Under the President Brandon regime, military families aren’t just stuck in Afghanistan, they’re also struggling with food insecurity. According to a recent report, in fact, 160,000 military families don’t know if they’ll get their next meal.
The Feeding America report, discussed by the Associated Press in a recent article, highlighted the sickening fact that many lower-ranking troops have trouble providing food for their families. Here’s what the AP reported about it:
It’s a hidden crisis that has existed for years inside one of the most well-funded institutions on the planet and has only worsened during the coronavirus pandemic. As many as 160,000 active-duty military members are having trouble feeding their families.
[…]The exact scope of the problem is a topic of debate, due to a lack of formal study. But activists say it has existed for years and primarily affects junior-level enlisted service members — ranks E1 to E4 in military parlance — with children.
“It’s a shocking truth that’s known to many food banks across the United States,” said Vince Hall, Feeding America’s government relations officer. “This should be the cause of deep embarrassment.”
In fact, Feeding America estimates that nearly 29% of junior enlisted troops struggle to provide enough food to feed their families.
One seaman speaking on the issue, James Bohannon, a 34-year-old Naval E4 in San Diego, said“It is what it is. You know what you’re signing up for in the military. But I’m not going to lie. It’s really tough.” Mr. Bohannon is forced to rely on food assistance to feed his family and was interviewed while accessing food at a YMCA event.
Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), a former Blackhawk pilot, said “It’s one of these things that the American people don’t know about, but it’s a matter of course among military members. We know this. We’re the mightiest military on the face of the earth and yet those who are on the lower rung of our military ranks are — if they are married and have a child or two– they’re hungry. How can you focus on carrying out the mission and defending our democracy. If you’re worried about whether or not your kid gets dinner tonight?”
While the main problem is that junior enlisted men make little and are forced to move frequently, making it hard for their spouse to find a job that might help pay the bills, another issue driving food security is likely Bidenflation. According to a recent CPI update, food inflation over the past year was over 6%, with food items like ground beef rising even more than that.
Just the News reports that food problems pose a significant threat to military strength, as they keep lower-ranking enlisted men from staying in and put pressure on families:
Josh Protas, Vice President of Public Policy for MAZON, an organization that has extensively researched military hunger, said military members dealing with food insecurity are less likely to re-enlist and more likely to be distracted in the field, according to the AP. He added that losing such talent may also be generational as military service tends to run in families.
Relatedly, Just the News reports that, in an attempt to solve a problem that’s quickly escalating to the point of becoming a crisis, Senator Duckworth is trying to pass a bill that would help ensure all troops have access to enough food to feed their families:
Duckworth has sponsored a bill that would establish a Basic Needs Allowance for needy military families. Rep. James McGovern (D-Mass.) has asked for the Department of Defense to study the problem and repeal the USDA regulation that prevents military families in need from receiving SNAP benefits.