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February 15, 2014

In 11 Days Deadly Poison Will Be Sprayed onto our Farmlands: Please Help Me?

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“The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.” ~ Carl Sagan

I heard something today that broke my heart. My dearest cows, and our favorite patch of land is in jeopardy of being destroyed.

You see, the county holds the rights to this land—all 857 of the most breathtaking acres you’ll ever come to witness. It was intended to remain a refuge, of sorts—and a means to protect the waterways and forested lands nearest it.

For 13 years, I have biked past to say hello to my cows. And always so graciously they have shared their time and beautiful pastures with me.

The lands have been historically leased out to local farmers and tenants, with a promise that they must always be kind to our planet. And, for as long as I can remember, everyone has made good on their obligations.

qXENegaXOqUtyoe-556x313-noPadAs such, these beautiful lands have, to date and without issue, maintained their USDA Organic Certification. That’s not an easy task, as evidenced by the many eco-minded farms that have faced devastating financial impacts.

We are proud of our farmlands. And, proud of those who have worked so tirelessly to maintain them. Why, even the little market that sits adjacent to the farm bears proud witness, “David’s Market, 100% Organic, No GMO”.

But, through some shady slight of hand—one of the tenants, Maryland Sunrise Farm, has indicated that in a manner of days they will begin using harsh pesticides to keep up with demand. You see, it’s not always as profitable to honor one’s community and moral obligations.

However, this action will sadly have a direct impact on the air, soil, wildlife and waterways surrounding these 857 brilliantly pristine acres.

My dears, it is our obligation to take stand on these matters, to raise our collective voices in a manner that must be heard. As such, I beg you to please take one moment of your day to help our small community ensure that these lands are protected.

My dears, such harsh pesticides and chemicals would not only destroy these lands, it would have long term impacts on the families and children in our area. And sadly, too, it would strip the land in entirety of its Organic certification— potentially causing damage to other farmers and businesses in this area.

Please help me help my community.

Please take one minute to sign this petition. Then, please share this blog if so inspired.

Whether you are near or far, it doesn’t matter…let your voice be heard.

This is our planet—and something must be done to help it.

Many blessings and much love my dears. And, please take this moment to help save our lands.

Please Sign Our Petition to Protect Our Beautiful Farmlands. Click Here for Petition.

 

Carl Sagan (click for video):

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”

 

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Gail Yeiser Feb 25, 2014 9:20am

Well said Marian Fry. More information and less emotion is important in any decision making process.

One of the life-skills that 4-H club members take away from any 4-H project area is decision making at all levels from selecting a project to deciding when to shift gears to a new project areas. Having worked with the 4-Hers in the Anne Arundel 4-H Dairy Leasing Club at the navy farm in Gambrills for over 20 years, I hope that each of them has taken away not only an appreciation for large animal agriculture, through their dairy heifer project animals, but life skills related to decision making – gather information, analyze those facts and then make wise decisions, based on un-biased, science based information, that can be explained to an outsider. While the 4-Hers have emotional attachments to the animals they care for, they are aware of the balance of making sound decisions without emotion when necessary.

Clearly the management of MD Sunrise followed these principles when reaching their thoughtful business decision to return the farm to conventional agriculture following best (agricultural) management practices (BMPs) that have been developed and encouraged over time.

It is my hope that the elected and appointed officials in Anne Arundel County follow the same basic decision making guidelines.

Marian Fry Feb 23, 2014 8:27pm

Less time spent stargazing and more time learning the actual facts on terra firma would have yielded an article that didn't sucker-punch the reader. None of the animals pictured or the pasture land adjacent David's Market have ever been certified organic. Both the animals and these pastures adjacent the market are under the management of the Anne Arundel 4-H Dairy Leasing Club which has always used conventional agriculture protocols. The farm hasn't been "historically leased out to local farmers". From 1913 – 1998, it was owned and operated by the US Navy to produce milk for the midshipmen at the Naval Academy using a conventional agriculture protocol. Horizon Organic Dairy leased the farm from the Navy in 1999 and converted the land to certified organic status over a 3 year period. Since 2001 the present farm operator, MD Sunrise Farm, has farmed the agricultural land. The certificate of organic certification is applied for annually and owned by the business; not the land, Navy or County. David's Market is not, as you state, "100% organic," there are many items simply claiming to be "natural," a perfectly legitimate business choice. You accuse us of "shady slight of hand…" Before making the decision to withdraw our organic application for the field crops, we consulted Recreation and Parks and the Assistant County Attorney to see whether our decision violated our lease. It did not. The Organic Certification is a private business instrument . “In 11 days deadly poisons will be sprayed onto our Farmlands." You specifically reference pesticides which are only applied to growing crops with insect infestation. Check the thermometer, there aren't any growing crops in the fields, crops haven't even been planted. Our certified organic market garden which provides vegetables to our CSA and up to four Anne Arundel County farmers markets has full approval for 2014 but is in jeopardy of being lost if MD Sunrise Farm leaves. For those who would like to be accurately informed of our plans, please read the Q & A posted on our website.

tara357 Feb 15, 2014 4:26pm

Thank you for posting, Waylon!! xo and MUCH love 🙂

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Tara Lemieux

Tara Lemieux is a mindful wanderer, and faithful stargazer. She is an ardent explorer and lover of finding things previously undiscovered (or, at the very least, mostly not-uncovered.) When she’s not writing, you can find her walking in the woods and sometimes changing the way we look at things, one simple moment at a time. You can contact her at via her website Mindfully Musing
or, take one second to “LIKE” her on Facebook at Tara’s Facebook Page. Or email her directly at [email protected]. All roads will lead to one home, and rest assured she (and Nudnick, the wonder dog) would LOVE to hear from you.