Farming towns have been around for a long time, and now innovative folks are thinking about how we can do it better.
But farming doesn’t only have to happen in towns. It can happen in the city too. In fact, it’s important that it does.
Today about one out of three Americans are obese. Not just overweight, obese. There’s a certain breed of jackass out there who will look at impoverished people in this country, and point out the high percentage who are obese and claim that it’s some sort of proof that they’re really not that poor, or that they may be poor, but they’re sure comfortable and eating well.
Maybe I shouldn’t say that all people who think that way are jackasses because some of them just may not realize that it’s not about the quantity of the food that poor folks eat, it’s the crappy quality of the food. And why is it that they eat crappy food? Because those are the only options that have been presented to them in their community.
Here’s where the jackass part comes in. Those are the people who are unwilling to see that certain opportunities are denied people in our country who most need them—namely the poor.
See, there are regions called food deserts, which are places that do not have reasonable access to healthy food. Do they exist in the wealthiest country on earth? Yup. Cars, if you haven’t noticed, cost a lot of money. Not just to buy, but to keep running. So, poor people often don’t have cars, which means going to the big chain grocery store a few miles away is exceedingly difficult. Moreover, when you do go to the grocery store, it takes up a lot more time and money than just stopping by the national fast food chain where they are able to take advantage of bulk purchasing to produce the bare minimum of what qualifies as actual food.
Let me back up a little. There are two kinds of entrepreneurs in this world. The first one sees a problem and figures out a solution to it. The second kind sees a problem and exploits it.
For example, when the first kind sees that there’s a problem with poor folks getting food he might say, “Hey, there’s an empty lot here. Let’s create a community garden and let the people come together, socialize, learn, and provide healthy food for one another. Especially for our children.”
The second entrepreneur would see that there is a problem getting healthy food to poor folks and say, “Excellent. I can provide cheap food to them in bulk and make a hauling off it. I can do this because there are so many poor folks AND there is another population so desperate for survival that I can enslave them so I don’t have to pay much on the production side.” Sounds like a son of a bitch, doesn’t he? Well, that brand of entrepreneur who is willing to exploit people for his own profit is also capable of identifying an existing solution and destroying it so that he is able to realize his dreams of exploitation. Like what they did in South Central. Click that link and watch that trailer at least. It’s important.
The evil in such endeavors is profound, and the way they get away with it is by wrapping it in the flag, which is an even further atrocity. They say it’s for the greater good; to create jobs; to improve the economy. And it’s all untrue. When poor people are only given the options of unhealthy food, the result is lowered productivity and poor health, both of which just end up costing us more. Not that the argument for social justice needs to come down to economics, but it’s important to point out that such actions are good for precisely nothing, except perhaps the financial gain of a very few people.
And one other important thing to be aware of. The poor in this country are not getting enough food. Millions upon millions of people.