Think of “food terrorism” and what do you see? Diabolical plots to taint items on grocery-store shelves?
If you are Buddy Dyer, the [Democratic] mayor of Orlando, Fla., you might be thinking of a group feeding the homeless and hungry in one of your city parks. That is what Dyer is widely quoted as calling the activists with the Orlando chapter of Food Not Bombs — “food terrorists.” In the past few weeks, no less than 21 people have been arrested in Orlando, the home of Disney World, for handing out free food in a park.
Food Not Bombs is an international, grass-roots organization that fights hunger. As the name implies, it is against war. Its website home page reads: “Food Not Bombs shares free vegan and vegetarian meals with the hungry in more than 1,000 cities around the world to protest war, poverty and the destruction of the environment. With over a billion people going hungry each day how can we spend another dollar on war?”
The Orlando chapter sets up a meal distribution table every Monday morning and Wednesday evening in the city’s Lake Eola Park. [...]
At issue is a city law, the “Large Group Feeding” ordinance, that requires groups to obtain a permit to serve food, even for free, to groups of 25 or more. Such permits are granted to any group only twice per year. Orlando Food Not Bombs has already used both of its allowed permits this year.
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