Food Justice on Martin Luther King Jr’s Birthday!


“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I’m reflecting on Martin Luther King Jr’s life. He passed away at the age of 39. Hearing that hits me hard. He seemed so much older. Most of us aren’t even close to being that wise by the age of 39. In fact, I hope to accumulate just some wisdom by the end of my life. Many people get uptight about growing old, getting ugly. Truth is, it’s a privilege to age. If I make it, I’ll be a feisty old lady.

Dr. King talked about justice. I love that word, it sounds metallic and strong in my mouth, but yet it’s still pretty. He was focused on social justice. What would he have thought about food justice? Is there such a thing? (that’s rhetoric, I know there is)

Some think that food reform is the next big movement for our country. I like that thought. In March of last year, I started thinking about marching on Washington. I’ve had conversations with Ed Bruske (Better DC School Food and The Slow Cook) and when he gets riled up, he wants to get out into the streets. It’s easy for him to march on Washington DC — he lives there!

Will I march in Washington one day? It’s on my bucket list. I’m concerned about the food we are eating in our country. Whether it’s the 29 million pounds of antibiotics US livestock ingest yearly (by some estimates that figure is 70% of all antibiotics administer to people and animals) or the genetically modified fish possibly being sold without a label or genetically modified alfalfa possibly getting approved by the USDA or that one out of every three toys given to American children is from a fast food company, making McDonald’s the biggest toy company in the world, (Chew On This, Eric Schlosser) and food deserts and on and on…

Sometimes, people call me a complainer and even say they feel bad for my husband! Other times I’m called an elitist and a bitch, or worse. You can believe what you want to. I’m voicing opinions on my blog. If you want to read a vanilla blog, you can find many (I know, I read and enjoy lots of different types of blogs).

In the comments last week I wrote: My little blog and my opinion are whispers in a hurricane, but at least I’m not quiet. Until I get the chance to walk that lawn with my son’s hand in mine, listening to amazing people speak about American food and our rights as eaters, I’ll march here, on my blog.

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16 thoughts on “Food Justice on Martin Luther King Jr’s Birthday!

  1. um ive been reading you for a long time, and every once in awhile i will leave a message, ive have never thought you were anything close to being a b*itch. just rememeber this, the people that are name calling…not many of us like them either, is their blog popular? is there any trait of theirs that you would emulate?…no.

    see? much better:) Happy Martin Luther King Jr day!

  2. Earlier today I spent some time reading quotations from MLK. He was certainly an insightful and inspiring man. I posted one of his quotes to my facebook page today:

    "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter."

    I am glad you started this blog to break your silence about something that matters to you.

  3. I have the hardest time understanding who in their right mind would take offense to your blog in any way.
    I eat Mcdonalds on occasion I have to admit but you pointing out the fact that an egg mcmuffin is not healthy isn't offensive. It's true, hello, what do people expect from fast food?!
    I'm disappointed in the state of this country. Funny too because I watched a documentary on "problem kids" who were removed from their public schools (and their public school cafeterias!) and put into a school that had a healthy lunch provided and their behavior and learning problems were greatly decreased.
    Maybe people wouldn't be so uptight and angry all the time if they ate better like those kids….
    Ignore the hate- the majority of us are here because we agree with you and learn from your example!

  4. Hi Mrs. Q, I just wanted to let your know your blog doesn't seem to be loading correctly in Chrome! It looks fine in Google Reader but when I click through to the main site it squishes all of the content into one very looooong and skinny column. Just a heads up!

  5. Hi Mrs Q, I am chiming in with the anon above, I can't get your blog to load correctly in Chrome either. I have been reading on my phone.

    Also my local library does have the book club book! I was so excited to have them hold it for me. But due to the cuts in library hours and my work schedule, I didn't have time to pick it up! Thought I could get it Saturday but they were closed all weekend for the holiday. Oh well, I'll have them hold it again and hope my timing works out this time. The state of libraries in the US is a topic for another blog!

  6. I read this blog religiously, and have never posted a comment. I just want you to know that this post is fantastic! Maybe you're no MLK, but you are very wise indeed. Thanks for all the great info you share everyday. You and this blog are one of the reasons that I have recently decided to homeschool my children. Your words are powerful.

  7. Mrs. Q, just remember that folks get defensive about food and food issues, and just keep doing your great work. Food is culture, tradition, habit and taste, all very intimate to most folks, especially Americans who are used to being able to eat anything they want very cheaply. We don't want to be told what we are eating is wrong, unhealthy, unethical or bad for the environment. Trust me, I'm a vegan for personal health, public health, ethical and environmental reasons. The folks who are open to hearing it will change, and those who don't, won't (at least for a while). Keep up the good work!

  8. To the negative commenter: I have your IP address. If you harass me again, I'm contacting your internet service provider and I will inform them where you are and what you are saying to me. Get your facts straight. Read the post again — you most definitely mis-read it.

  9. Mrs. Q,

    I have been reading your blog the whole time, and I comment occasionally. I love that you are becoming more feisty! There are plenty of blogs out there – at least one for every interest imaginable, and many more than that about food. It's easy to find someone who already agrees with you if that's all you want to read about. For the rest of us, bring on the education and sass! I have two small children in the public school system and am very interested in food issues, and your blog and several other provide me with invaluable information and make me think. Thanks for your hard work, and keep it up!

  10. They're just jealous cause they're obviously an idiot! Some people still haven't made the connection that when you are nasty to other people, it comes back to get you.

    I say (along with hundreds of thousands of others), you are awesome! Thank you for recognizing Martin Luther King, jr on your blog.

  11. I love this post and this blog.Thank you for saying what I have been thinking for years. It is really a disgrace and instead of worrying about Walmart chopping 10 cents off of an apple let's working on fixing the school lunches!

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