published Monday, April 2nd, 2012

Food police vs. the homeless

We doubt that most people who are homeless and hungry would be very concerned about the salt, fiber and fat content of food generously provided to them at homeless shelters.

But out of a skewed sense of nutritional appropriateness, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's administration has ruled that homeless shelters in the city no longer can accept donations of food. They must rely instead on foods provided by vendors they hire.

A CBS affiliate in New York found that the reason for rejecting the donations -- which often come from religious groups -- is that the city cannot evaluate whether the foods have proper levels of fat, salt and fiber.

One man who, with a team of volunteers, has been collecting tons of freshly cooked food from a New York synagogue for decades to deliver to homeless shelters was disgusted to discover that he may no longer do so.

"I think there is a degree of management that becomes micromanagement, and when you cross that line simply what you're doing is wrong," Glenn Richter told the New York television station.

Coming from New York, though, these new rules are not a big surprise. That's the same city that back in 2006 banned trans fats in restaurants. Trans fats are unhealthy, and we cannot recommend a steady diet of foods containing them.

But as with food donations to homeless shelters, trans fats served by restaurants shouldn't be an occasion for more Big Brother intervention.

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conservative said...

I'm so thankful I don't live in one the cities of Lieberal La La Land!

Wouldn't it be wonderful if all the Lieberals would move to the cities in Lieberal La La Land!

April 2, 2012 at 10:38 a.m.
lightkeeper said...

@ conservative.....Thats not what the article is about. If you were homeless through no fault of your own, which you could very well become, you would want someone to help lookout for your wellbeing. Some of you so called conservative evangelical christians [you know, the Rush Limbaugh kind] give the word christian a bad name and think the Lord is on your side. Chattanooga's problem is because of nut jobs like you and it would be better off if you and your kind would move to conservative hypocrite land....I hope you don't have children, if you do...God help those poor little kids!

April 2, 2012 at 1:46 p.m.
Rtazmann said...


April 2, 2012 at 8:01 p.m.
328Kwebsite said...

I feel we would have been better served by an editorial about community service conditions experienced by the homeless in our own area.

On returning from war, I was shocked and disgusted to learn that while I was gone one of two men's homeless shelters in our area had been evicted. Evicted. A men's homeless shelter. Who evicts a homeless shelter?

Then, there were lawsuits trying to prevent relocation of the shelter.

Meanwhile, things seem to have settled down by relocating a shelter to the old school at Main and Central.

Within six blocks of your headquarters at 700 E. 11th St, there are plenty of resources that can provide firsthand observation of conditions about the homeless right here in Chattanooga.

It might be helpful to send a reporter over to one of those places, if you cannot go there yourself.

Editorializing about shelter conditions in New York City is not a newsworthy item for the scope and condition of your paper's circulation.

Try writing about the kitchen within 100 yards of your employee parking lot. Or, try looking at the abandoned "jobs" center two blocks from your business; it's an empty hulk of a building that could house somebody, but it sits empty and abandoned at 11th and Central. Or, go over to the men's shelter at Main and Central. Or, go over to the Salvation Army shelter at Magnolia and McCallie.

Any reports about conditions in any of those places would have been more newsworthy than the editorial posted above.

When I checked on it the first time about 20 years ago, there were 14 places in Chattanooga for homeless women and children. There were two for men. Two. As if poverty should exercise gender bias. While I was away at war, y'all tried to shut down one of those.

And now you want to complain about the nutrition rules in New York City. Pay attention!

There's a street out there. Get a reporter on it. Better yet, get out there yourself.

April 2, 2012 at 9:18 p.m.
joneses said...


Why is it you atheist are so intimidated by something you do not believe exist? Do you really think your continued assault on Christianity is helping your socialist liberal agenda? It is not.

April 2, 2012 at 9:28 p.m.
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