Tag Archives: creation

Asphalt, Concrete, Lawns and Golf Courses

These are the things that surround me now, the unlandscapes I gaze upon when waking, walking, brooding, and finally, retiring to dreams of Clooney and Depp and a nectar that doesn’t destroy.  There is hardly what could be called a “landbase” left in this country of my girlhood, but the subtropical clime is always attemtping to reclaim itself from the alsphalt, concrete, lawns and golf courses.  Weeds pop up through the sidewalks, tendrils of wild ivy claw at closed windows, air conditioning whirring a cold froth in the rooms of the civilized.  The dogwood, magnolia and gardenia offer their stark white blossoms as if in pennance for our sins.  They still grow wild here but we prune them and cut them and mold them and spray them to “protect” them from the rest of nature so that they fit our groomed gardens, our ideas of order and control.

I turned a turtle around headed straightlong for the busy road this morning.  Turned him around to the creek that runs nearby, the one coursing with all the chemicals from the surrounding asphalt, concrete, lawns and golf courses.  I had only the lesser of two evils to offer him, maybe not even that.  I’m pretty sure he laughed at me as he meandered back towards the only water available.

I saw a writhing bright black and white kingsnake on the same road yesterday and have requested he be my temporary totem.  He laughs at me a lot but he’s willing to dialogue between chuckles.  He doesn’t hate me, he just feels sorry for me.

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Why Eve’s Daughter?

Hello and welcome to my blog.  Why Eve’s Daughter?  Well, my mother’s name is Eve.  She’s getting older now, hell, I’m getting older now, but my mom looked exactly how you would imagine a good Eve to look:  long auburn hair, intelligent green eyes, a beautiful figure.  She was easy to picture wearing well-placed fig leaves with flowers in her coppery locks, a sly come-hither look in her wide, innocent eyes and an apple in her outstretched hand.  Yep, she was one hot babe and you would’ve eaten that apple too if she had been offering it.

Perhaps because my  mother’s name is Eve, I intuited that the original Eve got somewhat of a bad wrap  and so questioned a “truth” that would put the burden of original sin on one human woman –  the first one, the mother, supposedly, of us all.  An eternity of damnation for one snake-whispered bite?  Come on.  On the other hand,  the creation myth of my childhood provided me a vision of a garden that stays with me today:  a voluptuous, productive, healthy and breathtakingly beautiful garden that would provide for the needs of all:  animal, plant and mineral,  if treated well.

But we haven’t treated our garden well.  Sometimes it seems to me we have done and continue to do everything we can to not only cause harm to our beloved planet, but to cause the most harm, the longest lasting harm, the worst harm.

This blog is about my longing to return to a  time that was  simpler, set in a garden on the North American continent before we devastated it  with deforestation and railroads, dams and bad agriculture.   I don’t remember it in my mind.  I remember it in my bones and in my blood.  I remember it in the DNA handed down through past generations who lived closer to the earth.  I remember peace.  I remember sustainability.  I remember things I have no business remembering.  My longing follows my remembrances and leads me to discoveries along the way:  whole food, slow food, alive, vibrant, healthy food,  love and seasonal rhythms and living life like a sigh.

It also leads me to seek answers for how it got so bad so fast, how we let our astonishing blue planet become polluted, overcrowded, overheated and ill.  How we’ve gotten to the 21st century with dangerous food on the shelves and subsequently, our tables, dangerous agricultural and manufacturing practices that threaten the health of every living thing and a population who has  trouble connecting the dots because there are powers adept at deceit, diversion and creating confusion.

This blog about the sense I am making out of the chaos, or not.   I hope to learn, inform and connect with others who are saddened and disheartened by what they see in the world. And to find hope that there is still reason to live and love and fight for change.

Thank you for visiting Eve’s Daughter.

GMO’s: DEATH CROPS? Part 1

If you’re like I was, you might be pretty confused right now about GMO’s , or genetically modified organisms.   You may be wondering exactly what they are, if they’re safe or not, and what the long-term effects on humans, animals and the earth might be.

Like anything connected to nature, to creation and death and rebirth, this is not a simple issue.  But I hope I can break it down in a way that makes sense and offers the reader a better understanding of a very complex matter that is affecting all of our lives, whether we know it or not.

GMO’s – What are they?

Simply put, genetically modified organisms are ones created in a laboratory by direct manipulation of genes. No romantic dinners here.  No lovely little honeybees and hummingbirds and all matter of birds and insects flitting and buzzing happily about, spreading pollen and spring happiness in their midst.

