Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Farm Raised Education

Alright y'all I am fixing to do a little rantin' and ravin' so bear with me. I think I should start this out with the fact that I am not a big follower of politics, but this just stuck a nerve and well here we go...

In between classes today I was killing time like most other college students (on facebook) when I stumbled on an article. If y'all haven't seen this already take a look at it. Granted I have not researched much into the subject matter, but it is not looking good. Here is a little summary, but you can get the entire article by clicking here.

A proposal from the Obama administration to prevent children from doing farm chores has drawn plenty of criticism from rural-district members of Congress. But now it’s attracting barbs from farm kids themselves. The Department of Labor is poised to put the finishing touches on a rule that would apply child-labor laws to children working on family farms, prohibiting them from performing a list of jobs on their own families’ land. Under the rules, children under 18 could no longer work “in the storing, marketing and transporting of farm product raw materials.” “Prohibited places of employment,” a Department press release read, “would include country grain elevators, grain bins, silos, feed lots, stockyards, livestock exchanges and livestock auctions.” The new regulations, first proposed August 31 by Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, would also revoke the government’s approval of safety training and certification taught by independent groups like 4-H and FFA, replacing them instead with a 90-hour federal government training course.

Being raised in the country I would not of had it any other way. I think children of today's generation are going to be missing out on valuable educations if this proposal passes. A good work ethic and responsibility are two of the many lessons I learned growing up in the country and would NOT change it for the world. The many lessons I learned helped to develop me into the person I am today and helped me get to where I am at in my life today.

If you were to tell 9 year olds of today's generation that they had to wake up every morning to go out and work with their animals (usually for a couple hours), then feed them before it got too hot. After the animals were fed, they had to clean the pens and barns before they could start their day, how do you think they would respond? Probably not good is my guess. Well then you tell them you have to repeat the same process every night as well.

I can imagine there would be a lot of whining and arguing from the kids. I was raised this way and I am not going to lie, sometimes I really did not want to get out of bed to go feed the animals, but I did it because that was how I was raised. Many times the animals got fed before I ate dinner, this was just how things were. I treasure every one of my memories of being raised in the country and I would NOT of had it any other way. Not only did I develop a work ethic and a sense of responsibility, but I also developed manners and respect which seem to be lacking from today's generation.

I think that children should be expected to do much more than sit on their butt all day eating unhealthy food and playing video games. I was expected to take care of thousands of dollars worth of animals at a young age and put their well being ahead of mine most of the time and I turned out just fine, for the most part :). 

Not only would this proposal affect on the agriculture industry as a whole, but also our youth's 4H and FFA programs as well. These student led organizations have developed some of the nation's finest leaders over the years would see a decrease in enrollment with this proposal. This is just another step of the way our nation is leaning in the wrong direction.

Well I have had a nice little rant and rave here, but I guess that is what happens when you are passionate about something. PLEASE read more about this proposal and spread the word to your friend's and family. Our nation's future in agriculture is in your hands.

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