Black Food Geographies

Ashante Reese tackles the problem of food deserts in low-income neighborhoods as a structural racism problem. While I believe there is plenty of evidence to back up this claim, I believe it is also a problem of economics. Our capitalist system does not allow access to the same amenities for everyone. We have to fix the problem of income inequality if we are to fix the problem of food insecurity. For this reason, I advocate for universal basic income, which is being implemented in several cities through the federal pandemic relief bills. Once the results are compiled from these measures, it will be easier to formulate ways to address food needs in these neighborhoods. I appreciated that the author actually visited the neighborhood and spoke with residents and business owners. While she spoke with the owner of Community Market, she did not speak with the manager of Safeway, but rather quoted from media reports about the store. The fact that local residents would rather shop at a supermarket (over the nearby black-owned grocery) indicates to me that pressure should be brought to bear on Safeway to clean up their act. I did get an overwhelming sense of helplessness because the problem is so big.

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