Posts Tagged ‘food politics’

This Spring the Wingnut Anarchist Collective got 2 bee hives (well built them), and got approximately 20,000 bees to go with them! We are super stoked about supporting these hard workers in a world less and less friendly to bees.

Thanks to the Ashland Beekeepers Association which is where one Wingnut took a beekeeping class, and thanks to 2 of our friends who are with the East Richmond Beekeepers association and helped out once we had the bees.

Here are 2 important/relevant links regarding bees that might interest you.

http://www.realfarmacy.com/illinois-illegally-seizes-bees-resistant-to-monsantos-roundup-kills-remaining-queens/

http://anarchyapiaries.org/

If you want to come say hi to our bees, just let us know. They are pretty chill.

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Huge thanks to everyone involved in the organizing and participating of the March Against Monsanto in Richmond, VA today. All of us Wingnuts had a great time.

Extra love to the bike marshalls, legal observers, and copwatchers! And super extra love to the person who was arrested, the person who got hit by a cop car while on their bike, and the person shoved by a cop.

We took the street, there were a ton of us, and this is just the beggining.

Looking forward to seeing the connections drawn between the food justice movement and many other pressing issues around various oppressions, and having all of this energy move forward into more and more positive things!

Huge thanks to David Martin of Martin images for coming out and filming the march. If you have a way to support David Martin, please do, he really does a great job of supporting a variety of protests and movements that the mainstream media doesn’t do anything close to justice with.

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This is a piece written by our friend Brando Chemtrails, inspired by his stay at the Wingnut and based on his observations of the neighborhood and food issues. Brando opened for the Blackbird Raum show on April 12th, and blew us away with his spoken word.

More by Brando at his website below, buy a book or zine or cd of his if you can!

brandochemtrails.bandcamp.com

 

Here it is:

When a Dollar’s Too Much to Spare

by Brando Chemtrails

I woke up this morning in Richmond, in a part of town called “food desert” by people that do not live there. This doesn’t mean there’s no food there, it means there is no food those people would want to buy. Truth is there’s more edibles on sale per square block here than in a mile of most neighborhoods built on liberal guilt built on what used to be neighborhoods like these, and sold by the small family owned businesses they nondenominationally pray for every night. True, the shelves might not look like the ingredients to a long and healthy life, but if I was given the money to buy all I wanted from the co-op, I’d buy most of the same food I buy in stores like these, and the only difference would be the receipt, not the nutrition facts.
I have a rule when it comes to buying anything. Don’t call it morals, I’m not looking for friends when I’m paying the ransom for the things that I need, call it loyalty. I won’t buy shit from any store that’s ever had anyone I know arrested. Since food is pretty much the only thing I spend money on and it’s available most places, this rule doesn’t change much for me. When one place gets crossed off my list there’s always another store not far from there that hasn’t had a chance yet to prove itself the same as all the others yet, and I buy canned beans there until I’ve been proven wrong.
Anyways. On the door of one cornershop, they got a hoodie in a circle with a line through it, orders to take your hats off coming in or they’ll call 911, a dumpster with ALL CAPS demands not to pee there because we’re watching you. At the Dollar General, they got so many hanging cameras on the ceiling that the shadows look like black circle tiles on the floor. Every time I’ve gone to the North Avenue Deli and Market after sundown, the same cop stands between the registers and the people in line and watches the procession of best behavior, of the respect that comes from a hand resting on a holstered gun and the costume that makes it all OK. At the Family Dollar, they don’t play songs on the radio, they play warnings on a thirty second loop about how you’re being monitored from some office in Charlotte right now for your own safety, so don’t try to pull anything the next time you’re in here and hungry and a dollar’s too much to spare. I am angry, but it’s not the kind of story made for those whose business is outrage from the safety of their keyboard or sofa, no brave main street mom and pops trying to say “no” to a Wal Mart in town, and it’s not lone assholes speaking their mind too honestly, never expecting the world to watch and make them suffer till they say sorry like they mean it. No, this is the nature of holding the title to dinner in a place where a dollar can be too much to spare, and free help is always a phone call away. If I knew more people, I’d never buy a thing.

