[Market-farming] Women's Voices in the 2007FarmBill--Pleaserespond]]

Robin Follette marketfarmers at thymeforewe.com
Wed Nov 23 09:59:47 EST 2005


Women's Voices in the 2007 Farm Bill-- Please respondPoint taken.  And it's 
a good point.

>>White men do not have a caucus - because they already have such power in 
>>our society.

Pamela Kingfisher addressed this in her talk.  I wish I'd taken better notes 
but it was later Sunday morning and I was ready to hit the road to drive 
home.  One of the things she said was that we need to start talking to some 
of these men who are in power as though they are our husbands or sons.  She 
said they need to hear a message similar to "smarten up."  Hopefully someone 
else who was there will remember her words better than I do and reply.

Robin Follette
www.thymeforewe.com  zone 4
http://www.farm-garden.com/robin


  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Jill Bussiere
  To: Market Farming
  Sent: Wednesday, November 23, 2005 9:40 AM
  Subject: Re: [Market-farming] Women's Voices in the 
2007FarmBill--Pleaserespond]]


  I agree that all have valuable contributions to make, and that we can 
learn much from one another, no matter what our differences.

  Yet, I want to put forward that there are times when it is appropriate for 
people to meet and exclude others.

  In an organization that I belong to, we have caucuses for groups of people 
that are not well represented in society - groups that are less powerful 
than others - groups that have even been repressed by our dominant society.. 
These groups each elect a representative to the governing body to give them 
more of a voice - a voice that is not as loud in our society or our 
organization for both historical and traditional reasons.

  So, we have a Women's caucus, a Youth caucus, a Diversity caucus, and a 
LBGT (Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay and Transgendered) caucus.

  White men do not have a caucus - because they already have such power in 
our society.

  And yet, men, white men, and all, have valuable voices in our 
organization, and, in fact, as in the rest of society, have a higher average 
of representation in our organization than one would predict if one looked 
at demographics.

  So, while a affimr the contribution of all voices in any organization, I 
also affirm the encouragement of voices that are not as well represented.

  Besides caucuses, we also use consensus in decision making, as an attempt 
to hear all voices.

  Not perfect, but both do help!

                  Jill Bussiere, Wisconsin
    -----Original Message-----
    From: market-farming-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org 
[mailto:market-farming-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org]On Behalf Of Robin Follette
    Sent: Wednesday, November 23, 2005 8:32 AM
    To: Market Farming
    Subject: Re: [Market-farming] Women's Voices in the 2007 
FarmBill--Pleaserespond]]


    >>>>My defining moment in the women's ag movement came at the same 
conference where Cheryl spoke.  This particular conference had a 
pre-conference the day before that was only open to women.  After listening 
to how it was a lovely program and this large regional organization should 
put on more such conferences, I asked my dining table mates how it would be 
if a conference would be staged where only men could attend?  <<<<

    Can you imagine?  We'd be screaming our heads off, and rightfully so.  I 
attended the Women In Sustainable Ag conference in Vermont last month.  Men 
were welcome.  They presented and also networked.   One of the best 
conversations I had during the conference was with a male farmer who just 
finished his second growing season.  It's a shame to shut people out based 
on their sex.

    One of the most beneficial things to come from the WISA conference was 
the boost many new and aspiring women farmers got by networking with other 
women farmers.  I heard a lot of them saying, "I can Do that!"

    Robin Follette
    www.thymeforewe.com  zone 4
    http://www.farm-garden.com/robin


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