Thomas Shields’ latest rant against the poor and those who fight for them, namely Democrats, was particularly sad. Sad because his letter (Sun Journal, Jan. 7, “Photo ID would reduce fraud”) clearly showed that he has no understanding of what it is like living in hopeless poverty.

He used the examples of needing a photo ID for purchasing airplane, bus and train tickets, to open a bank account, or get a hotel room, etc. I have been blessed to come to know some wonderful people who happen to be very poor. They can only dream of taking a trip on a plane or train. As for a bank account or hotel room … well, one needs money for that.

Besides, has anyone really thought this through? What if grandma, mom (or dad) are sick or unable to go to the store for food? Can they send a relative in their place with their photo ID? How do you plan for the countless exceptions that will block needy families from life’s most basic necessities, including medications.

Progressive Catholics, including myself, help the poor because we care; not for votes, as Shields accuses. Besides, poor folks don’t vote. He’s afraid, someday, they will.

Bruce Noddin, Lewiston

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