Editor’s Introduction: May 2013

by: Posted on: May 08, 2013

Welcome to our May 2013 Editor’s Introduction-published on the 8th of every month.

Scroll down for this month’s articles and correspondence.



Participate in Read the Dirt: Submit an original article or send us a piece you think we would be interested in reprinting. See our Submission Guidelines.

Read the Dirt has accumulated a few more editors and staff writers. Meet them here.

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Note: Thanks to our young and growing network we blew past our goal of 50 responses to the Community Forums Network (CFN) spring survey. We partnered with CFN to help unearth consensus on how to improve Washington State’s K-12 education system, and raise funds to support our work. Thank you to all who participated.

The Articles:

Does Food Sovereignty Exist in the United States? Food and the Community Rights Movement: Trisha Mandes speaks to the deficiencies of U.S. food activism and proposes an adaptive way forward. Trisha has worked with community-based food projects in Oregon and Pennsylvania, and is now pursuing a Masters Degree in Public Health Nutrition and Sustainable Development at the University of Eastern Finland. “We need to make fundamental changes to the structure of law that is working against us, not work around it.” –Trish Mandes

Washington Community Action Network Talks Rights: Rachael DeCruz of Washington Community Action Network and the Seattle-King County NAACP speaks to the conflict between people’s right to housing, health care, education and equal opportunity, and the rights of corporate people. As she says, “It is time to elevate individuals’ rights over corporate rights and ensure that our democracy is accountable to the people.”

The Moral Blueprint-Sacred Democracy: Phil Damon, who taught writing and spiritual literature at the University of Hawaii for 34 years, takes us through a meditation on the relationship between morality and democracy. Which, he asks, “is more primary? Which is more grass-roots, ground-up, and sustainable? And, which is more subversive?” Read the Dirt will be co-publishing select Sacred Democracy columns by Damon.

Transforming Faith: What is the role of faith within social and environmental movements? How do people with different beliefs work toward common goals? This piece by Nick Mele, a man of faith, explores these questions.



Reprints: (We were given explicit permission to reprint the below articles.)

First County in U.S. Bans Fracking and all Hydrocarbon Extraction – Mora County, NM: By Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, via CELDF.org

Self-Replication at Stake in Monsanto Patented Seed Case: By Simon Davis-Cohen, via Truthout

Guatemala: Mayan K’iché Environmental Sustainability As A Way Of Life: By Louisa Reynolds, via Indigenous Peoples Issues and Resources

Small Farms Fight Back: Food And Community Self-Governance: By Tory Field and Beverly Bell, via Other Worlds

State College Borough Gov Denies Pipeline Permit: Fight Isn’t Over: By Braden Crooks, via Groundswell

Muzzling Scientists is an Assault on Democracy: By David Suzuki, via David Suzuki Foundation


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Photo: Simon Davis-Cohen

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