Seeds Sown for Harvest: A Farewell to Kirtrina Baxter

Sunday, 01 April 2012 17:32


By Zuri Sabir

kirtrinabigOnce in a while you meet a person who contains so much of a sense of purpose — palpable and kinetic — you feel the change they seek happening during your conversation with them. Kirtrina Baxter is such a personality. She radiates an active and deliberate positivity. While she's intelligently probing any situation, you can watch her eyes searching faces, the room, and the Earth for places to plant love. Kirtrina is plenty live.

I'm not surprised when Kirtrina tells me she has been working in human services in varying ways for twelve years. To me, it seems a person with her disposition belongs in a place where she can rub off on others. She tells me that because of her father, a pastor, she has always been in a position of service to nurture a community.

"Service is a part of my life. When I was thinking about what I wanted to do with my life, when I evaluated the things that make me happy, what came up most was service to others," says Kirtrina, after she has ushered me to the front of Gimme! Coffee to buy me a cup of tea. "I realized I wouldn't be happy in a job just to make money for myself and my family, so I've always positioned myself in places that pay spiritually," she adds.

Read more: Seeds Sown for Harvest: A Farewell to Kirtrina Baxter


A Drop in the Ocean

Sunday, 01 April 2012 17:03


By Joe Romano,

Marketing Manager

Plastikos-Planet-MAXHow inappropriate to call this planet Earth when it is quite clearly Ocean.

— Arthur C. Clarke

By the 1920s, the world had become a fanciful, fantastical, futuristic place. Art Deco, in design and architecture, and the technological advances that made our modern cities possible pointed to a bright and prosperous tomorrow. A strange new art form called surrealism challenged art, cinema and human perception to look beyond the mundane. We flew high above the ocean with "Lucky" Lindbergh from New York to Paris, never suspecting the Crash about to come. A "lost generation" of flappers and philosophers danced the Charleston in Prohibition speakeasies, or fantasized at grand movie palaces. In films like 1929s The Mysterious Island, the vehicles were not flying ships, but submarines bound for the ocean's floor, where they found a strange land populated by dragons, giant squid and an eerie humanoid race.

So it made sense that in 1930, a naturalist named William Beebe and an engineer named Otis Barton would engage in a quest to dive deep beneath the sea to view deep-sea creatures in their native habitat for the very first time. Such a modern endeavor would enlist technology, science and art. Barton designed and built the Bathysphere and the means to lower it. Beebe described the fantastical creatures via telephone to a woman at the surface, who took careful notes while an artist drew and painted the creatures. By the time they finished these dangerous oceanic explorations, 30 in all, Beebe and Barton had gone more than half a mile beneath the waves, to a dark, mysterious world of phosphorescent fish, sixty-foot sea serpents and species which had never been seen before, some of which have never been seen since. Said Beebe.

Read more: A Drop in the Ocean

Way Beyond Greenwashing-Have Corporations Captured Big Conservation?

Sunday, 01 April 2012 16:19

By Jonathan Latham

greenwashing-rollerImagine an international mega-deal. The global organic food industry agrees to support international agribusiness in clearing as much tropical rainforest as they want for farming. In return, agribusiness agrees to farm the now-deforested land using organic methods, and the organic industry encourages its supporters to buy the resulting timber and food under the newly devised "Rainforest Plus" label. There would surely be an international outcry.

Virtually unnoticed, however, even by their own membership, the world's biggest wildlife conservation groups have agreed exactly to such a scenario, only in reverse. Led by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), many of the biggest conservation nonprofits including Conservation International and the Nature Conservancy have already agreed to a series of global bargains with international agribusiness. In exchange for vague promises of habitat protection, sustainability and social justice, these conservation groups are offering to greenwash industrial commodity agriculture.

Read more: Way Beyond Greenwashing-Have Corporations Captured Big Conservation?


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