Chores, livestock, and food security
I promised that Joel
This Ain't Normal
would have something for everyone to disagree with, and the first three
chapters are no exception. Each essay dives right into something
Salatin believes is wrong with modern American society, in this case:
- Our kids no longer have chores,
and we actually don't let them work if they want to. "By denying
these opportunities to bring value to [kids'] own lives and the
community around them, we've relegated our young adults to teenage
- We've forgotten that animals are
part of sustainable ecosystems, vilifying all meat-eating rather
than focusing on outlawing CAFO operations. "In a desire to get
rid of the cow, they want to substitute plants that require
tillage. No long-term example exists in which tillage is
sustainable. It always requires injection of biomass from outside
the system or a soil-development pasture cycle."
- We've outsourced our food supply
to far-away, consolidated places and aren't scared by the fact that the
average town contains a mere three days' supply of food. "The
average person is still under the aberrant delusion that food should be
somebody else's responsibility until I'm ready to eat it."
I actually agree with
all of Salatin's points this time around (even though I did enjoy my
chore-less, layabout childhood consuming a book a day). How about
Since Salatin's writing
is so enjoyable and quick to read, I thought we'd discuss sixty pages
per week (unless you comment to say that's too much). So next
Wednesday we'll focus on chapters four through nine (ending with "No
Compost, No Digestion"). Don't forget --- Salatin's book is
probably available in your library, so you've got nothing to lose by
joining our book club!
Weekend Homesteader walks
you through easy projects to build your own home larder of locally
grown or homegrown food.
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