No. Inherently, there is a lot of power in the word no. The power to bring an end to something already set in motion. The power to stop things before a drop of life is breathed into them. The power to snuff out possibility. Undoubtedly, the person who utters those two letters possesses a great deal of power.
But what about the listener? What about the person on the receiving end of the no? Traditionally, we view that individual as powerless, stymied, or at least momentarily suspended in time. But what if there is real power in being told no? What if that is how we develop the tenacity that is necessary to navigate finances and other aspects of our personal lives? If that’s the case, then what happens when we stop being told no? Continue reading “The Power of No”
Last week, Yahoo Food ran a Refinery 29 piece entitled “What It’s Like to Feed a Family For Less Than $20 a Day”. It was widely read, and if the 3,510 commenters are any indication, it was also widely misunderstood.
In a lot of ways, I blame Refinery 29 and Yahoo. Their sexy headline was nothing more than clickbait and troll fodder. The actual essence of the article was about the flawed Farm Bill and the fact that the current government assistance programs make it much easier to track down sugar-laden processed foods than fresh, let alone organic, produce. It was intended to be about the power and the voice that young people have to demand healthier options with their votes and with their dollars. Instead, it became a soapbox from which people could declare their moral, financial, and nutritional superiority while espousing judgments at their best, xenophobia at their worst.
So how exactly did thousands of commenters miss the mark? Continue reading “SNAP, Food Insecurity, and Really Angry Commenters”