to the point of needing some aid when a job came through. He would have taken anything, but in our small town there were few choices. Just a thought...

  4. What a great idea!! This should be implemented nation wide. Of course, I agree with Shawna, if the church hadn't given up its God given obligation to care for the widows and orphans to the government, we wouldn't be in the predicament we are in now.

  5. I agree with Mr. Evans with the exception of the Norplant birth control implants / tubal ligations. We wouldn't want to penalize someone who had just fallen on hard times with something that would have lifelong implications.

    Besides, if government assistance was reduced to the bare necessities, you wouldn’t have as many people making it a way of life. They would want something better and would be motivated to make that happen. Others would do their best to not have to go on assistance. When will people realize that it is not the government’s job to make sure you can pay for that three bedroom two bath bungalow? Or to make sure you have meals you enjoy each night? I know that people sometimes find themselves in situations beyond their control, but you should have to be at rock bottom before you would even want to accept assistance.

    Heaven forbid, if I were to find myself in a situation where I had to accept such welfare, I would be grateful for beans, rice, and milk and cheese. It would be nice to also include a little flour, oil, some eggs and a few basic fruits and vegetables. Of course, for most people today, you would need to give them a pamphlet telling them how to cook with these items.

    Southern Gal

  6. I'm sending this out on email. I predict that it will go viral.

    Naturally, a "one size fits all" solution won't work. All too often, though, that is how government programs work, giving aid to some who don't really need it or arresting people for minor infractions that violate a zero-tolerance policy. It's a good place to start, though.

    And in regards to JenB's remark, people need to live their lives as if things will go wrong. We never could count on jobs and circumstances. My wife and I chose to live frugally, passing on the vacation trips and many of the toys people consider necessities. Instead, we bought food - nothing fancy - on sale, bought cars we could pay cash for, made do with what we had, and paid off our houses - "handyman specials," every one of them - and paid them off as quickly was we could.

    I have been unemployed for 4 1/2 years now, in a state with the highest rate of unemployment, last I heard. We are slowly draining our resources, but thus far, our standard of living has not changed much BECAUSE we chose to not live high in the first place, and instead put money back for just such a situation.

    Every time we dip into my retirement, I still have to pay taxes on it, and it is particularly galling that my taxes are being used to bail out people who bought huge houses that they couldn't afford in the first place, then lived high, thinking there would be no consequences.

    Even now, we are preparing for when (as Patrice put it) the bleep hits the fan, and I have heard rumors that the government will consider taking the "excess" that we "hoarders" are so unfairly putting by at our own expense.

    Yes, there are people who are in dire straits because of circumstances beyond their control, but I am certain that there are a lot fewer than you think.

  7. I agree with all except for the Norplant and the Tubal Ligation. If some one is struggling through a temporary setback, asking them to be sterilized in order to get help might be a bit harsh. And I am talking about temporary. Not someone who is using and abusing the aid system to sit at home having a bunch of kids while contributing nothing to society.

  8. I also struggle only with the birth control aspect, but that's because of my religion, not because I like paying for it.

    I agree totally with Shawana also. We Christians don't have the "poor" here to care for because the government has taken that from us. We have asked people before if they can take money for various things, and they say, "oh no, we are getting such and such for so and so" it makes me sad every time. People don’t even care for their own elderly parents anymore because “the government will pay for that”. I am raising my children to know full well they WILL care for me when I’m old. How will I teach them? Because I WILL care for my parents and my husbands parents. They will learn by example.

  9. I can't add anything to that except:


  10. Along with Norplant I suggest vasectomies for a all males instead of Tubal ligation. Vasectomies are much easier to reverse compared to a Tubal.

    Make all Government worker's pensions the same as the military. 50% base pay at 20 years up to 75% for 30 years. Make all federal workers pay compatible to the military. A GS-1 = E-1 the same pay, make it a public service again. If you don't like it get a job in the private sector. No COLA for SS, no COLA for the military or Fed workers.

  11. or we could just reduce the surplus population

  12. i can remember a day back in the 60's when an unemployed person with a family to take care of recieved a small unemployment check and had the opportunity to qualify for "commodities" that were provided by the government each month. these commodities included canned chicken, canned beef, canned pork, canned peanut butter, dried egg, dried milk, flour, cornmeal, cocoa powder, sugar, canned vegetables, boxed cereals, etc....enough food to keep a family of six alive and in good health. one of the reasons the government quit this program and went to food stamps was the black market..some foolish and lazy individuals traded cigarettes, booze, and drugs for the food items that they would resell. this was generally not a problem for the folks who were on the dole for short periods of unemployment..but it was for those who ended up in public housing and on welfare for long periods of time. seems like no matter what the government does or what the church/charities do....there is still alot of corruption. how many children a person has is not the business of anyone especially the state or federal government. too many people "benefit" from the welfare systems...and the amount of the "benefits" from those systems is bloated to exorbitant amounts making it hard to get out of the systems honestly.

