Every now and then, I see a film that totally shocks and inspires me at the same time. A Place at the Table is a powerful documentary that illuminates the plight of the 49 million Americans struggling with food insecurity.
Those featured include a single mother, a small-town policeman and a farmer who share their horrifying stories of working at such a low wage that they can’t put food on their tables every day for their children, but make too much to receive food assistance from the government. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN AND HOW CAN WE HELP?
Politicians, activists and even actor Jeff Bridges weigh in on how the problem happened after the 70’s (when Americans did have more food security), when food subsidies shifted to large corporate interests (Big Ag) rather than to small farms who were growing healthy food, or to the individuals who needed Food Stamps.
Most recently, our U.S. Congress voted to increase the amount of money given for school lunches (the only food some at-risk children receive every day) by a paltry amount, but took that extra amount and subtracted it from the Food Stamp program, rather than from other huge expenditures, like the military budget. As Jeff Bridges remarks, if another country had 1 in 4 of their children going hungry, we would invade them!
Food assistance for struggling families, and starving children who are too hungry to learn in school, has fallen to local Food Banks and church-related charities. But what they provide is primarily calorie-dense, nutrient-deficient boxed and canned foods that just lead to more health problems for the poor.
Yes, I’ve been donating help to feed hungry children in my area… Part of the proceeds from my new Kindle book, The Chakra Energy Diet, will go to “Feed the Children,” a program with the mission of ending childhood hunger by connecting kids in need with nutritious food from local farmers, and teaching families how to grow, find and cook healthy, affordable meals and practice the sciences of wellness and the arts of creative living.
We all need to help those in need, but we also need to lobby our government representatives to change our budgetary priorities, and have our children well-fed, healthy and able to grow into smart, successful people.
Happy viewing and reading,
Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra Energy Diet, The Chakra Diaries, Chakra Secrets and Balance Your Chakras – Balance Your Life