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Democrats Propose Universal School Meals Program Act to End ‘School Lunch Shaming’

Democrats Propose Universal School Meals Program Act to End ‘School Lunch Shaming’

Who is paying for the meals? The bill is pretty vague.

Many Democrats in the House and Senate want to pass a universal school meal program for kids in preschool through high school. It applies to all kids, no matter their income.

The bill includes a summer food service program.

From a Bernie Sanders press release:

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.), and Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wis.), along with 15 colleagues in the Senate and 68 in the House of Representatives, today introduced legislation that provides a permanent solution to end child hunger in schools by offering free breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack to all students, preschool through high school, regardless of income, eliminating all school meal debt, and strengthening local economies by incentivizing local food procurement.

The Universal School Meals Program Act of 2023 builds on the highly successful universal free school meals program that Congress funded to combat the spike in child and youth hunger brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. While various efforts were made to bolster and extend the program since 2020, it expired in September 2022 leaving nearly 30 million children who rely on free or reduced-price lunch in a state of uncertainty and strain.

The bill’s summary claims it would end “school lunch shaming” and “provides an additional incentive for local food procurement.”

But the 47-page bill doesn’t explain how the government would pay for the program. How much does the program cost? How will the government offset the payments?

Oh, wait. These people think money grows on trees.

It looks like the bill would amend the Child Nutrition Act of 1966. Let’s see if we can find anything in this section:

(c) STATE DISBURSEMENT TO SCHOOLS.—Section 4 of the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (42 U.S.C. 1773) is amended by striking subsection (c) and inserting the following:

‘‘(c) STATE DISBURSEMENT TO SCHOOLS.—Funds apportioned and paid to any State for the purpose of this section shall be disbursed by the State educational agency to schools selected by the State educational agency to assist those schools in operating a breakfast program.’’.

The subsection the bill suspends states:

(c) Disbursement of apportioned funds by State; preference for schools in poor economic areas, for students traveling long distances daily, and for schools for improvement of nutrition and dietary practices of children of working mothers and from low-income families

Funds apportioned and paid to any State for the purpose of this section shall be disbursed by the State educational agency to schools selected by the State educational agency to assist such schools in operating a breakfast program and for the purpose of subsection (d). Disbursement to schools shall be made at such rates per meal or on such other basis as the Secretary shall prescribe. In selecting schools for participation, the State educational agency shall, to the extent practicable, give first consideration to those schools drawing attendance from areas in which poor economic conditions exist, to those schools in which a substantial proportion of the children enrolled must travel long distances daily, and to those schools in which there is a special need for improving the nutrition and dietary practices of children of working mothers and children from low-income families. Breakfast assistance disbursements to schools under this section may be made in advance or by way of reimbursement in accordance with procedures prescribed by the Secretary.

Oh, I see! The bill is forcing the state to cover the burden of the costs? Doesn’t that make the bill unconstitutional?

The bill reimburses schools for any school lunch debt. Again, who pays for the debt?

The Secretary of Agriculture will have to establish a program to reimburse every school participating in a school lunch program. Then the secretary sends out a form to state agencies. After getting that information the secretary will “provide all reimbursements under the program not later than 180 days after the effective date specified in section 2.”

Alrighty then.


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Giving children a free buffet at school teaches them eating for the rest of their lives is going to be a free buffet..

The task of a mother packing a lunch teaches children food comes from effort and love.

But then, communsits are running our schools and are looking to make children – espcially low income children – monsters that they can use going forward.

And what happens when the school year is over? Are they just going to make the school year 12 months long or will they mandate that the students (pre-K through 12) will be made de facto wards of the state? Anybody believe that Bernie and company wouldn’t introduce legislation that makes the government the sole source of nutrition for your children?

    They will use delivery.

    nordic prince in reply to Idonttweet. | May 12, 2023 at 2:08 pm

    They had summer school lunches in Illinois even for those who weren’t in summer school, so I imagine it would be something similar.

    Never understood why the freaking parents couldn’t be responsible for their own kids.

    gonzotx in reply to Idonttweet. | May 12, 2023 at 6:29 pm

    Oh, here in Texas we have had year round school lunch, I’m not sure it’s stopped but oh, don’t need to be low income at all

    All about control

    Apparently parents are too poor and too retarted to make their kids lunch

    Hey, how about refunding at least 1/2 of our horrible school taxes and maybe we can afford hotdogs

    divemedic in reply to Idonttweet. | May 12, 2023 at 7:25 pm

    Not only that, but dinner and a snack? Are the school cafeterias going to be open until 7 or 8 o’clock at night?

This week: Bug burgers and bug burritos.

    ThePrimordialOrderedPair in reply to Virginia42. | May 12, 2023 at 2:13 pm

    LOL … but true, if the commies have their way.

