While I agree with Edgar Allen Beem’s goal of ending hunger, as expressed in his column of Sept. 12, I believe his solution of a tax on meals at restaurants is not necessarily the best approach. People who would give freely if they were aware of Maine’s hunger problem may react negatively when that “giving” is enforced through a tax. Just like Mr. Beem said in his column, “once the people of Maine learn the extent of the problem, they will want to help their hungry neighbors.” What we need to do is make sure that everyone in our communities understands the severity of the situation, and also understands that if they have anything to give, be it time, money, or food, it can make a big difference. There is currently a disconnect between those who are poor hungry, and everyone else. Healing that divide is even more important than just throwing money at the problem. If we can bridge that gap, we will never have to “eat, drink and feel guilty.” We will be able to take joy from every meal, knowing that through the efforts of our communities, no one is going without.

Jordan Ossie