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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Controlling Hunger and Starvation

By Ardain IsmaIn nineteen-fifty, the world population was about two billion. Now, we are six billion on this planet. As many more will be born in the near future, the need for a more humane food distribution has become all the more urgent. According to UNESCO, a branch within the United Nations, more than eight hundred (800) million people go hungry everyday. Out of that number, thirty-six (36) million are living right here in the United States, the world’s wealthiest country.Ironically, global food production over the past thirty-five years has dramatically surpassed population growth. In other words, there is more food per person than ever before in history. If there is so much food, why do so many people go hungry? The main problem, researchers believe, is the food distribution. Government corruptions, inequality between rich and poor, and the vast concentration of wealth in the hands of a few in developing countries are contributing factors. All of these conditions create the economical state for famine and other major catastrophes. In a UN report on hunger around the world released last month, experts believe that promoting a global economy has had a ripple effect on food distribution. “What needs to be done is to change the food distribution system,” they say, because “more often than that the wealthiest get the most food, while the poorest go hungry.” The UN report goes on to say, “While corporations and businesses should be allowed to make profit, they must also respond to a larger human rights agenda.”This sounds perfectly just, but also sheds a simplistic view on how to interpret inequalities in the world. The same corporations mentioned in the report are the ones operating across borders, making millions off of cheap labor, and fostering a ruling elite that is entirely beholden to them, rather than creating a national agenda that would secure fair distribution of wealth and building institutions that would guarantee democratic governance and the rule of law. Civil wars and other social conflicts are symptomatic to social injustices; and social turmoil is the direct result of government mismanagement in the third world. From Haiti to sub-Saharan Africa, this is problematic and dangerously explosive, as the disenfranchised population is demanding fair distribution of their country’s resources.It would be unfair to say that individual and corporate recognition has not increased over the last decade. Lots of groups and organizations have sprung to fight in the war against poverty. The works of many foundations and philanthropic institutions can speak for themselves. But unless those who control the reigns of power and, therefore, the means to genuine social changes (governments) take drastic measures to eradicate corruptions and foster honesty in public affairs, the war against hunger and other forms of social problems plaguing our world today will be all but lost.Dr. Ardain Isma is the editor and publisher of CSMS magazine. He teaches Cross-cultural Studies at Nova Southeastern University and also heads the Center for Strategic and Multicultural Studies, near Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

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