Gwyneth Has Snapped

gwyneth has snapped

So, her Royal Highness of the steam cleaned hoo ha, has SNAPped.

That’s right, folks, Gwyenth Paltrow is doing the SNAP challenge.

For those unaware, the challenge is based upon food stamp allotments, totalling $4.15 a day, per person.

This from the woman who said, “I am who I am. I can’t pretend to be somebody who makes $25,000 a year.” Uh, Gwyn? Hon? How much do you think folks who need SNAP to feed their families make? And isn’t that exactly what the SNAP challenge amounts to? Pretending to be someone who makes far less money than you, for a week?

Then I took a look at the picture she posted on Twitter, supposedly of the groceries she’s using for the week.

A dozen eggs.

One avocado.

One bunch of green onions.

Two heads of lettuce.

One ear of corn.

Seven limes.

A bag of peas.

A bag of beans.

A tomato.

A head of garlic.

A bunch of cilantro.

A small bag of brown rice.

A package of gluten-free tortillas.

Uh, Gwynie? Sweetums? Are you actually going to *gasp* drink tap water? The rules of the SNAP challenge say that you can’t use any food already in the house, nor have anyone else buy food for you. Since there’s nothing to drink in your picture, you’re going to guzzle regular old tap water? No caffeine, no juice, no bottled water? Really?! *clutches pearls*. What nobility! What sacrifice!

Is there anything you won’t do to raise awareness?

“I’d rather smoke crack than eat cheese from a tin,” she’s quoted as saying on a British television show.

Don’t get me wrong, folks; I’m all for raising awareness about the reality of poverty, and have written two posts about what it’s truly like for families who live in fear of how to keep food on the table. (You can find them here, and here). In that sense, any awareness being raised is good.

I mean, I have a lot of respect for Bif Naked, and Beth, from Budget Bytes, who did the SNAP Challenge for a month. A month. But a week?

Perhaps I should view it as simply that, and let any of the rest go. However, if feels too much like someone standing on the backs of those who struggle, who look at their hungry children and feel like failures as parents, who don’t have the ability to opt out after a week. For headlines.

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Gwyneth Has Snapped — 12 Comments

  1. Am I the only one who thinks there’s something a little odd about an actress saying, “I can’t pretend to be someone who makes $25,000 a year.” She can pretend to be Shakespeare’s lover, a fat girl, and a tortured American poet…but she can’t imagine, much less pretend, what it’s like to live in poverty.

    Looking over her filmography I wonder if she has a contract that says she can only be cast as a rich girl, or if she just can’t play anything else.

  2. It’s not about pretending to be someone who makes $25,000 it’s about actually living like someone who MUST live on a budget and the awareness will come from seeing how challenging it is! Unfortunately, Gwyneth lives in lala land – too far removed from the real world!

  3. It is hard to take her seriously when you know she has no sense of urgency or feeling of despair if things go to hell.

    If she goes hungry for a night or a couple of days it is not a big deal because it is not her reality.

  4. While I, like you, feel that getting eyes on this situation is a good thing it seems like there is something missing with this challenge. Its not exactly putting off vibes of togetherness and “striving for a change” as it is spotlighting just how big the gap between the “regular folks” and the wealthy are. It doesn’t really touch our hearts to know Gwyneth went without caviar and rare baby seals encrusted in black pearls for the week (that’s totally what the rich eat, right?). We know next week she could be having $300 sushi (what do I have against seafood today?!) and saying “That wasn’t so hard! I lost 4lbs!”

    So yes, we need changes and awareness but for me personally, this campaign isn’t the way to do it.

    • Huff Po Canada just ran my Poverty (first one) piece, and I’m hoping they’ll run part two as well. Folks need to understand what’s truly at stake, when talking about this issue. Too many are just, “go get a job!” and its just not that simple.

  5. Sigh. What would we do without Gwyneth? She’s the woman we all love to shake our heads at. Even her well-intentioned actions come off out-of-touch and pretentious. I don’t know how she manages to pull this off, but she does.

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