If We Cannot See Bread Lines, Do They Exist?


Unlike during the Great Depression of the 1930’s when food lines were clearly visible, today since we don’t see food-soup-bread lines, do they not exist? If the problem is hidden from view, is it no longer a problem? If a tree falls in the woods and no one is around, does it still make a sound?

Today’s equivalent of food lines are indeed hidden from view and public perception, and therefore it’s as though the underlying problem does not exist. Similar to how other ‘negative’ economic news is hidden, disguised, or not spoken of – the fact is that the problems do exist, and they’re pretty bad…


Food Stamp Cards – EBT Cards

Although the following data was collected a few years ago, the numbers are likely worse today.

44.5 Million people are on Food Stamps in America, which is equivalent to 14,588 participants for each and every Walmart Super Center in the US! The program is called Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). To remove the stigma of food stamps, the EBT card was created and is used the same way as a credit card.

While there is no doubt that this program helps lots of people and while there is certainly abuse in the system, the sheer numbers indicate the magnitude of the problem – which is just one of many that are hidden from view in today’s America.

image: demonocracy.info

During the Great Depression of the 1930’s there were bread lines, where people waited in line to get food at a soup kitchen. You could see the problem. It was in plain view.

Today, the perception of the problem has been removed as the bread lines have been replaced with technology. EBT cards are filled with government money for Food Stamp participants to purchase food at local retailers.


Bread Lines during the 1930’s– The Great Depression

During the Great Depression, people lined up to get food at soup kitchens. Skilled and non-skilled workers stood in lines for hours to get some food.

The lines were visible to everyone, a reflection of the hard economic times.


Bread Lines of the Modern Era

To visualize the situation, if all EBT recipients shopped at only Walmart Super Centers for all of their SNAP benefits, then this is how the bread line would look each month at each Walmart — 14,588 people.

The line on the left: 4.1 miles of adults
The line on the right: 3.7 miles of children

Walmart bread line
image: demonocracy.info

There are 3,051 Walmart Super Centers in the USA and 44,510,598 participants in SNAP (2011 data), making the average SNAP line at each and every Walmart consist of 14,588 people.

The Modern Era’s Bread Lines are not visible because the business is handled discreetly through EBT Cards, as the card holders come and go to the grocery stores like anyone else would during any given day, week, or month…

Short Facts:
47% of Food Stamp participants are children.
78.6% of all SNAP participants are in metropolitan areas.

Visualizing this REALITY not only illustrates the magnitude of today’s problems, but it also serves as a caution as to the number of people and potential ‘unrest’ should their government cheese be reduced or even eliminated. How long will the government be able to continue and pay out enormous benefits to such a large and apparently increasing percentage of Americans? Certainly not forever. The government is already broke – it’s just that not everyone has realized it yet.

The purpose here has NOT been to diminish anyone who may truly be in need, but instead it is to point out that much of our economic sickness as a nation is being hidden from your view – which is helping to stretch out the end-game (by avoiding a revolting public). Problems need to be addressed – not papered over.

data sourced from demonocracy.info