GOP Mich. Lawmaker: Foster Kids Only Deserve to be Dressed in Rags

April 25, 2011

(ChattahBox Political News)—Republican Michigan state Sen. Bruce Caswell, anxious to pay for tax breaks for the rich on the backs of the poor, proposed an amendment to the state budget that would force foster kids to only shop at second hand stores for their clothing. How could an elected official rationalize such a cruel and cold-hearted plan that would save the state little or no money? Caswell, a.k.a., Mr. Bumble, explained he wore used clothing as a boy. So, why should poor unfortunate urchins be provided new clothing from Walmart on Michigan’s dime? After a public outcry over Caswell’s mean plan to dress foster children in rags, and strip them of any remaining dignity, he backed down.

Michigan Radio reported on Caswell’s plan to force foster kids to use their paltry $79.00 annual state clothing allowance only at thrift stores.

“He says they should get “gift cards” to be used only at Salvation Army, Goodwill or other thrift stores.”

‘”I never had anything new,” Caswell says. “I got all the hand-me-downs. And my dad, he did a lot of shopping at the Salvation Army, and his comment was — and quite frankly it’s true — once you’re out of the store and you walk down the street, nobody knows where you bought your clothes.”‘

What a guy.

Gilda Jacobs, the CEO of the Michigan League for Human Services was “flabbergasted” at Caswell’s attack on the dignity of foster children.

“Honestly, I was flabbergasted,” Jacobs says. “I really couldn’t believe this. Because I think, gosh, is this where we’ve gone in this state? I think that there’s the whole issue of dignity. You’re saying to somebody, you don’t deserve to go in and buy a new pair of gym shoes. You know, for a lot of foster kids, they already have so much stacked against them.”

Caswell’s new plan drops the thrift store requirement and instead, would issue gift cards that could only be used at selected retailers.

“A last-minute amendment would eliminate a requirement that poor children spend their $79 clothing allowance at the Salvation Army or other thrift stores.”

‘”The state will work with those other retailers to get a discount on clothing that is bought,” said Sen. Bruce Caswell, chair of the DHS Appropriations Subcommittee. “The clothing or shoes that is purchased with these cards shall not be redeemable for cash. This way, we know the kids are getting the clothing and the money is spent appropriately.”‘

No slight against the poor is too small for Republican lawmakers, as they wage war against the helpless to help the rich get richer.


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