Don't petition the White House, Use

Don’t petition the White House, Use

Nov 18, 2012 Aaron Krager No Comments
Secessionists. I first want to say thank you for finally learning something from history. The last time so many desired to rid themselves of a tyrannical president they declared war on the Union. Thus, your use of a peaceful means through petitions on the White House’s site is commendable. Furthermore, each state now finds themselves represented by a petition and signatures from people possibly wanting to secede from the United States. Texas leads the way with more than 100,000 people asking the White House to address the issue. This is the same state governed by Rick Perry who drummed up his base of supporters with calls for seceding prior to his Republican bid for President. The irony seemed lost on him. Governor Perry is obviously not a viable option to lead the cause. He hardly put up a fight against a weak group seeking his party’s nomination. I also question...
The Country Moved to the Left Last Night

The Country Moved to the Left Last Night

The whole campaign season did not just depend upon the presidential race that finally came to an end last night. Yes, the country voted clearly to give Barack Obama another four years in the White House. He received more than 50 percent of the vote and won handily in the electoral college. Yet, it is what happened down the ballot that shows the nation’s move toward progressive values. It appears that Democrats will pick up a couple seats in the lower chamber but the real change happened on the senatorial level. Voters said no way to Republicans Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock after they attempted to scapegoat women and downplay the trauma of rape and sexual abuse. Furthermore, women won in Massachusetts, North Dakota, Hawaii, and Wisconsin for their first terms. All four of them will be more progressive legislators than their predecessors. In Wisconsin Tammy Baldwin will be the...
Republicans, Rape, Life, and Control of Women

Republicans, Rape, Life, and Control of Women

Oct 24, 2012 Aaron Krager No Comments
During last night’s Indiana Senate debate the Republican candidate, Richard Mourdock, did more than stick his foot in his mouth. I believe life begins at conception. The only exception I have for to have an abortion is in the case of the life of the mother. I struggled with myself for a long time but I came to realize life is that gift from God, even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape. It is something that God intended to happen. Mourdock joined a club made exclusively of Republicans but a club that seems to be growing as the November election nears. Illinois Congressman Joe Walsh made a reprehensible comment about exceptions for the life of the mother following his debate. “There is no such exception. With modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance.” Complete crap as this woman explains. Of course who can forget Missouri...

Lunchladies Push for Higher Quality Foods in Chicago Schools

Jan 25, 2012 Aaron Krager No Comments

The men and women preparing meals for Chicago school children say the kids do not eat most of the new food, according to a survey released by the cafeteria workers union Unite HERE Local 1. Nearly fifty of the workers marched outside the Chicago Public School headquarters on Tuesday afternoon to unveil the survey of 436 self-described lunchladies.

First Lady Michelle Obama will announce new national lunch standards today that CPS already adopted last school year. The schools incorporated healthier foods by offering a different vegetable each day, placing whole grains on the menu, and more.

The workers say this does not do enough. According to the survey, three-quarters of the workers said they “had no input on the new recipes or food.” The food is often unfamiliar for the students and leads to waste, defeating the purpose of the program.

Disciplinary fears prevented 61 percent of the respondents from speaking out on the program. Workers would like to see actual kitchens that would allow them to prepare full meals for the students instead of taking a one-size fits all approach. They would also like to take part in the decision-making process, offered more training, ending the practice of replacing fresh food with frozen or reheatable food, and add language to their contracts that allows them to talk to parents and kids about the food.

The Chicago Tribune quoted CPS spokes man Frank Shuftan from a statement saying:

“Our lunchroom workers are an important part of our food service program, and we value interest and passion in offering students the most nutritious meals possible.”

The Tribune also provided more data on the lunch programs.

Last year the Tribune reported that only about 70 percent of CPS students were taking lunch after the meals were overhauled — even though 86 percent of students qualified for free or reduced-price meals. The lunchroom survey suggests the percentage of students who actually eat the food could be even lower — only 42 percent of the workers “felt the students were eating the new food.”

Unfortunately, they did not seem to gather data on the universal breakfast program in which some workers believe is mismanaged. According to a few of the lunchladies the breakfasts are distributed in paper bags and students return to a classroom to eat. The meal typically contains a fruit item, milk, cereal, and/or a warm option of grits or oatmeal.

“It’s about taste and the way it is prepared,” said Katherine Crawford, a CPS lunchroom worker for 13 years. “We want training on what should be served but instead they just tell us how to serve it.”

CPS has 409,000 students and the lunchroom workers serve 77,000 school breakfasts and 280,000 school lunches each in over 600 schools.

Gloria Drew, an eight year veteran of school cafeterias, says, the heavily processed food like hot dogs, hamburgers, and turkey is avoided by students but the fresh chicken is usually enjoyed by the students. Drew also mentioned the eggs and beans are processed or smell poorly.

“It is not the food they could get from their mom’s home cooking,” said Drew.

While school food is notorious for being substandard the one-size fits all approach for nearly a half million students skips over the diversity of Chicago in order to save money. It also brings down the quality of food with more processed goods shipped to the schools and told what to prepare. One workers said the kids don’t even like the pizza because it takes like cardboard. Even if Congress believes it to be a vegetable.

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