Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Community of Faith

There is a movement in this country. It is an extension of a movement that was alive and well forty years ago, carefully preserved and nurtured like an heirloom apple tree by a small but dedicated group of urban and not-so-urban farmers/homesteaders. A few years ago this movement began to grow again. It touched something in the deep dissatisfaction many of us felt from living a suburban life where our hands were always clean and our food came in plastic.The urban homesteading lifestyle burst into the mainstream. People with little more than a postage stamp of a yard found a way to produce real food and take some control over their own diets. Those of us with a little more land took inspiration from them and incorporated some of their techniques into our own small scale farming enterprises.

But now there is a family trying to control the words we use, claiming ownership of this entire movement. It is not right and it deeply saddens me as I had admired this family's efforts. The news is all over the web. The Dervaes are laying claim to the phrase Urban Homesteading along with many other phrases that have been in use by individuals and organizations for many years. They have trademarked these phrases are are doing all they can to prevent anyone else from using them. Facebook has received "takedown" letters and many pages related to our movement are gone.

The authors of this book have found themselves unable to promote it. After all their hard work they can't even write about their own book anywhere on the web. A book that was written BEFORE the D family trademarked the phrase that is the title.

I believe we all deserve to make an honest buck, even the Dervaes. But this is wrong. I am not an articulate writer so let me offer you some links to people who do a much better job of expressing themselves.

and here is the Facebook page for Take Back Urban Homesteading.!/pages/Take-Back-Urban-Home-steadings/167527713295518

Please join if you feel offended by the Dervaes actions. The authors of this book have asked that, if you feel you'd like to help please make a donation to EFF (the organization in the 4th link from the top) so that it can continue to defend free speech and fairness on the web.

For many of us pursuing self sufficiency by growing our own food has become a spiritual activity. We've rediscovered our connection with this Good Earth. We've found that quiet place inside ourselves where our connection to a Higher Power lives and thrives. We display our gratitude by being good stewards of the soil. We also claim our independence from the domination of corporate (or D family) greed.

I personally will not be linking to or visiting any website run by the Dervaes family nor will I support their enterprises in any way.