Sorry, Monsanto: The Science Is on Our Side, Not Yours
Date Added to website 23rd June 2015
Sorry, Monsanto: The Science Is on Our Side, Not Yours
Friday, 27 March 2015 10:41 By Katherine Paul, Organic Consumers Association | Op-Edhttp://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/29899-sorry-monsanto-the-science-is-on-our-side-not-yours
few weeks ago, I spoke by phone with Cathleen Enright, executive vice
president of the Biotech Industry Organization (BIO). (Long story).
the course of our conversation, when we touched on the subject of the
science behind the debate over whether or not GMOs are "safe" (me
arguing that there's no scientific consensus) Enright said, "Then you
must not believe in climate change, either."
over that accusation, though it struck me as odd. And random. Until
less than a week later, on March 9 (2015), an article appeared in the
Guardian under this headline: "The anti-GM lobby appears to be taking a
page out of the Climategate playbook."
That's when I
realized what I should have known. Enright's comment wasn't random at
all. It's just a new twist on an old talking point—from an industry on
the verge of crumbling under the weight of an avalanche of new
credible, scientific evidence exposing not only the dangers of GMO
crops and the toxic chemicals used to grow them, but the extent to
which both Monsanto and U.S. government agencies like the EPA, FDA and
USDA have covered up those dangers. (Side note: Turns out the authors
of the Guardian piece all have ties to, surprise, the biotech industry).
are just a few examples of the latest reports, articles and books
exposing the dangers of GMOs, Big Ag's toxic chemicals and evidence of
a decades-long cover-up to keep consumers in the dark.
study: World Health Organization declares glyphosate a human
carcinogen. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)
decision was reported in The Lancet Oncology, on Friday, March 20
(2015). Predictably, Monsanto went on the attack, demanding the study
• New study: Roundup causes antibiotic resistance in
bacteria. In the first study of its kind, a research lead by a team
from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand says that commonly used
herbicides, including the world's most used herbicide Roundup, can
cause bacteria to become resistant to antibiotics. Cause for concern?
You bet, when nearly 2 million people die annually from
• New article: "GMO Science
Deniers: Monsanto and the USDA," points out what we all learned in
third-grade science (but what Monsanto and the USDA refuse to
acknowledge): That plants evolve to adapt to their environment, with
the stronger ones winning out. Hence the fact that over time,
Monsanto's Roundup Ready crops have bred a new generation of
superweeds. Yet, incredibly, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
bought into Monsanto's anti-science claim that the continuous use of
Roundup, over time, would not produce evolving Roundup-resistant weeds.
Of course, that's exactly what's happened.
• New book: Altered
Genes, Twisted Truth: How the Venture to Genetically Engineer Our Food
Has Subverted Science, Corrupted Government, and Systematically
Deceived the Public, exposes how the U.S. Food & Drug
Administration (FDA) disregarded the warnings of its own scientists in
order to foster the biotech industry's agenda. According to author
Steven Druker, the FDA broke U.S. food safety laws when the agency made
a blanket presumption that GE foods qualified to be categorized
"Generally Recognized as Safe" (GRAS). And they did it in order to push
GMOs into the market with no pre-market safety testing.
book: Poison Spring: The Secret History of Pollution and the EPA,
written by a former (1979-2004) employee of the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA), documents the EPA's "corruption and misuse of
science and public trust." According to author E.G. Vallianatos, the
EPA allowed our lands and waters to be poisoned with more toxic
chemicals, including glyphosate, than ever, while turning a blind eye
to the consequences.
• New report: "Seedy Business: What Big Food
is hiding with Its Slick PR Campaign on GMOs," exposes Big Food's long
history of manipulating the media, policymakers and public opinion with
$100-million worth of sleazy public relations tactics.
a smattering of the latest science—from scientists who have nothing to
gain and everything to lose, based on Monsanto's history of
aggressively discrediting and scientist who dares to challenge
GMOs—that should have every consumer in this country asking, "What's
going on here?"
Of course the industry response to the
latest accusations concerning both its products and its desperate
attempt to keep consumers in the dark, has been the same old same old:
deny, deny, deny. All the while pretending to be incredulous that
anyone would question its motives. This from an industry that (among
other crimes) for nearly 40 years, knowingly poisoned a community in
Alabama by dumping millions of pounds of PCBs into open-pit landfills,
according to 2002 article that said:
And thousands of pages
of Monsanto documents—many emblazoned with warnings such as
"CONFIDENTIAL: Read and Destroy"—show that for decades, the corporate
giant concealed what it did and what it knew.
comment on the climate-denier talking point. How ironic that Enright
and the biotech industry would pretend to side with the scientists
sounding the alarm on global warming—when the largest contributor to
global warming is industrial agriculture, with its GMO monoculture
crops. Anyone serious about global warming knows that our best hope is
to ditch our chemical-intensive, soil-destroying industrial agriculture
and replace it with organic, regenerative farming practices that
restore the soil's ability to capture carbon.
That's a talking point we can all get behind.