Sorry about my muddy boots - a word from your local farmer
July 4th, 2012
03:15 PM ET
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Yesterday, we posted a plea to get consumers and farmers talking to each other, and by gosh, they did. This comment by a farmer named M.A. really stood out to us, so we're sharing.

Who needs farmers? All we are is a bunch of dead-beat, lazy, filthy loons. Some of us sporting big goofy hats that work all of our dreaded lives sacrificing time with those we love only to be condemned.

The weeds are getting bigger as are some folks pocket books. Bugs are getting stronger too. Vegetables aren't as nutritious as they once were and the meat does not even taste the same. Not to mention the salt and sugar laden foods we're all being presented with. We need more hormones, antibiotics and chemicals! Just to "keep up."

It should come as no surprise that fewer and fewer people want to participate in the business. I know why. It's a dirty, thankless job that's seemingly unimportant and particularly unappealing. Then the wind blows, it hails, floods, freezes or crops get burned up in the scorching heat. And then there's the insurance issues, regulators, banksters and everything else.

It's legalized gambling that's what it is! $$$

Darn straight, my boots are muddy. I apologize for getting your floor a little messed up. I did my best to tidy them up a bit prior to my entry into your establishment to get this donut and caffeine. This go I failed to bring along the spare clean pair and the sign says "no shoes no service."

While I'm at it here, my apologies for going a little slow the other day along the road holding ya up. And also for shaking my head after I had to swerve suddenly to avoid accidentally sending a piece of my machinery through the windshield of your speedster which could have potentially proved fatal. Don't be running those stop signs! Just a suggestion. Being a tractor jockey is tricky sometimes....do NOT pass on the right!!!

Not all agriculture folks are bad boys and girls. Most the time we attempt to do the right things despite the "challenges" and challenge of not being understood. I'm sure that you can appreciate this.

Ignorance is a forgivable offense. Knowing better and not doing so is quite another issue. At this juncture of this life, I'm understanding that there's a lot to be said for less being more. It's hard to convince money addicts this, of course. It's a tough thing to negotiating change that's for sure. On occasion there is stubbornness in this regard.

Adjustments can be made at any juncture if we so choose.

Plenty of shade for Sunshine. "Shine" for short. She's the mare we sprinkle the water a little closer with the irrigation pivot to keep her trees watered and the ground just a little cooler this time of year.

All we have to do is love the crop and with a few hurdles, cartwheels and bumps along the way most the time the love comes back. At least enough to keep us moving forward. What more could we ask for or expect. It's important for all of us to consider that we reap what we sow.

Hey, I better get to feeding a couple of my supervisors before bed and splash in some fresh water for them. Thanks for listening.

Read - No bull – start a conversation with a farmer



soundoff (160 Responses)
  1. lena

    Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food." Genesis 1:29

    July 6, 2012 at 2:47 pm | Reply
    • What?

      You have chosen to ‘cherry-pick’ one verse out of the whole, so what you have provided, although technically “correct”, is way out of context of the whole. It is akin to going out in the flower garden, cutting a yellow rose, taking it inside and making the pronouncement that “Roses are yellow” – true for that one, but pitifully incorrect “on the whole”. Now, since you’ve chosen to ‘go there’, please allow me – as Paul Harvey would have said – to tell “the rest of the story”.

      Adam and Eve had it made in the Garden of Eden . . . no schedule, no sickness, no worries, no cares, but they messed that all up, didn’t they? And you know how they messed it up? You forgot the “qualifier” when you cherry-picked your verse – they were explicitly forbidden to eat from the “tree of knowledge of good and evil” (Gen 2:17). So what did they do, they ate the “forbidden fruit”. What? That’s right, in a very real sense – if you’re going to go there, all of the ‘trouble’ in this world started because vegans screwed it up. But after their ‘transgression’, they tried to make things right – in a good vegan way – by making themselves clothes out of fig leaves (Gen 3:7). However, when God came to talk to them after this all happened and saw what they had done, he wasn’t real happy. And then do you know what happened? The first animal(s) died, and it wasn’t by “man’s” hand, either – “The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.” (Gen 3:21). So you see, man didn’t start the whole killing of animals thing. You might say it was a “divine precedent”. And then there’s all that ‘inconvenient’ stuff in Leviticus about what animals are OK to eat and what aren’t (see chapter 3).

      And one other thing for you – you have talked in another post about how nature is “perfect” and would be fine in ‘man’ didn’t interfere? Well, here’s some additional info on that subject, too. “So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken.” (Gen 3:23). So you see, it is actually by ‘divine decree’ that man has interfered with nature.

      And that’s “the rest of the story”.

