Is violence a community health issue?

Founder of Natural Living Institute Llc | 10/22/2012, 2:14 p.m.

We have been miseducated. We are digging our graves with our forks and dumbing down our children with fries, fried chicken and soda, making them addicted out of their minds.

They have us thinking that it's weird to talk about eating more greens, a plant-based diet with more raw and living foods, but that it's normal and good for us to eat pesticides, herbicides, hormones and dead, processed foods made in a factory, processed cheese products sold in BPA plastic and cows fattened with hormones and injected with antibiotics. We have been miseducated.

Billions of dollars are put into keeping us ignorant and blind to our own blindness, with advertisements that sell us a pill for everything and giant businesses designing flavors that make us crave more of the very foods that are slowly killing us. They have lied to us.

So what action can we take? Let the village move forward with open eyes that see the things in our society that are just as dangerous as guns. Guns are an end result, as is rape, assault, even bullying and any other form of violence. Let us examine our own blindness to the dangers of the drugs they are giving our children and believe the statistic that up to 90 percent of the persons behind the guns are on prescription medication.

The role of holistic health professionals, the role of community warriors, is to lead the way to truth and positive values and to create an environment that empowers us and our people; that connects us back to our spiritual roots; that helps us to make better decisions, to have more self-discipline and internal control of ourselves.

Yvonne Stafford, author of "From Fast Foods to Slow Foods: How to Wake up Laughing," is the founder of the Natural Living Institute LLC, dedicated to helping people help themselves to excellent health ( She is the producer and creator of Health is Wealth, the Harlem Natural Living Film Festival (