Naartjies and oranges

I wrote this 2 months ago and did not publish it, for some reason. It’s possible that a friend was here on holiday and we had a similar discussion which got really intense and while I should worry about the guilting and shaming of me, I worried about whether she’s depressed (and would be more depressed reading this) after I offered perspective on her own practices that deviated from the mythical purity of veganism. White veganism makes one hold or have shame and guilt around certain needs while consuming and taking food pics to contradict that shame and guilt.

I realised a bit more what POS people are with this social media citrus uproar (as Lawrence Carter-Long put it), people are still being ableist about this 2 months on.

I already consume little (within a much more limited range than vegans) but I was shamed by former friends who, I then argued, consume more, smoke etc. I’ve struggled a lot with self-esteem, then vegan self-esteem (guilt of not doing enough, I just made the word up) that I wouldn’t have it. These two white vegans shamed me for menstruating “unsutainably” while one of them had a sewing machine and could actually do something (which they’d do as work) instead (for which I offered to pay her), but shaming was easier. I must add: not everyone can use menstrual cups. Bodies don’t work the one and only trve way you learned in biology (or even medicine, the students I knew have been as ignorant as some doctors).

When disabled folks say eradicating something is not possible bc [insert needs], people would shame them, while being the ones who are consumerist with their wants: using loads of coconut water from Thailand for competitive athletic performance not health, it’s got a label and aluminium. Or them using all sorts of coconut things in a land of no coconuts. Or using processed moringa package wrapped bc it’s the latest superfood trend (which exploits labour and encourages monoculture in my country too, ok? As in it’s local to me, the state is white supremacist af & at the every least, if you had needed to remove those tinytiny twigs from the leaves yourselves, you’d never consume it). Or all the superfoods (probably unnecessary in their diets) and all the packaged meals they buy, serve or offer.

[An old local séga about moringa, and its dishes by working-class/ economically oppressed people, the dishes Marclaine sang about are vegan btw]

Wholefoods is probably targetting a class and race but other stores, if they did this, could cater to a need. Whereas the trend of white people making raw things with coconut oil or paleo things with packaged and imported coconut flour is a trend. When we use coconuts (not harvested by monkeys here, and in 2016 there has been 1 human death in the harvesting, reportedly an accident with the ladder and a rare occurence) the only waste is the natural husk but things get made by people: mulch, and since forever, coconut brooms with which in Mauritius, we all clean our yards. Bottled coconut water is a new thing here but no label, recyclable and lightweight. Contrast with glass bottles and the weight that gets shipped from Thailand to Capetown probably by air bc though it’s not refrigerated it’s shelf life wouldn’t permit several months shipping surely. Or worse, there is cling-wrapped half-husked green coconuts at PicknPay and Wellness Warehouse. Please let’s have a 2nd social media uproar on this bc this is actually bad and cling-wrapped (several layers) is not recyclable (unlike the Wholefoods plastic tub?).

The problem is often the branding, that label may not be recyclable but hey, like your stickers on your fruits from the market! I used to collect a lot more of display plastic from fruits as a kid! An uncle sells fruits and kept them for us kids. This reminds that maybe you don’t see all the waste your food produces and you don’t care. In contrast, it’s easy to target vulnerable people who are visible, or outspoken about a need or struggle.

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         An illustration of how much invisible waste is produced by an ‘Apollo dan Bol’

The outrage was about naartjie or ‘mandarine’ (tangerine), it doesn’t seem hard to peel, to me who occasionally have dexterity injuries but I never tried then (intolerant to citrus), and it wouldn’t make a difference if I had – if it is hard for others that is what is relevant.

Someone also tweeted that they have citrus peel allergy. What would be preferable, gloves (if even a solution, non recyclable afaik) or biodegradable recyclable containers? It’s not up to you but to the person.

 

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