This is in response to a comment that KennyMac made on the Jesus Because Your Broke post. It was supposed to be a reply but it got way too long.
My entire family emigrated here from Oklahoma and Texas in the 1930s. At first they wanted to work but there was none or didn’t pay enough to live on so they starved. Then the government stepped in with food assistance and free housing in the form of labor camps. My grandparents accepted this help as a stepping stone from poverty to prosperity and eventually got off government relief after many years. Their children however, began to wonder why they should help themselves at all when the government was willing to do it for them. After all, they didn’t need much and the government had lots of money. Because of that attitude and government ‘help’, an entire generation of self-reliant, independent people were lost, at least in the State of California. The entire first generation of my family born here in California were on government assistance most if not all of their adult lives. They worked only when they had to, not because they wanted to. They would purposely work seasonal or temporary jobs so they would get laid off every few months and live on unemployment and welfare living in hovels until their unemployment ran out, forcing them to go find another temporary job.
Their many children (welfare pays more for each child you have) never learned any different. Government assistance done fine for their folks, why wouldn’t it for them? The need for education or a work ethic was never impressed on these children. I cannot think of a single college graduate in my family. Not one. I cannot think of a single person other than my dad and his brother that retired from a place of employment. Not one.
The welfare system here was revamped so it was harder to get, but not impossible. What did my family and the rest of the state do? Headed downtown for some federal assistance, that’s what. They all went down and got on SSI. I swear to God, I know of people that were on SSI because of their addictions – that’s right, they claimed they couldn’t work because of their drug and/or alcohol addictions. So what did the government do? You guessed it, gave them $1000 a month to spend on their addictions. Brilliant, isn’t it?
There are people on assistance that need it, not ranting about that. What I am ranting about are those that are perfectly able to support themselves but refuse to because of a ‘disability’. They either exaggerate their disabilities or they refuse to retrain for another line of work.
Oh, what was the difference between my dad and his brother from everybody else? Their stepdad, my grandpa Ike, was a logger in Oregon and knew the meaning of hard work. He didn’t move his family down here until 1957. Pops and Ed already had a work ethic instilled in them.
Rant over and I can’t believe there isn’t a single cussword in there. I should probably frame it, huh?