Earlier this year, 2013 was deemed the "Year of the Farmer" on the Dodge Ram Super Bowl commercial, "So God Made a Farmer." Was it really a year for them here in Hawaii?
With the multiple laws aimed at agriculture introduced late last year and this year, it clearly was not the year of the farmer. It was the year of the loud minority of activists in our state. The majority of these activists don't feed people or till the lands or produce any food for our island. They use unfounded fear and threats to support their cause for that is their tactic. They take advantage of the fact that local people don't speak up and turn those who do into targets. That's not the local way of doing things.
It is time now for local folks, the silent majority to start speaking up to support your farmers, whether it be organic, conventional or biotech. We need all types of farmers in our communities. If the majority doesn't contribute to the discussions, our inaction sends a message to the farmers and agricultural industry that we don't want farms anymore.
If you love your farmers' markets and enjoy their produce, is time to show your support by speaking up for them in the issues around agriculture. It takes all but a few minutes to send a letter to your politicians what you think about the farmers. The activists don't speak for local people and we need to show them that by speaking up. The farmers deserve our appreciation by lending your voice to keep giving them a reason to continue their tireless but valuable work.
Follow Joni Kamiya on Twitter: www.twitter.com/HIFarmersDtr