Former Pro Surfer Runs for Mayor of Kauai

By on October 14, 2014

There’s a battle for the future happening right now on the island of Kauai. Some of the biggest chemical corporations in the world have been testing their GMO products on the fertile land and the future of Kauai is at risk. Former pro surfer and seasoned MMA fighter Dustin Barca started a fight with these corporations a few years ago and rallied the entire island chain around his cause. His fight with these corporations has not only gone viral, it’s gone global. And while his efforts have been loud, he can only do so much as he goes up against big money and seedy politics. Council meeting after council meeting. Argument after argument. Needless to say Dustin lost his voice on more than a few occasions. But he fought onward and held his head high. Fed up with it all, he started a campaign to become the mayor of Kauai. Signs were posted all over the island: “Barca for Mayor”. It got their attention. On August 9, Kauai held its primary elections and Dustin came in second with over 30% of the vote. He’ll now go head to head with the incumbent mayor of Kauai on Election Day, November 8, 2014. If Dustin is voted Mayor, things will change and the future of Hawaii could very well be saved.

From Barca’s website:
“I was so lucky to grow up on Kauaʻi, learning from my elders about our sacred and unique ʻaina (land, “that which feeds us”). When I returned home from a traveling surf career, I started becoming aware of the issues our island is facing, and how they are compromising the health of our community and land. It’s time to move in a different direction, we can’t let things continue as they are.” While this is Barca’s first bid at political office he has been involved in local politics for much of his young adult life. Driven by a strong sense of kuleana (responsibility and privilege) to Kauaʻi and its people, he sees local government as a way to deepen his service. Barca may be best known for his activism related to environmental justice and the impacts of the agrochemical industry on Kauaʻi, however, he is also passionately committed to:
Democratic participation
Local agricultural food production and access to healthy foods
Cultural revival
Protecting Kauaʻi’s most vital water resources
Sustainable energy and transportation
Waste reduction
Better solutions to address crystal meth and illegal pharmaceutical drugs

“We need innovative ideas, rooted in our historical and cultural knowledge, to ensure that our economy is delivering a high quality of life and not compromising the things we value. We need to bring tourism and development into alignment with the values and priorities of residents, ensuring that tourism serves Kauaʻi instead of Kauaʻi serving tourism. ”

For Barca, this means moving towards greater economic self-reliance and regenerative agriculture especially; addressing land-use policies that have driven kama`aina families from their homes and blocked local access to important cultural and recreational areas; as well as policies to stabilize growth while ensuring that Government dollars are spent wisely to benefit local families. Barca emphasizes that the true wealth of Kauaʻi lies in our water, land and people, and that we are stewards of this `aina for many generations to come.

Dustin Barca’s Run 4 Mayor from Change For Balance on Vimeo.

About Skip Snead

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