  13. How about no aid at all? Because I don't think it honors anyone to steal.
    Yes, it is my money that has been taken from me, we call it taxes, but it is not used for my good, roads etc, it is used to get politicians votes, by giving it to others. A rose by any other name....
    I was born into slavery;I would like to die a free, sovereign citizen. And if you don't think you are a slave also, just what are you when you have to work 4 to 5 month out of the year just for taxes? What is it when you can't own property? Either land or real money? When you can't do anything without the government's permission? The Federal reserve notes we call money isn't worth the paper it is printed on and the rest of the world understands that more than the people of the U.S.
    SUPPORT RON PAUL! At least he understand what liberty is....
    And that it has been lost.
    There is nothing much left to celebrate tomorrow.
    God have mercy.

  14. Agreeing with Anonymous @ 6:48 " many children a person has is not the business of anyone especially the state or federal government."


  15. I agree with everything about this except the birth control aspect. I am betting that if men on assistance were required to have vasectomies, the requirement for any birth control would immediately disappear. It says something evil about "fatherhood" in this society that men on assistance should be allowed to make as many babies as physically possible, (which they cannot support at all), while women should be permanently prevented from ever having any children, for needing any amount of assistance for any length of time.

    You want to put them on Norplant, fine. But you better not be subsidizing Mr. Screwanythingwhileonwelfare's Viagra Rx at the same time.

    Xa Lynn

  16. This has been gnawing at me since I read it. The idea that folks should choose between starvation and taking hormonal birth control/being sterilized is gruesome. It is very Sanger-esque in its purpose to keep "undesirables" from reproducing. How many steps is that removed from forced abortions? And then what?

    There are so many abuses of the safety nets and so many productive ways to talk about this, but that one idea is so full of hate that it shuts down the conversation. When you put forward an idea like that as a viable option, it is likely that people who once thought they agreed with you in many respects are no longer listening - you have made your sphere of influence smaller.

  17. I find the comments on birth control here a little baffling. How many children a person has IS the government's business if the government is the one shelling out money for the food, clothing, education, medical care and supervision (daycare/juvie system).

    Nine out of ten people in the welfare system (and the ones primarily being discussed here) are not good people who fell briefly on hard times - they're long term freeloaders riding the system! Explain to me one good reason why those people should be allowed to breed prodigiously and hike up everyone else's taxes because they can't be bothered to demonstrate responsibility over their own sexual restraint or birth control options?

    It's also worth noting that taxpayers are funding women's birth control already - through Planned Parenthood abortions! Is that really any better?

    Ultimately, I have to say that I think the writer of this column is on to something - if his ideas create this much uproar, it might just be the kick in the pants that people need to get off of welfare and start making better choices!

  18. sara said...
    This has been gnawing at me since I read it. The idea that folks should choose between starvation and taking hormonal birth control/being sterilized is gruesome. It is very Sanger-esque in its purpose to keep "undesirables" from reproducing. How many steps is that removed from forced abortions? And then what?

    There are so many abuses of the safety nets and so many productive ways to talk about this, but that one idea is so full of hate that it shuts down the conversation. When you put forward an idea like that as a viable option, it is likely that people who once thought they agreed with you in many respects are no longer listening - you have made your sphere of influence smaller.


    As someone who tied my tubes because I had to use Medicaid for my son's birth and couldn't see things getting better any time soon I couldn't agree more. A year after my tubal ligation we bought a home and my hubby more than doubled his pay with his company.

    Now we are 5 yrs out since that terrible surgery that left me sick with infections in the tubes. I have reversed the tubal ligation and am now infertile for the last 2 yrs much to the heart ache of my children who long for another sibling or 4.

    Making IRREVERSAL life altering decisions because one is on hard times for just a bit is just plain DUMB.

  19. A long time ago, there was an earnest plea from a "FAMILY with Lymes Disease." Most of the material contained in the family's blog appealing for help is contained in the "Put me in charge" e-mails. As the multitude of comments about this e-mail attest, this 21 year old female either "has a great plan!" or has been bashed around for that plan and it's solutions. This lady's opinion ONLY agrees with a newspaper article in the Waco Tribune-Herald.

    The author of this opinion letter, not a real plan with real solutions, has already identified himself as Alfred W. Evans in his letter to the Waco Tribune-Herald and is also posted in this discussion. He also wrote to and SILENCEDOGOOD2010'S BLOG, which was reposted on BlackShards, and thanked them for posting his letter. "I googled “Put me in charge” and found it on many sites. Thanks again for getting what I consider common sense out to the people." This 21 year old female is receiving credit for your plan and your solution, Mr. Evans. Most of the heat and derogatory remarks are directed toward her and not to you, Mr. Evans. Do you care that this is happening? Why do you allow this to continue on this way? Better her than you? Some military operations use intelligence and deception to accomplish their mission. Food for thought. More on this further down below.

    To read more, see my posted comments on the Amazon discussion "Put Me In Charge!" This is the link to those comments.

    You may also want to visit The Veterans' Voice at

    The following articles are from the
    "Gatesville man surprised letter to the editor is an Internet phenomenon," dated February 26, 2012 at
    "LETTERS: Readers sound off on Alfred W. Evans, oil drilling," dated March 3, 2012, at

    Charles Kranichfelt