On Tuesday, Jan. 22, Asheville City Council members will vote on a resolution stating, “The City of Asheville approves the attached Food Policy Goals and Action Plan.” On Sunday, Jan. 19, WWNC radio host Pete Kaliner and “Dmitri/Raven Ravinoff” debated the issue via Twitter.
On Sunday afternoon, ahead of the city vote, Asheville City Council member Gordon Smith posted a tweet about the Asheville-Buncombe Food Policy Council’s “Food Action Plan.” Local Libertarian Tim Peck — who ran unsuccessfully for City Council last year — posted a query about the Food Council’s members. “Dmitri Ravinoff” (whose identity isn’t known) posted a series of tweets, starting with a question about who “could possibly be against an all-volunteer, grassroots org whose only intention is ending food scarcity?”
Kaliner replied that he questions “whether an elected official is steering tax $ to an org. he’s running,” and suggested, “That might be a conflict.”
A long and seemingly testy exchange between Kaliner and “Ravinoff” ensued. After the exchange appeared on Storify, Smith invited Kaliner to give him a call; Kaliner invited him on his show. Via Twitter, Smith went on to reply to some of the questions Kaliner and “@BCGOP” posed: Although a co-founder of the Food Council, he does not serve on its “action” committee; he’s not aware of plans to form a nonprofit Food Council; and in any case, “nonprofits do an incredible amount of excellent work in our community! Helpmate, ABCCM, Homeward Bound, etc.”
Smith adds, “The AVL/Bunc Food Policy Council is entirely grassroots organization that’s involved over 350 citizens.” He encouraged Twitter followers to learn more about the Food Council’s action plan at its website.