John Klar: With food crisis looming, Shelburne Farms squandering resources on social justice

As I have chronicled here, Vermont’s Shelburne Farms has been reshaped beyond anything recognizable in its stated or historic mission, and now boasts of its use of policies to screen employees and to restrict access to materials based solely on skin color. Vermonters must be informed of where their donation or purchasing money goes — at Shelburne Farms, it is heinously applied to undermine the Constitution, rewrite Vermont’s history, and brainwash children to be earth-worshiping racists.

This disgusting transition is blatant. So much for educating the public about sustainable agriculture: now “sustainability” translates to what Shelburne Farms calls “antiracism praxis.” Shelburne Farms proclaims:

Shelburne Farms recognizes that justice, equity, and access are central to sustainability. We are committed to translating these values into action across the organization by improving equitable outcomes in our culture, programs, and services.  Shelburne Farms is working to create experiences of belonging for all, including BIPOC, LGBTQ+ communities, people with disabilities, and people of all economic realities.

What Shelburne Farms does not recognize, I believe, is constitutional law, historical fact, or inclusion of conservatives, Christians, or white people. That this institution perceives it can talk out both sides of its race-focused mouth reflects the true face of “social justice” — so infatuated with its moral superiority that it is blind to its abject failure and the endless race war violence it seeds (instead of potatoes).

Public domain

Located on the shores of Lake Champlain, Shelburne Farms was founded in 1886 as a model agricultural estate using money from railroad magnate William Henry Vanderbilt. The 1,400-acre property was designated as a National Historic Landmark District in 2001.

As with all white virtue-signallers, Shelburne Farms first invited an “equity assessment” of the organization, overseen by Shadiin Garcia of Shoreline Consulting, who has also testified in the Vermont House Education Committee in support of similar race-based experimentation on children in Vermont schools. Unproven assumptions of systemic racism are employed to impose a deliberate discrimination against white people to “repair” past transgressions and rectify a flawed “Christian hegemony” (ignoring the Christian Abolitionist movement that ended slavery). BIPOC people are conditioned to embrace their racial “exceptionalism” while condemning white people as subconsciously racist. This bad dream is being nurtured into nightmarish reality by Shelburne Farms.

Shoreline Consulting has the answers to make the world perfect. Offering specific programs for “operationalizing equity” and “racial consciousness building” (the opposite of being colorblind), their “Chalkboard Project” provides “a critical equity lens for partner school districts enhancing their educational equity practices.” Vermonters are told that CRT is not taught in schools; yet it is applied (this is called “praxis”) in schools just as at Shelburne Farms.

Shadiin Garcia is the “expert” on transforming children to create a new world based on skin color:

From systemic injustice to internalized oppression, apathy, and trauma, Shadiin Garcia, Delma Jackson, and guests will pull back the layers of struggle within social progress, and dream together, even as we remind one another that our personal tragedies, triumphs, and healing will inform our ability to create a better world.

Garcia has applied her personal tragedies and triumphs to transform the Oregonian education system:

This role was designed to create the conditions to execute and sustain ODE’s strategic equity and anti-racist vision in coordination across our offices and in partnership with community. Shadiin will work to leverage ODE’s capacity for internal change, innovation, and collaboration while aligning multiple approaches into collective strategies that dismantle old systems that no longer achieve the aims of the agency.

Claiming they are erasing a racist culture and replacing it with a new “enlightened” organizational culture, one sees quickly there is no room at Shelburne Farms for Vermont’s true history or even for an unbiased agriculture. This “culture” is rooted in delusion, fantasy, and self-empowering race-talk. Indeed, it is not a culture at all: it is contra-cultural, and is defined by dismantling and destroying American culture. In my view, the replacement “culture” is better known as anarchy, or nihilism.

We’re told it’s all about the victimized Indians who starved here before we farmed here. Shelburne Farms does not acknowledge the abolitionist past of those who donated land to create it, instead switching loyalties to a fantastical vain imagining of an idyllic Abenaki world. It instructs not how to nurture soil, but to worship dirt:

This 3 part series is designed for farm-based educators interested in deepening relationship to place. The act of creating and speaking an Indigenous land acknowledgement is a practice that is becoming more common in the eastern parts of Turtle Island. While we experience it as a moment at the beginning of a gathering, it is actually part of a bigger process for our society and for the individual. … By acknowledging Indigenous people’s relationship to land, and exploring our own relationship to land, we will enter into a process of truth and reconciliation. Time and space will be created to consider the connections to and implications on our teaching practices.

