Bill disregards public health, safety

Washburn Review Washburn Review

As of last week, we are all guinea pigs for Monsanto and all of the other agribusiness corporations that produce genetically engineered products. 

This may come as a shocking proposition especially under the leadership of the most ‘socialist’ president this country has ever seen. Last week Congress passed a continuing resolution, a kind of stopgap piece of legislation to allow the government to continue functioning. Within that resolution snuggled neatly between section 734 and 736 was a corporately manufactured masterpiece that provided for Monsanto and its big business buddies protection from being sued if their genetically modified products prove in the future to be hazardous to human consumption. 

When businesses make a bad bet, they go out of business. When they make a good bet they cash in big. When they hurt innocent people by defrauding them, that’s when the courts drag them into the back room and doles out punishment. Last week Congress and the president told the courts that Monsanto could essentially produce its product without fear of lawsuit. 

If I were to sell some unsuspecting schmuck a taco laced with a substance that may or may not be deadly, I just didn’t take the time to find out, and stet schmuck dies, I get tossed in jail, probably put on trial for manslaughter and sued by the victim’s family for wrongful death. As of last week, Monsanto can do the same thing and instead of the government stepping in to stop them from harming the consumer, Monsanto gets to continue making its product with the blessing of our government. 

While there is no evidence that genetically engineered foods pose a danger to humans, the truth of the matter is we don’t understand the dangers products pose to us. We don’t know if these modified foods cause cancer, mental defects, physical defects or mental illness. This bill allows Monsanto to flood our markets with genetically modified foods and nobody knows what effects these foods will have on consumers in years to come.  

I am not advocating for genetically modified foods to be banned. The simple fact of the matter is that, as it stands, there is not enough evidence to understand the possible dangers of genetically modified foods. I do know that if a genetically modified food causes me to be more likely to have some rare form of cancer or make me more likely to develop some chronic illness I am more than happy to take time to investigate the dangers of these products. 

Until we understand what these genetically modified foods can do to a human body, I’m going to be suspicious of any fruits and vegetables that come with a trademark.