I am writing this letter out of sheer confusion and frustration. I wanna know why as a society we reward stupid and irresponsible behavior and make it tougher for those that work hard and try their best to do whats right, not just for themselves, but also make the choice to not be a burden to society. I am a single mom with two children, I went to school and I have what’s considered to be a “good” job, making around $35,000 per a year. After my divorce, I decided to move back home to save some money and pay down some debt. In the last few weeks I have been looking to rent a nice two bedroom apartment or home for my two kids and I. What I have found is just down right disturbing to me.
A decent two bedroom apartment, in a decent apartment complex depending on area such as Cameron Park, for example runs approx $850 to $1000 per month. Okay, fine, but that got me thinking. How exactly do a lot of these people who make even less than myself make this work? Especially if you have children, are a single income household and paying for daycare, groceries, etc.? I have an car, along with an average car payment and very minimal debt, yet even apartment living is a stretch and pennies will be pinched just to get by. Now I made my career choice, that is no one’s fault but mine and I have currently enrolled myself back in school in order to make some more money in the future and yes I am paying for my own tuition. However, my question still stands, how do these people do it? The answer is amazing. They don’t.
I am amazed at how many people think it’s okay to get a three bedroom apartment for next to nothing based on income, and how many kids you have. If you couldn’t afford the first child or the second then why burden the tax payers with a third child? Have you ever gone to the grocery store and saw that couple with WIC checks and an EBT card buying Oreo’s and a tri-tip while you’re standing there, still in your work uniform, buying a loaf of bread and hoping to god you have enough gas money to last you until the next pay period? My favorite is when they get finished using their EBT card, they whip out a hundred-dollar bill to buy the carton of cigarettes and a 18 pack of Coors Light, not to mention the $1,000 worth of tattoos and the $35 fake nails. Oh and let’s not forget the purse that’s nicer than the one you’re carrying. So I ask myself, why is this okay? The answer is it’s not.
I am not saying that these programs are bad, and I certainly am not saying that in these times there aren’t well deserving people out there that need a “leg up.” What I am saying is shame on those people who consider Medi-Cal their “insurance” plan, yet have another kid. Shame on those people who are perfectly capable of working yet choose not to. I can’t say that I blame them, I am starting to feel like the dumb one. Hell, if I quit my job tomorrow, I can get my very own two bedroom apartment for next to nothing, all my day care can be paid for, my kids can get free lunch, and hell, why hurry through school when I can get that paid for too?
Self responsibility and accountability are lost for far too many people. We as a society need to change that, and the only way that can happen is to make people responsible for their own lives and their own destiny. Until we gather the strength to do this, it’s going to be a long, hard road for the next generation of taxpayers.