No.

Test tubes, needles and sterile conditions are where this “life” is created.  Due to their asexual beginnings, genetically modified organisms can combine traits between entirely different species:  think pigs with apples, fish with tomatoes, bacteria with corn. (Think that sounds crazy?  Don’t.)

The most common applications of genetic engineering in our food supply include pesticide-producing crops (yep, you read that right) and genetically modified bacteria and fungi which are used in the production of enzymes, vitamins and flavoringsAspartame is a good example and is found in literally thousands of products on our grocery store shelves.

The bio-tech industry, the closest thing to parents these “offspring” will ever have, like most parents, has a favorite.  The superstar gene-baby of the bio-tech industry is the terminator gene. This little bugger causes a crop to commit genetic suicide after just one generation.

Are you beginning to see why GMO’s might properly be called death crops?  If not, keep reading.

GMO’s – Are they safe?

The short answer to this question is no.  But I’m sure you’re going to want more information before deciding for yourself.

The American Academy of Environmental Medicine reports that multiple animal studies report immune dysregulation associated with allergy, asthma and inflammation.  Animal studies also show altered structure and function of the liver, including altered lipid and carbohydrate metabolism.

To put that in perspective, here are some highlights from studies done on animals who ate GM crops:

  • Rats fed GM tomatoes developed stomach ulcerations.
  • Offspring of rats fed GM soy had 4 times the death rate of offspring of rats fed non GM soy.
  • Rats fed GM oilseed developed enlarged livers.
  • Mice fed GM insecticide-producing corn over four generations showed a build-up of abnormal structural changes in various organs (liver, spleen, pancreas), major changes in the pattern of gene function in the gut and reduced fertility.
  • Buffalo that ate GM cottonseed had reproductive complications such as premature deliveries, miscarriages and infertility.

The data continues to mount.  If you’re wondering if it’s biologically possible for genetically modified foods to cause adverse effects in humans, let me assure you that it’s not only possible, it’s proven.

Already scientists have found that the genes from genetically modified foods transfer into the DNA of bacteria inside our intestines and continue to function.  Since many of the genes inserted are pesticide genes, our intestinal bacteria could form its own little pesticide factory, with no way to shut it down.  Once it’s there, it’s there.  If it makes you sick, so sorry.  And it can make you sick – it can even kill you.

In 1989, 707 people were diagnosed with EMS (Eosinophilia myalgia syndrome), after taking the supplement L-tryptophan.    L-tryptophan had been a safe supplement for decades and was often prescribed as an alternative to addictive prescription medication for insomnia and anxiety disturbances.  But this L-tryptophan was different.   The company that manufactured it sought to boost its efficiency by inserting a new genetically engineered bacterium called Strain V.  This modified supplement killed 37 people and left 1500 permanently disabled in the United States by the time they discovered the source.

Oh, there’s something you might want to know about those inserted pesticide genes:  the level of toxin expression can be many times greater inside our bodies than when the same pesticide is sprayed on crops.

So, GMO’s are not so good for animals and humans; how about the earth?

Well, first there’s the contamination problem.  When GM crops are planted, they create GM pollen which is then spread by the wind and all those previously happy little critters.  Once this pollen mixes with pollen from natural crops, well, say good-bye to the natural crops.  They will forever and ever amen be altered crops.  Unless, of course,  they are contaminated with that superstar gene-baby, the terminator gene, at which point they will just be dead.

Because GM crops require large land areas to be mono-cropped (that is, planted with only one crop), biodiversity  and nutritional values suffer along with the possibility that the soil will be contaminated with GM bacteria causing it to guess what?

Die.

Oh, and those previously happy little critters?    You can read the latest about colony collapse disorder at this link, the “mysterious new disease” that is killing off the honeybee and the possible effects of GM pollen on the monarch butterfly here.

What’s happening to these winged protectors of our food supply?

They’re dying.

So if the short answer is no, the long answer is not only Hell No! but how in the world did this happen and what in the world can we do about it?

I’ll start biting into that apple in the rest of the series.  In the meantime, I hope you’re convinced that having these DNA-altered crops and foods in our groceries and pantries is just about the worst idea since the pesticides they were created for.   To take action, you can start here.  And remember, taking action these days is as easy as a click or two on the computer.

You can be part of an American Food Revolution.  Or you can eat the food they’re feeding and be . . . .

Sources:  Sources are linked in the article.   Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Barbara Kingsolver, Harper-Collins, 2007 is the source for many of the facts and a boatload of inspiration.