Sojourners and Call to Renewal are trying to get as many people as possible to contact their Senators and Congressmen/women and urge them to vote against Bush's proposed tax cuts for programs that help the poor. If you go to the Sojourner's website, there is an easy form email set up for you to send to the lawmakers of your state. It just takes a few minutes (or longer, depending on how much you chose to edit the form letter) but if enough people email/call/write, they do listen.
Below is my edited version of the form letter that I sent to my Senators and Congresman.
I write as a believer in Jesus Christ to beg you to consider the effects of President Bush's budget on people living in poverty.
I am one of those millions of Americans who relies on Food Stamps to eat a healthy diet, and Medicaid to pay for my health care, which has deteriorated over the years as a result of Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome. I went from being an energetic graduate student in Arab Studies who was accepted at Harvard, Chicago and Georgetown for graduate studies, to barely being able to leave my house on most days. In September of 2001 I finally had to quit my job as a graduate assistant in Middle East Studies and apply for disability at a time when my country and my students desperately needed such knowledge. It took 20 months to have my SSI claim approved and during that time, food stamps were my ONLY SOURCE OF INCOME.
Could you eat on $140 a month? Could you pay for rent and medical expenses not covered by Medicaid on $579 a month? And now Congress wants to cut this even further? Indeed, my Food Stamps this year were already cut from $140 a month to $107, despite the fact that food costs have skyrocketed the last two years.
At a time when more and more of our budget is being devoted to defense spending, further and extended tax cuts are not in line with the biblical mandate to care for the poor. Neither are the budget's proposed cuts to Medicaid, Food Stamps, and other low-income programs.
I plead with you to vote YES on any amendments that restore funding for Medicaid, Food Stamps, Earned Income Tax Credits, Child Care, and other important work-supports for low-income families.
I urge you to vote YES on any amendments that repeal tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans.
I implore you to vote NO on any budget that goes against central biblical and moral principles by reducing the deficit at the expense of the poor.
When roughly 36 million people like me in this country live below the poverty line, budget priorities, like those being proposed, are outrageous, anti-family, and anti-biblical values.
I trust in God and know that He will take care of me. Will you be His hands and feet to care for the poor? Or will you be one of those of whom He says, "I was hungry and you gave me no food. I was thirsty and you gave me no drink...ill...and you did not care for me..."