Thursday, October 08, 2020

Letter Bomb

 People were asking Snopes if the "president" actually required that food boxes distributed by the Department of Agriculture to needy families contain a letter from him.  This is how difficult things have become to believe. The Farmers to Families Food Box Program has distributed four billion dollars of aid, more than one hundred million boxes to those in need since May, with the aim of redirecting meat, dairy and produce that might normally go to restaurants and other food-service businesses. The letter comes in both English and Spanish on White House letterhead and features Trump’s bold signature: “As President, safeguarding the health and well-being of our citizens is one of my highest priorities,” it reads. “As part of our response to coronavirus, I prioritized sending nutritious food from our farmers to families in need throughout America.” It should be pointed out that the letter itself contains no nutritional value.

Quite the contrary.

Some organizations that handle the boxes, delivering them to families that are in desperate and dire circumstances, have refused to handle these Trump-infused boxes. Others are doing the simpler thing: removing the contamination before passing out the otherwise healthy supplies. Like so many things connected to this "president," the impact has been primarily self-serving on his and frustrating to those actually doing the work. Like his insistence that his signature be placed on every one of the relief checks that were sent out back in April, even though his autograph was not required and appeared in the memo section, delaying the already delayed relief. 

These letters, appearing as they did just a month before the election and without prior warning, continues this trend of the kind of help we can all do without, to quote the poet. Ultimately, the food gets where it needs to go. The money got where it needed to go, but in the meantime, folks like our district's Chief Systems and Services Officer who had to explain the existence of this note, that included admonitions to "practice good hygiene and wash your hands, people who feel sick should stay home, and to practice social distancing and consider wearing a face covering when in public."


Our food service has been working since March to keep families safe and fed. They don't need some clown to come late to the party and taking credit for it. Especially those most vulnerable and afraid in our sanctuary city. These are the good guys. That guy on the letter? Ignore him. Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay home. 

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