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I lived in Chicago's South-side in the middle of a food desert for 7 years in the 80s. All that was available in my neighborhood was MacDonald's, Harold's Fried Chicken Shack, liquor stores, and a "Stop and Rob" convenience store where the "fresh" apples, bananas and broccoli were for display purposes only. Junk was pretty much all that was available.
I would have to drive 20 minutes (one-way) to get to the nearest supermarket with edible fruits and vegetables. The bus would have taken 45 minutes.
I was poor, but not poor enough to need food stamps. I cannot imagine people who needed food stamps could even afford a car, let alone the time to get to the supermarket, like I did.
On the plus side for the new "EBT" program, people who live in food deserts are now taking matters into their own hands growing their own food and establishing community gardens (see http:/ /http://urbanrootsamerica.com, for example) — not many people know this, but SNAP-EBT funds can be used to buy seeds and plants for fruits and vegetables.
I feel uncomfortable with trying to dictate what people can purchase with their EBT funds, but I do believe in giving them the opportunity and education to make healthier choices. And maybe adding a few taxes to unhealthy choices like soda and potato chips to discourage them wouldn't be such a bad idea. We already do it for tobacco and alcohol …
Wow, Suburban. You surely have come a long way! Mazeltov. I agree taxes on unhealthy choices (with empty calories) would be a great way to boost our economy as well as end our obesity epidemic. Along with that, ban those foods from the free lunches we give to school children.
Although, the JUNK he buys with gov't money is DEPLORABLE. It should be outlawed!
EBT=Electronic Benefits Transfer card…Food stamps gone techno. 🙂