Assistance should go to those in need

Published 11:27 am Monday, April 17, 2017

We Americans have been blessed. No doubt about that. Simple human compassion dictates that when people are suffering in less fortunate lands, we should try to help them.

For generations, we have done just that. We are willing— nay, eager —to do more. But the enormous waste and abuse involved in how our foreign aid money is spent have lessened our ardor for simply handing over the cash.

President Donald Trump has proposed reducing the dollar amount of foreign aid provided by the United States. An Associated Press reporter put this situation this way: “The world’s largest humanitarian crisis in 70 years has been declared in three African countries on the brink of famine, just as President Donald Trump’s proposed foreign aid cuts threaten to pull the United States from its historic role as the world’s top emergency donor.”

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Of course we should not turn our backs on starving people. But too many famines in the past have not been fought successfully because of waste and profiteering by officials in countries we have tried to help. Part of Trump’s plan is to demand that when we do try to help, our assistance actually must get to those in need.

We should insist on it.

— The (Tiffin) Advertiser-Tribune