My Hunger Has Been Replaced With Tears…


Day 3 of Five Day Fast

I’m watching “A Place At The Table” again. I’m sad to say that watching the people get a hot meal on a Wednesday night in the beginning of the film gives me pangs of hunger. Last night I thought “I’m glad I have some ham in the fridge because a sandwich would be nice.” It makes me cry because 50 million Americans don’t just have a choice within arm’s reach. The term food insecurity makes me sick to my stomach. The obesity connection to hunger is probably baffling to many people, but if you think about it people who are poverty stricken try to stretch the little amount of funds they have by buying cheaper processed foods. The problem with this is those empty calories do not nourish the body and obese people are literally starving, so they eat more empty calories that throw their metabolism out of whack. Whole foods and nutritionally beneficial foods have become so expensive that people with better incomes have more access. If you look at most people with a “healthier” shape they tend to be people with upper incomes.

I do have local farm organic delivery, but it costs so much that I usually only get a delivery once every other month. I try to shop smart with that too. Someone else provides that for me so I make sure to utilize it carefully. I have found myself craving green veggies more than fruit, because I don’t have constant financial access. When you see the food stamp section of the movie it makes you feel even more upset. What can we do to help? I just can’t help crying to myself and wondering what can I do. We all must think about watching a child go to bed hungry and being okay with that in this country. It’s because we don’t have to look at those hungry children.

When I was a child at public school, because my mom was a single mother at the time we were part of the subsidized school lunch program. When we received scholarships to attend private school, with people who had money I felt embarrassed to get my free lunch (they always had a way to illuminate you weren’t like everyone else because they either logged your meal or made you carry a card, while the “regular, non poor” children had money or sack lunches). I remember wishing I could bring my own lunchbox or sack lunch. The times we were able to bring them, I always ended up being hungry because we’d have just a simple sandwich and nothing else, especially not fruit. Luckily back then in the early 1960’s chips were only things people ate at picnics along with pop (sodas). So when we had food it tended to be less processed, if you had it. When the child in the film said they had eaten already they said their meal was chips!

My friend questioned where the community gardens were in rural areas so that people could feed their children more vegetables and fruit and it is a great question. I don’t know if it’s because there is no one to manage the land, or what. It doesn’t take much to see how easily children are falling through the cracks of a country more interested in wars and special interest groups with financial power than a bunch of children who are being groomed to grow up and require more public assistance. They will require it because they have been compromised by bad nutrition or no nutrition. This basically translates into greater socioeconomically deprived and depressed numbers, which means lower educational attributes…less chance of college or professional training and that translates to more of this same horrific spiraling down in America.

I think about the parents and how they feel about having to “beg” for food. I’ve been to food banks and half the time I felt guilty when I saw families there with children because I was single. The other half of the time, I felt embarrassed, but it felt so good to have something to eat when I got the bags home. I was working part time at a couple places, while attending school and trying to pay for rent. I hoped to have my own family, just one child actually, but I guess the wisdom of God realized if I had a child in the midst of finishing my graduate degree with financial along and life stressors would have compromised them too. I just can’t imagine how I could have faced that after the market took a dive. If I had a child, the strain would have been unbearable like most of the parents in the film.
The disgusting paradox of the mom who was unemployed and on assistance that got a job helping people get food stamps, ended up losing benefits for her children with day care and food assistance. It is the constantly horrific cycle for the economically depressed. It is an age-old sick paradigm in America. As a college student, especially once you move to the graduate level, financial assistance dries up and you are forced to move to student loans. If you work at a job to cover your rent, living you may not get financial aid to cover your schooling, and you still need time to study and complete assignments so you can graduate. I don’t know how people do it. I have loved ones that sacrifice to help me finish this journey so that I can start contributing to the solution with my academic credentials and financial power. For now I guess the best I can do is illuminate this issue through my blogs and radio show. Maybe America can stop wasting money worrying about or trying to control my vagina and start putting it towards making their greatest resource, our children whole again. Any country that does not care about their children is slowly dying from the inside. Other countries will not give up their young when ours have fallen away.


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