Friday, September 30, 2011

"Lobbying" Victories for Victory Gardens

Growing our own food anywhere we can on our own property should not be against the Law. Here's a few recent cases where public outcry and support has helped return "Common Sense" instead of "Jail and Loss of Gardens". In effect, it's public lobbying... free, and in support of our rights, as opposed to those $$$'s lobbying congressional lawmakers in the name of profit.

Adam Keeps His Front Yard Garden!
Memphis high school teacher, Adam Guerrero, was ordered to remove his garden or face legal action.  After a social media outcry to the tune of thousands of supporters, and even some national media attention, Guerrero's story moves toward a happy resolution: He will keep his front yard garden, although better trimmed, install a bubbler and introduce mosquito-eating fish into his existing backyard pond, reduce the number of on-site worm bins, and install mesh covers on his rain barrels to keep mosquitoes out. 

And it gets even better because the city of Memphis was so impressed by the support Adam and his garden received that it's going to help him locate a lot in his neighborhood for a new community garden. (Source)

Michigan Woman Faced 93 days in Jail for Front Yard Garden: Charges Dropped!
According to Mrs. Bass' latest post on her blog, the misdemeanor charge against her for growing vegetables in her front yard has been dropped. Her attorney went to the courthouse earlier today to file a motion to dismiss the charges, and was told that the charges had already been dropped. However: the ordinance has not been changed, and Mrs. Bass still has her garden. We'll be keeping an eye on this story for further developments. (Source)

Toronto Changing Ordinance; Will Allow Front Yard Vegetable Gardens
Last summer, the Oliveira family of Toronto planted a front yard vegetable garden. Their four children loved it, the neighbors admired it, and the Oliveira family enjoyed harvesting home grown food from their yard. The city of Toronto's Traffic Planning Department did not share their enthusiasm.

They issued a letter telling the family they had to remove the garden.

Local newspaper columnists and media picked up the story. The family received support from all over the world. Letters and phone calls poured into the Traffic Planning department.
And the city saw the light. As of this spring, they're rewriting the city ordinances! Previously, sod was the only acceptable material for the front yard of a residence. The city is now adopting an ordinance which will permit the use of "soft landscaping" -- plants other than grass, including flowers, shrubs, and -- (yes!) vegetables.

A combination of media coverage and the support of people from around the world made the difference for the Oliveira family and their garden. Here's hoping the same is true for other gardeners dealing with overzealous city bureaucrats, intent on maintaining the status quo rather than adapting to a new reality. Growing our own food was once common, and it is becoming more common again. We should have the right to grow food, regardless of what bureaucrats and nosy neighbors think. (Source)

British Columbia Man Faces Six Months in Jail for Growing Food

I haven't seen any updates on this case. Does anybody know?

Of course, it isn't all that way... 
Wisconsin Judge Patrick J. Fielder recently said:  "no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to consume the milk from their own cow;"

And in a kind of exclamation point, he added this to his list of no-nos: "no, Plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to produce and consume the foods of their choice..."

1 comment:

  1. There's more to the WI dairy issue that what they covered. Yes, crappy litigators that didn't do it justice.. but.. there was more. They got busted running a dairy. Without a license it is considered a grade B dairy. Up to sanitation regulations, they can get a grade A if they get licensed.

    The circle jerk is this..

    Only raw milk from a grade A dairy is allowed... for milk to be grade A it must be pasteurized.

    So no matter how they try to get around the matter by selling dairy shares and whatnot.. they have to push to change the laws.

    Kinda bad timing as one of the main "issues" with raw milk is Listeria.. and with the cantaloupes still making the headlines..

    If someone wants to consume raw milk, it should be their choice. They'd need to be fully aware and sign something to the effect of assuming all responsibility for such action.. but it should be their choice.

    Listeria is just a pest in that it can spread so easily from contact. However, it is so very common, and if someone wants to take on the risk for alternate health benefits.. that should be their choice. If others get ill due to their choice, that as well should be their responsibility.


I'd love to hear what you think about my posts! We all learn together.