I have the greatest privilege of being associated with Native cultures of many continents.. thus satisfying my curiosity and desire to travel and the chance to help them with my medical expertise. these notes are from those travels. I am a professor at the University of Havana
dimanche 14 avril 2013
FOOD FASCISM AGAINST AMERICAN INDIANS
Is a fashionable term used, especially among
the Middle Class Literati to denote imposing the unscientific but popular
health/diet systems upon other people, who may enjoy eating Meat and are not
averse to eating Gluten-full food or full fat milk. While these naysayers are
at best a nuisance, they are not Fascists in that they don't actually cause
are others who hide behind Capitalism and hide their evil intentions behind
personal freedom and competition. And their actions actually cause physical
harm to people and this is Fascism. A selfish ideology hiding behind noble
ideas of Freedom.
case is the Food Fascism I witnessed recently on a visit to an Indian
Due to the
criss crossing of federal and tribal legal authorities on the very same piece
of territory, some times Indians are unable to exercise their supposed sovereignty
in their own land.
might be businesses within the Indian Territory, which are harmful to the
health of the Indians, but they are not able to stop it or control it.
can’t control the kind of food that comes to their food deserts and these
greedy outsiders increase the food insecurity.
was taken to see VENDING, which has become a gathering spot for school children
and adolescents. I had this image of games, a couple of soda machines and some
snacks to buy. I was not prepared to what I was brought to see.
this is a small village of Indians with a few white people living within the
Indian Territory. There are not many options for food in this village: Dairy
Queen, some lower level fast food outlets. Even McDo thinks this is not
profitable a place that there are no cafes, fast food American restos. The
nearest McDo is 60 miles away.
enter the hall, your senses are jammed with rows and rows of vending machine
selling every thing that has to relate with food. And obviously with the in
built condition that, in this isolation, vending machines cant sell healthy
food but preserved food and canned drinks of all sorts. There are also frozen
pizzas, hamburgers and hotdogs already prepared and there is a microwave oven
ready for your input.
I am sure
the owner is saying: I don't ask them to buy anything, if they don't want to
buy it, let them not come.
There are no other places to go and there is no great innovation from the tribe
to offer a similar place where freshly prepared food is provided.
owner who is white is doing nothing wrong, but carrying on the centuries old
exploitation of the unfortunate Indians. It is unethical when I was told that a
Health care Provider (white) to the Indians in the local facility has some
financial interest in the Vending Enterprise. The prices are higher than
reminded of the poem United Fruit Company by the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda,
part of which I quote:
Meanwhile Indians are falling
into the sugared chasms
of the harbours, wrapped
for burials in the mist of the dawn:
a body rolls, a thing
that has no name, a fallen cipher,
a cluster of the dead fruit
thrown down on the dump.
MY QUESTION IS
WHY DON'T THESE
PEOPLE LEAVE INDIANS ALONE?
This does not mean that
every one in the Indian country is eating badly. Far from it. During my weeklong
visits to this Indian reservation, my colleagues, who are all Indian, prepare
lunch and dinner for me, from fresh ingredients as much as possible, but always
keeping in mind to provide our bodies with healthy sustenance.