    Even worse, the kids are only going to get the bug legs and antennae.

henrybowman | May 12, 2023 at 1:36 pm

“OMG, we’re hemorrhaging enrollment! We need to offer, like, free lunches!”

This was done years ago here in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts.

2smartforlibs | May 12, 2023 at 2:04 pm

Everything new ties back to BIG mike and that regime.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair | May 12, 2023 at 2:11 pm

The Universal School Meals Program Act of 2023 builds on the highly successful universal free school meals program that Congress funded to combat the spike in child and youth hunger brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.


And these are the people who would be our censors. This one sentence is nothing but misinformation, disinformation, and malinformation, all rolled up in one … with some anti-information, de-information, and contra-information thrown in for good measure.

You SHOULD be ashamed when you’re getting free stuff from the government. Every penny that the government gives to you has been stolen at gunpoint from someone who worked to earn it. That IS about as shameful as anything can get in my book.

    gibbie in reply to Paul. | May 12, 2023 at 3:32 pm

    No. One should be grateful for whatever one gets from whoever gives it.

      paracelsus in reply to gibbie. | May 12, 2023 at 4:18 pm

      My folks taught me never to accept nothin’ from strangers -and there is nothing (and no one) stranger than the regime in power today.

      gonzotx in reply to gibbie. | May 12, 2023 at 6:30 pm

      No, it’s being stolen

      nordic prince in reply to gibbie. | May 12, 2023 at 6:55 pm

      Believe it or not, there used to be a time in this nation when people had too much pride and dignity to accept government handouts. They had to be persuaded to do so.

      Now people are like greedy piglets who rush to get their “fair share” by sucking at the government tit.

        BierceAmbrose in reply to nordic prince. | May 12, 2023 at 10:11 pm

        Oh it’s worse than that.

        The “support” and “care” systems aggressively slap you down if you’re trying to get yourself capable, and do what you can. Their denizens are flat-out offended that you even try.

        Ask me about dealing with this post my TBI.

      Paul in reply to gibbie. | May 13, 2023 at 12:06 pm

      It’s not the government’s to give. They’re stealing money from everyone who produces in order to hand out freebies which will breed complacency and dependency.

      The idea that we should all depend on government for food is f*cking absurd.

If this is adopted, will Mr. 10% ban having other food choices that students would pay for?

It would not be equitable for anyone to have better food than others, correct?

We could move on to shaming schools for serving slop and calling it food.

And wrapping everything in cellophane is wasteful.

    Paula in reply to Tiki. | May 12, 2023 at 8:09 pm

    We could shame boys who for pretending to be girls in order to obtain some advantage.

stevewhitemd | May 12, 2023 at 2:36 pm

As a bonus, the feds will pay the extra haulage fees required after all those kids throw the extra lunch food away…

And they will walk alike, and talk alike, and take a knee alike, to void the shame like good little Dezis.

The purpose of this bill is to provide a reason to excoriate Republicans when they vote against it. This is the main purpose of the US Congress.

    healthguyfsu in reply to gibbie. | May 12, 2023 at 6:26 pm


    The purpose of this bill is to tie it to some grift scheme for all the rich critters in DC to profit off of the mandated provision contract. It’s a can’t lose investment.

it seems that the United States of America under Joe Biden has become more Soviet Union than the old Soviet Union under Joe Stalin

Close The Fed | May 12, 2023 at 5:50 pm

Shame is a good thing. It makes people want to be self-sufficient so they will not suffer it.

Shame is a useful tool.

    nordic prince in reply to Close The Fed. | May 12, 2023 at 6:59 pm

    And that’s part of the reason why the “transgender” social contagion is spreading out of control – people no longer have a sense of shame.

      Close The Fed in reply to nordic prince. | May 13, 2023 at 10:41 pm

      Since most of those folks were abused/sodomized/penetrated as kids, I don’t begrudge them tolerance. It’s the idiotic militance that normals should pretend to be mentally injured also that kills me.

    maxmillion in reply to Close The Fed. | May 12, 2023 at 7:56 pm

    It’s basic learning. Even flatworms will try to avoid pain.

Let’s step back a moment and look at it from another angle. If the kids are getting access to meal 3x day + snack that’s less funding needed for ‘food stamp’ assistance.

Heck lets expand it to replace all food assistance programs. Schools can be used on weekends for pick up of in kind food aka ‘govt cheese’ among other items. 1st Sat of the month for 1st Qtr birthday of the Parent and so on. No more EBT cards.

That would make a whole lot more sense than sending out cash or cash equivalents as we do now. Less fraud, less waste. Plus it uses the political momentum of the left to judo this into being. Longer term it removes this from the heartstrings quiver the left uses to fire at us. We could point to food assistance at Schools, community based with local people supplementing the offerings by donations if they so desire.

    Stepping back requires us to acknowledge that this is another power-grab, another move toward federalizing education. It’s really that simple.

