When we watched the videos about the Zapatistas, we heard them speak about the injustice inflicted upon them as workers of the land. They worked under unbearable conditions to produce agriculture which the buyer set the price on. The system was entirely bent against the workers since their labor was extremely undervalued and when the crops didn’t do well one season, they suffered exponentially more than the buyer. This is obviously not just true in Mexico, but in almost every other country I can think of. I was recently reading an article about the same phenomenon in Egypt, but this time there was more detail: the Egyptian farmers were not just being exploited by capitalism, they were being poisoned and killed by it, too. Egypt is America’s biggest exporter of grain (roughly $1 billion a year worth of grain is bought by the US from Egypt), and while the buyer (America) receives this grain and wheat, the Egyptian poor are eating grain so intoxicated with pesticides and chemicals that it is not deemed safe for humans to eat. Also, the poor Egyptians that own farms can’t actually afford to eat any of the organic meat they raise and sell, but instead tourists and foreigners are the ones consuming the healthy meat while the Egyptian poor are fed chicken and beef that has steroid levels through the roof. The Egyptian poor now suffers from unbelievable health issues they cannot afford to fix. Here is the article for those interested: When the State and Your Kidneys Fail

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One response »

  1. alexanderlandau says:

    I like how you connected the Zapatistas to other farmers enduring social injustices. It’s awesome that the Zapatistas utilized the internet to make their voices heard. But, it’s important to remember that there are many farmers around the world experiencing similar injustices who don’t have the resources to use the internet like the Zapatistas. Also, I like how your example of farmers in Egypt connects a social justice issue with an environmental justice. Often social and environmental justice issues go hand in hand.

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