Welfare has been a hot topic lately, with Conservatives looking to cut down on government assistance programs. And now that Republicans control the House, Senate, and Executive Branch, it’s looking more and more like people are going to lose what little resources they have left. I feel like it’s my duty as an American citizen to plead my case for why we need to leave welfare alone.

First and foremost, I need each and every one of you to understand that poor people are not the enemy. The current state of our economy is not caused by poor people, was never caused by poor people, and never will be caused by poor people. It’s the rich people at the highest branches of socio-political power that have gotten us into this mess. Remember: the majority of our debt came from the wars we waged in the Middle East. And do you know who benefits from this massive debt? Banks.

But people are still focused on the “billions of dollars spent on welfare every year.” It’s a brilliant diversion tactic I must say. The elites of this country have us so focused on welfare that it distracts us from what the majority of the budget is actually being spent on. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, only 10% of the federal budget was spent on welfare in 2015. Do you know how much was spent on defense? 16%. If we need to cut our costs, let’s start with military spending.

But do you know what the truly ironic part is? People who want to cut down on welfare simultaneously argue that people receiving government assistance should be required to pass a drug test. I can’t help but to giggle every time I hear that, considering how much that would add to our costs.

Look, as someone who was previously on welfare, let me tell you this: it’s not glamorous, it’s not fun, and it’s not a “free ride.” Being on welfare is actually quite humiliating. Poor people already feel bad about their circumstances and they certainly don’t need anyone else to further shame them for it.