Have You Ever Been Hungry?

It’s a trick question.  Very few of you reading this ever have been.  Neither have I.  Not really, truly hungry.

Yeah, I get “hungry” for lunch, sometimes for dinner.  I look forward to my Cheerios and frozen blueberries in the morning.  But hungry?  No.  I’m blessed to have grown up (and remained) in the Great American Middle Class, and the classical definition of hunger is something to which I can’t relate.  Thank God.

I’m not trying to bring you down, but this blog – about healthy eating and healthy living – is a good place to ruminate on what hunger is … and the fact that it’s closer than any of us want to understand.

Just this evening, my Lovely Wife and I took the Sprightly Daughters out to dinner (pastrami on rye, thanks for asking), and after getting them to bed I ran out to the Publix down the street to pick up a gallon of milk and a few other quick items.  Just yesterday I deposited my paycheck in the bank, and tonight I slid my debit card through the machine, took my bag full of groceries and came home.  Tomorrow I’ll give my kids a nice healthy breakfast.

Across town there’s a dad wondering what he can possibly give his kids for breakfast.  The shelves in his fridge are as empty as his wallet.  He kissed his kids goodnight just like I did.  But while he worries about feeding his family – much less himself – my biggest worry is keeping myself from eating too much tomorrow.  There’s a lot wrong with a world like that.   A hell of  a lot.

Nearly 50 million Americans – 17 million of them children – don’t have enough to eat.  And I don’t mean they didn’t get a chance to go grocery shopping this week, I mean they don’t have anything to buy groceries with.

Around the world 925 million people (nearly three times as many people as there live – totally – in the US) are hungry.

I have to say again, there’s a hell of a lot wrong with that.  We live in a country … a world … full of abundance.  Most of us (again, all of us reading this, I’d wager) can’t even imagine what hunger is.  Maybe that’s the problem. Maybe if more of us had ever actually had to beg for food to feed our children we’d understand a little better, and maybe we’d do something about it.

The thing is, we can do something about it.  Individually we can all do a little.  But together – as part of the richest nation in the history of the world – we can make real – historic – change.  If we care to.

Do we?


One response to this post.

  1. VERY powerful message Harvey…and something that people really don’t talk enough about. We have a local food bank in Sarasota that has a wonderful PSA that hits the nail on the head!!

    You can view it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoVsqdQD4eI&feature=player_embedded

    They also have one of their trucks wrapped that shows an elderly man sitting at a table with a pill bottle and it says: “He’s supposed to take his medication with food, but he can’t afford both.”

    GREAT post…thanks!!


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