What are these agricultural teaching practices if not a hippie coven? Shelburne Farms is a farm only insomuch as it sells food from the land it has usurped, to apply the profits to indoctrinate and subjugate white children under the pretense of an agricultural education.

Vermonters are on the verge of a food crisis, and food inflation and local production will become paramount — grains don’t care what color skin plants them any more than what color teeth chew on them. Instead of contributing important agricultural knowledge to solve that challenge for all people equitably, Shelburne Farms has squandered resources on an ideological fallacy, serving up race discussions to divide Vermonters in that great time of need.

In this regard, Vermonters must examine the clear parallels between what Shelburne Farms is religiously preaching and what all the social justice attackers are screeching as they criticize white Vermonters. As Marianne Ward recently explained in a commentary published at VTDigger regarding Burlington, racial initiatives there excluded white people, and access to materials was similarly denied:

When I asked the acting REIB director (the director left March 10) if I could have access to the materials, I was told no — they are not for public viewing. They are legitimate internal city business!  What are they hiding? … Tyeastia Green, reveals the new Black narrative that explains the new racist label … her words can only be described as white-hate tribal indoctrination. Fueling divisiveness will not mend our broken communities. But then, healing is not everyone’s goal.

Shelburne Farms has undertaken not to heal the land but to politicize it. Vermonters should distrust, with disgust, this pernicious abuse of their heritage. Shelburne Farms is self-appointed champion of the New Age — forget about using government to democratically change society: they will impose an instant race-reboot, and all will be grand:

The ongoing work is to build an equitable and inclusive organization, and more broadly, to support an equitable and inclusive society. … Using an “equity lens,” we have begun to take a critical look at our curriculum. As we develop a program, we ask who the program is for, who is benefitting from it, and whose voices are missing, and adjust accordingly. Then we try to examine the program activities with a fresh eye – especially with programs we’ve been running for a long time – to see where we are inviting in multiple perspectives and how we might incorporate (or drop) ideas, activities, resources, stories, or knowledge to make the program more accessible to all. … This is a group of coworkers committed to diving deeper into the “itchy bath” (as a former coworker called it) of dismantling racism and privilege. As people and professionals, we share thoughts, ideas and perspectives, meeting each other where we are at without shaming or placing blame. It’s not enough to just not be racist or misogynistic or xenophobic; I have to actively work against these ideas in order to create the world I do want: one that embraces difference, opportunities, and access for all.

But wait, Shelburne Farms is talking out both sides of its mouth again — the consequence of their “equity assessment” is that they are overtly unequal: I have been denied access to the contents of these teaching materials, as are all white Vermonters. Excluding 94% of the state’s demographic is hardly “making the program more accessible to all” — it is the opposite. Talk about privilege!

Future race-based workshops are planned for Shelburne Farms’ woke praxis — not the dangers of GMOs or glyphosate, but race-training using the service to justice network:

This immersive training is anchored in the transformative power of people in social service and advocacy organizations. Grounded in anti-racism praxis, arts, culture and tradition, these trainings create shared knowledge, a common framework, and embodied experiences that support the collective reimagining and reshaping of non-profits in the DC area.

Just like Shelburne Farms’ current race-centered seminars, this “work” of “reshaping nonprofits” is geared toward uniquely pitting black people against white people in the name of creating a “black sanctuary”:

Service to Justice (S2J) intends to hold a fellowship space for BIPOC who hold leadership roles in movement organizations and/or racial equity efforts. We’re calling this divine gathering Black Sanctuary! It will be a 4-5 session series held weekly beginning in February. Folks will be supported in prioritizing their healing and pleasure practices, as well as growing in relationship with one another. … S2J plans for this space to be low-cost or no cost for BIPOC participants.

Well, white folks must prioritize their healing and pleasure practices also — by growing food maybe? With this kind of agenda promoted by nonprofits like Shelburne Farms, will it be surprising if Americans create “white spaces” and “white sanctuaries” to preserve and defend their culture and race from attack? It’s only equitable — and inevitable, given the agenda embraced by Vermont’s nonprofit “farming education center.”

