Commentary Strange Fruit

You’ve heard of white privilege, male privilege and any number of other unearned advantages some of us are born with. But what about food privilege?

University of Louisville graduate student Tyler Short got in touch with Team Strange Fruit after hearing our recent special, Privilege Check. He says just like race, gender and sexuality, access to food is often determined by circumstances of birth.

In Louisville, that usually means geography.

“Folks in the East End have disproportionate access to fresh and healthy food compared to folks in the West End,” Tyler says. “Food justice is a platform to overcome that historical problem.”

Tyler’s scholarship focuses on food access issues, but his work isn’t just academic. He’s also part of La Minga, a 15-acre farming cooperative in Prospect, Kentucky. La Minga (the name┬átranslates to “community work for community good”) brings together people from different walks of life to grow, eat and sell organic food.

In our Juicy Fruit segment this week, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch gives us chills with her strong statement against North Carolina’s anti-transgender bathroom law.

She announced this week that the Department of Justice will file a civil rights lawsuit against the state of North Carolina and Gov. Pat McCrory because the state’s bathroom bill violates federal protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity. At one point in her speech, she addressed trans Americans directly, saying, “We see you. We stand with you, and we will do everything we can to protect you going forward. And please know that history is on your side.”

And to close out our show this week, we introduce you to another young person doing great things in our community. Fifteen-year-old Jalen Posey is the co-founder and president of the Black Student Union at Central High School (while Central is a historically black high school, only a handful of teachers there are people of color). Posey was also involved in the formation of a citywide BSU that serves students from throughout Louisville who may or may not have BSUs at their own schools.

Jalen and other student poets recently appeared before the the Metro Council to advocate for funding for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund, where he recited a poem he wrote about poverty and housing injustice. He stopped by the studio to share that poem with us and our Fruitcakes, and to tell us about the other work he and his fellow BSU leaders are doing.

Laura produces Curious Louisville, Strange Fruit, and other audio news stories for WFPL.