Thousands of Oklahomans participated in a food drive last weekend when letter carriers picked up canned foods at mailboxes for distribution to regional food banks and local food pantries.
This voluntary, nonpolitical event is in stark contrast to what Oklahoma House Democrats tried to make of the issue of hunger with a resolution designating May 14 as “Hold Out for Hunger Day.” To politicize a serious problem could make those who disagree with the politics avoid participating in food drives.
House Minority Leader Scott Inman, D-Del City, used yet another whiny taxpayer-funded news release to criticize Republican leaders for declining to submit the resolution for a vote unless certain wording changes were made. The resolution was so loaded with political ammo that it seems the whole point was to present something Inman knew would be objectionable so that he could then accuse Republicans of being hypocrites and insensitive to the plight of the hungry.
Inman is correct in saying Republicans have used resolutions to advance partisan agendas. This is equally off-putting and usually also involves taxpayer-funded press releases. Inman and the increasingly small Democratic caucus are frustrated by their decline in influence and their loss of the ability to decide which resolutions and bills will be heard.
As worded, the resolution reads like a national Democratic Party platform rather than a sincere attempt to help feed the hungry by encouraging cash donations and food drives. It's loaded with words such as “failing to invest.” Name a social, income or health problem that Oklahoma has and it's mentioned under the “failing to invest” mantra.
A resolution purporting to encourage voluntary “investment” by citizens is turned in a demand for more government mandates. If those who give voluntarily are repelled by this naked partisanship, the Democrats are only hurting the cause. Shame on them.