Response to column by Michael J. Hicks, entitled, “Welfare-recipient fraud lower than most think”:
It was refreshing to read the column of April 1 by Hicks, Ball State professor of economics, in which he very effectively debunked the myth of “welfare fraud” by the recipients of such services.
Now I wish The News Sentinel (Professor Hicks?) would publish a similar article debunking yet another common myth: “voter fraud.” Voter fraud is being touted in many states as justification to chip away at voter rights, despite the fact that fraud perpetuated by voters is virtually nonexistent.
Unfortunately, both of these highly emotional, false narratives have been promulgated by political pundits as justification for policies which further disenfranchise poor people. As a result, a great many citizens have come to accept these myths as facts.
If fraud was honestly measured using number of instances and amount of money involved, then it would be quite obvious that there is much greater need for campaign finance reform than for welfare reform.
I find it reprehensible that poor citizens are being used as political pawns. I suspect that Jesus would, too.