America's economic downturn puts hunger back on front burner
The ongoing economic crisis has pushed the number of Americans without adequate food to the highest level since the government has kept tabs on this, according to its latest figures. The new report shows nearly 50 million people - including one child in four - were hard-pressed in 2008 to get enough to eat. The department of agriculture's data provides a detailed portrait of the effect the economy has had on Americans' access to food. The magnitude of the increase in food shortages - and, in some cases, outright hunger - identified in the report startled even the nation's leading anti-poverty advocates, and these numbers will almost certainly add to pressure on the president to meet his earlier pledge to wipe out childhood hunger during his tenure in office. The data shows that nearly 17 million children live in households in which at times food was scarce - 4 million children more than the year before - and more than 16% of Americans overall sometimes ran short of real food. No jokes about too many Big Macs and not enough low-fat designer organic veggies and fruit smoothies, now. For more, read the Washington Post.