Update:(****Start Location Change*****)
March Against Monsanto: Richmond
In solidarity with ‘consumers’ across the WORLD,
Richmond citizens are going to March Against Monsanto.
On Saturday May 25th at 2pm, citizens of Metro Richmond will be peaceably assembling in the area of Carytown, Richmond, on the sidewalks of Thompson and Floyd Ave near the Post Office.

Time:
March Against Monsanto: Richmond
May 25th 2-4pm
We will Get there around 1:30 and start at 2pm. The march will start Promptly at 2:15pm!!!! Don’t be late!!!

*****MAP WILL FOLLOW*****

Where:
Corner of Thompson and Floyd Ave-
Carytown, Richmond, VA

Purpose:
•To protest the Monsanto Corporation, Big Agribusiness, and Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s).

•To Express outright condemnation of recent unlawful, immoral and unjust laws (H.R. 933: Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013- Farmer Assurance Provision, Section 735), allowing Monsanto and other agribusiness giants to promote and plant Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and genetically engineered (GE) seeds while being free from litigation that might prove their products unsafe for human consumption.

• Exercising our freedom of choice, WE demand products containing GMO’s to be labeled
•Until that time, WE call for the immediate Expulsion of all GMO Foods from Metro Richmond, VA!

This nonviolent rally will focus on spreading awareness of Monsanto and corporate agriculture and the harmful effects of GMO seeds on our environment, organic farmers/farms, and our bodies. Participants will be providing information on Monsanto’s corporate crimes against humanity and attacks on our freedom of food choice as well as healthy food alternatives in the Richmond Area (farmers’ markets, Community Supported Agriculture, Seed sharing, organic options, gardens and urban agriculture).

Preview for the movie we are screening on Friday night at 7pm

Also with music by Beloved Binge from Durham, NC!

Bring cash for donations if you can

2005 Barton Avenue

All ages, sober

We’d like everyone, but especially interested folks who have never been before, to join us Sunday the 20th for our first Greeting Day!

Have you heard about Richmond Food Not Bombs, but been unsure about approaching a group of strangers in an unfamiliar setting? Not sure what food access justice means? Do you have questions about the politics, history, or process of RVA Food Not Bombs?

Food Not Bombs is a loose worldwide conglomeration of local food justice organizations, who believe that food is a right and the conditions of poverty are a kind of structural violence. Richmond Food Not Bombs has been in operation for eighteen years, serving a vegan meal that is free to all and prepared from donations and food that would otherwise go to waste, on Sunday evenings in Monroe Park. RVA FNB has only ever missed two servings in their entire near-twenty-year history. Currently, we cook out of a collective in Barton Heights, from 12:30-3:45pm, and eat in Monroe Park from 4-5pm, on Sundays.

Members are always available to greet newcomers and answer questions at the regular Sunday cooking, eating, and cleanup- and anyone is welcome to attend any Sunday- but we’ve decided to begin a tradition of monthly Greeting Sundays, where a specific member volunteers to act as the greeter and guide for any newcomers. There will be nametags, literature, and a member available specifically to address your questions and explain the process, from grocery pickups all the way through to cleanup.

This week’s greeter will be Kat. If you have questions or concerns prior to Sunday, you can contact her at mcnealkc@vcu.edu, or through Facebook. You don’t need to show up right at 12:30, as this is an informal event. Feel free to come to the specified address from 12:30-3:30pm, and to the corner of Main and Belvidere at Monroe Park from 4-4:45pm. 2005 Barton Avenue!

There will be dogs at the cooking site, which is not wheelchair accessible, and lacks central heat, so dress warmly. Kids are welcome, provided they are supervised. Here is more information regarding accessibility and allergies: http://wingnutrva.org/2012/12/15/accessibilityallergies-at-the-wingnut/ .

Greeting Days will be held on the 3rd Sunday of each month. If you miss this one, there will be more!

On Friday December 28th at 7pm, Food Not Bombs member Baldeep Pooni will be giving a presentation and screening a documentary at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective on Monsanto.

