We hear a lot of talk about how the way to change the food system is for people to vote with their dollar. We need to be really honest that that argument only applies to affluent families. Because the poor are already spending between a quarter and 35 percent of their income on food. So they’re already voting pretty heavily with their dollar. And I think that most people are doing the best they can with what they have.

Q. It looks like Rush Limbaugh has decided to make you his latest target of attack. How do you respond to what he said about you, and about your book, on his show?

A. Rush Limbaugh’s thing is that there are all these problems in government. [But] if Americans want to have good-quality food — how do we make that happen? It’s not by just trusting that the private sector will fix it for us any more than we trust that government will. I think government is failing us, for the most part, when it comes to good and healthy food.

I think it’s part of American culture and heritage to want to have control over our lives. That doesn’t let the private sector off the hook any more than it lets government off the hook. I don’t want a private sector nanny any more than Rush Limbaugh wants a government nanny.

Engaging in a real discussion about these things is something I welcome and I’m glad Limbaugh has broached the topic. Obviously he’s too intimidated to have an honest conversation with an educated woman. Limbaugh hasn’t reached out to me or said anything about having a real discussion.

In terms of the education stuff, Limbaugh seems intimidated by the idea that a woman from the working class would go out, work hard, get herself through school, and do her job. I think most women, and frankly most men, would take umbrage with the idea that getting a B.A. means you’re overeducated. I’m very grateful for the opportunities that my education has afforded me. I’ve worked my butt off, and what I have is a product definitely of luck, but a lot of it is a product of hard work. I’ve earned my keep as much as anyone does.