The Republic of Awesome is the collection of contradictions spawned when frontier independence collides with politics and greed. The ROA is a place where “conservatives” froth at Obamacare but champion federal farm subsidies. A region where ranchers are celebrated for refusing to pay for grazing their cattle on public land while hungry children and veterans on food stamps are considered “moochers.” In the ROA armed militiamen are acquitted for brazenly seizing federal property while Native Americans protesting oil pipelines slicing through their land are arrested en masse. Despite the ROA being covered in a sea of laboratory-approved, genetically-modified corn, the science behind man-made climate change is considered a hoax.
The Republic of Awesome is a place of staggering wild beauty, big skies and abundant natural resources that are under constant assault by polluters and profiteers.
I’ve written about music, movies, politics, food, farming and the environment for outlets like the Washington DC City Paper, Politico, Grist, Civil Eats, the Huffington Post, and the Food and Environment Reporting Network.
From my family’s fourth-generation South Dakota farm, to running the kitchen at a hunting lodge, to farm country political campaigns, to federal agriculture and environmental policy work in Washington, D.C., I’ve been professionally involved in theses issues for the past fifteen years.
Thank you for your time.