Franson's comments about food stamps stir controversyComments that Representative Mary Franson, R-Alexandria, made about food stamps on a Friday video sparked a barrage of complaints – even death threats.
By: Al Edenloff, Alexandria Echo Press
Comments that Representative Mary Franson, R-Alexandria, made about food stamps on a Friday video sparked a barrage of complaints – even death threats.
The backlash was so threatening that Franson, who pulled the video and offered an apology, filed a complaint with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, which is investigating.
Franson made the comments as part of a week-in-review video she posted on YouTube.
Here’s what she said:
“I'll read you this little funny clip that we got from a friend. It says, 'Isn't it ironic that the food stamp program, part of the Department of Agriculture, is pleased to be distributing the greatest amount of food stamps ever. Meanwhile, the Park Service, also part of the Department of Agriculture, asks us to please not feed the animals, because the animals may grow dependent and not learn to take care of themselves.’ ”
When contacted by the Echo Press Monday, Franson again offered an apology to those who were offended by her remarks, which, she emphasized, came from an e-mail that was forwarded to her.
“For those who are offended, I’m sorry,” she said, “but the truth remains that we have to do some things to get people off welfare and back to work.”
Franson said that people misinterpreted her comments.
“No way in the video did I say poor people are like animals – absolutely not,” she said. “Those who are upset don’t want to confront the real issue – government dependency.”
See Wednesday's Echo Press for the full story.