I take the following from an article in In These Times called Blue Collar, Bare Cupboard. It is by Sasha Abramsky.
It is to consider while we enjoy our dinner tonight. Bush's America no longer says there are any who are hungry in America. There are only those who are experiencing "very low food security." It's enough to make one sick, and it is certainly unfathomable when one considers the wealth this country once had. I heard a man interviewed on Terry Gross today on the debacle that is the real estate industry and how the taxpayers once again are left holding the bag, while the wealthy walk away with millions. Big breath!
I offer the middle of the article.
Of the nearly 40 million who fear going hungry, an estimated 11 million-plus Americans occasionally miss meals, according to the USDA. They include many adults in a family who sacrifice their own portions to ensure their children are fed.
In most countries, such people would be defined as being “hungry.” Bush’s America uses a more Orwellian term.
In 2006, the USDA instructed government agencies to no longer refer to this group as being hungry. The change came about after a Committee on National Statistics of the National Academies reported it could not conclusively determine whether people who couldn’t afford to buy food actually experienced “discomfort, illness, weakness or pain that goes beyond the usual uneasy sensation.”
As a result, the 11 million Americans who cannot afford to stock their houses with food are now classified as experiencing “very low food security.”
In the decades since the Great Depression of the 1930s, this category would have been made up largely of the long-term unemployed, the homeless, perhaps the mentally ill and other marginalized groups.
These days, however, increasingly it is the working poor—whose wages have stagnated, whose cost of living has gone up with higher gas, food and healthcare expenses, and whose time is now spent standing in line at food banks.