posted on Aug, 7 2013 @ 06:30 AM
Regardless of whether there are potential health risks or not attached to use of products which may contain GMOs, the issue is a political hot potato,
with heated arguments from proponents for and against. If corporations like Mosanto and Nabisco (owned by Phillip Morris) refuse to label foods which
have been altered, they are treating consumers with contempt, stating they know what's best, and the consumer's voice is not worth listening to.
From the perspective of someone who is unsure of whether GMOs have the potential for adverse health effects or not, I feel that without doing a fair
bit of research I'm unlikely to become any wiser if I just listen to the arguments (and obfuscation) of both sides. There seems to be a lot of noise
in the signal, and for someone unclear on the science, there is plenty of opportunity to play upon that lack of understanding.
Looking back at how certain substances were portrayed in the 20th century, does not give me great confidence in the honesty of corporations and
government. Thalidomide was advertised as a 'wonder drug' with a seeming lack of awareness of the potential horrors that would eventuate. By 1924,
Asbestosis was recognised as a disease caused by exposure to asbestos, yet mining was unabated (and asbestos mining corporations to this day go to
court, fighting against paying compensation to those suffering from asbestosis and mesothelioma). For how long tobacco companies were aware of the
detrimental effects of cigarettes, yet actively covered this fact up, is a disgusting indictment of corporate responsibility.
Are we completely aware of the long term effects of mobile phones and exposure to the types of radiation these devices emit? There are conflicting
reports, and looking at which body funds which study can be damning. As for GMOs, I do not know what potential health risks there are, but can it be
stated with confidence that there are none?. In light of all the other things we were told were safe (nuclear power plants, particularly ones located
on major fault lines prone to potential earthquakes and tsunamis seems an exercise in complete stupidity), does it not seem wise to allow those who
wish to be aware of what is in their food the opportunity to do so?
I am vegetarian and have been so my entire life. I seldom had the common ailments my peers suffered regularly. As an adult I am in good health with no
excess weight, cholesterol, salt, as well as being quite fit. I consider this to be due to certain lifestyle choices including being aware of what I
put into my body. I buy and use free range eggs for a number of reasons, and even if there's no health benefits, do I not have the right as a
consumer to choose the eggs (and the conditions under which the chickens live) I wish, if the market permits those choices? I grow a small amount of
fruit and vegetables in my city garden and I believe there are health benefits to doing so (including the not inconsequential act of gardening
itself). I do not preach or moralise about my own choices, nor publicly chastise those who choose to live in a fashion I may find contrary to my own
I do believe that we all should have the ability to know what goes into our food, and I believe that multinational corporations should adhere to a
labelling regime regardless of the expense. If they have the ability and financial wherewithal to alter the genetic makeup of our foods, the onus
should fall on them to keep the consumer informed. Perhaps science says that GMOs are perfectly safe (and perhaps not); this does not mean that valid
reasons for consumer awareness do not exist.
The problem I have with those who suggest the current scientific methodologies are adequate is that perhaps they're adequate in light of what we know
now, but who knows what combination of circumstances have not been accounted for. For example, perhaps GMOs are perfectly safe, unless the person
consuming them wears a certain type of nail polish, lives underneath a mobile phone tower and cooks using a microwave while smoking.
For those who have listened to what has been called safe in the past, especially from corporations and/or the government, does not a degree of caution
make sense? Is the technology still in its infant stages, or can we confidently state there are no health risks (like some of the examples of 'safe'
products discussed earlier)? Perhaps labelling is the 'least' that can be done, to at least allow those concerned the option to attempt to avoid
these foodstuffs where possible.