The real reason for Michelle Obama's 'food deserts'

Ethel C. Fenig
An important component of Michelle Obama's healthy eating, let's move initiative is decrying so called food deserts.These are densely populated urban areas parched of any food market oasis purveying nutritious food such as fresh produce, lean meats, grains and dairy. This forces the starving inhabitants to either travel far distances to purchase these products or make do by patronizing greasy spoon fast food restaurants or to subsist on overpriced alcoholic beverages and chips -- the only foodstuffs proffered by small establishments owned by and operated by recent immigrants.

What Ms. Obama, presently enjoying a tax subsidized $4,000,000 vacation complete with tax subsidized corporate jet while attired in a dress without even sleeves costing more than a food stamp recipient's annual food expenses, doesn't mention are some of the causes of this human made desert. Understandably so, doing so would force her to confront some uncomfortable realities.


So why aren't greedy capitalist, profit gorging supermarket executives watering these food deserts with their establishments? Certainly one reason is because of numerous instances like
this incident that occured in Chicago just last holiday week but happen with tragic regularity throughout the year.



The off-duty Chicago police officer slain in a West Side convenience store Thursday night had just gotten engaged on Christmas Day, family friends say.

Clifton Lewis, 41, an eight-year veteran assigned to the Austin District's tactical team, was pronounced dead Thursday at Stroger Hospital, officials said. Two men had walked into the M & M Quick Foods about 8:30 p.m. at 1201 N. Austin Blvd. in the Austin neighborhood, shot the officer, and then grabbed his gun and star and fled, sources said.

At a press conference today, Chicago Police Department Supt. Garry McCarthy said that both of the offenders were armed, one with a pistol and the other a weapon that appeared on video to be a TEC-9. He also said that Lewis, who was standing behind the counter, drew his own weapon and was "subsequently shot."

"The officer didn't stand a chance in this case. He did everything he could," McCarthy said. "Both offenders were wearing masks when they entered the location. One of the two offenders immediately turned and started firing at Officer Lewis. And Officer Lewis engaged that individual ... and was subsequently murdered."

In another sadly routine incident last week at a Church's Chicken, less than a 15 minute ride from Obamas', Bill Ayers' and David Axelrod's respective homes,



In interviews with two people wounded Tuesday night at an Englewood restaurant when a gunman opened fire, killing two and injuring five, witnesses described a brief, yet chaotic and horrifying scene - the sound of incessant gunfire, the falling of bodies and the eerie minutes after the shooting as victims waited for help to arrive.

The mini mart establishment, at a busy intersection, is owned by a Mr. Patel who had hired the police officer to work on the cop's off hours because of numerous past robberies. His store sold mainly chips and such with a small selection of Michelle Obama approved healthy food because patrons, exercising their free choice, bought the former. And the specialty chicken restaurant was popular because once again, patrons, exercising their free choice, patronized it. And there is nothing wrong with that.



Unfortunately these mostly decent patrons can't totally relax in their food desert/violence drowning neighborhood no matter
how often their ministers and congregations march and condemn the situation.

In a neighborhood plagued by violence, a gunman this time struck a small, popular restaurant where bystanders found themselves in the line of fire of someone else's fight, with no place to escape. On Friday, police charged Arthur Chaney, 23, with shooting five and killing Jawan Ross, 16, and Dantril Brown, 17, teens who had gone to the restaurant for dinner, their families said. Police say Chaney got into an argument outside the restaurant and followed that person inside, firing at his target and whoever else happened to be standing there.

Will the vacationing Ms. Obama, address these uncomfortable realities?

Don't bet a thrown out, subsidized, healthy school lunch on it.



An important component of Michelle Obama's healthy eating, let's move initiative is decrying so called food deserts.These are densely populated urban areas parched of any food market oasis purveying nutritious food such as fresh produce, lean meats, grains and dairy. This forces the starving inhabitants to either travel far distances to purchase these products or make do by patronizing greasy spoon fast food restaurants or to subsist on overpriced alcoholic beverages and chips -- the only foodstuffs proffered by small establishments owned by and operated by recent immigrants.

What Ms. Obama, presently enjoying a tax subsidized $4,000,000 vacation complete with tax subsidized corporate jet while attired in a dress without even sleeves costing more than a food stamp recipient's annual food expenses, doesn't mention are some of the causes of this human made desert. Understandably so, doing so would force her to confront some uncomfortable realities.


So why aren't greedy capitalist, profit gorging supermarket executives watering these food deserts with their establishments? Certainly one reason is because of numerous instances like
this incident that occured in Chicago just last holiday week but happen with tragic regularity throughout the year.



The off-duty Chicago police officer slain in a West Side convenience store Thursday night had just gotten engaged on Christmas Day, family friends say.

Clifton Lewis, 41, an eight-year veteran assigned to the Austin District's tactical team, was pronounced dead Thursday at Stroger Hospital, officials said. Two men had walked into the M & M Quick Foods about 8:30 p.m. at 1201 N. Austin Blvd. in the Austin neighborhood, shot the officer, and then grabbed his gun and star and fled, sources said.

At a press conference today, Chicago Police Department Supt. Garry McCarthy said that both of the offenders were armed, one with a pistol and the other a weapon that appeared on video to be a TEC-9. He also said that Lewis, who was standing behind the counter, drew his own weapon and was "subsequently shot."

"The officer didn't stand a chance in this case. He did everything he could," McCarthy said. "Both offenders were wearing masks when they entered the location. One of the two offenders immediately turned and started firing at Officer Lewis. And Officer Lewis engaged that individual ... and was subsequently murdered."

In another sadly routine incident last week at a Church's Chicken, less than a 15 minute ride from Obamas', Bill Ayers' and David Axelrod's respective homes,



In interviews with two people wounded Tuesday night at an Englewood restaurant when a gunman opened fire, killing two and injuring five, witnesses described a brief, yet chaotic and horrifying scene - the sound of incessant gunfire, the falling of bodies and the eerie minutes after the shooting as victims waited for help to arrive.

The mini mart establishment, at a busy intersection, is owned by a Mr. Patel who had hired the police officer to work on the cop's off hours because of numerous past robberies. His store sold mainly chips and such with a small selection of Michelle Obama approved healthy food because patrons, exercising their free choice, bought the former. And the specialty chicken restaurant was popular because once again, patrons, exercising their free choice, patronized it. And there is nothing wrong with that.



Unfortunately these mostly decent patrons can't totally relax in their food desert/violence drowning neighborhood no matter
how often their ministers and congregations march and condemn the situation.

In a neighborhood plagued by violence, a gunman this time struck a small, popular restaurant where bystanders found themselves in the line of fire of someone else's fight, with no place to escape. On Friday, police charged Arthur Chaney, 23, with shooting five and killing Jawan Ross, 16, and Dantril Brown, 17, teens who had gone to the restaurant for dinner, their families said. Police say Chaney got into an argument outside the restaurant and followed that person inside, firing at his target and whoever else happened to be standing there.

Will the vacationing Ms. Obama, address these uncomfortable realities?

Don't bet a thrown out, subsidized, healthy school lunch on it.