As much as I despise the false narrative and stereotyping of people who receive public assistance, there are plenty of examples who do give some credence to the stories spun by right-wing pundits. Granted, these people aren't rich, but they aren't necessarily struggling from paycheck to paycheck like I am. Depending on the type of public benefits they get, they might not have to worry about a grocery bill, phone bill, utilities, rent, etc.
I can't judge every single person, and neither should anyone else, but I do get irritated when I see someone like my ex-wife buy a brand-new smartphone, get her nails done fancy, and go on road trips in a nice rental vehicle. There's folks who are receiving public assistance who legitimately need it. I don't have a problem with that, and any reasonable person shouldn't either. However, it really grinds my gears when folks who could work find every loophole they can to not work and take resources from those who actually need it. Background on the ex? She gets disability for being bipolar although she is fully capable of working (we used to work at the same job) and collects every form of public assistance she can get, in addition to the approximately $700 I pay her monthly in child support. I remember when she stated how she couldn't wait to not have to work and encouraged me to find a way to go through the same attorneys to try to get the same deal.
Go into almost any grocery store and you'll inevitably see someone with a cart full of food who whips out an EBT card to pay for it as you wonder if there's enough change in your pocket to buy that pack of Ramen noodles. Most of us have been there at one point or another. I've been there as well, both as being the kid who was ashamed that we had food from the Food Bank in our lunches as well as being the one who still wonders if he'll make it to payday. I don't want to take EBT cards away from everyone, but I sure as hell would like to make sure that person really can't work and/or really truly needs that assistance.
Now you'll have all the anti-welfare people running with parsed bits of these statements and saying "See, see this is why we need to cut programs, drug test people, etc" but that's not where I'm going with this. The point I want to make is that those who abuse the social safety net, like my ex-wife, are free ammo for the likes of Paul Ryan and the rest of his Ayn Rand worshiping "screw you, I got mine" posse. It's also not fair to the people who legitimately need my tax dollars to make it from day to day.
Part of the problem with progressives and liberals is that we've gotten into a mode of protecting our ideas and people at all costs, instead of proactively taking a scalpel to the points of weakness. Admitting that there are problems with welfare and working with the opposition on a compromise that fixes it, that isn't weakness or letting the other side dictate your agenda, that's common sense. Don't let the falsehoods and exaggerations of the people who have a vested interest in shredding the social contract continue to run our political dialogue. Wars are rarely won by simply playing defense all the time.