We wonder whether we are alone in our reaction to today’s IBJ online story about a conference considering the serious impact of a widespread hunger problem in Indianapolis.
Those gathered at the conference seemed to have been pretty much in agreement that a much larger "investment" should be made toward the solution of the problem. An investment by whom?
The article concludes with a statement by a representative of the Pacers basketball team about the necessity of caring for the children specifically. This gentleman made his remarks in an address to the group.
The gentleman in question is a part of the operational administration of the Indianapolis Pacers. Would he be willing to put professional sports - and the Pacers especially - on a somewhat leaner diet? After all, the public dollars which give professional sports such massive subsidy come from a Food and Beverage Tax.
How many of these hungry kids could be assisted by diverting to them the annual gift of $16 million to the Pacers?? How many more by the city sharing some of the non-basketball fieldhouse revenues, all of which currently fall into the Pacers’ coffers? Surely the team could afford an annual lease of more than $1 - one dollar! And, while we’re at it, how about a couple of bucks less in city maintenance and operation of the football palace at the other end of Georgia Street? And a lease more favorable to the city for the team to use this three quarters of a billion dollar Colts’ playground?
We have no problem with a program to reduce hunger for these kids. (We do wonder how many of them lack food while carrying an expensive cell phone.) But we foresee financial demands which will also include suggested tax increases to meet them.
Perhaps that need should be at least partly financed by an income tax on those who, directly or indirectly, depend on that tax on the food of others for their own edibles!