Gwyneth Paltrow And The #FoodBankNYCChallenge

It looks like Gwyneth Paltrow accepted a challenge to eat on $29 a week. I wasn’t sure if she accepted the food challenge or the donation challenge, but that pronoun “we” in her second tweet implies the former, doesn’t it?


At least she’s on the right track with the rice and beans.

I don’t like these challenges. They end up being more about the person doing them than about the issue. That’s especially true if the person is a celebrity. Why not just do it and not tell anyone? Why must it become an ego-inflating activity? An opportunity to advertise one’s greatness? It’s ironic that people who do have a hard time making ends meet don’t work at advertising that fact.

These food challenges don’t depict what it’s really like to need food assistance. The sense of humiliation and despair isn’t shared by the challenge-takers. Nor is the lifestyle – not having reliable transportation, not having food markets nearby, not having time to prepare meals, coping with the physical and mental health issues that plague the poor more than other groups. The challenges are more like party games.

To me, fixing the problem of food insecurity means fixing the large and growing income gap in this country:

Source: The Most Important Chart About The American Economy You’ll See This Year, Vox, 25 September 2014

4 thoughts on “Gwyneth Paltrow And The #FoodBankNYCChallenge

  1. Bix Post author

    I was curious how she was getting on. I saw she said this:

    “As I suspected, we only made it through about four days, when I personally broke and had some chicken and fresh vegetables (and in full transparency, half a bag of black licorice).”

    I also read that she had finished the challenge:

    However when MailOnline asked her representative, he revealed she had actually finished the challenge five days earlier, as when she had announced the challenge on Twitter she was actually already six days into it.

    ‘She finished the challenge last week when Mario challenged her on April 3rd. She didn’t get to post the photos of the groceries until the 9th,’ her rep said.

    So, she and her family actually finished the full week eating only the foods in her photo. She also stopped half way through. She did both of those things.



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