To the editor:

Growing up we were surrounded by neighbors who had family farms like we did, raising enough crops to feed your livestock and family. Neighbors did harvests together to share the labor and machinery. It was tiring physical work, at times rewarding, at times demoralizing, but everyone knew you had to give back to the land (conservation and good farm practices) if it was to keep providing for you. Maybe we cared more because we lived there. It surely was not to be used, abused and thrown aside. All parts of our environment were cared for — all in all it was a good healthy life, though no one got wealthy.

Today, family farms are few, corporate farms are frequent. Like most of society, it is now all about making money. No one has quite “enough,” always wanting to increase the profit margin and own more. As a society we are driven to make more, do more, go more — for ourselves. But do we care more for each other, for our environment, for this planet?

This summer at sunrise, morning after morning I heard and saw crop dusting planes spraying nearby fields day, after day, after day. What are we doing to the animals who eat the plants that are treated with chemicals so often? To control yield and harvest, they spray to kill whole fields at a time.

We all spray for dandelions, crab grass, mosquitoes, tent worms, thistles. We are all responsible for this situation, not just the farmers. I, for one, am going to stop praying. I will pull weeds, chop down thistles and just keep mowing the crab grass. I believe regulations and controls need to be implemented now to stop the over-use of sprays by corporate and smaller farmers.

Carol Hedlund

Aexandria, MN