Billions of gallons of pig feces and urine are collected in lagoons, mixed with blood and rotting pig body parts. To keep these fetid ponds from overflowing, the toxic liquid is pumped skyward with enormous spray devices, aerosolizing the waste, which is carried away by the wind.
For the progressive movement to make inroads in communities like mine, it needs to put forward a serious plan for how the US government can stop subsidizing corporate farms and instead return the land to small family farmers who work the land. Farmers should not have to farm 20,000 acres of rented land just to make a living.
With rural issues in the spotlight following the election, Iowa's poet laureate, Mary Swander, speaks about her work with farmers, the concerns of her neighbors in this political moment, and the role of art in challenging times.
A lot has changed since 1966, when watermelon workers in the South Texas borderlands walked out of the melon fields in a historic strike to protest poor wages and appalling working conditions. What hasn't changed is the work: It's as brutal as ever. Workers are vulnerable to getting cheated by growers and crew bosses. Texas — with the third-largest population of farmworkers after California and Florida — has some of the lowest agricultural wages in the country.
Officer Nakia Jones Talks About the Alton Sterling Shooting. Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Why We Need to Stop the TPP. How the Cannabis Business Community Pays Taxes. Gretchen Carlson Is Suing Fox News' CEO. This Might Be Why. This Farm of the Future Uses No Soil and 95% Less Water.