a place at the table-ed. peter pringle

“As a nation, we have increasingly privatized our response to hunger over the past thirty years. Through this transfer of responsibility from the public sector to the nonprofit-business partnerships, we have created a system that is effective in feeding hungry individuals but not in ending hunger. It is a system doomed to succeed in the short term-by lulling the public into the false belief that their charitable donations are fixing the problem-and doomed to fail in the long term as well.” (184)

“But we are treating hunger like a sporting contest, a numbers game. It’s not a game we can win by just pumping more food through the charitable food sector. Hunger is the result of both a failure of the political will to resolve an entrenched problem and a failure of the marketplace to meet the needs of the poor.” (176)

i got this one because i first watched the documentary that came because of it. i think i said this when i read orange is the new black, but i really think we have managed, on some level, to figure out the strengths of the different media available to us, and have integrated them to tell a more complete story. the doc was great because it was able to convey some of the humans most affected by the policies and politics, but the book is a great collection of the multi-level, cross-country initiatives and realities, and together, the issue of food deserts and malnutrition should be leaving us all stuffed and starved.

“Why do we have policies that keep liquor stores away from schools but allow junk food into them?” (10)

“Today this is the new American Promise: if you are born into poverty, your chances of getting out are slim.” (30)

“A grocery store doesn’t just bring food to a neighborhood, it can create an environment of possibility that spills over into the entire community.”

-Jeff Brown, CEO of Brown’s ShopRite supermarkets (57)

“The conditions that have produced inexplicable hunger in a land of plenty will not be changed overnight, but they will never change at all unless we begin to address the real issues standing in the way of eliminating hunger, not just alleviating it.” (158)

at a time when the stop doesn’t win the toronto book award, schools are choosing soda over exercise, and diabetes and add are accepted and medicated rather than prevented, and our mental health issues are spilling out of our seams, we are going to have to come to terms with how we’ve created our own food-related problems, both physically and environmentally.

“False modesty aside, we were monsters of love, purpose, sweat, and butter.” (224)

“Hunger is a human-made problem, and it can be a human-ended problem.” (203)



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