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Make use of unused farmland; help feed families

Published 9:52am Wednesday, April 10, 2013

To the Editor:

We travel to Franklin, Va., several times a year to visit relatives. We take the Courtland exit of I-95 and as we travel along (Highway) 35, we notice all the farmland on both sides of the road. It seems most of it is just sitting there not being used. Such a pity to sit unused.

With the high price of food items this day and time, I think it would be good if the people or person who owns all that land would mark it off in half acres, one acres and etc. with stakes and ribbon and let families of the area put out a garden.

I understand there isn’t much work in the area and everyone needs to eat. Think of all the vegetables that could be raised.

If there is a person or persons in the area who have a lot of money and want to make good use of it, maybe they could buy some tillers, hoes, spades, seeds and fertilizer and give it to the families that couldn’t afford them. They could put in gardens and work them and have their fresh vegetables for the summer and fall months. Think how much that would help them and the cost of living at their house. They would have to be committed to working their parcel of land each week and if need be share the tiller with others.

Their children could help and in helping would learn how things grow and what an experience that would be for them. Better than sitting in front of a TV all day or talking on a cellphone or going out getting in trouble.

It would also make good memories for them, when they are old and maybe they would pass the idea on to their children.

Maybe some families could raise all beans, another all corn, another all tomatoes and on and on. Then share with all others. Folks, we all have to find good ways to take care of our food needs and go back to some of the old ways of dong things to keep America a free place to live. We are being taken over by rules and regulations of the government as to our life styles, as us older folks have known for many years.

I hope my idea catches on and one day when I come that way I will see people working their different gardens along (Highway) 35.

Linda Goode
Louisa, Va.

  • itsalwayssomething

    “maybe they could buy some tillers, hoes, spades, seeds and fertilizer and give it to the families that couldn’t afford them.”

    “Better than sitting in front of a TV all day or talking on a cellphone or going out getting in trouble.”

    Ummm, hello? If one can afford television and cell phones, one can CERTAINLY afford to buy seeds, hoes, tillers,or FOOD, pay their bills, etc.

    You want to talk about a REALISTIC problem??? How about this?
    People on welfare get a card called EBT (I believe). You are now allowed to use this card to buy almost ANYTHING on God’s green Earth that you want. I think if you are going to be on Food stamps, you should be RESTRICTED to buying ONLY wholesome, nutritious food. NO chips, cookies, soda, McDonalds, candy, pay your cell phone bill, etc., AND if you are getting public assistance you should be REQUIRED to do community service. Back in the day, you HAD to do community service if you wanted assistance. The entire SYSTEM is broken, and it would take LIGHT YEARS to fix it. So, while your ideas are good, they are misplaced because we live in a society that doesn’t give a s*** about a hand UP they want a hand OUT.

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  • jusdlh

    since Louisa county is predominately rural, perhaps Ms. Goode can provide us with examples of how well this idea has worked in her own backyard. jus sayin…

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  • kingradman

    farming is hard work

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  • Liberty With Responsibility

    Bless her heart, poor thing! People such as this writer from “up North” are so cute, with their little ideas of human nature. I can tell she’s never lived “down here” with the folks we have as neighbors in this part of the country.

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  • FromHere

    Ms. Goode, that’s not how it works if a farmer wants to stay in business. And ONE of the problems is that part of what you eat comes from other countries while growers here get little or nothing for some of the things your mentioned. Just saying. If you don’t farm, you can’t possibly understand.

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  • employee2

    Does the lady realize that at this time of year most, if not all land is not in use?

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  • chilimac72

    I hope y’all realized my sarcasm. Welfare was originally developed to use farm surplus (not pre-packaged meals) by widows of war veterans. Wow how much times have changed. The writer wants to return to the origins and start over. Where would it go this time.

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  • bulldog238

    I can t believe there is someone as misinformed as the person that wrote this letter. It is totally rediculouse. Slim Pickens you nailed it. Linda must be a democrat.

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  • MyHometown

    I have to agree with chdrake about the land use in this and the surrounding counties. I think helping people feed themselves is a grand idea. The issue is that it is hard work. Community gardening is practiced in urban areas and is effective only when everyone involved buys in and “pulls their weight”. These gardens are often neglected and unproductive when not maintained by some sort of program director. Even well intentioned gardeners sometimes fail to maintain a productive garden because it takes a great deal of hard work and attention to detail to produce food.

    I’m not sure which people you are trying to feed but there are plenty of programs in this country designed to help those who can not help themselves. Those that are responsible citizens in “our community” that fall on hard times are looked after by their friends, family, neighbors, and church.

    You do make one good point, or eluded to it at least. If the parents would get off their cell phones and video games and teach their children to be hard working responsible citizens they might not need assistance. We are turning into a “soft” society where hard work is not valued. In fact it is frowned upon and avoided by most people these days. There is work in the area for those qualified and looking.

    We don’t have a food supply problem. In fact, we produce an over abundance of food in this country.

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  • SlimPickens

    They would sell the tillers , hoes, spades, seeds and what not to buy Lotto Tickets, gold chains, shiny rims and skinny tires. Work the land? They woulndn’t work in a pie shop as it is.

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  • chilimac72

    I disagree I think they are on to something. How about the handout specialists farm the land? Maybe even provide their own daycare? We might have just answered the issue. Great letter.

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  • mbrya023

    I think it would be wonderful if you quit your job and spent all of your time working for the poor. Do you realize the farming is a VOCATION not a hobby. Would you tell someone who works in an office that they should just go work for charity? Your letter is hilarious.

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    • chdrake

      I simply cannot go without commenting on this misinformed attempt at a letter.. For one, nearly every productive piece of land in Southampton and Sussex County (where she was traveling) is used for crop or livestock production,she may be coming through when there are no crops in the field.. ie anytime from November through late April.. if it is fallow, it is usually for a good reason.. it is highly erodable, non productive, or set aside for conservation reserve purposes.. with farmgate prices at profitable levels, trust that every acre of decent land is sought after and is in row crop production in southeast VA.. as for the main focus of the letter, wow is all I have to say.. while the idea of feeding the poor is noble.. the means proposed in this letter is downright unfeasible, impractical, unrealistic, etc etc.. the comment above is spot on, if you wont even work period, you are darn sure not going to actively participate in gardening to feed yourself.. it is hard work

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