Texas to Allow Discrimination in Drug Testing Welfare Applicants

perryTexas is set to join other states by requiring applicants for welfare, or TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) as it’s now called in Texas, to pass a drug test before receiving any benefits.

Not overly shocking.  It’s Texas, I live here—I’m just shocked it’s taken this long.   Besides, other states have done it, and even many liberals agree with the requirement.

But that’s not the real problem.  The problem is that not all applicants will be required to take the drug test.

What all applicants for TANF will be required to do is go through is a screening, at which time the interviewer will determine whether or not the applicant should be subjected to a drug test.

Yes, you’ve read this correctly, Texas is set to pass a law that mandates drug screening based on discrimination.

It puts the determination of whether or not to require a drug test for each applicant in the hands of someone who’s basing it on their own personal opinion.

Are you kidding?  Either require the test for everybody or nobody.  What idiot felt that only “some” should be tested?  It almost seems as if some Texas lawmakers are actually hoping for discrimination against some—is that why they didn’t require drug testing for all applicants?

What if the interviewer has a bias against overweight people, Latinos, blacks, women, men…you get the picture.  Don’t you think that prejudice would lead them to require a test more often against those of which they discriminate against?

And what exactly does someone who does drugs look like?  I never knew people who did drugs looked a certain way.

What questions do you ask?  “Do you do drugs?”  Who the hell would say yes?

This is the most idiotic thing I’ve heard of in quite some time.  You push for a somewhat controversial requirement of passing a drug test before receiving welfare, something that has actually proven to cost taxpayers more than what they save, then you make it even more controversial by only requiring some applicants to be tested.

It’s as if Texas legislators are begging for lawsuits.  Then we can break down just how much it will cost Texas taxpayers to defend the state against claims of discrimination.

With a stipulation this foolish, one has to wonder…

Should we drug test the legislators who think this is a good idea?  Because they must be smoking something.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Michael Breen

    Perfect example of too much Inbreeding resulting in Asshats!

  • Jeff

    Drug test welfare types who live on the taxpayer blood = bad.
    Drug test the working people who need a job to pay the bills = super awesome!

    Yeah..I see your point. Can’t tick off the voting base by threatening to take their gravy train away.

    • Melania Gulley

      Not every job does drug tests.. thats a fact jeff. In a job like police, fireman, healthcare using heavy machinery. I can see where that makes sense. As far as drug testing people on welfare..how often, will they be tested? Who will be tested? and who the hell is paying for it? Don’t see a problem? I see a whole lot of problems.

    • Brent Christensen

      Test Away ‘Deep Pockets’ Texas, just be ready to pony up the Millions for the tests (multiply Texas Welfare Recipients TIMES $30, each month) and Larger Gov’t to manage it!!
      Seems no-one noticed that Florida did this and lost their shorts, spent $Millions, (but saved $89,000 when 2% failed) so they quit!!
      Test Baby Test ~ oh and bring your Taxpayer Checkbook with you!!
      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/18/us/no-savings-found-in-florida-welfare-drug-tests.html?_r=0

  • Woody

    I think the fairest thing for Texas to do is just cut all the entire TANF program altogether. Then nobody has to worry about being discriminated against.

    • Cheryl

      ^^thats the ticket. Let them starve to death and “decrease the surplus population.” How 19th Century of you.

  • Brent Christensen

    Ain’t THAT the truth and this comes on the heels of Texas possibly refunding PP after their own accountants gave them the future COSTS for all the Unplanned Pregnancies and State budgets for Social Services until those children reach majority, to age out of the system. hahaha Good Luck and Deep Pockets, Ya’ll!!

  • Big Curtis will kill you

    I just want to make hot man love to Rick Perry. I want that man licking my bootyhole and sucking on my nuts while I watch ‘Night Court’ and eat cereal. Damn that would be good. Damn.

  • minuteman55

    I believe that random drug testing would be more fair. However cops do the same thing when they pull over drunk drivers. If they look suspicious they pull them over. If someone looks strung out they should be allowed to test them. Yes you can tell if someone is strung out.

    • If you’re behind the wheel of a nearly 2-ton deadly weapon, weaving all over the road with 100s of other people behind their own deadly weapons, you SHOULD be pulled over and checked for sobriety. Besides; driving is a privilege, not a right – apparently, government assistance is a right and not a privilege.

      • ZekeTX

        Apparently you don’t know shite about public assistance. Money doesn’t just fall from the sky into the homes of poor people. There’s an application, review, and qualification process. It’s actually easier to get a driver license than to get public assistance. Have you ever received unemployment benefits? Was it as simple as calling the state and asking them to send you money? No, it wasn’t.

      • jabberwocky

        To the freeloaders of this country welfare is a right. Did you see that lady with 15 kids demanding the government take care of them?

    • Burgess Griesenbeck

      But, strung-out on what? There are prescription drugs by the hundreds that would test positive…not to mention the poppy seeds in that salad dressing or on your muffin. Do appreciate the possibility of Totally Random, by math alone, because the testing in other states has cost the taxpayers living in those states over 150% more in payments to the privately owned and profit motivated testing companies than any amount saved by “catching” the surprisingly few applicants that did test positive. When we stop to think about it, those living in abject poverty really can’t afford the illegal drugs. Also, I wish we could get off the obsession over and money-pit feeder associated with weed enforcement.

