More than 25,000 members of the United States National Guard have been called up to protect the nation’s capital in the wake of the violent insurrection incited by Donald Trump on Jan. 6. Between the troops, the fences, and the near-empty sidewalks and streets, images from the District of Columbia ahead of the historic inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are far more reminiscent of a war zone, rather than the joyful celebration of the fall of Trump’s cruel regime.
Enter humanitarian and national treasure Chef José Andrés, who—in between writing books, suing Trump, and opening roughly 20 restaurants—has made it his personal life mission to feed the people of the world when they are in crisis. Whether it’s a hurricane or an earthquake, a pandemic or a wildfire, Chef Andrés’ World Central Kitchen (WCK) volunteers are never far behind … with healthy, tasty meals for anyone who needs them.
With the District, where Andrés lives, on a surreal post-insurrection lockdown ahead of the inauguration on Wednesday, and tens of thousands of soldiers arriving to protect it, you can probably see where this is going.
First, let’s note that WCK’s unique model pays restaurants to make food for people in need.
That’s been particularly important during the pandemic, when hunger is spreading even faster than COVID-19, and the already fragile restaurant sector is hit extremely hard by shutdowns, curfews, and other restrictions.
It’s a pretty smart approach, and some pretty important people have taken notice.
Ahead of Biden’s inauguration, Chef Andrés took a drive around Washington, D.C. to see the impact of WCK’s latest mission: Feeding the soldiers ensuring the ceremony we’re all waiting for doesn’t turn into another live-streamed shitshow.
Again, note that WCK is helping both soldiers AND restaurants. And if Chef Andrés’ Twitter feed is any indication, they’ll be feeding soldiers quality meals all week long.
That’s no small feat. As of this writing, 25,000 National Guardsmen are being deployed to the District.
As Andrés notes in this video, his Jaleo tapas restaurants, which, like other D.C. businesses, is not permitted to open due to security. It’s WCK HQ as Jaleo, and many other District companies, focus on this important effort instead.
Even Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, got in on the good deeds on Saturday.
This is patriotism.
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