Certainly, everything about SJW “work” is the Orwellian opposite of its pretense: equity kills equality, discrimination based on race is justified, free speech or dissenting opinions are stifled in the name of “justice.” Systemic racism is presumed and never proven. And anyone who disagrees is targeted, shamed, and disparaged. The virtue-signallers don’t shame each other while in their SJW pews at taxpayer expense — they shame Vermont’s culture and white citizenry. The naked-emperor Shelburne Farms must tell us why it has renounced Martin Luther King, Jr. and his mighty legacy, along with the abolitionist legacy of the Farm it now racially weaponizes in violation of numerous laws.

When food inflation compounds exponentially, let us recall the squandered resources and unconstitutional methodology employed by Shelburne Farms.

John Klar is an attorney and farmer residing in Brookfield. © Copyright True North Reports 2022. All rights reserved.

Image courtesy of Public domain

16 thoughts on “John Klar: With food crisis looming, Shelburne Farms squandering resources on social justice

  1. Who here believes that the “taliking points” we see from the Shelburne Farms website, is not supporting a politicized agenda, under the disguise of ” eductaion” (indoctrination) to their point of view… for all things social, climate & gender… justice:

    “…A 501(c)(3), which encompasses the traditional charitable nonprofit and charitable foundations, cannot engage in political activity .”

    Thwap! Probably a fine line to prove it, though…. but it is clear they have gone TOO FAR!

    • Two of the violations listed in the IRS Complaint Form 13900 that pertains to violations of a charitable organization’s mission include:
      – Organization is involved in a political campaign
      – Organization is engaged in excessive lobbying activities

      See links:


      In addition to oversight by the IRS, tax-exempt organizations are subject to oversight by State charity regulators and State tax agencies. You may also want to send a copy of the referral you send to us to your state tax agency.

      But I wouldn’t expect too much from Vermont’s Sec. of State office. None the less, filing the complaint with the State agencies will support the initial claim to the IRS.

  2. “Praxis” was a Klingon moon that exploded in the sixth Star Trek film. Let’s leave it that way.

    For most of my life, I only heard the term “equity” when it related to a house purchase.

    “Justice” refers to the enforcement of the law. Screaming “justice” without referring to what laws are being violated is just hot air. What is “systemic racism” according to the law? Anything that violates the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Are we seeing violations of that landmark piece of legislation?

    Much of the Shelburne Farms language Mr. Klar quotes above is intentionally vague and elastic. George Orwell warned us in his essay “Politics and the English Language” of how mutilated language, including “staleness of imagery” and “lack of precision,” can be weaponized against populations: “Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”

  3. Shelburne Farms lost me over this whole thing….AND did you all know Antiques Roadshow is going to be there this month?? the 12th I think, but ck that as I may be wrong…….here’s what drives me crazy
    You Can’t attend the Roadshow at Shelburne Farms…..unless you show your VAX card
    Really? Really!

  4. I suppose that in Vermont, there will be no political will to do any kind of an audit, or an investigation, an autopsy! of what has gone on and is going on. It will be up to you all to rise up and demand this is done.
    One comment above raises a good point about the kind of tax dollars this place could be giving to the state..
    Maybe to play the ‘Fair’ game, a look at ALL such places should be given a new lookover.

    Next: I’m following this situation John is covering from NH.
    Have the people that are doing this over at Shelburne Farm forgotten that darn near every town around here has a historical society that is full of documentation of our history here? And that a good deal of us know what it all says!!
    It certainly paints a completely different story than they are trying to sell over in Vermont.
    Unless you believe that the Abenaki acted differently in NH than they did in Vermont..
    What these people are attempting to do is nuts.

