Local Activist Wendi Mahoney Talks About Her New Fundraiser Lunches For Law Enforcement Officers


Live from Music Row Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – guest host Ben Cunningham welcomed founder of Lunches for Law Enforcement Officers initiative Wendi Mahoney to the newsmakers line.

At the top of the second hour, Mahoney described her fundraiser Lunches for Law Enforcement Officers that provides free lunches to policemen by partnering with local businesses that are suffering from the coronavirus shutdowns. She explained her motivation for the project as being one born out of frustration for the disrespect she heard channeled through the media for police.

Cunningham: Do we have an activist here in town that has just done an extraordinary thing. She has put together a project. Wendi Mahoney is on the line with us. Wendi good morning.

Mahoney: Hi there Ben. How are you?

Cunningham: Thank you so much for getting up so early and calling in. Believe me, I’ve been here for an hour or so. I know how early it is.

Mahoney: Jeeez.

Cunningham: Michael gets used to this. I don’t. But I do appreciate your calling in this morning. You have a project where you make lunches or you have lunches for Metro policemen. Tell us first off, what motivated you to do this?

Mahoney: Frankly at the time I still had my cable and I did cut my cable because of the bias in the media and kind of got sick of it. But also I was getting a lot of emails and saw a lot on social media with people really complaining a lot about it. And just complaining about things in general. And I just got sick of seeing complaining and people not doing much about it.

Cunningham: Right.

Mahoney: And feeling very hopeless. That I guess was the catalyst for it.

Cunningham: And that is something I get messages about it every day. What can I do? What can I do? People seem really really frustrated with the political landscape but they don’t really know what to do. And you have found an outlet where people can actually get involved.

They can make a contribution on Facebook. It is just extraordinarily important that we support these institutions and the police. The rule of law is so important to our basic and fundamentals values. And we’ve got to do that. Wendi tell us what do you do? When do you provide meals and where? And kind of just the logistics of what you are doing.

Mahoney: Back in mid-June when all of this was kind of starting and heating up. It’s a two-prong thing. The economy has been shut down as you well know. And I just felt terrible for both business owners, restaurant owners and the service industry, and the police. So that’s actually why I don’t make the meals. I choose a business that I feel is struggling or has indicated that they are struggling. A local business. A local restaurants.

Cunningham: That is a great idea.

Mahoney: I partner with them. It’s kind of funny when I called them they were like are we providing the whole thing? And I said no. Part of this mission is to help you too. They do usually end up donating something. Drinks or paper goods. Whatever.

And so mid-June my daughter Genevieve and I delivered 60 meals to the central precinct on my dime. It was just incredible. I can’t even begin to describe it. After that, I decided why don’t I just put up a fundraiser. I’ve never done that on Facebook before. I just started to get money. I set an original goal of $1,000. And I reached that goal.

Cunningham: Wow!

Mahoney: And my goal was to get meals delivered, now 80 meals to the police at the central precinct. And the reason I’m doing that is because when I asked them what would be most helpful they said most of their people are coming through that precinct because of the issues, the riots, and all of the nonsense that’s going on downtown a lot of the people come through there.

Cunningham: Where is the central precinct building?

Mahoney: It’s on the Korean Veterans Blvd.

Cunningham: Give us a landmark so people know where.

Mahoney: Right across from the Music City Center and that hotel.

Cunningham: Gotcha.

Mahoney: It’s right after the circle. You just take a right on Korean Vets and it’s right there on the right-hand side. So my daughter and I decided to do every other week, every other Friday through Labor Day. So we’ve chosen a business. We’ve done four so far.

And as I started to get money and of course I kick in about half every time. So my goal now is to do it through election day. And I think I’m going to be able to do that. I’ve delivered Zoes. I’ve delivered from Clean Plate Club.

Local catering businesses that have really suffered. I’ve delivered from Nectar Urban Cantina. And then my last one was from on Rippy’s on Broadway. They’ve just been slammed. And just fines.And so many shenanigans with their business. I feel so terrible. But the police have just been incredibly dear.

Just the stories of about how they leave their homes every day to serve the community and these people don’t know whether they are going to come home that night. And it’s just so incredibly awful to put them in the place of being a demon in this situation. I just quite honestly don’t understand the thinking.

Cunningham: I don’t either. Of course, there are bad policemen. We all know that in any group of human beings you are going to have some bad apples. But these guys are trained well. My interactions with the police have just been very very good every time. Tell us how people can contribute on Facebook. What do they need to look for on Facebook?

Mahoney: It’s called Lunches for Law Enforcement Officers. It might be hard to find. I don’t know if you can provide a link on a website or something like that just because Facebook can be dicey if you are not my friend. I do try to make it a public fundraiser. But it’s under my name Wendi Strauch Mahoney.

Cunningham: Give us the full title again.

Mahoney: It’s called Lunches For Law Enforcement Officers.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Lunches for Law Enforcement” by Wendi Mahoney.


Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, guest host Ben Cunningham welcomed local Nashville activist Wendi Mahoney to the newsmakers line to discuss her new fundraiser Lunches for Law Enforcement.




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