The most important post you will read today.
In today’s America, we face a problem, which I can say without hesitation, is far more serious than any current issue publicized by any media. And we’re currently witnessing some pretty dire times. I’m talking about the food crisis. Crisis? Actually more like a pandemic at this point.
The video below is not brand new. It’s a TED talk featuring Jamie Oliver from 2010. It’s one of my favorites and I’m wondering why I’ve failed to post it before. If you take anything away from it, please understand this: Do you realize that we adults will live longer than our children? This will perhaps be the first time in human history that this has happened. How completely sad is that? What that tells me is that we are failing our next generation. I’ll go a step further and throw some of the blame towards the “baby boomers” as I believe much of the problems we face today, they caused directly. My generation, 20s-30s, are not completely innocent however, and the result is that statistics show my parents and I will live a longer life than my 11-year-old daughter. This is not because we’ve reached the pinnacle of the human lifespan. It is a direct result from improper nutrition and poor overall health as a side effect. Here's an obesity statistic graphic from 2010.
The problem, well one of the countless problems, is that we know what the problems are, we know how to fix them, we have the scientific proof (not theory, proof) as to what the problems are and how to fix them, we know who and what is to blame, yet nothing is done. Why is that? Here’s my not-so-farfetched theory: blame the government.
“Unless we put medical freedom into the Constitution, the time will come when medicine will organize into an undercover dictatorship to restrict the art of healing to one class of Men and deny equal privileges to others; the Constitution of the Republic should make a Special privilege for medical freedoms as well as religious freedom.” -Benjamin Rush
"Control the oil, control the country; Control the food, control the population." -Henry Kissinger
Two quotes separated by nearly 200 years but two quotes which outline my theory. It’s an easy question to consider… who benefits? I’ve said it over and over again. Here’s a fact: it doesn’t benefit anyone but the individual citizen to provide a truly healthy food system. It doesn’t make anyone money. This is the result from having a government that treats the corporation as a citizen. In other words they care more about the health and well being of corporate interests than they do about you and your children. You don’t need to do anything but open your eyes for a moment to see what is happening. Do you think it’s all a big coincidence that ever since corporations such as Monsanto have been running this nations’ food industry that obesity numbers and the overall health problems have gone through the roof?
Think about it this way. They’re all just one big team. You’ve got Big Ag/Chem saying, “we’ll grow and distribute the problem.” Then you’ve got Big Pharma/Healthcare/Insurance saying, “we’ll create an illusion of fixing the problem.” Then you’ve got Big Government who says, “okay everyone needs to give me a cut so I will pass laws to support your industries and look the other way… all while creating an illusion of freedom.” Wacky conspiracy theory, or sad reality???
The difference with this food pandemic, is as Jamie Oliver states, it’s entirely preventable, and unlike useless, baseless wars, or Bill of Rights violations, or the GOP, or Obama-nomics, or any other domestic problem we face today, THIS IS ONE WE CAN FIGHT! We still do have a choice in this battle, actually. You do have a voice, both figuratively and literally.
First, learn. Know what you’re eating. Know the differences in the food and the terminology designed to trick you. Care about what you’re eating and where your food comes from. Educate kids on what you’ve learned, admittedly, something I’ve failed to do but will immediately remedy. Educate mom and dad. This is something I struggle with. My parents are hardcore republicans so they hate anything that’s labelled or even is remotely related to “green”, in the sense of environmental issues. That’s another argument all in itself but I struggle with the fact that health and nutrition and especially organic nutrition and/or local food sourcing is lumped together in the “green” industry. It’s a marketing ploy I don’t agree with but understand why they do it. It’s the “all people at Whole Foods are hippies” mentality. What mom and dad fail to understand is that our food has entirely changed since 1995 even, but it’s a change that goes unnoticed. They didn’t change the labels or the colors or the taste. According to mom, the spaghetti sauce she buys is the same exact sauce she’s bought since 1988 and it just is not the case. This has been a result of the dirty handshake between the corporations and government. They just don’t get it, but I’m slowly wearing them down I hope!
Second, spread the word. If I can get one person to actually read this post and maybe contemplate changing what/how they see our food system here in the US, I consider that a win. That may be optimistic but it’s the only soapbox I have right now. Best believe I’ll wear this thing out!
Third, unfortunately, if I haven’t made it clear, do not trust your government. Do not trust your health care insurance provider. You can barely trust your doctor anymore. You are on your own in this battle.
Lastly, believe you can make a change. This is something I’m actually optimistic about. I don’t believe in our ability to make any changes in government policy, anything regarding government for that matter, but I believe we can change the course of the food pandemic in this nation and the world. It starts with YOU.
Some more reading if you care to educate yourself:
Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.
The world’s most evil corporation?
GMO and the myths of feeding the world.
Monsanto in bed with organic’s elite?