Tom Penders of Titusville, Florida, is an archaeologist and cultural resources manager, who has worked seven years for the Air Force. He is now on furlough. That makes him a non-essential government employee.
"It feels like crap (to be called non-essential)," he says. "I have no idea what we are going to do. We live paycheck to paycheck as it is and barely make ends meet. ... I am looking for another job and may have to declare bankruptcy."
A.J. Olsen of Willamina, Oregon, is a small business owner who favors the shutdown and believes it will serve as a wake-up call for the nation.
"It's time the government take lessons like we the everyday people do, and struggle like we do, they put their pants on just like we do. One leg at a time," he says. "This shutdown is just a struggle like we all have to go through, so the cushy jobs of the government now don't have the same stability they have had ... they have only suffered two days and counting, if every one of them had to stand in the welfare line like I did, and go thru the same BS I did, they would change the systems, overhaul them."