    On food: Yesterday I was in my grocery store (in “cheaper tax free NH”) and all the boneless chicken breast was in the $17.00 range.
    I don’t know what family raising kids can afford that. Many people can’t afford red meat anymore and eat a lot of chicken- and see that price.
    I was looking at ice cream w the kids- a splurge for the weekend since we can’t do the ice cream cones out there anymore (no more Dari-Joy in Bellows Falls anymore, we need to save money now)
    An elderly woman was next to us pondering flavors too and said “aw forget it, I can’t afford this anyway”.
    She was so elderly, I told her to treat herself.. she then, in the grocery store, to a complete stranger, told me that she is 80 years old and struggling to buy food- and to navigate the system to try and get some “food stamps”. In her naivete of ‘the system’, she explained that she didn’t want to tell the state her whole life story in order to get the help she needed.. (this was about her pride)
    I explained that if she needed the states help, they’d be needing that information and this is just how it goes.. she told me she’s preparing to starve to her slow death because she’s not going to do that.
    THIS is what is going on out here that Biden voters have done to people.
    This nation is facing disasters that we’ve not seen in some 100 years.. all completely caused needlessly by the Biden Administration.. Joe Biden has the entire world going cold and hungry now.

    • Laura: In my humble opinion, the food crisis is, at least partially, if not significantly, contrived. Yes, I’ve had my tin hat on since Paul Ehrlich, of ‘Population Bomb’ fame, warned me of mass starvation 50 years ago. And yes, our food supply is vulnerable. But not because of production capacity. Political regulations, monetary policy, and supply chain issues are more likely the culprits. This so-called food crisis is the latest fearmongering, after Climate Change, Covid, Monkeypox, and myriad other issues falling from the sky and hitting the Build Back Better Biden folks, like Henny Penny, on the head. I’m old enough, in my mid-seventies, to have lived through many a crisis. And, without fail, notably in our free enterprise society, we always find the way. The totalitarianism that is represented by this fearmongering, and the wars that inevitably follow, is our greatest concern. After all, to cite one of my favorite philosophers, the economist Milton Friedman:

      “The great virtue of a free-market system is that it does not care what color people are; it does not care what their religion is; it only cares whether they can produce something you want to buy. It is the most effective system we have discovered to enable people who hate one another, to deal with one another, and help one another.”

      BTW: You can get Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast at Market Basket for as little as $1.99 per pound, Chicken Leg Quarters for $1.59 per pound, and drumsticks for $1.09 per pound. $17 will still buy a lot of chicken.

      • I would not buy chicken breast, or anything else, from a store that charged $17/ lb. for it. Shop else where!

    • That elderly woman is one of the last true, independent, proud Vermonters. It must have been a very painful, humiliating choice for her to ask for help. God bless her!!
      She may freeze to death before she starves. Those are the choices government has given her.
      It’s going to be a very dark winter……



  6. Be “lawerly” and careful John \Klar. The Webb family has more money than you…Vanderbilt money (and there is Roosevelt money there too! ) use words carefully so they don’t sue you (which is what Lawfare Libs always do). I am pretty sure that most of the Webbs made sure they carved out enough adjoining LAND for themselves, before creating Shelburne Farms – which increases hugely their properties worth?? I will bet none of them live in the Nortth end of BTV. :)….Shelburne Farms, pulled a fast one, in that they are: “…Shelburne Farms is a nonprofit education center for sustainability.” One might argue that it is a “sustainable” daydream…and was soley created to benefit the Webbs with the 1,400 acres they “donated” to this POLITICAL activity. The 1,400 acres of Shelburne Farm is likely some of the most valuable land in all of Vermont….a huge amount. The Webbs could not afford the full property taxes on it. All you need to do is get their tax exempt “educational” status removed and see how long they last when the Webbs have to pay 100% of regular PROPERTY taxes on the most valuable 1,400 acres in Vermont :)….my guess is that the Webb family would have to pay up to $20 million annually, if they had to pay the property taxes, like everyone else, on it. Logically I do see WHY they did it – and I bet they profit from it with the land they may have kept for themselves adjoining? And the 1,400 acres…is still totally CONTROLLED BY tax free? If they really had “feelings: and “cared” :)…why aren’t they building free housing, on maybe 50 acres…. for poor Black families from the North End of Burlington :)….. Fat chance of that :)…My iopinion? whole thing has been a tax dodge….masquarding politically – as “sustainability”

    • Hey John…recenrly a property was listed, on Shelburne Point, right near Shelburne Farms. It is on 18 acres and they ask $12,500,000. They refuse to disclose property taxes on the listing…but the estimate from the realty site was property taxes are….$17,300,000 — PER MONTH. Not annually…per month! So imagine what the full taxes would be from Shelburne Farms 1,400 acres! My guess of $20 million property taxes may be too high…Shelburne Farms..might be closer to $15 million annually, if taxable ((and not “sustainable) :).

