Most people on disability are truly unable to work

As a recipient of disability benefits, I was angered by George Will’s Oct. 29 column in which he decries the growth of disability entitlements in recent decades. He blames the growth on a “celebration of dependency” and an escalation of false disability claims. Will implies that most recipients are able but unwilling to work.

I strongly feel that most individuals receiving disability benefits are truly unable to work. We certainly do not enjoy being dependent. Disability payments barely cover expenses for many people. We would gladly trade our benefits for the dignity of work and a higher income, if only our health permitted.

In my view, the growth of disability entitlements is related to improved understanding of disabling conditions such as mental illness. Years ago, many persons with disabilities were denied benefits because their conditions were not recognized. They either became impoverished or were forced to keep working, thereby exacerbating their disability.

While Will decries the growth in entitlement programs, I am thankful that our country provides a safety net for all who need it.

Robert A. Krohn