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This Tumblr user perfectly explained why a Minneapolis food bank's new strategy is so important.

A Minneapolis food bank teamed up with the local law enforcement in a program designed to help hungry people find food.

This Tumblr user perfectly explained why a Minneapolis food bank's new strategy is so important.

As we all know, food banks are one of the main ways communities fight hunger. But recently, Minnesota food bank Matter started doing something special.

The food bank is teaming up with the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office (encompassing Minneapolis) to help distribute food.

Officers will keep boxes with nutritious food in their cars, and if they come across someone in need over the course of their patrol, they'll be able to provide them with things like raisins, oatmeal, granola bars, and canned vegetables.


There are a lot of people in Minnesota who will benefit from this:

Based on data put out by Feeding America, with a population of more than 5.4 million in Minnesota, there are hundreds of thousands of hungry residents.

As an added bonus, the program will give the police a chance to develop a relationship with members of the community.

"There's no doubt in my mind that we will come across a number of those who are less fortunate, maybe even homeless. This will allow the deputies to build a little rapport, reach out to them, [offer] a healthy alternative to what they might be doing." — Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek, in an interview with Minnesota Public Radio


Some folks have pointed out that small-scale assistance won't put an end to the bigger problems that cause hunger and poverty.

Recently one of my co-workers shared a story of a restaurant owner who put a sign on her door offering a meal to the person she knew was digging through the trash at night looking for leftover food. While the story garnered many positive comments, we were surprised to see how many people (both on our post and on similar stories elsewhere on the Internet) commented saying that these case-by-case examples, whether it's cops handing out granola bars or restaurant owners offering a free meal, aren't doing enough to solve those long-term problems.

It's no secret that, for many homeless people, finding food is a daily struggle.

What's maybe not so obvious is that for many folks, even if they do manage to find food reliably, it can be as big a curse as it is a blessing.

One Tumblr user, who agreed to let me share his story here, responded to those criticisms and offered up some insight on what it's like being homeless and hungry:

It reads (emphasis added):

"When I was homeless, I was so constipated all the time — [a] combo of limited access to restrooms and living on one meal a day from the back door of the pizza place... but you can only live on stale pepperoni deep dish for so long before your guts start to rebel. And that was when i was — what, 19? 20? It's gotta be so much worse for older people, and not everyone's got such a nice restaurant to mooch off of. Eating actual trash will f*ck your stomach up like whoa. You never know how painful gas can be until you eat something that was a little farther past the sell-by date than you thought it was, it turns your stomach into a chemical refinery, and the nearest open public restroom is a mile away."

"Handing out raisins and oatmeal looks, at first glance, like one of those officious 'spend your food stamps on lettuce' clusterf*cks that middle-class people are always perpetrating because they've never been in the shoes of the people they're trying to 'improve'. But actually, it's a great idea, and this is gonna make a lot of people a little healthier in immediate, tangible ways. We're not talking some vague probability-of-heart-disease-in-20-years stuff. We're talking standing a little straighter and breathing a little easier the very next day."

jumpingjacktrash.tumblr.com



When it comes to solving problems as big as poverty and hunger, we can't just focus on the big picture and we can't just focus on the small-scale stuff. It's only through a combination of both approaches that we'll ever find a way to make things better.

In the meantime, I think the partnership between Matter and the Minneapolis-area sheriff is a fantastic and unique approach that has a lot of benefits for individuals AND for the community, and I hope we see more cities using this as an example soon.

Heather Cox Richardson didn't set out to build a fan base when she started her daily "Letters from an American." The Harvard-educated political historian and Boston College professor had actually just been stung by a yellow-jacket as she was leaving on a trip from her home in Maine to teach in Boston last fall when she wrote her first post.

Since she's allergic to bees, she decided to stay put and see how badly her body would react. With some extra time on her hands, she decided to write something on her long-neglected Facebook page. It was September of 2019, and Representative Adam Schiff had just sent a letter to the Director of National Intelligence stating that the House knew there was a whistleblower complaint, the DNI wasn't handing it over, and that wasn't legal.

"I recognized, because I'm a political historian, that this was the first time that a member of Congress had found a specific law that they were accusing a specific member of the executive branch of violating," Richardson told Bill Moyers in an interview in July. "So I thought, you know, I oughta put that down, 'cause this is a really important moment. If you knew what you were looking for, it was a big moment. So I wrote it down..."

By the time she got to Boston she has a deluge of questions from people about what she'd written.

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As part of its promise for a brighter world, Dole is partnering with Bye Bye Plastic Bags's efforts to bring sunshine to all.

Visit www.sunshineforall.com to learn more.

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Crest

Some of the moments that make us smile the most have come from everyday superstars, like The McClure twins!

Everyone could use a little morning motivation, so Crest – the #1 Toothpaste Brand in America – is teaming up with some popular digital all-stars to share their smile-worthy, positivity-filled (virtual) pep talks for this year's back-to-school season!

As part of this campaign, Crest is donating toothpaste to Feeding America to unleash even more smiles for families who need it the most.

Let's encourage confident smiles this back-to-school season. Check out the McClure Twins back-to-school pep talk above!

Photo by Charl Folscher on Unsplash

Harvard historian Donald Yacovone didn't set out to write the book he's writing. His plan was to write about the legacy of the antislavery movement and the rise of the Civil Rights era, but as he delved into his research, he ran into something that changed the focus of his book completely: Old school history textbooks.

Now the working title of his book is: "Teaching White Supremacy: The Textbook Battle Over Race in American History."

The first book that caught his attention was an 1832 textbook written Noah Webster—as in Merriam-Webster's Dictionary—called "History of the United States." Yacovone, a 2013 recipient of Harvard's W.E.B. Du Bois medal—the university's highest award for African American studies—told the Harvard Gazette about his discovery:

"In Webster's book there was next to nothing about the institution of slavery, despite the fact that it was a central American institution. There were no African Americans ever mentioned. When Webster wrote about Africans, it was extremely derogatory, which was shocking because those comments were in a textbook. What I realized from his book, and from the subsequent ones, was how they defined 'American' as white and only as white. Anything that was less than an Anglo Saxon was not a true American. The further along I got in this process, the more intensely this sentiment came out. I realized that I was looking at, there's no other word for it, white supremacy. I came across one textbook that declared on its first page, 'This is the White Man's History.' At that point, you had to be a dunce not to see what these books were teaching."

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