INKED! On the ninth day God created

And on the ninth day God looked down on his planned paradise and his caretaker and said, “How are you going to do all this by yourself?”

His caretaker said, “I dunno.”

So, on the ninth day God made a migrant farmworker.

God said, “I need somebody to get up before dawn, to cross the border before the sun, and stand around waiting for a migrant labor bus to pick him up so that my American children can stay asleep, nuzzled in their beds, oblivious to how that salad goes from plot to plate.”

So God made a migrant farmworker.

“I need somebody who would be willing to leave their family, wife, children and parents, for weeks on end and travel north with the harvest to work six days a week, 12 hours a day in some cases, to send wages home that barely crack California’s or the federal government’s minimum wage, or the federal poverty level.”

So God made a migrant farmworker.

“I need someone willing to risk life and limb illegally entering this county in search of a better life and a better wage for his family, doing jobs that Americans refuse to do or don’t want to do, like spending hours stooped over in pain with a lettuce knife in hand or working in a related field on the killing floor of a slaughterhouse covered in gore.”

So God made a migrant farmworker.

God said, “I need somebody with strong arms. Strong enough to rustle a calf, yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild. But I also need someone with a stronger will, able to withstand the grueling field labor, a man and woman who will surely suffer the same cracked and cragged hands, the same debilitating back pain, the same sleep deprivation as the farmer, yet with none of the monetary payoff that comes with it.”

So God made a migrant farmworker.

“I get it. The farmer is noble. He gambles in a way that no captain of industry can or does. His hours are long, his successes and failures amplified by conditions out of his control, like weather and international markets and tastes and regulatory concerns.”

So God’s own farmer is important and integral to the nation and its fabric. But so is the farmworker.

So God made a migrant farmworker.

Let’s be clear: there is a second reality that exists outside of my America, the “middle, real America” that I, Paul Harvey, have broadcasted for and about for half a century.

There exists a more corporately structured, contract-oriented business model today, where God’s farmer isn’t exactly milking the cows at dawn, shoeing the horses before noon and listening for the chiming of the chuck wagon’s triangle to signal vittles being served.

Now, for every hour spent in the field, on the tractor, testing and toiling over the land, and predicting the natural conditions conducive to a successful yield, an equal hour is spent in the office, on the phone, with bankers, buyers, labor contractors, and increasingly weighing in on the political machinery of the nation and the community.

So God said, “I need somebody to seed and weed and feed and breed … and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk.”

That’s why God made a migrant farmworker.

“To water and weed and tend and tame, to pick and pack and crate all the same, in the cold before dawn’s early light, when the lettuce is icy or the melons are ripe.”

So God made a migrant farmworker.

“When you sit down tonight for a bountiful spread, remember the farmer and what has already been said. On Day 8 it was clear that his contributions have been many, but without Day 9 there would be no Horn o’ Plenty.

So on that ninth day, God made a migrant farmworker.

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