Not everyone cares about the “raw milk debate”. You asume that because you don’t drink it, it doesn’t affect you. Well, there always seems to be some exciting event surrounding this food- be it a raid featuring armed federal agents seizing the milk and covertly arresting a food coop manager, or a judge saying that we, as Americans, do not have the right to decide if a food is safe or not, or even decide to own an animal and eat the food from it. DID YOU JUST READ THAT? Yes, that’s right. Last month a judge in Wisconsin declared that individuals have no fundamental right to own cows and drink the milk from those cows. If you know your Constitution, this is heresy!
Still don’t think this affects you? In stead of raw milk, replace “raw milk” with something you enjoy on a daily basis. Coffee, sushi, bacon, beef, twinkies, cigarettes, alcohol…whatever. These are all foods that one collective group of people or another have decided are dangerous in some way. It’s just a matter of how influencial this group of people is. But, it doesn’t matter what your convictions are about these particular foods, or health information altogether. We live in America, and we have certain unalienable, or fundamental, rights regarding our food and health practices. When we lose these rights, we have declared a rejection of our own Constitution.
So for whatever reasons (I actually know that the reasons have to do with pressure from the big dairy industry that wants to squash this minute section of the milk market), the right to drink raw milk, or even own a cow or goat that provides the milk, is being attacked seemingly every day. The latest horrible raw milk situation is actually occurring in Canada, a democratic country who’s government is fairly similar to the States, at least on this issue.
Ontario dairy farmer, Michael Schmidt, is currently on a hunger strike that has lasted almost four weeks. His request? He simply wants a meeting with a politician, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty. You may wonder what a hunger strike will do. Well, it has definitely brought the support and attention he needs to accomplish his goals (although McGuinty has not yet acknowledged Schmidt even though THOUSANDS of [deleted] social media comments, emails, phone calls, and faxes have flooded his office). But I can understand a deeper reasoning behind the hunger strike. I could be wrong, but his government has taken away something that he believes in with a deep passion. It is such an integral part of his life- like eating and nourishing his body every day. When a governing power forcefully tears away the fabric of your being, you feel like you don’t even have control of your own life anymore, like you don’t have a choice. It is like a prison. Hunger is like a prison. It can take over your entire being, and eventually kill you. This is a deep part of Michael Schmidt’s life that he still has control over, and he’s desperately hanging on to it. How far must a “free” government go to kill its people- emotionally, spiritually, and even physically? When you do not have free will, you do not have life.
The raw milk debate is a deeply important issue for me. It wasn’t until my family started relying on the daily nourishment of raw milk to discover how ferociously our government has become in determining to outlaw it. We are very quickly losing our rights with laws and regulations claiming to be “protecting” us. It is sad to grow up and realize that corruption, greed, and abuse of power is a leprosy that spreads through all nations and cultures, even America. BUT, this still is America. We can still stand up and make change. We haven’t lost that freedom yet.
This is no time to be complacent. Help me help Michael Schmidt. Help me save raw milk. Help me save food freedom. Help me save fundamental rights in this land we call “free.”