Censorship For Safety Or Liability?
In this post, I pick up Holmgren’s trail of bread crumbs and toss in other samples of censorship I forage along the way. At the end, it becomes a noxious recipe for the culture war and a far bigger problem than the loss of one book.
It starts with some Amazon reviews raising safety concerns with her pseudo-cookbook. In the brush-heavy landscape of social media, they spark a critical mass of outrage, causing the publisher and libraries to literally trash it.
Holmgren states on her website:
While I strive to be 100% accurate, it is solely up to the reader to ensure proper plant identification. Some wild plants are poisonous or can have serious adverse health effects. I am not a health professional, medical doctor, nor a nutritionist. It is up to the reader to verify nutritional information and health benefits with qualified professionals for all edible plants listed in this web site and any published content.
A decade ago, I believe her book would have survived the negative reviews and dubious claims of fatal health risks. This is a new age though, with a social media driven culture that endorses censorship.
Liability is a reasonable concern for publishers, but this is a fear of losing money and not necessarily a concern for public safety.
Legal censorship is a major tool of the current culture war.
Holmgren’s experience shows me that censorship can be legal and is more widespread than Alex Jones.
I hate what Jones said about Sandy Hook.
Regardless, I believe people should have easy access to his content.
Copyright Page: Printed in China
First Man, the moon movie, has a flag controversy.
To be fair, Neil Armstrong’s children defend the movie. Also, the director points out that the flag is seen on the moon and says that he omits the iconic planting of the flag to make it an achievement for all of humanity.
Regardless, I call bullshit. They are rationalizing censorship for profit.
A Censorship Nibble Can Ruin the Fruit
“This kind of descriptive study is important because it defines a group and raises questions for more research,” said study author Lisa Littman, an assistant professor of the practice of behavioral and social sciences at Brown’s School of Public Health. “One of the main conclusions is that more research needs to be done. Descriptive studies aren’t randomized controlled trials — you can’t tell cause and effect, and you can’t tell prevalence. It’s going to take more studies to bring in more information, but this is a start.”
Intellectual Curiosity has Value
It’s not easy to grow old and keep my mind open. I need help from institutions like libraries, but they are evolving from champions of intellectual freedom to quiet cowardice.
Tales from a Forager’s Kitchen is being ghosted by libraries because as the author says, “It takes a lot of courage to be appreciative of this life…”
Did you read it Reddit?
Meanwhile, Virtue signaling on Reddit and social media is censor hip.
One star reviews were given for Holmgren’s book based on concerns with how she presents the acorns, morels, and elderberries in a few recipes.
She responded, defending her work and with blood in the water, the Reddit sharks have torn into her.
From her book about its intent:
This book is intended to be a practical guide to planting your own forest and cultivating sustainability and generosity for the woods as well as a conglomeration of all things wild and free.
Good intentions don’t survive culture war censorship.
His unparalleled alcohol research was shut down because of fear and a heavy-handed requirement for gender parity.
It is censorship of science because of misplaced concerns for health and social justice.
Freedom dies from a thousand cuts.
From the new novel I’m writing:
If you will deny daylight, how can I point to the sun?
Your mind is a dogmatic masterpiece of delusion.
I would kill you where you stand to destroy this infection.
Equality of outcome, it won’t die with martyrdom.
So, I try again with sense—the race, how many have won?
Equal opportunity means there can be only one.
If you dare claim day is night, prove your censure with action.
Go blind staring at moonlight—the righteous lie is undone.
—Nameless “Jerry” Faceless
It’s a step past censorship when people aren’t allowed to be in public because of their beliefs.
As a black woman who values equal opportunity, she does not consider herself a white supremacist.
Attacking MAGA hats is also censor hip.
The Devil’s in the Details
Holmgren’s Good Morning Greens recipe calls for a quarter cup of ripe elderberries.
Uncooked they have the greatest potential health benefits, but also have the potential to cause some nausea, and even vomiting and diarrhea.
I see this as being akin to an allergic reaction and not a serious health concern.
Also, this risk is minimized by the small quantity called for in the recipe and making sure the picked berries are ripe.
On the first count of sick by elderberry, I find Tales from a Forager’s Kitchen… innocent!
Acorns: Don’t be bitter, bro.
However, she clearly did with acorn flower:
Flash boil them to remove tannins and discard any acorns that float.
I would quick-boil and soak some gathered acorns and make something with their tender interior meat.
Later in the instructional portion she writes, “Peel open the acorns and sizzle the meat inside the acorns with the onions.”
This later part is what’s been criticized. Reviewers are concerned that readers will skip leeching the tannins and have a bitter meal.
I find Johnna Holmgren guilty, but don’t I don’t see this as grounds to erase her book.
Is it an argument about morels or morals?
The most triggering of recipes has been Holmgren’s Dark Chocolate Dipped Fungi.
She is being called out for not explicitly saying cook morels.
Her recipe lists four fungi options:
Morels, which are always cooked. Oysters, almost always cooked. Hen of the Woods (Maitake), often cooked. Chanterelles, always cooked.
It’s fair to presume that the mushrooms are to be cooked.
Furthermore, she states on the page, “Or toss the entire 2 cups of fungi into the saucepan and mix it around to cover them in chocolate like a duck slopping in a perfect puddle.”
However, Holmgren likes to eat raw things, including mushrooms.
Verdict: Guilty. If she meant for the mushrooms to be cooked, she should have made it more clear.
However-however, since morels don’t have much toxicity, Holmgren is not guilty of murder, and her book should not be erased.
Tales from a Forager’s Kitchen is not yelling fire in a crowded theater. It is not a public health risk. It should not removed from existence.
The rise of victimhood culture is fascinating to me. It complicates helping others and discourages me from apologizing. Will I need to warn my son against giving mouth to mouth to save a life because he might be sued for sexual harassment?
What’s happening to Holmgren’s book is an extreme example of censorship. It is being removed completely and quietly.
At least Peterson wasn’t dealt with in the Russian way.
I’m learning to use archived sources and links because articles are being changed without comment or simply disappearing.
Mainstream media understands that having credibility is a great way to manipulate people.
Free speech is a valuable direction no matter if you turn right or left, or if you live in the East or the West. Let’s come together and tell the truth about the things we do.
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was censorship.
He was never here…