      July 7, 2012 at 8:38 am | Reply
  2. lena

    It is the position of the American Dietetic Association that appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. Well-planned vegetarian diets are appropriate for individuals during all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence, and for athletes.

    July 6, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Reply
    • Margo

      And this is the same Diabetic Society that provides diet plans to people so they can continue needing more and more insulin? Same thing happens in Canada. Follow our eating plan and hold onto your diabetes and we'll help you with yet another drug. Vegan diets do not work for diabetes and they do not work for the planet. If they did we would see less diabetes instead of more. Grains are the culprit for most people and yet diabetics are told to eat copious amounts of them. Take out the grains, eat pasture raised, organically grown meat, lots of non-starch vegetables, beans and lentils and moderate fruit and lets see how many people actually get better from Type 2 diabetes.

      July 9, 2012 at 6:12 pm | Reply
      • Nish

        That would be Diatetic, not Diabetic.

        July 10, 2012 at 5:27 pm | Reply
  3. lena

    Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food" – Genesis 1:29

    July 6, 2012 at 2:40 pm | Reply
  4. lena

    why not put some pictures how these inquisitive pigs are beeing killed.

    July 6, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Reply
  5. RP

    We are fortunate here to have some grocery stores that carry local produce in the summers, along with two thriving farmer's markets. We get all our meat, eggs, and summer vegetables from local people; if I took up canning (after the storms last week, freezing no longer looks so good), we could feed ourselves with local produce all year.

    July 6, 2012 at 7:49 am | Reply
  6. KSnonFarmer

    Never understood why we don't label where food comes from. It is tracked from the field to the store shelf but the consumer doesn't get to choose where to buy local, American or imported. Who made that decision? My bet is some big global company(s) that have no national loyalty, just worship of $$$. If you want to get our food supply back on the right track we are going to need to pull in the reigns on Monsanto.

    July 5, 2012 at 9:04 pm | Reply
    • MaddoginMass

      I guess the labeling depends on the store. We have a farm stand near where I live that has marked the origin of every type of produce they have for sale. It is either marked locally grown, a US state, or a country if outside the US. That being said, this is an exception rather than the rule and it is one of the reasons I buy from this establishment.

      July 6, 2012 at 9:26 am | Reply
    • arosebyanyother

      aaaand there's the anti-Monsanto rant. Almost as predictable as the anti-Democrat or anti-Republican rants that eventually appear. And just as illogical.

      I get that people grieve over the loss of what farming practices used to be. Or more accurately, what the romantic picture in their minds of what farming practices *should* be. Biotech companies (like Monsanto, like Pioneer) sell seeds that require fewer chemicals to grow the plant. And that is a good thing.

      So what I think people are really upset about is the fact that "corporate America" is involved in agriculture at all.

      July 6, 2012 at 9:51 am | Reply
      • Tina

        You are the one who is ignorant! Get educated. The reason the biotech, genetically-modified crops need to be sprayed less is because the toxins that kill the bugs and weeds (i.e. pesticides) are IN THE PLANT, VEGETABLE, AND/OR FRUIT!. For example, Monsanto's Bt Corn, the Bt toxin that ruptures the stomach of the insects that feed on it is actually in every corn kernal that you consume. If you feel safe eating things that rupture the stomach of insects, you are a total idiot.

        Please, get educated before you speak. Until you do, keep your opinion to yourself.

        July 6, 2012 at 10:29 am | Reply
        • What?

          Your post is quite interesting, because all the information I find about Bt says that it PARALYZES the gut of the affected "insects" – actually caterpillars, mostly – not that it "ruptures the stomach".

          Oh, and by the way . . . the EPA – not the FDA – has deemed that no "residue tolerances" are needed. In layman's terms, that essentially means "Use all you want". So you can decide for yourself how 'dangerous' it is.

          July 6, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
      • Robert

        I think you've been duped by the researchers of the USDA, FDA and EPA (and Monsanto, for that matter.) The revolving door between these groups - and especially the FDA and Monsanto - has been so long-standing that it's difficult to know when someone leaves Monsanto to go work for the FDA, and then when they return from where they came. For example, it's interesting that Donald Rumsfeld himself moved on to the FDA (and just in time to shove aspartame through their bogus process.) It seems aspartame (and Monsanto) was having a rough go of it passing all the safety research required. But if you trust Monsanto, the FDA, the USDA, and EPA - then go ahead and eat your fill of all the rubbish they approve for human consumption. (Me? I wouldn't feed it to my dog...)