    • Dennis M

      Actually the Police have to follow a strict protocol police cannot just pull your vehicle over because they want to. They must have observed you violating a traffic law (speeding, swerving, etc.). Assuming that you were violating a traffic law, the police officer cannot just suddenly start launching into a DUI investigation. Remember, they pulled you over for a traffic violation only.
      If the police officer notices open alcohol containers in your vehicle, smells alcohol coming from the vehicle or observes strange behavior on the part of the driver, then the officer has probable cause to start a DUI investigation. But if the officer does not observe anything like this, you should be free to leave.

      If the officer did have probable cause to begin a DUI investigation, you will be asked to take a field sobriety test and a breath test. Once the officer completes his observations of you, he or she cannot arrest you for DUI without considerable evidence that you are intoxicated. For instance, you must have ‘failed’ the field sobriety and breath test.

  • I believe that NOT PISSING on the 4th amendment altogether would be much better….

    This from people that freak out about the second amendment….

    Total hypocraxy

    • Also from the people who have to piss in a cup to be gainfully employed. If you want MY hard-earned dollars, you’d better be willing to be subjected to the same requirements to get them from me!

      • Get Ready for Texas to require MORE of your Hard Earned Dollars to be paid in Taxes; which will be spent to create a larger State Gov’t Program to Facilitate the Testing Program. Drug Testing programs are not free and have never paid for themselves.

      • jabberwocky

        That’s just fine with me. We will save money when we remove the druggies from the welfare rolls.

      • karen

        I have never had to “piss in a cup to be gainfully employed” and I doubt the government is the one having you do it. Do you make enough at that job that you even pay taxes or do you get it all back?

      • Tug

        good for you Karen. I would like to know your industry, inasmuch as my friends that can’t pass a drug test are always looking for a job. – Oh and in case you’re wondering me and my co-workers that could pass the “cup test” earned on average $105k last year.

      • jabberwocky

        Karen had better stay away from drug testing.

      • jabberwocky

        Kathy, Bravo!!!

  • I think if they aren’t doing drugs, they shouldn’t feel as if they’re “discriminated” against, just take the test, prove that you are clean and move on. If they’re accepting public aid, they shouldn’t be able to afford drugs.

    • WhichWitchisWhich

      They can also probably not afford transportation to the testing facility. Oh, you thought the drug testing was done right there at the Welfare Corral? Wrong, there, Bucko.

  • raytheist

    I thought profiling was illegal.

  • Pua

    1. It’s called TANF in all 50 states and has been since Clinton passed welfare reform in the 1990s.

    2. It’s not discrimination because there’s an initial assessment interview.
    Pretty basic stuff.

  • Knowing Rick Perry and the state of Texas, the only reason they wouldn’t test everybody is that it would cost too much money.

  • I agree that you should not be able to afford drugs if you are on welfare. You should also not be able to afford tobacco or alcohol. yet many people on food stamps smoke and drink. I have seen them getting cash advances, then buying cigarettes and booze. Wrong on so many levels.

    • jabberwocky

      We live in ObamaLand.

  • jabberwocky

    Cry me a river. You mean the druggies will have their benefits eliminated if they continue to be druggies? Why should I support druggies with my tax dollars? But wait….I can hear the progressive communists saying this will hurt the children. Actually having a druggie parent hurts the children.

    • WhichWitchisWhich

      These programs generally run a deficit, wasting taxpayer dollars. It is a myth that large numbers of people on public assistance are drug abusers.

  • Juliet Neary

    My God! The lot of you are despicable creatures. Do you know what percentage of people on TANF in Florida tested positive? 2% Florida LOST money on this deal, hand over fist. You aren’t fiscal conservatives. You’re stingy, obnoxious, racist douchebags. I hope you all have to feel what it’s like to be that poor.

  • Dennis M

    When large populations are tested to find small numbers of users the results are unreliable Drug tests or any medical test for that matter on large populations are not accurate.It is why Doctors always take more than one test when you have a problem.
    Drug tests with a 99% accuracy can actually
    produce true results only 50% of the time.The explanation for why drug testing
    doesn’t work is a simple mathematical truth
    “99% x 1% is the same as 1% x 99%.” As the
    example below illustrates, this mathematical rule goes by the name of “Boyes’
    Theorem.” The theorem states that in a testing program where only a few of the tested subjects are “true positives,” the number of “false positives” will be
    extremely large.
    A laboratory runs a test to determine the presence of cocaine in the blood of
    10,000 employees. Ninety-nine percent of the employees do not use cocaine; one percent do. (This assumption overstates the rate of cocaine use among most groups of citizens with full–time jobs.)

    The results of the tests:

    99% Accurate Test

    Results
    9,900 Non-Users:
    x 99% (accurate) 9801–Innocent People identified as innocent
    x 1% (inaccurate) 99–INNOCENT PEOPLE identified as guilty
    100 Users:

    x 99% (accurate) 99–GUILTY PEOPLE identified as guilty
    x 1% (inaccurate) 1–Guilty person identified as innocent
    Note the two items in capitals: the number of innocent people accused, and the number of guilty people accused. The number is equal. There is nowhere else in our enforcement of our laws where we would tolerate a practice that accused the innocent as often as it accused the guilty.
    As the Journal of the American Medical Association has detailed, as many as 91% of the “positives” in a test may be false positives.
    The solution to Boyes’ Theorem is to change the sample which is tested. If 50% of the tested individuals are actual users, then the test will have 99% predictive value; 99% of the positives will be true positives. Thus, effective testing programs must avoid sweeping testing of the population at large, which does not use drugs. Testing programs should focus on drug abusers