It Only Takes a Minute by Gavin Kedar
How many times have you heard that phrase?. And to what was it applied to?. Maybe someone popping into a shop, “It will only take a minute”. Or to fix something up, “I’ll have that done in a minute”. Whatever the context, the implication is something that will be quick, convenient, and of little effort on behalf of the one to whom the phrase is spoken to. Is it always the case?. Twenty minutes later , “Oh, I saw some things on special, I just had to have a better look and try one on”. Or, “I’m sorry, but we found a few more problems, so come back in 3 hours and it will be fixed, as long as we have the parts on hand”.
And so starts Lee Rhiannon's support of the campaign by Animals Australia to ‘fight factory farming’.
It is all very polished, and promises the reader that if they email their photo, it will go in the national newspaper ad. This is what they say. “ We want YOU to star in our history-making Make it Possible newspaper ad — an ad that will unite thousands of Aussies in a unique and powerful statement against factory farming. To join in, simply upload your photo by March 31st and we'll show Australia that together we have the power to free millions of animals from needless cruelty and suffering.”
And so you will star. Wow. Images of Hollywood?. A reward for your support to ‘fight’. Becoming a star?. And, it will only take a MINUTE…..according to Lee.
The very sad thing about such campaigns is that there is little effort put into the action. Something quick and simple, just take a minute, and you will do your part in ‘saving the world’, and will have a sound sleep, knowing you did your ‘bit’….and all in just 60 short seconds too!..
It seems in our ‘age of social media’, that the urban dweller can take part in so many ‘causes’, with little thought of the real outcome of their actions. Yes, it ‘only takes a minute‘ to become part of a newspaper ad campaign, then emailing off the picture from the future ‘star’s’ computer to the Animals Australia office is processed in a few seconds or less, and the ad emailed to the newspaper in similar time. Such is our modern technology.
The trouble is, that people do not consider the consequences of their actions. A few taps on the keyboard does not allow the brain to have time enough to process and think through what the outcomes are from the results of the message just send from the computer.
Do they consider, in ‘just one minute’ why many of us have to ‘factory farm’, not just some animals, but also many crops?. Do they consider that as a consumer, their demand for cheap, convenient and consistent food and clothing, has driven the development of ‘specialist farms’?. Do they take the time to question what would happen if we returned to a more ‘traditional’ style of farming?. Experience tells us that most do not. They tend to live for ‘the minute’, and not the decade.
Yes, our communications technology has gone from taking a week or more for a letter to arrive with a developed photo in it from my Uncles and Aunts back in the UK in 1980, to 2013, when the latest photos and news from my cousins, arrive in a few seconds.
However, Agriculture has not been privileged with the same speed. Even with the mass of science behind us farmers, we still take several months to grow a crop, stock breeding still takes the same time frame………….Sorry, just daydreaming……imagine if we could have the same proportional timeframe change as communications in the past 33 years. A crop of wheat, from planting to harvest in 25 minutes. A heifer, bearing it’s 1st calf at 3 days old!!........ Back to reality. Cane is being planted in the Burdekin at the moment. It will be ready to harvest about July/August 2014, and the grower will receive final payment for the crop about August 2015. Not winging, just stating facts. We do not have the luxury of ‘just one minute’.
As with all things in Agriculture, much time and thought and re thinking and planning and backup planning has to take place, with the rewards coming in ‘just one season, or one year, or even, one decade’, but never, ‘one minute’.
Gavin Kedar Grew up on a mixed farm in the UK. Emigrated to Australia in 1979. He has been involved in a variety of farming enterprises, including farm worker, farm managing, share farming, and owning a farm. Areas include dairying, beef production, pig farming, dryland and irrigated crops, including cotton, cereals, pulses, hay, seed production and cane.