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Why Don’t We Get It?

Hey it's George. If there is one thing that I have realized in my life, it’s that sometimes government is almost like the shoe shiners for big business. I mean seriously, look at our country. Food and beverage businesses tell the government what they are going to do (that of course protects their bottom line); then they throw lots of money at what’s important to protect their interests and the government goes along with it. Businesses tell us what we are going to buy – yes, they put in front of us what they want us to have and we go and buy it. I just don’t understand why we don’t see what’s all around us, or maybe what we can’t see, because we are too busy allowing food and beverage businesses to stomp their feet in our faces.

The facts are there, the voices for change are there, but we just love the taste of the foot I guess. I can imagine some of the conversations going on between businesses, the government, and people in the community.  For example:

The “business”: I want to start putting this pink slim in meat. We can make more meat products for less money which is good for everyone.

Government: That sounds like a great idea! Let’s get started! Just make sure the masses won’t get sick or anything from your pink slime product. Hopefully people won’t even know the difference.

The “business”: Would you like to try some?

Government:  No thanks, but I’m sure it tastes like you put your foot in this meat! (Laughter)

The “business”: You know I always do when it comes to me making more money. (Evil grin).

We the people: What are the long-term effects of eating this pink slime? Why do we even need it? Can’t we just have our meat without fillers and without it being overly processed?

The “business”: No! That is too much money. Besides only a few of you are seeing this as an issue.

We the people: But-

The “business”: There is no BUT. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you! You’re going eat the pink slime and you’re going to like it!

We the people: Try again, we will write, petition and let every major media outlet know we are not having it. In essence, we will shut you down, and force your hand to let people know what they are really buying AND we the people did just that.

This story has a "people power" made the change ending but what about all the other food and beverage changes we need to see in our communities? It’s just crazy how blind we can be at times.  We have the power we just need to use it. How could you not be supportive of the things that people are doing to get healthier food and beverage options in their communities? I was reading an article (http://www.gazettechicago.com/index/2012/04/students-demand-stores%E2%80%99-help-in-fighting-junk-food-proliferation/ ) about a group of teens in Chicago fighting for healthier options in their local corner store that really gets to the point of the matter.

As I said before, the voices for change and the community leaders are in place, and so are the facts. We just have to come together and fight for what we want and deserve. Businesses should be eating out of the palm of our hand. We are their key to success, and we have to show them that they are not getting the key unless they give us what we want!  SHIFTDemand!

George, SHIFT Crew Leader

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