Act Neighborly

Thomas Jefferson, Tod points out, presumed on the basis of colonial experience that farming and democracy are intimately connected. Cultivation of land meets the needs of the farmer, the neighbors, and the community, and keeps people independent from domineering centralized powers. “In Jefferson’s time,” he says, “that was the king. In ours, it’s multinational corporations.” Tod didn’t think he needed to rewrite the Declaration of Independence, just a good business plan. He found investors and opened the Farmers Diner, whose slogan is “Think Locally, Act Neighborly.” For a dreamer, he’s a practical guy. “Thinking globally is an abstraction. What the world needs now isn’t love sweet love—that’s a slogan.” What the world needs now, he maintains, is more compassionate local actions: “Shopping at the hardware store owned by a family living in town. Buying locally raised tomatoes in the summer, and locally baked bread. Cooking meals at home. Those are all acts of love for a place.”

Barbara Kingsolver quoting Tod Murphy
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle