Archive for the ‘foodpolitics’ Category

Disgusting or Awesome? You Decide!

May 18, 2007

emptyplate.jpg

Because politics can no longer just be politics, but like everything else has to emulate reality TV, behold: the Food Stamp Challenge!

In this episode, my own congresswoman Jan Schakowsky learns what millions of poor people already know: you can’t really live on food stamps, and you certainly can’t eat nutritiously!

Ok, I kid, but I actually don’t think this is as silly and insidious as some others do. Yes, it somehow manages to make the issues of poverty, hunger and public benefits all about HER, but maybe it does require stunts like this to get people’s attention.

What do you think: disgusting or awesome?

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p.s. I am actually a fan of Jan, despite (or because of?) the Pirro-esque shady past of her husband Robert Creamer. She always seems to vote the right way on lots of issues I care about.

saturday afternoon food musings

March 3, 2007

A while back, I was flipping channels (because i have CABLE now!!) and I came across a broadcast of a conference that took place last summer, sponsored by a Chicago bank, about the problem of food access in minority communities in Chicago. It was interesting, and interesting that this bank was sponsoring it (As a community service/PR-type thing? As reparations for something or other? Out of the goodness of their hearts?). Anyway, access to healthy food for poor and working class people is an issue that has gotten a lot of press lately with regard to childhood obesity, and an issue I have been interested in for a long time.

How do we get food stores to locate themselves in neighborhoods that desperately need them? Recently, the Chicago Tribune reported the closing of a whole slew of Dominick’s supermarkets, many in predominantly minority neighborhoods of Chicago. This sucks. But I personally don’t think that gigantic chain supermarkets (this one is owned by Safeway) are the best answer to the “food desert” problem.
Author Nina Planck says Of course poor people can afford real food – and she backs the assertion up by suggesting some specific policies that would make it easier.

Stay tuned for the book I will someday write about all this stuff. I am not kidding.