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Amish Farmer Sam Girod is in Jail…His Enemies Want Him there for Life
This might turn out to be the hardest newsletter I’ve ever written. I definitely think I’ve spent the most time on it. I’ve started over at least 5 times and I still don’t like it. But I guess I’ll just pour it out like it is and hopefully you can pick up the pieces and make something out of it.
The Facts Aren’t Hard to Tell
Samuel Girod, Amish farmer in Kentucky and herbal salve maker, father of twelve… is in jail. He’s been there for over a month and he has done absolutely nothing even remotely worthy of treatment of this magnitude. (Sam had made some healing claims on the labeling of his herbal salves and this all escalated from there.) When they came to arrest Sam, they corralled his wife and children into the yard to be guarded by an agent with a semi-automatic rifle. (According to a family friend that I spoke with, his children are still having nightmares.) They put Sam in hand cuffs, hauled him to prison, locked him up without bail and threw enough charges against him (28,000 pages of legal documents) that if they have their way in court Sam will be in prison for the rest of his life. (He’s 57 and they want him in prison for 68 years.)
Here’s the Background Story
Sam and Elizabeth Girod and their 12 children are Amish farmers in Kentucky. For the last 16 years they have made homemade herbal salves as a family. They sold it from their farm and at a few small stores near them. The family makes three products: A chickweed salve, a bloodroot salve called To-Mor-Gone and an essential oil blend called Sine-Eze.
Sam's salves
click for large image
Their main salve is the one Sam called “Chickweed Healing Salve.” It’s made with wild-harvested herbs like chickweed, rosemary, comfrey, peppermint, eucalyptus and lavender essential oils as ingredients blended with olive oil and beeswax to stiffen it.
The salve making is not rocket science. Any of you could make these products in your kitchen. In fact many people do. If you Google it, you’ll find recipes online like this one. But like so many other areas of life, moms are busy, salve making is messy, and so folks are quite happy to pay Sam and his family to make the salves for them. And so they do.
So the $64,000 question is: What in the world went wrong? How did this peace-loving, quiet, minding-his-own-business, Amish family farmer, father of twelve and loyal American citizen end up in jail for making herbal salves? How is it possible that this simple, God-fearing father, who would, any other year, be out working his fields with his horses getting ready for spring planting, be now sitting behind jail bars… considered a dangerous criminal?
These questions seem to defy answers. But let me show you how easy it actually is to make an innocent man look criminal. Then maybe you’ll understand.
Innocent Labeling Misstep
Sam’s nightmare started over twelve years ago. Their family was still new in the salve business and he had quite honestly and transparently labeled his one salve as ‘Chickweed Healing Salve’ and had healing testimonial claims on the label.
He also did not have the familiar FDA disclaimer that looks like this:
“These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.”
Sam, in his simple, disconnected-from-the-world Amish way of life may not have realized that healing claims coupled with the disclaimer omission amounted to a cardinal sin in the eyes of the FDA. Or maybe Sam just didn’t feel the disclaimer was truthful or even right to use. Maybe Sam felt it was dishonest to say that his salve was not intended to treat, cure or prevent any disease when, of course, that is exactly what his salve is for.
Whatever the reason, Sam was soon to get an education!
To Criminalize a Man
It’s fairly easy to criminalize a man… especially if he makes the first misstep. Please stick with me. It’s critical that you understand how it’s bureaucratically possible to make a good man look bad. How easy it is for otherwise sensible people to rationalize that good is evil and evil is good and that light is darkness. (Isaiah 5:20)
  1. The entire criminalization of Sam is based on the FDA’s official public position that ONLY a drug can “diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.” They really do say and believe this. And that truthfully is what 100% of this fiasco is based on. As soon as you accept this #1 non-fact as Truth, your mind is perfectly ripe for the next three Orwellian twistings.
  2. So… since Sam says his herbal salve helps for treating, or preventing a disease, therefore his product is obviously a drug. Point #1 proves point #2. End of discussion.
  3. So… since this new drug has NOT been approved by us, the FDA, therefore his drug is illegal. [You see how logically this is developing? It’s impossible to argue against if you accept #1.]
  4. So therefore, since Sam has admitted that he’s been selling this salve, and we’ve proved his salve is a drug and an illegal one at that, Sam is admittedly an illegal drug dealer. He’s even selling this illegal drug across state lines! So he’s actually a National Interstate Drug Dealer. And that makes Sam an exceedingly dangerous criminal! Bind him, men, and take him away!