We’ve woken up to the alarm going off that has been crying out for us to realize that there is an interconnectedness for ALL life and consequences for even seemingly insignificant choices that we make. We, as humans, are destroying the earth with the use of chemicals, pesticides, and genetic modification.
The ideas that we’ll share are not original, in fact, the origination for some of these thoughts can be traced back to the book Silent Spring written by Rachel Carson in 1962. Over the past several decades we have been brainwashed with better-living-through-chemistry propaganda, telling homemakers that traditional cooking and farming was drudge work and a waste of time for our technically advanced age.
The following is just our story, let’s call it a class. For us, it has been all self-study but has been fun by using easy-to-digest methods such as watching movies. It’s a gradual process and you can’t just jump right in with both feet, especially if you are a bit skeptical. So with that said, we’ll lay out a few options to get you started and a roadmap of other pieces to take in.
The initial seeds were planted some years ago when we watched the 2004 documentary Super Size Me (watch it here), which follows the filmmaker around for a 28-day period where he only eats McDonald’s food. If this movies was edited for some of the vulgarity, we believe that every child in America should watch this as part of their school curriculum.
A few years later we came across the film Fast Food Nation. The movie is loaded with several plots that intertwine to give you a dramatic view of our complacent, contemporary American life. Generally, the movie is good and we recommend seeing it but be aware that the intentions are good but sometimes the creative license is stretched a bit too much and seems a bit preachy.
The following two pieces are a MUST.
We think the whole book has great things to say but you only need to read 37 pages from Rod Dreher’s Crunchy Cons. The third chapter is on food and speaks wonderfully about embracing the Slow Food attitude. He references using the Weston A. Price Foundation website to find small organic farms in our region.
The other MUST is the 2008 documentary Food, Inc., which examines corporate farming in the US and the industrial production of grains and vegetables. After watching this, we don’t understand how anyone could continue to eat our cheap, contaminated, American food.
In March of 2010, ABC aired the reality television series Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, which showcased Jamie’s effort to curb obesity in the US by going to the unhealthiest city and trying to revolutionize the school food program. There were a total of six episodes, however, the meatiest parts are in the first two episodes. After that, while interesting, it starts to feel a little too scripted or overly dramatic.
Another documentary that we strongly urge you to watch is Killer at Large. The film showcases the saddening battle against obesity and all the differing causes. You will find some rather unbelievable things in this movie and it will enlighten you to the gravity of this catastrophe.
What if the contents of your cabinets, refrigerator, and kitchen were quietly switched with genetically engineered foods? Foods that the USDA refused to review because instead of treating genetic modification as a additive process, they treated it as a new form of breeding in order to specifically avoid any safety testing. The EPA doesn’t care and the FDA is only notified voluntarily by a huge multinational corporation of a summary for what they have done. The documentary The Future of Food offers an in-depth look into these trends. Even better yet, you can watch the whole thing online at the website.
Back in 2001, PBS’s NOVA/Frontline ran the story, Harvest of Fear, which explorers the potential irreversible ecological disaster that we may encounter due to rushing genetically modified foods to market. This controversy led Europe to label these types of products, however, nearly ten years later, the US has failed to allow consumers that same choice.
Joel Salatin has shown up in several of the documentaries that we have seen over the past few years so we jumped on the chance to hear and see him in person. If you aren’t aware of Joel and his work, you need to familiarize yourself with him. He is a farmer in Virginia that is committed to the “redemption business: healing the land, healing the food, healing the economy, and healing the culture.” Here is a link on vimeo that is worth the hour.