Free Lunch

Two experiences today in social media. First, a facebook friend mentioned the amount of food way, way past its expiration date they receive at the food bank where she volunteers. My comment on her thread:

The American way: let them eat spoilage.

Many Americans, especially Republicans, pro-lifers, and the 1% have a really fake perception of poverty, need, and the Christian response to it. I suspect the tax collectors and prostitutes are going to be dropping one humming big surprise on them in the afterlife.

Second, one of my favorite bloggers mused that “Actually, There Is Such A Things As A Free Lunch.” Truth. Just about every child in the US gets a free lunch, courtesy of their parents or guardians. Teenagers too, but sometimes those youth buy their own snacks. Lots of college students get free lunches and other meals too–if mom and dad are shelling out for the university meal plan. Not to mention campus ministries. If one household member is buying groceries and preparing meals, it seems that the other members of the family are getting free lunches. Dinners and breakfasts too. Maybe they contribute some money for the family larder. Maybe not. Working people get free lunches if there’s an expense account. Probably free drinks too. Yum, right? Retired people are getting free lunches if their grocery budget is on someone else’s dime, like social security. You can be sure their contributions set up the last generation or two of old people. 

See the source imageSo like Mary, I don’t understand the saying often acronymed as TANSTAAFL. It seems like a lot of people, even the 1%, get free lunches. Sure, somebody is contributing the money, the labor, and the service. These days, more and more of that is hidden from view. If you’re getting a free lunch, say a prayer of thanks. Then thank the people who made it happen. And don’t forget: pay it forward. Hopefully with some healthy and non-expired donations at the nearest food bank.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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