Blog Growing Crops and Lifelong Relationships

Wednesday, January 28, 2015 | 0 Comment(s) Cause City Folks Just Don't Get It

That's a lot of eyebrow plucking for a farmer.
I wish I had thought of both the website and tagline, just so I could have written a satirical tale of farmer on farmer action.  Alas, reality beat me to it and now I get to shit all over someone else's grand idea.  Six of one, half dozen of another.

The basics.  I love farmers. As individuals, as a group, as an idea . . . farmers feed us and make this country better.  More farmers, less GMO's.  Living in the relative country myself, I have the pleasure of knowing a few handful of farmers in and around New England.  I can't recall any of them lamenting about farmer-specific love problems, but I appreciate that there may different issues facing farmers in the more wide open spaces of the Midwest.

What I do know is that farmers, on the whole, are White.  According to a recent PBS special, today there are only 18,000 Black farmers -- representing less than 1% of all farmers.  Personally, I can understand why, as a Black person, one might find it difficult to see working the land as a viable career choice.  At the same time, the love of farming extends beyond the injustice of slavery, and losing a minority voice in American food culture is a net loss for everyone.  But I digress.

When I logged into this afternoon (forgive me honey), there were 28,582 members online who were available to chat. I browsed every single profile picture of women in New England. When the search started extending to gals in Pennsylvania, I got both bored and sad.  Guess how many Black women were on   Two.  Out of literally thousands.

When I dug deeper, I discovered there were more profiles than expected that were explicitly tailored towards hands-on farming; most of these profiles were younger women with no kids.  About one in twenty pics had a farm-themed picture, though "woman on horse" seemed more cliche than rugged.  As far as I know, there isn't a lot of horseback riding required in modern farming.  More common than cowgirls were 30, 40, and 50-something working women with one or more children.  As I browsed their occupations, I didn't see many farmhands in this bunch.

"I was born in a small town before moving to the city . . ." was a common refrain on many profiles.  I felt like that was insufficient reasoning to consider oneself a farmer, and therein lies my point.  I don't think this is really a farmer's dating website. I think it's a White person's dating website.  Without any of those "city people" who "just don't get it."  What don't they get?  Segregation?

"Too many Blacks on You know where to find us." -Seabiscuit
You can't name your dating website, that won't fly.  Similarly,,, and all are non-starters. So how do you develop a dating website to exclude those pesky minority candidates who always seem as keen on finding love as any other human Earth-children?  You find an occupation or hobby where Black people are already underrepresented.  Then, you just have to build a dating website around that activity, surreptitiously pick and rolling any potential minority participants. Oh, there we got, we got a winner.  Vague enough to avoiding racial motives, specific enough to keep those African American . . . sorry I mean "inner-city" folks from applying.

To end on a slightly more positive note, one of the other striking features of the dating site is its lack of modern web design. Just as its American Gothic ad implies, the visual and functional aspects of feel as if they are brought to you by the people who designed Oregon Trail; At around the same time as well.  When questioned about the MS Paint-like detailing of his website, the founder replied that many of the users are still using dial-up connections, and he wanted the site to run as fast as possible across all users.  I like that explanation.  It may not prevent me from considering the whole venture somewhat racist, but it does show that the webpage's creators have gone all in around catering to their stated premise.

Their commercial jingle is unquestionably catchy, "You don't have to be lonely at . . . ."

Sadly, The second verse got cut, "If you're lonely don't worry, there are NoMinorities around!"

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