“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever”
– Mahamta Gandhi
When I was young, I didn’t think politics was that important. What mattered to me was learning about *important* things in life: my research into behaviour and development, art, friends, singing… Yeah, there were some boring folks in government were doing the horribly tedious “government stuff” or “bureaucracy.” Lawyers and politicians…. Maybe they made it all seem so mind-numbing because they were trying to dissuade others from getting involved?
Well… I am not young anymore. But neither am I old.
After I came back from thirteen years in Europe, I had an awakening. What started out as a passion to know more about why and how our food in N. America contains GMOs without our knowledge or permission turned into something else. I have fortunately – or unfortunately – developed a sliver of understanding about how the political process works.
In a nutshell, it’s kind of a twister game called follow the money.
How many billions of dollars of subsidies and recorded campaign contributions and speaking fees have influenced policy? Last week, Obama signed the DARK act into law (Deny Americans the Right to Know aka the Roberts-Stabenow Bill of ‘un-labelling’). For those of you unaware, this bill undoes the hard-won state battles, fought with blood, sweat and tears to label GMOs. So much for the 4 simple words “produced with genetic engineering” which thousands of products started carrying to conform to Vermont’s law. Thanks to the DARK act, Vermont’s law is now overturned. And NOW there will be this strange QR code/funny symbol that only those with a smart phone will be able to interpret. This DARK bill is about continuing to hide what is in our food. To continue to confuse the consumer about what is healthy for people and planet.
Although I am wildly angry at this injustice, I continue to harbour hope. There is so much positive change happening right now. And everything shows that our clean food movement is gaining ground. Despite billions of dollars, bought scientists and bought politicians trying to convince us otherwise, sales of Non-GMO and organics are going up. Farmers markets, urban farms, acres converted to organic and non-GMO are all going up. Foodies are mushrooming. We ‘producers’ (not ‘consumers’), through our collective actions (ie: every food purchase), are fundamentally driving the change we want to see.
As the world gets smaller through myriad connections, the polarity of enlightenment shines even brighter in its truth. I know that with enough political pressure and speaking up and out, we are changing things. Change comes through struggle for justice. And via the dissemination of truth pollen.
Although ignorance is bliss, once the sleeper is awakened, she cannot go back to sleep. She cannot un-know. I salute Ye who have been engaged for so long in real politics, fighting for justice and positive change each step of the way. Thank you for waking me up. Here I am trying pay it forward.
So, if you’re new to the deeper side…
TAG! You’re it!