      BierceAmbrose in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | May 12, 2023 at 10:38 pm

      Federalizing feeding yourself.

      They’re already got “education.”

      CommoChief in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | May 13, 2023 at 7:20 am

      I don’t disagree about more Fed power; it is more of an expansion of an existing program. The way to roll back some of the bloated govt is to start removing the cash. Substitute in kind items and force people to show up and get them. Use the heartstrings arguments against the lefties by adopting a more politically palatable policy than a simple ‘no’. Move to a ‘yes but’ or yes with performance conditions.

      Adopt a series of policy engagements using a strategy similar to what McCarthy is currently doing re the budget and debt ceiling. The HoR passed a bill to fund the Govt and raise the debt ceiling. Biden can reject it but he can’t make the ‘mean GoP wants to default’ argument. Too many articles and TV hits demonstrate the truth.

    Sanddog in reply to CommoChief. | May 13, 2023 at 11:36 am

    Yeah… good luck with that. New Mexico went to free breakfast and lunch for all kids in the last legislative session. Many of us suggested snap benefits be reduced since the kiddos were getting two free meals a day. Needless to say, there’s not a snowball’s chance in hell of that happening.

      CommoChief in reply to Sanddog. | May 13, 2023 at 12:40 pm

      Sure there is but it takes both political will AND the substitution of a better, more focused set of solutions to point to as the alternative. Reforming the welfare state is very possible politically. Ending it is less so.

      One of the easier ways to do it is block grant the existing funding to the States giving them broad discretion of how to achieve the goal with some basic anti fraud/corruption guard rails. As an example a minimum 25 hour work week for able bodied adults that ramps up to an eventual 40 hour requirement.

      Votes who go to work, which is the overwhelming majority, don’t really care to listen to screeching from lefties and the wokiestas about doom and gloom and whining about folks who won’t put in the effort to help themselves. If you present a school centered child nutrition program along with a work requirement it will be acceptable to all but the blue haired commie contingent on the left a few useful idiot ‘Christians’ who allow their compassion to be turned against them.

      NM may not do it but Bama would, as would many other States. That’s the beauty of Federalism. Each State making decisions based upon the composition and culture of the State. Some will fail, others will succeed. Some will eventually adopt the better practices of more successful States. Some won’t. Every Citizen can then vote with their feet and shag ass to a better governed State if their own is stuck on stupid.

I’m all for it. Fund it by taxing teachers unions.

After a few years of school lunches and many years of military dining hall, I find that I can’t identify a single food item in that picture.

This is not a bad idea as long as the states buy into it and the states fund it. Better still would be if the individual school districts paid for it. The closer any government program is to those who must pay for it the better managed the program will be.

    ChrisPeters in reply to kjon. | May 13, 2023 at 8:46 am

    No. Government’s role is not to feed the citizens.

    MosesZD in reply to kjon. | May 13, 2023 at 1:53 pm

    You’re right, it’s not a ‘bad’ idea. It’s a terrible idea. It promotes the free-rider problem and shifts burdens from the irresponsible to the responsible and sends a message that you will never suffer consequences for being lazy or incompetent or ‘too good’ to work that crap job.

    Of course, public school is a shit-show and I pulled my kids out and homeschooled them. One graduated from college Magna Cum Laude (3.66 GPA), the other Summa Cum Laude (3.98 GPA) before they both went on to grad-school.

ChrisPeters | May 13, 2023 at 8:45 am

Will you still need me?

Will you still feed me?

Orwell’s “Eighty-four”!

Meals full of insects, lab-grown meat, and indoctrination.

My wife and I have paid school taxes ever since we bought a house.

We have no kids.

Can we get free school meals? Why should we have to pay for our own food? We’re paying for someone else’s kids to eat.

It seems only fair.

    alien in reply to alien. | May 13, 2023 at 2:05 pm

    Oops. Allow me to clarify.

    “We’re paying for someone else’s kids to eat” might be better phrased as “We’re paying for someone else’s kid’s meals.”

    We don’t eat children. Honest.

I suppose next they’ll propose just keeping them at public school 24/7?
Government control of our children.


Antifundamentalist | May 13, 2023 at 9:11 pm

I would actually say that I’m not opposed to “free” school breakfast and luch for all students regardless of income – provided that is is proposed as a local/county law, voted on by local residents (not the local counsel or school board), and paid for by local taxes.

It’s child abuse for the parents to not provide food for their children. There should be no free meals at schools and if parents don’t feed their children they should loose custody and be charged with child abuse.

Since the dawn of the human race the most basic job of the parent has been to feed their children. This is something that is done by mammalian species, birds, and even some insects and reptiles. But these “parents” are seemingly incapable of doing this simple task according to the Democrats, so it becomes the job of the all-powerful state to do it for them.