On Saturday, Oct. 12, Xerox ran into problems updating the software that runs the SNAP (Food Stamps) system. Stores across the nation couldn’t process SNAP transactions. Many sores posted signs indicating that SNAP purchases were temporarily unavailable.
In Springhill and Mansfield, Louisiana, the local Walmart accepted purchases from those with SNAP EFT cards so that people would not have to go without food. Without the amount limits in the cards, the purchasing power became virtually unlimited. Soon the store filled up and the shelves emptied as hundreds of people filled shopping carts to overflowing. The police were called to help control the chaos.
When Xerox managed to resolve the issue, and the card limits again became effective, dozens of shoppers simply abandoned carts full of food and left the store. They didn’t even have the courtesy to put food they could no longer afford back on the shelves where they got it. Walmart employees spent well into Sunday returning items to shelves.
Such behavior says something about why many people are on SNAP. Moral poverty often leads to financial poverty. Moral poverty is a mindset, a worldview. It’s very difficult to rise out of financial poverty if you live in moral poverty.
Moral wealth would include the attitude, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It also includes the sentiment, expressed by the Apostle Paul in 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15, that people should work for their own living and not be dependent on others, concluding, “If a man will not work, he shall not eat.”
Moral poverty’s attitude, however, is, “Hey, the system’s broken, and we can get all we can carry for free. Hurry, let’s get what we can while we can.”
Many on the left decry the growing gap between America’s most wealthy and its poor. They see the poor as oppressed by the rich. The reality, however, is that many of the poor are oppressed by moral poverty.
Many of Americas poor have had job after job and have been fired because they don’t show up for work or do a very poor job at work. This isn’t oppression by the rich. It’s oppression by moral poverty.
When government programs fund and encourage moral poverty, we get more of it. Food Stamps (SNAP) may be used by many hard working, moral people, but there are many for whom the program simply feeds their moral poverty.
This is what happens when a society abandons the moral principles established by God and His spokesmen in the Bible.