According to Chabad, the seed for creating the W.I.C. program and expanding the food stamps program came from the late Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson. Now the Republicans are trying to gut both programs, and Chabad is silent. Why?
According to information published by Chabad, the late Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson was responsible for planting the seed that became the W.I.C. program and for planting the seed that expanded food stamps.
"What a blessing G‑d has given you!" the Rebbe told Chisholm, urging her to take advantage of the Divine Providence that put her in a position to do something about food supplies. "This country has so much surplus food, and there are so many hungry people. You can use this gift that G‑d gave you to feed hungry people. Find a creative way to do it."
Later, Chisolm was meeing with US Senator Bob Dole (R- Kansas), and Dole told her:
"Our farmers have all this extra food, we don't know what to do with it." Chisholm thought, "One second. The Rabbi!"
From these two meetings, Chabad says, grew the W.I.C. program and the expansion of food stamps.
So you would think Chabad rabbis across the country would be up in arms about the G.O.P.'s attempt to slash almost $1 billion from W.I.C..
But Chabad seems to have been silent.
The answer, I think, extends to the entire haredi community and to much of the Modern Orthodox community, as well.
Orthodox and haredi Jews have largely substituted conservative and right wing politics for theology. God may want the poor fed, but that doesn't really impact how Orthodox and haredi Jews view their politicians – or their politics.
This disconnect is exacerbated by haredi fixers who allegedly help haredim scam these government programs. Haredim view these programs as easy targets, and also seem to be confident that their fixers can continue to keep the benefits rolling in, no matter what happens in Washington.
Even so, why is Chabad silent?
After all, W.I.C. was the "Rebbe's program." It helps many people, including a large number of Chabadniks. You'd think Chabad would want to defend it.