When my children were younger, they’d bring home a big packet of forms each year from their schools with instructions for me to fill them out so they could turn them in.
Routinely, the packet included an application for the federal government’s National School Lunch Program. Signed into law in 1946 by President Harry Truman as a “national security” measure, its goal was to provide children from poor families the nutrition they needed to sit through a day of school and learn.
Routinely, I tossed the application into the trash. My income, though modest, put me well above the 130 percent of the federal poverty level needed to qualify. But had I filled it out, I could have falsely reported my income with likely little repercussion, enrolled in the federal lunch program and gotten my children free meals every day.
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