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Date:12/22/2014 2:40:01 AM
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Culling, Part I
It is almost impossible to come up with a perception of nature without having to at least consider Darwin's theory of "Survival of the Fittest." In a countryman's life, he or she is forever forced to choose what lives and what dies on his or her property. There are those on the extreme of Naturalist discussions who insist that Nature be allowed to proceed undeterred and that humankind should relegate itself to being just one species among countless others, with no right or privilege to demand more.

I can only reply (in admittedly a brusque fashion) "Good luck with that." If a Countryman, or any human, wishes to survive and flourish, he and she must utilize the God-given intelligence available to them. Simply put, in order to maximize the potential food production capabilities of selected plants and animals, it is necessary to allow some to live and to eliminate others.

I can give an unlimited number of examples but I'll limit myself to the ones which jump out at a Countryman at this time of year. The first that comes to mind for all of us is weeding. That includes hoeing, cultivating, dragging, roto-tilling, hand picking weeds and even, unfortunately, spraying. Tomorrow I will hoe the home garden again, then weed the flower beds, (or at least as many as I have time for). I will also take the axe and machete to hack out unwanted growths of sumac, oak, and box elders. Finally, I will take the Roundup sprayer and kill the ragweed which sprout up in the middle of the driveway and sidewalks.

Other forms of culling will be discussed in future blogs but for now I would express that I believe in the theology that we are to be stewards of the Earth and even though our efforts at working with (or against) nature is ephemeral at best, we, as Countrymen and women have the right, necessity, and obligation to cultivate, nurture, and harvest what we can for our own well-being while still safe-guarding the Earth for our children. -- Gary
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