Monday, June 28, 2010

Greenlight Weekend!

There must be something going on with the planets, because it wasn't just Canberra experiencing all the action. Brisbane dished up a taste of its own!

Thursday night saw us attending the premier screening of the much anticipated and Academy Award nominated documentary, Food, Inc.
How much do we really know about the food we buy at our local supermarkets and serve to our families? You are what you eat. It is a simple expression that bears scary implications. The film explores how modern developments in food production pose grave risks to our health and environment. There are stories of heartbreak and outrage, but the film carefully channels these emotions towards opportunities for activism. Worth the watch, and don't plan on eating out afterwards - it kind of kills your appetite.

Saturday night saw the official launch of my election campaign for the Greens. Senator Sarah Hanson-Young gave Larissa Waters, our lead Senate candidate, and I the green light to get out there and spread the word that the Australian Greens are the only credible alternative in the seat of Griffith. The last week showed us that politics as usual cannot allow any leader to wrestle with the great moral challenges of our time. Fundamental changes are required, and the Green movement is one which is reflecting the mood and sensibilities of the Australian people, and more importantly our precious planet.
It was a fantastic night of inspirational speeches by Sarah and Larissa, and I felt very honoured that Andrew Bartlett came along in support as well. Great acts by local bands, Yellow Bird and Peter B and the Homeless Souls, and stage performance by Phoebe Manning as "Eustace, looking for love" got the crowd into the swing of things. Over 100 guests were treated to some beautifully prepared dishes, with locally grown produce donated by Food Connect.

The success of the night should be credited to Jo Bragg and her team of volunteers from the South Brisbane Greens, who organised some fantastic raffle prizes from local businesses, and signed up lots of campaign volunteers. I'd also like to acknowledge the support of my family, my beautiful friends at West End State School, my campaign manager, Wilf, and my beloved Robert, and our daughter Elsie - all endless sources of inspiration, encouragement and love.

Sunday started early with Food Connect hosting breakfast for around 100 local farmers, community leaders, and delegates from the global peasant movement, La Via Campesina. We brought everyone together for a whole day of riveting talks and discussions about the way of the family farmer and how it is being threatened by the global industrial food system.

Thursday's viewing of Food, Inc. fired us up for this day, and after listening to our wonderful guests from Indonesia, Timor Leste, South Korea and Japan, we finished with robust plans and a commitment to join the global movement. Today the delegation is off to a couple of South East Queensland farms to see first hand the threat of coal mining on our most fertile food growing areas.

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