Okay, so he’s calling out the crying brigade and newspaper columnists far and wide are heeding his call.
Here’s the deal: we have enough money already. We really, truly do. As Ed Hubbard pointed out here, $72.2 BILLION is enough money. Just spend it wisely and cut the friggin’ bloat – chaplains, drunks, spokespersons – all of them. The taxpayer doesn’t need to fund any of them.
Houston Chronicle reporter Peggy Fikac has really gotten into the parade of crying and whining, almost as if she’s on a mission. She inadvertently highlights one family that, while begging and whining at the state level, is on the right path at another level. In two of her recent reports, she mentioned Hope Montgomery, mother of triplets diagnosed with Autism.
Among Texans trying to help lawmakers see the faces affected by their budget decisions was Hope Montgomery, of Richmond, accompanied by her nearly 5-year-old triplets, Lakin, Lauren and Londyn. All three girls are on what’s called the autism spectrum and receive services in Rosenberg through the Texana Center. Those services would cost $5,000 a month per child without funding from a state grant through the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services. Funding for the autism grant would be eliminated under House leaders’ initial budget draft. It would be halved under the Senate’s first draft.
“Without the DARS program providing services, I couldn’t afford to have all three girls in the program,” Montgomery, 41, said. “It’s early intervention that’s going to help them, and so far, they’re on their way to having a typical life.”
Montgomery works part-time in public relations. Her husband, Eric, works full time as a pharmacy technician. They’ve also got an 8-year-old son, Collin. With the grant, her family can pay an income-based fee.
“I really beg, and humbly beg, on behalf of my family and all of the families in the DARS program, please do not cut these programs,” Montgomery said.
It is a sad story, designed to do just what Sen. Whitmire called for, force our legislators to make emotional decisions with taxpayer money. Except, it doesn’t have to be that way. The state, i.e., the taxpayer, has no fundamental right to take money from me, or you, and pay for Mrs. Montgomery’s children to receive therapy. That is not harsh, that is simple truth. In fact, it is immoral to do so.
Perhaps Mrs. Montgomery already realizes this because she also has a donation website up and running called HopeforThree.org. It tells the story of the three children and quite properly asks for donations to help with their care.
That is the way we as a society should treat these situations – charity, not forced taxation.
An army of taxpayers sent a message to Sen. Whitmire and his colleagues last November. It is high time that they heeded the call of this army and said enough really is…enough.