Hunger: By any other name, it still gnaws at Americans' well-being
Published: December 1, 2006
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- It may be irony -- or it may serve a more useful purpose -- that just before the feasting season that begins with Thanksgiving and ends with New Year's Day, reports are issued that detail the prevalence of hunger in the United States and around the world. "Hunger" is an easy, six-letter word. But this year in its annual report on Americans' access to food, the U.S. Department of Agriculture decided to use the term "very low food security," which brought scoffs from some and rebuke from others. The Rev. David Beckmann, head of the Christian citizens' anti-hunger lobby Bread for the World, told Catholic News Service he got no flak for his comments about it in The Washington Post Nov. 16. He was quoted as saying that "the proposal to remove the word 'hunger' from our official reports is a huge disservice to the millions of Americans who struggle daily to feed themselves and their families." The USDA study, released Nov. 15, showed that in 2005 35 million people -- about 12 percent of all Americans -- could not put food on the table at least part of the year, and that 11 million reported going hungry on occasion.
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