Local2Global Advocates for Food Sovereignty

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Youth of Ferguson: Love in Action, Peace in Action: Hope for Humanity and Food Sovereignty?

The Youth of Ferguson: Love in Action and Food Sovereignty

I was so inspired this weekend watching the live feed from the weekend of Resistance in Ferguson. I did not attend myself. 

I feel the  youth of Ferguson  who led and who were the most numerous, have stepped up to the leadership and are striving mightily to be and perhaps are the peace, love, justice and fairness we all need. I believe that is what I was witnessing in MO this weekend with the planned weekend of resistance.

They were and are not famous and largely seemed not to be striving to be famous. . They are not the clergy and Dr. West who planned to be arrested. They were brutalized by the police and their names are not in the headlines. They simply seemed to be saying "This is not right and you are not going to do this on my watch without my saying, This is not right. Do right."

Perhaps they were community centered. They certainly appeared to be bottom up.

I have been transformed by them and their common sense stalwartness and  bravery.

It makes me think of the community centered leadership of the Zapatistas in Southern Mexico and many communities in Africa that I have visited and perhaps of THich Nhat Hahn's community itself. 

Perhpas this is what we need in the food movement, the food justice movement, the food sovereignty movement, a real people's bottom up, grassroots movement that is food sovereignty, democratic, just, healthy, fair and sustainable where people feel compeeled to sacrifice and suffer for the common good.

I don't know. I am not sure of what I have seen, what we need or who are and where we a re going and of what we are capable. 

I am not naive. I know that our youth are human and consequently do suffer all the frailiteis of being human that I described are in our mainstream movements: competitiveness, self centeredness, etc.

Perhaps the question is,  if the youth did overcome this in Ferguson, how do we support, nurture and sustain this kind of leadership and movement for all humanity and particularity for our society here in the US which plays such a large role in misleading all human civilization.

a few more thoughts...

I did not attend even though I wanted to because I wanted to preserve myself for another time and day when it was right. This was not my time and day.

Also, I am still working on what my message is. I know we need some deep and true messages in this time as we are aware of human civilization crumbling around us and the continuing cranking up of vested interests seemingly unaware of or unconcerned by (perhaps even encouraged by) the crumbling and suffering around them and inside of them.

Beloved global peace leader, THich Nhat Hahn, says, it is this human suffering inside of us, specifically, our failure to address and calm and comfort this human suffering inside of us, which has led and is leading us to the destruction of human society and civilization. It is this rage and pain which we have turned outward through massive consumption, designed to run from ourselves, which is destroying human civilization, I understand the venerable Hahn to be saying. (I am planning to participate in a retreat in his community this fall to further explore his beliefs and leadership to which I feel deeply drawn.)

I feel the need to explore his message and our human suffering more deeply in order to insure that my message is a message of healing, unity, peace, love and sustainable human civilization building that we all need, rather than more destruction and suffering.

At this point, I have concluded that all we will have is what we create. If we create more hatred and violence and oppression that is what  we will have. We will only have justice, love, peace, food sovereignty if we create it by our actions right now, in every way  we act, in our movements  in lour lives.

We do not create justice by simply opposing injustice, but by also being justice. We create what we are.


We only will have and do have what we create. We create the change we are, not the change we dream of, the cahnge we are.

In this respect, we have largely not reached the needed movement which is peace, love, fairness, justice, sustainability or food sovereignty. We have for the large part not even recognized these goals as goals.

In my perspective, we largely  are venting our rage and  anger  and hurt (and sometimes lust for power and greed) through our movements rather than being peace, love, justice, fairness and food sovereignty. Nor do we even acknowledge this vision as the vision we need to truly transform ourselves and human society.

Rather, from what I have seen, our movements are largely about the self-interests of our groups, at the expense of others if need be,  without concern for the common good. Institutions in our movements largely compete rather than cooperate, with exceptions. They compete most obviously for resources which sems to put them under the power of the vested interests that need opposing.

Moreover, we have not appeared  to realize or perhaps have appeared to have forgotten that our future as individuals and groups  is the  future of all humanity, a deeper but powerful truth which Thich Nhat Hahn elucidates.  We appear to have forgotten that we have a common future and that we cannot hurt someone else or others without hurting ourselves, because we are each other as Hahn would say.

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