Before I was a farmer, I was an activist. In college, I spent school breaks traveling to protests, and when I first moved to DC back in 2009, you could find me at a meeting or a lecture or a training most nights of the week.
All that activist-ing led me here, to my farm and my life now, which is not not being an activist, but it's different from the kind of action happening last week and this week, with this youth-led climate strike.
As a farmer, I'm here to tell you: climate change is here, it's real, and it scares me. It's not just individual weather events, but the way the weather whiplashes between extremes: for example, last year was the wettest one on record, this year is hot and very dry. As soon as we begin developing strategies for one set of conditions, another one comes along.
I didn't get into farming because I thought it would be easy. I did get into farming because I wanted to do something necessary, and I think growing food the way we do is becoming both harder and more necessary. In some sense, I see my choice to keep farming as an ongoing form of protest, with my whole life, a set of actions toward a healthier, more just world.
And I see the global climate movement actions happening now as part of the same movement. These youth are so damn inspiring, and what they're doing couldn't be more important.
So although Sara, Maddie, and I are working in the fields instead of walking out, we're with the young people who are protesting. We're not alone: there's a group of area farmers who, like us, can't join the protest in the streets, and we've agreed to reach out to our CSA members to let us know how and why this climate strike and climate movement is important to us.
For more, you might check out this recent Kojo Show about how climate change impacts farms in our region.