Those feeding the hungry should be praised

Sunday, June 19, 2016

First Baptist Church and the Clay County YMCA have done a tremendous amount of good in Clay County over many years. Of this we have no doubt. In fact, these pages have carried many stories about the good performed by these organizations.

They are doing a wonderful thing by feeding hungry children through the summer and for this they should be applauded though, we're sure, they are not seeking recognition.

On the other side of the coin is the realization that just one of the YMCA's two programs to feed the hungry benefits more than 200 children in the City of Brazil.

That is amazing and it makes us ask, "Why?"

We hear stories and see pictures of a more prosperous Brazil of decades ago. People lined those wide sidewalks in downtown Brazil on a Saturday night to shop at Penney's and many more stores that are now gone.

It makes us doubt that in those prosperous times any organization could have found 200 children to feed even once, much less five days a week, all summer long.

Could this be a warning of things to come or is prosperity right around the corner?

We know the middle class seems to be gone in this country. Today we have the haves and the have nots.

If you doubt there is a problem, consider how far extremist candidates have gotten in the race for the presidency.

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders appeal to people who want change, though they don't agree on what change for the better will look like. In fact, wasn't that President Obama's campaign slogan when he was elected eight years ago, that he would bring change to America?

To be sure, not all those 200-plus children would go hungry without the lunches provided by volunteers at First Baptist Church. But we have to believe too many would go to bed on each summer's night with their stomachs grumbling from lack of food.

Ronald Reagan praised churches and other groups that performed social services instead of waiting for the government to do it. We praise the YMCA and First Baptist Church. However, we hope these programs are a stop gap measure and will one day serve many fewer than 200 children.