Welfare Debate Hits Close to Home

The welfare cuts that the government is trying to make will make my family's life a little harder, so I'm thinking about getting out of the game, away from dope, guns and alcohol. I plan to better myself any way I can. I hear that it's hard, but in the game I tried to "stack a million," so I know I can try just as hard to educate myself so I can become financially set by the time I'm 25 or 30. Back in the day, welfare reform wouldn't have affected my family so much, because most of my family worked. Most of the women in my family were nurses, including my mom, my grandma and my older sister. But nowadays, most of my grandmothers' daughters are drug addicts. My mother and two of my aunties are still smoking. Because of drugs, they show no sense of responsibility.I know some people on welfare who think, "Ain't nothing better." Some just show no shame. When the first of the month comes, everyone I see in the ghetto is smiling. Some of my young homeboys come around with new shoes. Girls come around with their hair and nails done. But by the end of month, they're all looking raggedy as ever. Sometimes when my mom gets welfare for me and my sister she'll give us a little bit of money. Then she takes the rest and says she is going to the store. We live a few blocks away from a Safeway and a dope track. After a few hours go by, my sister and I know to find something to think about other than mom making it back with groceries. Sometimes she does come back with a grocery bag, but the only thing it contains is noodles, the five for a dollar kind.When my mom was going in and out of rehab, my grandmother struggled with me and my siblings. Then my auntie got caught trying to sell drugs and the city took five of my cousins into custody. So then my grandma had to try to get her other grandkids home with her. She gets welfare for some of the kids and Section 8 is trying to help her with housing. If I do get financially set, I would like to stop my grandmother from working so hard, and do something for her for a change. I'm willing to make whatever sacrifices I have to in my life so I don't find myself in welfare or in jail.

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