I have finally completed my Graduate Certificate. Wednesday night I spoke with my professor for a final assessment and he asked me the one important question – what have I learned? Where has this investment of time, money and energy brought me?
Well, it has really helped me reconsider my world in many ways. I found, as he very correctly pointed out, that being the initiator of your own life and learning is a difficult thing. It’s easy to go to a class, listen to someone talk for a while and then spit information back out. It’s even easy to critique their information. But to be the creator of your own body of knowledge, to rely on your own experience, to believe in your own authority – that is not easy.
I thought about that for this blog as well. What have I learned from it? Well, I have certainly learned about the primacy of food for human beings. All my life I have lived and worked in places where I never had to think for a second about food. I have access to really good stuff. Until I got this job and began working in the food wasteland.
As I was driving to work this morning I heard, among all this political analysis, one profound statement. Someone said, if we decide to remove every illegal alien from the US we will see food price inflation like we have never seen in this country. Did anyone mention this during the election? Why not? I would think that is pretty important – remember Nazi Germany? The French Revolution? The Fall of Rome? Go back and re-read your history books if you don’t know that those gigantic turning points in Western History were primary about food. Think about this: We are no longer in control of our food resources. We are no longer the initiators of our own lives or the makers and keepers of our own knowledge in a very literal sense. Someone else is keeping our seeds and they have a patent on them. Someone else is harvesting our crops and we are threatening them.
What is it that I learned from these last few years? That if you want to decimate a culture, attack it’s food source. You will destroy it’s culture, it’s mythology, and it’s biology.
Well, friends I too have a dream. It is a dream that one day we will recognize that one of our favorite holidays is founded on the atrocities of our history. I have a dream that we will become the initiators of our own lives once again and begin giving thanks to the small farm down the road, to the volunteers at the co-op, and that we will deport the Monsanto’s instead of the Martinez’s.
Here is a Thanksgiving menu that looks like a dream to me: