In the latest example of a government outfit squelching private charity, Millie Ramirez of Glendale, Arizona, is being told to shut down the food bank she has run from her front lawn for the last seven years.
Saying dozens of people depend on the service each day, Ramirez told KTVK-TV:
“If you could see their faces, it would make you emotional too. I’ve been there. I’ve been down to where I have nothing and there wasn’t anyone around to help. And If I can help why shouldn’t I? Why shouldn’t anybody help?”
But apparently someone complained to the city, and now the food bank is being considered “illegal storage.”
“You cannot have shelves out for display,” Ramirez read from one of the two compliance letters she received from the city.
When KTVK visited the city offices for clarification, they were told that regardless of Ramirez’s intentions or the fact that she cleans up every evening, “illegal storage” it is.
“They need to come out and see the little kids when their mom grabs a thing of cupcakes that they can take home…to see, ‘wow, we’re going to get a treat tonight,’” Ramirez said with emotion, wearing a shirt that reads “Pray, Vote, Pray.”
City officials were apparently vague about what fines or punishments the generous woman would receive if she failed to comply, but Ramirez says it doesn’t matter either way.
“I’m at a loss, but I can’t stop,” she said defiantly before (somewhat) jokingly adding: “Will you come visit me in jail?”
Here is Ramirez’s interview, via CNN: