Sometimes I wonder why people do what they do in terms of a living. Some I suspect just do what they have to - to get by, feed their families, make the payments. I know this farming thing is a tough gig, but it's a workout all the same and keeps me plenty busy, meeting just about every need I have- spiritual, physical, emotional. I have worked many jobs in my lifetime, most of those meeting the first criteria of doing what I had to do just to get by, but I always grew something. I felt immense pride and joy in putting food on the table that I grew. The kids would always roll their eyes after every exclamation-"Came from the garden kids!" Or at the winter table-"These pickles were grown right here, by golly- last July, aren't they good?" More eye rolling, more sense of embarrassment when their friend happened to be eating with us. "Mom is such a hippy!" (I'm too young to be a hippy....) I think now though, the kids are happy with the jams that come their way, via the postal service these days. I dream that they sit at their tables, buttering their bread and smiling big as they glob on big spoons of homemade goodness from Mom's garden...kids are kind of reluctant to let you know when something as soft and gooey as jelly touches their heart. My aim is always there, past their stomach and through to their tickers.
I have always encouraged my children to vote, taking them to the booths with me, explaining the process ...it was a big deal, something when they were little they boasted about at school, displaying proudly the flag sticker that went along with vote casting. I know Emma is a registered voter, not sure on the other two- I recall hearing of Em's first vote, the memory recalled by her with pride. But I also hope I instilled something just as important as that vote- which, in all honesty does not carry the weight it once did. Nowadays- I vote with my bucks. I try to perpetuate the good being done by those who take from the land and give more back. Those who handmake clothing and use resources close to home which helps their local economy out. I try to buy from the guy that makes pillowcases and donates a dollar of every sale to a program that offers shoes to children who don't have any. I buy glasses upon glasses of lemonade from the local 4-H who are trying to get needed funds for camps and learning excursions. Imported stuff does not get my vote. If the catalog business imports everything, I recycle their rag and purchase nothing from them. I shop at Goodwill- apt name. I'm a shopaholic for good will. Buy USA gets my vote, if only more folks would vote-perpetuate with their bucks local shops and American made- the white washed big box stores might cease to send out all our "votes" to overseas corporations where the workers are treated inhumanely, I do not wish to perpetuate that. Now there are some who'll say-"but those workers need that job!" That may be so, but if the workers here are barely hanging on- my "vote" may just help them to get a better hold and gain solvency which perpetuates more jobs here....and so on and so on.
Perpetuates gets a bad image these days. It does not necessarrily mean a negative. It has only been reported as such- when a story needs the loudest vibe, news people abuse the term- "Hitler perpetuates...", "KKK perpetuates....", etc. And I can definitely see why it was used, it is a looking through a smoky, scary lens until all the awe and mayhem can come into complete cloudy focus. But there is another view, a deeper, hopeful and clearer lens- that which perpetuates good, positive and powerful change. Seeing like that begins with our vote, our buck, our relationship with money that might truly turn the tide, little by little.
I ask you to deeply consider your wallet, the votes in it- what does that next purchase perpetuate?