Re: GM angst

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Thu Jul 20 2000 - 08:28:52 MDT

Brian D Williams wrote:
> From:
> >Damien, as a hard-core conservationist (note, not
> >"environmentalist" -- a point of nomenclature I've written about
> >here before), I'm in full agreement that rational and
> >well-informed people should be concerned about the environmental
> >effects of our technology and that we need social mechanisms for
> >making producers internalize the cost of damage they do to the
> >environment. The problem I see now is that the process has become
> >politicized and "ideologized" to the point where the science is
> >taking a back seat to rhetoric and "activism". We're really
> >faced with a "meta" problem that underlies issues as diverse as
> >"GM Foods", "hormonesque" chemicals released into the environment,
> >electromagnetic field effects and human genetic engineering, to
> >name just a few. How do we get institutions and interest groups
> >to "calm down" and allow the science to be done in a fashion that
> >will produce acceptable answers without prejudging the many
> >techno-soccial questions we face?
> The problem is that the science the GM industry is doing involves
> me as the unwitting lab rat, a part I am loath to play.

Yet you, and no one else, for that matter, seems to object to being 'lab rats'
when new breeds of plants are developed by time honored processes of human
directed hybridization. The only difference between GM foods and those developed
by the hit or miss methods of the past is that GM is focused, informed, and

> They can start to promote the "calming down" bu halting their
> opposition to labeling.
> It's clear the industry is unwilling to face the facts.

As if the ignorant people who irrationally fear GM foods even once face the

> Knowledgable consumers like myself distinguish between "good" GM
> products and "bad" products. (using these terms as a statement of
> personnal preference.)
> I'll give a couple of examples.
> I think micronutrient rice is probably a good idea.
> I think RoundUp *.* is a bad idea, I want to know if a product
> contains it because there is zero chance of me using any product
> that contains it.
> The historical evidence is seen daily in newspaper headlines, even
> when companies know about bad things their products do, they either
> ignore it, or hide it.

Which is why there is the FDA process. Most of what I've ever heard that are the
'bad' things these products do is bogus unfounded hysteria based on fake science
by people with an agenda.

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