Last Saturday, I went to the rally at the Japanese Consulate (article) in support of thousands of protestors in Japan, the Japanese people and to shut down nuclear power (video). Not too surprisingly, many old friends of mine were there and after the rally we gathered to share stories, to catch up, and share ideas on the revitalization of the anti-nuclear movement. Right now there are many scattered demonstrations, but we aren't yet forming giant coalitions and strategic plans. One idea that I tossed out was that we should empower people by finding or producing inexpensive, reliable measuring devices, so that we, citizens can monitor our air, our water, our milk, our food. Right now the food supply is threatened by the incestuous relationship that government holds with the industries that it is supposed to "oversee or regulate," but that it actually subsidizes at great human and environmental cost, born primarily by the unknowing victims.
Governments don't want people to "panic" and they want to protect industries that generate money. People don't want to live in "fear mode" and it is easy to slip into "denial" especially when contamination is so widespread that it seems inescapable. However there are some foods that do concentrate radioactivity and are better to avoid than others (then again there are toxins in seafood, GMO's in 75% of American foods, and it is very hard for anyone to know precisely what ingredients, carcinogenic possibilities, and quality of nutrition any individual food item contains. The things that traditionally are good to reduce the effects of radiation, often come from the sea, which is now so contaminated that even seafood and seaweed are suspect. I do think if people recognized the extent of the deceptions being pushed by the government in regards to nuclear issues, however, the industry would be shut down. Maybe that is why the technology I'd like to find isn't more widespread. Governments are going out of their way to make it impossible/difficult to independently monitor the releases and if they don't want to "find and report it," they "do not look for it." Dr. Riki Ott urged folks in the Gulf to get samples of the water and air and have their blood tested, well those of us downwind of Fukushima need to monitor our air, our water, our milk, our food, and we cannot rely on the assurances of the government that all is well and safe. We know the pattern, the FDA raised the amount of toxins permissible in seafood from the Gulf, to help out BP and they are still aiding and abetting the nuclear industry.
Last weekend I had a guest visit me from India, and I went with him for a hike on Mother's Day. Life always interrupts my "work" and when I tried to catch up, my computer began crashing. So, this week has been very challenging. I haven't been able to post articles, find phone numbers, solidify plans to go to Sacramento, finish the article that I started, communicate with guests for today and future radio shows.
Ironically, I find solace in cooking which is a more tangible activity than writing press releases, articles, and which I can see has an impact on genuine human beings. My kids joke that "Food is Love." It is a very primary way for me to express my love for my kids, and also for my friends, comrades, the activists who help me, volunteer, come to meetings. I usually always bring cookies and baked goods to rallies, meetings, and of course me Listening Project. If I'm told that it is illegal for me to give away the cookies that I bake, when I'm tabling, I feel like my First Amendment Rights have been violated, since it is one of the ways in which I speak and communicate. So yesterday I was a bit outraged when I was told that it was illegal for me to give away homemade cookies without a permit... I am more outraged that the FDA has been co-opted by Monsanto and is threatening human health, rather than protecting it. There is an effort to obtain some food sovereignty to protect small local producers from the impossible, expensive, onerous regulations. I certainly believe food should be safe and healthy, but when the regulatory process is corrupted by commercial interests whose concern is profits over human health then we are in real trouble, and I'm afraid that is where we are today.
As I was looking for devices to measure radioactivity in food and find out who was doing it, I stumbled into Homeland Security's domain and learned that only government and business are allowed to monitor/test food, there is no place for citizen oversight. The timing of the County Health Department's assault upon my most visible political work was an amazing coincidence!
Sometimes I think all the barriers that continue to confront me are designed to test my creativity, ingenuity and problem solving ability or to generally drive the population insane.