Outrageous Lies Monsanto and Friends Are Trying to Pass off to Kids as Science
Continued from previous page
What we should be teaching kids in science class is what scientists have been warning for years -- that any attempt to increase resistance to pests through genetic engineering will ultimately fail. Insects -- and diseases -- will build up a tolerance over time, and evolve into stronger and stronger strains. That's how nature works -- and even Monsanto can't fool Mother Nature. Organic agriculture, on the other hand, utilizing crop rotation, biodiversity, natural fertilizers, and beneficial insects, reduces crop loss from pests and weeds, without the collateral damage of toxic pesticides and fertilizers.
Recently, 22 leading scientists told the US Environmental Protection Agency that it should act with "a sense of urgency" to urge farmers to stop planting Monsanto's genetically engineered Bt corn because it will no longer protect them from the corn rootworm. Bt corn is genetically engineered with bacterial DNA that produces an insecticide in every cell of the plant, aimed at preventing corn rootworm. Except that corn rootworms have now developed resistance to these GE mutants.
Just as scientists had predicted years ago, a new generation of insect larvae has evolved, and is eating away at the roots of Monsanto's Bt corn -- a crop farmers paid a high price for on Monsanto's promise that they would never have to worry about corn rootworm again. Scientists are now warning of massive yield loss and surging corn costs if the EPA doesn't act quickly to drastically reduce Bt crops' acreage and ensure that Monsanto makes non-GMO varieties of corn available to farmers.
"Massive yield loss" doesn't sound like "more food" -- whether you're 12 years old or 112.
What we should be telling kids is what responsible scientists and farmers -- experts at the United Nations -- have been saying all along: Eco-farming can double food output. According to a UN study:
- Eco-farming projects in 57 nations showed average crop yield gains of 80 percent by tapping natural methods for enhancing soil and protecting against pests.
- Projects in 20 African countries resulted in a doubling of crop yields within three to 10 years.
- Sound ecological farming can significantly boost production and in the long term be more effective than conventional farming.
Lie #2: "Biotechnology can help farmers and the environment in many ways." ( page 8)
Two lies for the price of one.
Biotechnology -- specifically genetic engineering -- helps neither farmers nor the environment, according to the majority of legitimate scientists and economists. In fact, the opposite is true. Genetic engineering of seeds has wreaked havoc on the environment and brought misery to hundreds of thousands of small farmers all over the world.
The majority of farmers in developing countries struggle to afford even the most basic requirements of seeds and fertilizers. Their survival depends on the age-old practice of selecting, saving and sharing seeds from one year to the next. When multinational corporations move into areas previously dominated by small farmers, they force those farmers to buy their patented seeds and fertilizers -- under pretense of higher yields, and under threats of lawsuits if they save or share the seeds. Every year, they're forced to buy more seeds and more chemicals from corporations -- and when the promises of higher yields and higher incomes prove empty, farmers go bankrupt.
Compounding their corporate crimes, when Monsanto's patented seeds contaminate the non-GMO crops of small farmers (because the seeds drift across property lines) Monsanto routinely sues farmers for growing their patented seeds illegally, even though the seeds were actually unwanted trespassers. Further, the company has ruined the livelihoods of small farmers by harassing them for illegally growing patented seeds, even in cases where no patented seeds have been grown, either knowingly or by accident.