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LifeStock: A Call to Farms

Posted 7/11/2016 7:02am by Samantha Klinck.

An amazing day was had at Lifestock: A Call to Farms yesterday.

A few of the Funny Duck Farmers got to spend time with some of their favourite neighbouring farmers from Fly Creek Farm, Hollanbec Farm, as well as farmer friends from farther away places like Severn Sunset Eco Farm. I even met a farmer there from Hurleybirds Eco Farm and discovered we had gone to high school together many years before!

One of the many highlights of the day (and there were many) was sitting and chatting at length with Montana Jones and Joel Salatin. Under the shade of some lilac bushes we sat in a small group for about 20 minutes talking until a crowd had gathered around us.

Thank you Joel for allowing me to put you on the spot numerous times yesterday so you could teach us and share with us your experiences and knowledge. You were so generous of your time, and so willing to share. I know there are farms on the brink of giving up, and I hope that your message helped them see that it is as you say, truly darkest before the dawn. I hope that anyone there yesterday, farmer or eater alike, gathered round under the lilac, or later when you spoke from the stage takes to heart the important messages you shared, and that in turn we all live out those messages and go on to share them with others. 

Thank you Montana for opening up your home and farm to us, and for sharing all you have been through, and you've been through a lot. The festival and all those you gathered to come created a magical, inspirational, fun-filled day. In spite of all you've been through you still have such an air of peace and happiness about you.

After sitting for about an hour chatting with these two inspirational farmers, Michael Schmidt arrived. Our good farmer friend Brandy from Fly Creek Farm introduced us all, and later in the day sat in the shade of a screen tent we talked of legal woes, cow horns, line breeding and all sorts of things. Thank you Michael for giving freely of your time, sharing your knowledge and experience, as well as for asking about my families past run-ins with the government and policing authorities, and our many years in the court system when we too were trying to change things for the better. It is always so encouraging to talk to others who have literally gone through trials in order to make the world a better place. Your peaceful nature and knowledge are inspiring. 

There were so many important messages shared that day, and one that really spoke to me was something Joel shared from the bible on what Romans 13 says about the government, "For civil authorities are not a terror to people of good conduct, but to those of bad behaviour. Would you have no dread of him who is in authority? Then do what is right and you will receive his approval and commendation."

So, the government is to be a terror to evil and an encourager of righteousness. 

Is that what our government is? A terror to evil? I'm not so sure. Our government here in Canada does do many good things, but in some areas there is a long way to go. Why are farmers persecuted for growing healthy food, for trying to feed families the best from the land? Why are the best and most healthy foods restricted? We have a long way to go, and this is not just a battle of farmers against the government. There are far more eaters out there than farmers. Much of the change has to come from the eater.

There were so many highlights to this amazing day, but for me one of the most personally meaningful was when I was speaking privately with Joel at the end of the day, and he told me that what I was doing, and what I did in getting him to talk to us was very important and good work, that I was a catalyst.

So my question to the eaters and farmers out there is this: What are you? Are you a catalyst for change, or are you going to sit back and let things stay as they are? It only takes a moment to write a letter, make a phone call, or email a politician to ask what they are doing for your food freedom and food sovereignty. It only takes a moment to choose a small local farm over a faceless grocery store chain.

It only takes a moment to be the change.