The Government Shutdown Hits Home

How is it affecting our society? And how are people affected by this dealing with this new reality?

Hundreds+rally+at+the+White+House+for+an+end+to+the+government+shutdown.++%E2%80%9CPhoto+via+Wikimedia+Commons+under+Creative+Commons+license.%E2%80%9D
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The Government Shutdown Hits Home

Hundreds rally at the White House for an end to the government shutdown.  “Photo via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license.”

Hundreds rally at the White House for an end to the government shutdown. “Photo via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license.”

By AFGE - #StoptheShutdown Rally - Washington, DC, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=75748925

Hundreds rally at the White House for an end to the government shutdown. “Photo via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license.”

By AFGE - #StoptheShutdown Rally - Washington, DC, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=75748925

By AFGE - #StoptheShutdown Rally - Washington, DC, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=75748925

Hundreds rally at the White House for an end to the government shutdown. “Photo via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license.”

Kage Blakeney, News Editor

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January 19 was the 30th day of the government shutdown, the longest shutdown in history. Already, federal workers have gone without one paycheck.

The government shutdown is due to disagreements between the United States Congress and President Donald Trump over bills and federal funds for Trump’s proposed wall for the Mexican border.

Some of those federal workers are dependent on that one paycheck and, with that taken away, they’re trying extremely hard to survive. Even if that one paycheck isn’t the only one their family receives, they still are barely getting by. Paying bills, car payments, and other expenses can add up. The ones who are hit the hardest can’t even afford to put gas in their cars to go to work or take their kids to school, much less go out and buy clothes and supplies, or even buy food for themselves and their families whenever they need or want it.

“My dad was calling the bank and asking how much he has in there and he started thinking about getting food stamps, just in case,” stated sophomore Danna Cifuentes who has been affected by this shutdown. Her father has been working at the Federal Corrections Complex, or FCC, in Victorville for about 8-9 years. “My mom was worried and my dad was just mad.” Sometimes, the FCC has to make their workers work overtime to be able to fill in shifts that are not being worked on because those workers aren’t able to get to work. Some of these workers are aggravated or upset. According to Cifuentes, “My dad, he just doesn’t care about the time they give him. He’s going whenever he can.” Her household’s been under some stress lately, but they’ve been able to get by. However, it came with its restrictions. “My parents were telling me I can’t go out to eat or buy anything I want or do anything that requires a lot of money. Like I’ve said previously, my dad got food stamps, and we can’t just go out and get what we need. We have to wait for the first of the month now.”

Some people think that the government shutdown is good, that people can adapt to these changes. Vice President of the Jaguar Republican club, junior Jordan Ford, believes this. He feels that the government shutdown is “Basically an example of how politics today works, with no compromise and much conflict.” His father and step-father work for the FCC. His parents are, “A little on the edge.” However, his family is “Financially covered for a while.”

Sadly, for the Cifuentes’s family, this is not the case. They are really watching how much they spend, and they are also now relying on food stamps. At the moment, she is worried about what could happen next. “In the future, everything is going to go up and we don’t have the money at the moment, so we can’t save the money we need for the future, either.”

She also has a very strong viewpoint about the government shutdown. “I’m honestly mad,” she said. “Because you just can’t punish the people who are working for you because you don’t get what you want. He’s overusing his power and he doesn’t understand that he’s putting other families at risk.”

On the other hand, Ford feels that the president should, “Stand his ground, as I feel what he is doing is right. I do feel that the Democratic Party has wrong values, and that American politics need to be fixed. Border security is important for the nation. Originally, both sides supported a border wall, but the prejudice against Trump swayed Democratic views. The entire Democratic party is now just anti-Trump.”

This contention doesn’t only affect the FCC, but all other federal jobs, as well. Jobs such as the Transportation Security Administration, or TSA are having to work without pay. It not only affects federal workers and their families, but also those not associated. Since TSA workers usually drive to work, money for gas and/or car payments isn’t there for them to be able to use. With less TSA workers, there’s less security on flights which is a risk in itself.

The economy is also suffering from this and supplemental support programs such as SNAP (aka Food Stamps) are also being affected. In fact, it is speculated that food stamps will be ended after February when the reserves run out. According to Grace Segers of CBS News, “If the shutdown continues through March, there will be no remaining funding for SNAP, endangering food security for millions of Americans.”

Clearly, this government shutdown is affecting all aspects of American society, not just federal employees. For Danna Cifuentes, it is hitting her too hard: “Just because you’re the president, you can’t take other people’s lives away.”

*Story Retracted after it was published unedited.

About the Writer
Kage Blakeney, Journalist

Position: Sports Journalist

Grade: 10th grade

Hobbies: Writing, Drawing, Reading, Working out, Hanging out with friends

Favorite Foods: Carne...

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