If the recent stories about kids being denied school lunches have revealed anything, it’s that there are families struggling to provide food for everybody in the household. These are the parents whose children have been shamed from Rhode Island to Wyoming because they fell behind on their payments for lunch. And these are the children who’ve had their hot meal publicly snatched away; if they’re lucky they get a cold cheese sandwich as a substitute.

It won’t get better for many of them who attend college and go to classes hungry. Today, as a matter of course, colleges and universities have set up pantries where students can get something to eat — no questions asked. Then there are the working adults who make ends meet by regularly lining up to receive food donations from large city pantries and small ones operated by churches.

We are a country where chefs are celebrities, brunch buffets a cultural phenomenon, and regular portion sizes are in reality extra-large. Yet, all over the country people are starving. Here in these United States. The need is so great that there are, sadly, plenty of patrons for longtime organizations like Feeding America and newer ones like No Kid Hungry. In New England, Project Bread, the Greater Boston Food Bank, the Rhode Island Community Food Bank, plus a myriad of other free food services also act as a supplement for people who do not know where their next meal is coming from. But it’s not enough. The problem is too big. So, the safety net — the federal government programs that pay for groceries and prepared foods — are a literal lifesaver for millions of Americans.

But those in-need Americans are always under attack, it seems, from people who believe they are scammers abusing their government-issued electronic debit cards to buy steak and lobster. And now, once again, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps, is threatened with proposed cuts. The Trump administration’s new rules for SNAP would prevent families who receive help from Temporary Assistance for Needy Families from also receiving SNAP benefits. To get both, their assets and income — a reminder that most are either working, elderly or infirm — must fall below certain limits. For a family of three, that’s about $27,000 a year, or $2,252 dollars a month. Meanwhile, the Government Accountability Office estimates that each of the president’s trips to Mar-a-Lago, his Palm Beach Florida private club, cost taxpayers $3.4 million. The GAO also notes the president’s team has refused to detail the exact amount spent on “incidental expenses and meals.” But I don’t hear anybody screaming about scamming the government. At least not about that.

This is the third attempt by the Trump administration — ably assisted by some out-of-touch Congresspersons — to cut back on SNAP. I wish they would revive the eye-opening 2007 Food Stamp Challenge, during which several Congressional lawmakers attempted to live only on weekly food stamp benefits. Many of them ran out of funds well before the experiment was over.

To be clear, I think real food stamp scammers should be identified and punished they’re literally taking food off the table from the folks who really need it. Experts say the government would save $2.5 billion a year if these new rules go into effect. Losing benefits — an estimated 3 million families, most with children. It’s not too late to protest the proposed rules during the just opened 60-day public comment period. I wonder how do the leaders of one of the richest nations in the world justify leaving families and their children with bare cupboards?