The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or food stamps, was created by Congress to help low-income families obtain a more nutritious diet.
While it's a good goal, the fact of the matter is that people using food stamps aren't using them to buy healthy food.
The USDA published a report in November which found that SNAP households spend 20% of their benefits, about $255 per month, on:
- Sweetened beverages (Both fizzy sodas and non-fizzy drinks)
- Salty Snacks
One in five SNAP dollars goes to buying items which are allowed under the program's rules, but they're completely devoid of any nutritional value.
People are using their food stamps to buy empty junk calories, food and drink that contribute to chronic conditions such as diabetes and obesity.
Charles Lane has a piece in the Washington Post titled "How liberals undermine the food stamp program." In it, he highlights SNAP's flaws and looks at both sides of reforming the program.
Ultimately, you decide what you put in your body. It's that simple.