The American Dream, that anyone who works hard enough can create a good life for themselves and their families, is part of our nation’s DNA. Our parents and grandparents believed in it—many of them lived it. Our Founding Fathers believed the pursuit of happiness was an inalienable right, and the opportunity to find self-made success inspired millions to risk it all and join the American experiment. Since our nation’s earliest days, America has promised opportunity—opportunity through work.
But somewhere along the way, things changed. For the past two decades, the number of work-capable adults trapped on welfare increased dramatically. In the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), frequently referred to as food stamps, the majority of work-capable adults enrolled reported no income, despite the strong economy. Tragically, instead of families creating their own American Dream, they’ve remained trapped in dependency.