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Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis features: The Smell of Money.
“The Smell of Money” is the documentary to watch this holiday season. It’ll change your life and the lives of countless others as you do so.
Waylon Lewis spoke with writer and producer Jamie Berger.
“The Smell of Money” is a feature-length documentary. It follows a community in North Carolina who are up against the world’s largest pork corporation, fighting for their rights for clean air, clean water, and just to be able to live free from the stench of animal manure.
In particular, it follows a woman named Elsie, the granddaughter of an enslaved man. She lives on property in Eastern North Carolina that has been in her family for generations, since the time of slavery.
She goes to school after she grows up there and then comes back to take care of her elderly mother. When she arrives back home, she realizes the farmer next door is spraying animal waste, manure, feces, and urine, onto her elderly mother’s home. This starts a journey where she becomes a renowned activist for environmental justice—the fight for equal access to a clean, safe environment, to be able to live on your land, to enjoy your property.
She galvanizes this movement in North Carolina that’s been going on for more than 30 years, now. The film follows her story and the story of other people like her and people who are fighting alongside her for justice.” ~ Jamie Berger
It’s available On Demand via Apple, Google, and YouTube, distributed by The Unreasnble.
“Coming at this issue from a very human perspective—that’s really what brought us into it in the first place. Understanding that nobody wants to endure this.
This is a basic injustice that nobody should have to be subjected to. We can really relate with people in that way, on a human-to-human level.” ~ Jamie Berger
A clip of our conversation:
“We can talk for an hour more, but people should save their time and watch the film. I really want to thank you and the director and everyone behind this.” ~ Waylon Lewis
Or, listen to the podcast:
“North Carolina is the second largest pork-producing state in the country, after Iowa. There are about as many pigs as people in North Carolina, and many of them are concentrated in the Eastern part of the state. As far as we know, this [area] has the densest concentration of factory farms anywhere in the country and, likely, anywhere in the world.
Pigs produce about 10 times as much fecal waste, solid waste, compared to humans. And the reason that it’s such a problem in this part of the state is that the waste is kept in huge open air pits.” ~ Jamie Berger
“It’s not just urine and feces. It’s also different kinds of chemicals. It’s antibiotics. it’s industrial strength cleaners and all kinds of bacteria and toxins. There’s huge ramifications for not only the environment, the water quality, and air quality in the area, but for people’s health.” ~ Jamie Berger
“The industry could definitely change if it wanted to. And it has studied alternative methods of waste management…and in the end it’s come back and said, we’re not gonna do anything that’s gonna cut into our profits.” ~ Jamie Berger
“The maps showing historic areas where slaves lived overlaid with the maps of where this is happening are pretty much parallel. That’s powerful.” ~ Waylon Lewis
Dig deeper inside the full conversation with an additional second half of conversation.
“We get asked all the time, what’s the solution to this?
And there’s not one single solution. There’s many. It’s going to take a concerted effort on the part of a lot of people and different levels of power to start making change.
But I do think that as individuals we have much more power than we realize to say, I don’t wanna be a part of this system. I don’t want to contribute to this.” ~ Jamie Berger
Follow “The Smell of Money” on Instagram for more inspiring posts and to stay up-to-date about news and updates about the film.
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