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Should we all be farmers My first impression of Wendell Berrys book The Unsettling of America Culture Agriculture was What could this possibly have to do with me I first thought that Berry wanted us all to be farmers but then I realized this book argues that the way our society behaves is directly related to the decline of small farms and the state of our ecological system Berry wanted the people who read this book to realize they are responsible for the land and the decisions they make pertaining to it can help or hurt the future of the land Today we are too involved with our own lives to remember that we need the land to survive and every one of us takes part in keeping it healthy and functional Everyone takes their quality of life for granted We assume there will always be energy and fuel No one takes into account what happens when they drive around a parking lot for 20 minutes looking for the closet spot instead of walking an extra 50 feet What happens is there is fuel wasted meaning more gasoline needs to be produced It also means that this person also missed out on exercise that would make them healthier In our society people do only what is convenient not what is responsible Berry says The only possible guarantee of the future is responsible behavior in the present 58 Part of responsible behavior is being a part of the land by becoming a producer Todays families do not grow their own vegetables in gardens and do not even cook their own meals on a regular basis Berry quotes Jules B Billard as saying Of the 6000 to 8000 items in the typical supermarket 40 percent were not there a dozen years ago qtd in Berry 60 Instead of canning our own applesauce we now buy it at the supermarket in jars with
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