In today's age of local foods, organics, self-sufficiency, and the return to traditional ancestoral diets, one would think that two miniature goats wouldn't bother the city officials of Visalia, California. Maybe California is not as "green'' as the propagandists portray it to be?
Visalia is the oldest San Joaquin Valley town between Los Angeles and French Camp, a little town just south of Stockton. It is the Crown Jewel of the San Joaquin Valley, according to the city's website. Once a creek side settlement, Visalia is now a thriving city with 126,864 inhabitants, and has become a community that takes great pride in the small town feel and high quality of life that accompanies big city amenities.
Well so much for the small town feel when you are threatened with hefty fines and loss of your private property. So much for the quality of life when you are not allowed to feed your children healthy and nutritious fresh goat milk.
Gingi Freeman contacted FoodFreedomUSA.org over the weekend when her children's food source was taken from their home. Gingi is currently fighting Visalia to allow Food Producing Animals in residential areas. The city took their two miniature milking goats that she uses to make organic baby formula for her daughters (2 months and 20 months).
The following is an update from Gingi Freeman:
In the small city of Visalia, California, nestled in the heart of America’s agricultural breadbasket, the Freeman family were told by the city that they must get rid of their two Nigerian Dwarf dairy goats or face daily fines of $1000. The Freemans, who own their home and have ample space for the miniature goats, use the goat milk to make organic infant formula for their two daughters, aged 7 weeks and 19 months.
The goats are vital to their daughters nutrition because Gingi Freeman, the mother of the two baby girls, is unable to breastfeed due to a corrective surgery as a teenager.
Gingi was born with a congenital abnormality called tuberous breasts hypoplasia. The condition alone affects the ability of women to breastfeed because the milk glands usually do not develop enough to produce breast milk. After finding various (thankfully noncancerous) lumps in her breasts as a teenager, her doctor decided to remove them, and in the process perform reconstructive plastic surgery. Gingi ended up receiving a partial mastectomy, which removed her milk glands and damaged the nerves around her areola – sealing the deal that she would never be able to produce breast milk and breastfeed in the future.
Refusing to feed her daughters dangerous GMOs found in commercial formulas, and with the cost of goat milk being exceptionally prohibitive - and no raw organic goat milk options in the Central Valley - the Freeman family’s goats were more than just pets, they were a source of vital nutrition for their children.
The goats, which weigh roughly 35 pounds each, and break no noise, health, trespass or nuisance ordinances, were loved by all the neighbors that shared a fence with the Freemans.
After appealing to the city in a rally of over 50 concerned citizens, the Freemans were informed that they would have to raise $3598 in funds to cover the legal fees in drawing up a new zoning text amendment – and even then, the City Council may simply vote the ordinance amendment down.
The GoFundMe page to raise legal fees is located at: http://www.gofundme.com/tsvseg