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Summary

Paul gathers Scott, Jen Richardson, and Josiah Kobernik get together to watch the movie “Gather” which is about people trying to re-discover their Native American roots and some of the issues they face.  A lot of this part of the podcast is spent talking about the politics brought up in the film, which reminds Paul of his younger days in which he was mostly angry at bad guys, rather than building good things instead.  

Paul saw a show 15 years ago about five families trying to get set up in the Montana wilderness with one week of training, and did so poorly that a nearby native tribe gave them a couple of deer that the families weren’t allowed to hunt.  Paul was hoping that the movie would be about a similar group, but one that had been let to get further along.

The group feels that while protests can be useful for some issues, many other or larger issues require novel solutions, and while protests draw attention to problems, they often don’t offer solutions and thus get swept under the rug.  Thus leaving the protest and making the alternative can have a larger effect than the protests could on their own.  

Paul spotted someone titled Master Forager during the intro finding seeds who had a pillowcase on her, which got him excited because it’s almost certainly used for pillowcase threshing.  The community in the movie doesn’t even have a grocery store – only a gas station style convenience store which is laden with sugary foods and drink, and a fair bit of the movie is about making a café that serves traditional Apache foods and locally sources the ingredients.


Relevant Threads

Northern Native American Agriculture thread

Native American Herbal Healing/ Foraging for Health thread

Small Scale Grain Threshing thread

Tending the Wild - A book on a similar topic

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COMMENTS:
 
pollinator
Posts: 768
Location: NW California, 1500-1800ft,
171
hugelkultur dog duck
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I had the privilege to watch this film (Gather) with some of the central people in the film, Sammy Gensaw and his brothers (the Yurok fishermen), who I've had a few interactions with over the last few years. This outdoor screening was put on this fall by my workplace, the Family Resource Center & Community Food Council for Del Norte County and Adjacent Tribal Lands (DNATL). The Gensaw guys and their friends are doing some great things in our regional community as well as their tribe. They started a very impressive subsistence and market garden this summer with very resourceful use of what they had available. A food council colleague (with a couple pdc's under her belt) helped advise a bit, and I went down this summer and had some ideas for how they could expand and leverage their resources, but they really put in the work and grew an impressive amount of good food for the local community. I really think they are on the right track on their own from determination and ingenuity, but it seems they are also open to how permaculture design can support their traditional practices' integration with contemporary factors. These include dealing with ongoing racism (systemic and overt), a fairly recent history of land and resource theft, and that this region of NW California was the place of the second largest genocide in US history. It was also, in my opinion, subjected to some of the greatest environmental crimes in human history against the forests and fisheries that the Yurok have been integrally tied to in similar ways to bison and the peoples of the great plains.

I thought Gather was very moving and ultimately inspiring. While I disagreed with Paul's initial negative opinions, I respect where he is coming from about being proactive rather than dwell in anger. I also respect how he has some wonderful people around him, who he seems to welcome disagreeing with him. Josiah and Jen made some points that I definitely agreed with throughout the podcast, and Paul seemed to appreciate a lot of my favorite aspects of the film, in spite of his initial comments. I think a lot of the hopes expressed for the success of the film's subjects in moving towards food sovereignty are being exceeded by the Gensaw brothers and their allies in this community, but we all have a long way to go. I hope to help how I can.
 
Ben Zumeta
pollinator
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Location: NW California, 1500-1800ft,
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I am saddened to report that the young food forest at the local elementary school to the Gensaw’s in Klamath, CA, (Margaret Keating) was sprayed by school district maintenance against the wishes of the community, teachers, principal and myself (the food forest site developer) with some herbicide I have yet to determine. It was most likely roundup, which I fought to get them to stop using at Del Norte High in Crescent City. The district maintenance crew also cut down the native trees we planted with students. This makes me all the more relieved to have that site and it’s surrounding cattle grazing fields will be hereafter controlled by the Yurok Tribe, its ancestral inhabitants and stewards. I am also very glad the Gensaws are doing such great things with their own garden on their own land. The school district maintenance, through either ignorance or malicious intent, has proven to be a perpetuator of institutional suppression of native sovereignty, health, and freedom to sustain themselves. I wish the Gensaw guys and their friends all the good fortune in the world.
 
pollinator
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Ben

So sorry to hear this.

The adaptor narrative of not being mad is all good until some badged thug sprays your food forest w herbicide.

First they came for the...
 
Ben Zumeta
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Location: NW California, 1500-1800ft,
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I should correct my previous post. It seems I misinterpreted what I was told. The spraying occurred on native plantings at another part of the campus. It was still unacceptable, but it was not on the food forest site.
 
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