1/1/2014 – Update ~ I was contacted by GMO Free Maui to make some corrections in this critique. I have made them.
Aloha ladies and gents,
This past Saturday, March 23rd, my friend and I met at the War Memorial in Kahului to join with other residents and patrons of Maui for removing GMOs from Hawaiian and American food / agriculture supplies.
I was not only pumped, I was prepared. I had not one but TWO signs I'd made with my friend the day before, which is a HUGE deal for me to actually show up that prepared.
So there I was, in my cute outfit, full of zest and vigor, ready to make my feelings about GMO and Monsanto known to the world. Even though my son was playing the second game of his basketball tournament, I took the time out to come down and show my support for GMO labeling… and GMO annihilation, to be quite blunt.
One of my signs read “Evict the Derelict” meaning, give Monsanto 30 days and then give them the boot.
Uh huh, that's what I said – we need to kick their asses to the CURB. Wouldn't that be cool, if we really did that?
I thought it was just great that Maui had a turnout of over 2,000 people (according to reports I've heard/read). I know my friend and I were only 2 people, but we represented our families and friends who could not be there… As she and I represented about 10 people combined, we calculated our presence as being 20% of our group.
Looking around and listening to all the drivers honking as they passed us by, my guesstimate is that this applied to the entire crowd. Meaning that if everyone that agrees with GMO labeling and / or the complete ban of GMOs was present, the number would have been more like 10,000+ people. The population on Maui is only approximately 110,000 people and about 30k less than that if you subtract the tourists. Dude, that's like over 10% of Maui residents say NO GMO.
Among the informed population, I'd bet anything those of us that protest GMOs make up the majority.
I have a lot to say on the subject but today I'm writing this post in hopes that the organizers of the event will take note.
Postcards from the Edge (or Should I Say END) of the Maui Ban GMOs March in March
Dear GMO Free Maui & Hawaii GMO Justice Coalition…
Thank you for organizing this march / peaceful protest of GMOs and Monsanto. I was stoked to see the major turnout of over 2,000 people. Somebody did something right to pull all that off, and I appreciate your efforts.
I also liked the vibes, people were friendly and positive… and the drums and singing up at the front of the line sounded cool when I could catch a note or two all the way in the way back of the line.
That being said, some MAJOR, MAJOR elements were sorely lacking:
+ Not enough facilitators evenly distributed throughout the procession. We got almost nothing in the way back. It was practically a silent march. Yawn. Boring as hell. I was trying to get some chants or songs going, but due to the lack of organization and people knowing what was up, nothing really stuck. The power of the voice and people singing in solidarity together is very, very powerful not only for strengthening the unity of the group, but for singing hope and a new vision into fruition.
+ I could not hear the prayer at the beginning… before the March started. Y'all needed to get a PA system together and make sure every single person there heard the prayer and got to be a part of it. Also, this was a prime opportunity to:
a.) inform us about the rules of peaceful protesting and
b.) teach us some simple chants like “Gotta Go, Monsanto” or “Pack Your Bags and Go, Monsanto” or whatever so during the 1.8 mile march we could carry forth with exuberance and energy… plus establish a bond of unity with each other.
I think obviously we would also get noticed by more people which leads to some of them being educated about what is really going on!!!
Basically, just a little more attention directed at follow up and facilitation ~ but otherwise, it was awesome especially because of the passion, and the turn-out!
I was so fired up over this that I recorded my first podcast ever this morning in response to the insanity. You can check it out by listening via the player below. I'm still figuring out how to get my podcasts loaded into iTunes, but it is coming soon. For now, the player works good!