The Gap

As of 2005, the FAO of the United Nations estimates that about 18% of the population world wide is severely undernourished.  One of the biggest differences between food insecurity in the United States vs. the entire globe is access to resources.  There is a correlation between the wealth of the country and the health of a country.  The least developed countries have the highest Infant Mortality Rates, the lowest life expectancy, the lowest literacy rates and so on.  What causes such a gap between developed and developing countries?

It began with colonialism.  As part of the industrialization movement, powerful countries moved in countries such as Africa to take advantage of the abundance of raw materials that these lands provided, and in doing so, they disrupted the peoples way of life while giving them no chance to use their own land for themselves. 

While so much of these resources and food was being exported at such a low cost, the items that were being imported were at a price unreachable to most natives.  This lopsided give-and-take was the root cause to the severe problem we are facing today.  The effects of food insecurity is shown most apparent from those who are most vulnerable, women and children.  If the mother is malnourished, her children will most likely be born with problems and have a slim chance of survival.  The high Infant Mortality Rate causes families to overproduce which leads to overpopulation and the vicious cycle continues. 

“Some have suggested that the developed countries could help alleviate the world food problem not by giving more food aid to the poor countries, bu by taking less food away from them,” (Community Nutrition In Action.)

Food insecurity in developed countries like ours is not so severe.  There are places you can go for help such as the food bank or shelters.  I feel that food insecuriy here is a problem that is in our control.  The people in underdeveloped countries are being born into poverty with no education or resource at the fingertips.  However, in the United States, there are resources wherever you turn.  I feel that in many cases, not all, but many cases there is a lack of motivation to improve ones own quality of life and that the ease of unemployment and food stamps is destroying what the country should stand for, Freedom, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. 

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