Hunger Stamps

Wasted food wouldn’t be as significant of a problem if there weren’t people without enough to eat. But there are and probably always will be. Throughout human history, hunger has persisted. Even today, when the U.S. has the means to marginalize it–imagine if we spent as much on ending hunger as we did on our defense budget–we don’t.

In an effort to raise hunger awareness, the co-leaders of the House Hunger Caucus called on members of congress to take the Food Stamp Challenge by subsisting for a week on $21 of food stamps, the average amount given to recipients. Sadly, only two lawmakers (out of 435!) accepted.

With Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, and Janice Schakowsky, D-Ill., plus the caucus co-leaders Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., and Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., that makes a total of four. McGovern and his wife Lisa are blogging about the experience , as is Ryan (he even scanned in his supermarket receipt!).

Kudos to these four for bringing attention to hunger, especially Emerson for continuing the legacy of her late husband Bill, who introduced the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act that shields food donors from liability lawsuits.

Now it’s time for the colleagues of these four members to raise the antiquated amounts food stamps provide. An average budget of $3 per day/$1 per meal just doesn’t cut it.  

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