      • John, of course they don’t “own” Shelburne Farms now! It is why it all is in a 501-c3 !! ALL ABOUT MONEY and property taxes they could never afford to pay! It is out of their “name” – but in their control ! Why haven’t you checked who the LONG TIME President is of Shelburne Farms 501-c3? Why it is… none other….than… Alec Webb…and you can Bet-Your-Bippy that every Farm Board member is selected soley for being a “rubber stamper” (never a denier conservative) to whatever the President wants…Alec Webb.

        As to land? I know they own land … over a dozen parcels were split off (sold or gifted) before carving out the Farms. Always follow the money :)… There are Webb’s in name…but also females of the family who took ther spouses names, you will not recognize.. There are also Roosevelts there, combined with webb/VANDERBILTS there. The “Trusty Fund” crowd is present.

        Finally? The Webbs seem to have terrible ” White-Liberal-Guilt” of Blacks. My previous post solved that. Webbs & Shelburne Farms should GRANT 50 acres of the1,400 – to poor BTV Black families to live. Solves guilt. BUT WORSE is the Web’s apparent “Indigenious PEOPLE” Guilt! The Abanaki’s. But the Webb’s never admit that Abanaki were a travelling band….all over VT, parts of NH, even NY and perhaps into Canada. Webbs make it sound like their Farm was HOLY GROUND, like Jesus’s… that Abanaki lived on it full time for centuries…that ONE spot. But the “White-Webb’s” stole it? Wrong. The Abanaki had far less to fear from WHITE MAN – than they did fellow INDIANS…the Iroquois in particular..who raided, killed, chased and murdered… Abanaki. NOT SO MUCH WHITE MAN! So, To relieve the Webb -Family-White-Guilt…. I propose the Webbs, with Alec Webb as the Farms President & CEO…carve out 300 acres of their 1,400…to “give back” to ABANAKI descendants, in 1/4 acre lots. JUST like the Blacks want trillions $ of “Reparations”? An ABANAKi in VT might be defined by perhaps 1/50th…or 1/100th Indian blood ?? So, 300 acres – with 4 lots per acre…is 1,200 NEW “INDIGINOUS PEOPLE’S” HOME LOTS !. I just absolved the Webb-White-Guilt :).. But the Farms & Webb family must also agree to build ALL the roads, septic and utilities for the White-Guilt-1,200-1/4 acre-Indiginous-lots….I figure that should set tham back about $8 to $10 million? BUT IT IS ALL ABOUT….Justice served?

        • They did scam here in town. We’re donating this land to the town. It’s a polo field, open for recreation. But if anything, interferes with their polo playing it reverts back to the owner.

          In the meantime, they pay no taxes and it is mowed and maintained by the town….

          Pretty clever. Vermont has the most non-profits of any state. It is widely abused.

          Spending time investigating non-profits and grant money would be the easiest corruption discovery since shooting fish in a barrel. Vermont is rife with corruption, self-dealing and crony capitalism, all first and second cousins to socialism and communism, one of the reasons we are where we are.

          • Hi Neil,
            Question for you:
            If they are doing this at Shelburne Farm, where else are they doing the same exact thing?
            This is why I said maybe ALL the Non-Profits should get an audit.
            These places that get tax dollars- or don’t pay in tax dollars because of that non-profit status, they should not be allowed to do what they are doing.
            This is exactly the same thing as Pro-Lifers being forced to fund abortions.
            People on the other side of the aisle, which we do have a right to be on the other side of the aisle still I think, we are being forced to fund things that are contrary to our viewpoints either directly or indirectly.. the money we don’t get in taxes matters too.

            This is not okay and it all should be rooted out.
            IF we got off our duffs and did these audits of these places, we’d be stopping the financing of what is destroying us.
            We need to stop funding the Left everywhere they are at it.
            We are financing our own demise.

            We are not going to take back our states sitting on the couch.
            Pull every dollar from them that we can and teach the people around you what is going on.. Lord knows the schools and the media are not.

          • It’s everywhere, our state is over run with abuse, and on top of that “non-profits” get to lobby… VNRC is a prime example, lobbyist paid with tax exempt money.

            then our governor fills the coffers of planned parent hood with tax payer money, and they give it to their PAC….and fund the democratic party.

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