What originated as temporary relief has evolved into a permanent entitlement program, like Social Security. In some states, tax-paid bureaucrats race to sign up potential food stamp [the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program] users by interpreting guidelines as broadly as possible, so the state can qualify for more federal money!
In reality, the federal government has to borrow most of the money to provide these benefits. Ultimately it has to increase taxes and international borrowing or cut deeply into other national priorities. Self-respect and self-reliance are diminished in the recipients and compassion involvement and charitable inclination are diminished in the working members of society.
Rather than allowing ourselves to become more dependent on government, church and community programs should be facilitated first and federal welfare programs should again become the last resort.