The World According to Monsanto by Marie-Monique Robin is the documentary that will be shown (1 hour, 48 minutes)

the_world_according_to_monsanto

“Monsanto is operating in the U.S.A. with very secretive and harmful methods that apply to the inhabitants of America as well as the rest of the world. If the food we eat today organic? Is it health for us? Is it even food? With genetically modified seeds Monsanto has copied the genetic coding of numerous products and have outlawed farming methods that use traditional seeds instead of GM seeds. Herbicides and pesticides are highly prevalent in the food we eat and the most disturbing fact is that they are operating successfully in the USA and the in the world without much opposition or criticism. It time the inhabitants of this planet wake up and demand proper methods of growing and producing food!”

Baldeep will be facilitating a discussion, as well as speaking to the serious issues that farmers in India are facing due to the practices of Monsanto.

We spent Thursday night and a good chunk of the day Friday entering all of the books from our Radical Lending Library onto the Librarything, adding tags to pre-existing entries, and re-organizing the shelves. The result (aside from our crossed eyes and papercuts) is a library collection that is much easier to search by subject online and better arranged on the shelves.

We had over 200 books that were in our collection but not yet recorded as in our collection. Now all of those titles are available in our online database.

To search our collection, go to: http://www.librarything.com/home/thewingnutrva  We have 2 collections currently- one is the Approaching Apocalypse Zine Library which currently has just 203 catalogued titles.  Our book collection, titled Your Library, now has 764 titles.

Some of our categories in our library include: guns, gardens, DIY (Do It Yourself), Myths, Religion, Guerilla Warfare, Government Oppression, Anti-Civilization, Ecology, Civil Rights, Black Liberation, Radical Activism, Hawai’i, Australia, Indigenous, Richmond, Richmond Authors, Queer Theory, Queer History, Queer Biography, Queer Fiction, Feminism, Medicine and Alternative Medicine, Animal Rights, Food Politics, Cookbooks, Art, Music, Bikes, Military Handbooks, Field Guides, Zine Compilations, Graphic Novels, Travelling, Globalization, Anarchism, Radical Fiction, Prisons, Anarchist Practice, Mexico, Central America, South America, Celts, Consumer Culture, U.S. Cultural Studies, Home Renovation and More!

Please, feel free to go onto librarything.com and search the collections here at the Wingunt (thewingnutrva is our screenname on that website) If you seem somehting you like, come by during Open Hours (Wednesday and Friday from 4-9pm)and check it out (you can check a book out for 2 weeks). If you can’t make open hours just send us an email or give us a call and we can arrange a different time for your visit. (804) 303 5449 wingnut_collective@yahoo.com

If you would like to donate us books, we are specifically interested in adding to our Anarchism, Radical Fiction, Radical Activism, Black Liberation, Civil Rights, Prisons, Government Oppression, Queer Theory, Queer History, and DIY sections. But if your donation is to a different category that would be lovely as well!

A recent post on the Church Hill People’s News website shows some of the issues that Church Hill faces in regards to accessing affordable, healthy food. Southern Barton Heights, Brookland Park, Battery Park, and Highland Park all face similar challenges as Food Deserts. There are no grocery stores in our neighborhood. There are corner stores which typically have a smaller, less quality, and more expensive selection – in addition to fewer open hours than many grocery stores. The closest grocery store to our neighborhood is the Kroger at Lombardy and Broad. Residents without personal vehicles are forced to either walk, bike, or take the bus. Aside from that they only have access to what the corner stores have to offer.

There are other challenges on the people in low income food deserts. The public transportation system in Richmond, namely the GRTC, has been cutting routes over the past couple years. And last night city council just voted to pass a bus fare hike. Additionally, there are no bike shops in Southern Barton Heights to help people who do ride bikes maintain their equipment.

Food Politics and access to affordable, healthy food are not isolated issues. They are tied into to many issues around class and race. There are reasons why certain areas do not have the access they need. Working with groups like the Richmond Transit Rider’s union can be ways to take a more holistic approach to the problem of food access in our communities. (more…)