Those flighty, unfair, indiscriminate, yapping, voracious pests of American agriculture are at it again — those actresses of the boob tube.
Years ago, there was Oscar-winning actress Meryl Streep and her misguided belief that pesticides on apples were killing Americans. She hit as hard and fast as a leafhopper, scrubbing away non-existent pesticides from apple surfaces on national television. She was gone before apple farmers knew what hit them, killed their market deader than a plague of worms for months, if not years.
And now we have weight loss “expert” Kirstie Alley of the reality show “Kirstie Alley’s Big Life” blaming commercial agriculture for her obesity on The Late Show with David Letterman and in her personal blog. On Letterman, she had this to say about chemicals and food production: “That’s what I’m working on now, getting all the chemicals out of my life, out of all the foods. The pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, all the antibiotics, all the hormones that are in food. It really is making us fat.”
Pesticides making us fat? Hmm. A red-shouldered stink bug or cotton bollworm may beg to differ on that, Kirstie.
On her blog at www.kirstiealley.com, she continues to enlighten us. “Think of your body as a house — where do you put all the junk you don’t need or use? You probably store it in the attic or garage, right? Well, these toxins end up stored in the fat areas of your body, leading to an increase in your weight.”
I hate to be unkind, but have you seen Kirstie Alley’s “garage” lately? Methinks her weight issues won’t improve by consuming organic cupcakes.
But the ramblings of Kirstie Alley and Meryl Streep only scratch the surface. There is a more insidious pest burrowing into agriculture’s collective chest.
It appears that our nation’s respect for the farming community is slowly sinking under the enormous weight of the nonsense media — agriculture is being slapped around with impunity by blathering bloggers, ignorant actresses and Twittering twits.
It’s a sad day in the news world when the best way to reach millions of people is to go viral on You-Tube or Twitter. Speaking of Twitter, I’m not sure farm fingers can handle this evolution. How can digits designed for wrangling steer and plowing fields be asked to zip about at light speed performing a zillion functions per second on a surface the size of a postage stamp?
Back in the frontier days, a catastrophe that commanded our rapt attention was a cold, cruel winter without food, a drought or a yield robbing pestilence. Today, Americans fear little but an electronic blackout taking out our plasma screens and texting devices. Far be it from me to condone such an event. But if it happened, I guarantee you, the farm is where I would want to be.