Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Back with a Movie Rant

So as most of you may have noticed we haven't posted in quite a while. Well mostly because its winter and often Fauna and I are huddled together for warmth and to bemoan the loss of our garden under nearly zero degree weather. We hope the garlic and leeks will still make it through, and everyday I fret over the apple trees, recently planted.

When it is too cold to walk and bike the next best option is Movies! And in the spirit of the blog we watched The Garden last night. This is a documentary about a 13-arce farm in South Central Los Angeles, and in 2006 was the largest community garden in the United States. About 350-some odd mostly Latino families had plots there, some being passed down generationally with groves of tropical fruit. The land was bought by the city in the 1970s to build a waste incinerator that was never built. In the 1990s with a giant empty lot people began to plant. Then under a shady backroom deal the City sold the land back to the original owner who had all the "squatters" evicted.

Lets talk about how hard this movie was to watch. A woman clutching her last sprig of Rosemary as bulldozers level plot after plot, tree after tree, seeing her tears of a loved one murdered. The police in full riot gear beating on families trying to protect their land, their livelihood. The voice of the owner proclaim that he would never sell the land to the farmers because he just doesn't like them, and in America he doesn't owe anyone anything.

This movie was such a good documentary about what is wrong. How celebrities pretend to care, pretend to be powerful, only to flaunt their privilege to look "generous". How hard a group of people fought for their lives only to be rejected under a vague notion of property rights. How their pubically elected officials turned on them. How the 13-acres is fallow to this day.How one man under auspices of "American Capitalism" reinforced a racial/class power dynamic just to keep others down.