        July 9, 2012 at 6:54 pm | Reply
  7. Solo

    I appreciate the role that farmers play in our food supply – what I don't care for is all of the incredible tax breaks, shelters, grants and federal assistance that they are given. I realize it's the time of corporate greed and bailouts, but please don't glorify farmers as something they are not. They are in business, pure and simple.

    July 5, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Reply
    • Margret

      Actually, most of these evil subsidies go to the large corporate farmers-not the little guys who really need them. The stats are available online. I would also like to give a shout-out to Joel Salatin, a farmer in Virginia who's trying to change the nature of modern farming-to the way things used to be sans chemical fertilizers/herbicides/pesticides, but using green modern technology to the fullest. Farming, as performed by Mr. Salatin and those like him, is a truly honorable profession, and I for one am grateful.

      July 5, 2012 at 4:36 pm | Reply
      • Primal 4 Life

        Joel Salatin just may be te greatest modern American farmer today. Poly Face farm is simply amazing. It's definitely the way things should be done, no doubt about it.

        Anyone who might be interested should watch "Fresh". Netflix streaming.

        July 5, 2012 at 8:58 pm | Reply
    • Ryan Goodman

      RE: comments on subsidies – you may be interested in some of the comments on the No bull – start a conversation article linked above. There's a few farmers on there who talk about how they utilize government programs. They would be great people to talk to about this. One is Mike Haley. The other is a blog link in the post – The Farmer's Life.

      July 5, 2012 at 6:52 pm | Reply
  8. Libertyridge

    We sell at a local farmer's market and we believe that a big part of our job is to educate people about local food – how it grows, why we believe that organic is best, etc. We do an heirlom tomato taste test during tomato season – people are amazed at what a real, freshly picked tomato tastes like. Know your farmer. And if you think CRIME doesn't pay, try FARMING!

    July 4, 2012 at 9:25 pm | Reply
    • Ryan Goodman

      I love going to the local farmers markets. Here's what I gathered on my latest trip to the Nashville market – http://wp.me/pTIK1-1jj.

      I think it's great that there are so many farmers able to fit the niche markets for those customers looking to buy local foods. I do get a little discouraged when some say organic/natural/local is the only way. Every farmer has his/her place and our modern methods have responded to customer demands. I hope we can continue to market our own products while not putting down our neighbors' chosen farming methods. It's something we ALL need to improve upon.

      July 5, 2012 at 6:49 pm | Reply
    • maria

      Thank you LibertyRidge, I agree with you, organic is best and we support and love our farmers who do the impossible and amazing job of growing real food for us in the face of the threats from the natural and unnatural elements that be. I always say, you can pay your farmer or the doctor and as the great Joel Salatin says, if you think organic food is expensive have you priced cancer lately? Thank you for keeping it REAL , my most warmest regards, and EVERY DAY I thank my organic farmers and local CSA.

      July 6, 2012 at 8:49 am | Reply
  9. imuneek

    It's "reap what we SOW," not sew. Sewing refers to textiles, while sowing is an agricultural term. Sorry to correct you, but this is a public news site, there should be proofreaders here.

    July 4, 2012 at 9:21 pm | Reply
    • karen

      It is "of course" (not "of coarse"), also. These errors aside, it is a very good article, I think. I DO appreciate farmers, very much. :)

      July 4, 2012 at 11:19 pm | Reply
    • MarileeBob

      It was a comment posted by a farmer and sent in, for an article that ran on July 3rd asking farmers and consumers to write in to air their views, not an article written by a paid employee of the newspaper. Why would the newspaper spellcheck a comment, and why are you so nitpicky about a farmer's grammer? They're outside growing our food while we sit behind a computer screen...some of us correcting every little thing we see.

      July 5, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Reply
      • lena

        MarileeBob, so you are a cnn employee..... wow.... you guys can change the world, instead you take only one side (the one you feel more comfortable with) and teach the multitude. You guys, in the media field, can change the world for the better in a matter of months if you were more objective.

        July 6, 2012 at 3:01 pm | Reply
      • lena

        50 articles on meat-eating diet and one on vegan diet..... not fair...

        July 6, 2012 at 3:04 pm | Reply
    • smart in bama

      it's UNIQUE, not uneek.

      July 5, 2012 at 6:00 pm | Reply
  10. NYFarmer

    Some 750,000 cow/calf operations in the US apparently invisible. Fly over America....look down!

    July 4, 2012 at 7:22 pm | Reply
  11. Nick Naranja

    I think everyone should be required to learn exactly where their food comes from. We as a society have been separated from our butchering past. 60 years ago it was not uncommon for people to slaughter their own animals. The rural parts of this country were self sufficient.

    July 4, 2012 at 7:08 pm | Reply
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