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Monsanto's Bully Tactics: How Far Will They Go?

Monsanto uses their immense wealth to bully states the same way a schoolyard bully pushes around smaller kids. Monsanto uses their immense wealth to bully states the same way a schoolyard bully pushes around smaller kids.

There is a little something extra in your groceries these days, and while GMO-giant Monsanto is happy to put it there, they would rather you didn't know about it. As concerns grow about the health and environmental safety of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), industry leader Monsanto seems to have realized that if the US requires GMOs to be labeled, as much of the world already does, their products may not sell. So while other corporations spend millions to advertise, they are doing everything they can to keep secret their involvement in your lunch.

We Americans have a history of expecting the government to protect us, and they often do. There are a variety of rules, regulations and organizations in place to protect the American people from things that may harm us. But any system of laws is, by its nature, is slow to adapt to new threats, and the US government is especially gridlocked and unfortunately prone to corruption. This is why we see so many drugs receive FDA approval only to be recalled years later when that drug has had a chance to injure or kill some folks.

"Monsanto should not have to vouch for the safety of our biotech food. Our interest is in selling as much of it as possible. Assuring its safety is the FDA's job."

Such may be the case for GMOs, which have already been banned outright in countries throughout Europe and even Saudi Arabia. In addition to countries that have banned GMOs altogether, more than 160 countries have banned the use of a growth-promoting drug called ractopamine, which comes with a warning label that it is "not for use in humans" and is handled like hazardous waste, yet is allowed into the American food supply because of its use in the GMO industry by companies like Monsanto.

We all know that cigarettes can kill us, and even if this fact had not been hammered into our brains throughout grade school and in endless public service ads, all someone need do to discover the dangers of tobacco is pick up a pack, where giant warning labels warn consumers of their impending doom. GMOs should carry the same warning labels, as their ingredients can cause equally devastating effects on those who consume them, like infertility, neurological disorders, and cancer. However, in the US they do not. GMOs sit on our supermarket shelves right next to their GMO-free counterparts, leaving consumers to wonder what exactly we are putting into our bodies.

Multiple states have already tried to change this situation, with two recently passing legislation to require GMOs to be labeled on their store shelves. However, Monsanto was able to successfully bully the governments of both Vermont and Connecticut into abandoning the bills by threatening to sue the states into insolvency. Fearing prolonged litigation and the taxpayer funds that would be needed to pay for such a fight, Vermont and Connecticut both caved.

Now, the fight has switched coasts, where on November 6th California voters will have a chance to pass legislation to require labels on foods that contain GMOs. According to polls, more than 90 percent of voters favor such a bill, and activists easily collected over a million signatures to place the initiative on the ballot.

The Right To Know Genetically Engineered Food Act is the next opportunity we have to show Monsanto how we feel about what they do and that we care about our health and environment, because they have made it clear that they don't care at all. As Phil Angell, Monsanto's Director of Corporate Communications said way back in 1998, "Monsanto should not have to vouch for the safety of our biotech food. Our interest is in selling as much of it as possible. Assuring its safety is the FDA's job."

The most important thing that we consumers can do is spread the word about GMOs, what they can do to our bodies and their possible devastating impact on the environment. After that, we can join the movement to require labeling of GMO foods because, as Monsanto seems to know, our best ammunition against them is knowledge. And as many of us know already, our other best ammunition against GMO giants like Monsanto is to grow our own produce. So get into your garden/grow room/wherever you plant things and get growing!

© Copyright RosebudMag.com, 2012



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An excellent look at how Monsanto bullied the state of Connecticut.
Last modified on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 14:10

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