by MATT GORDON Editor-in-chief
The Monsanto Protection Act was signed into action by President Obama as part of the Congressional spending bill H.R. 933 in early April. The Act states that large food growers, like the company Monsanto, would not have to scrap or destroy their crops, even if the seeds turn out to be dangerous.
Environmentalists are up in arms since the passing of the bill, and have been protesting in front of the White House ever since. The act was cleverly slipped in with the spending bill to avoid a government shutdown and most likely went unnoticed by many people in the government.
Though the rider was slipped in unnoticed, Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., told Politico he “worked with” Monsanto on the provision.
“[T]his all can be boiled down into a single, common phrase: a special interest loophole, and a doozy at that,” writes Dustin Siggins, who blogs for Tea Party Patriots. “This is a situation in which a company is given the ability to ignore court orders, in what boils down to a deregulation scheme for a particular set of industries.”
All of this outrage stems from the production of genetically modified organisms or GMOs. But what exactly are GMOs? The textbook definition of a GMO is an organism whose genetic makeup has been altered using genetic engineering methods. In this case, the GMOs are fruits, vegetables, nuts, and other produce that has been altered to repel bugs and weeds, maintain a longer shelf life, and even ripen exactly when the grower wants them to.
For years, large growers like Monsanto have grown genetically modified organisms that combat weeds and insects on their own, without the use of powerful herbicides and pesticides. Unfortunately, the growth of these foods has come back to bite them. Weeds and insects have evolved into plant-eating monsters and have combated the ever-growing GMO market.
These “superweeds” and “superbugs” threaten the existence of non-genetically-modified foods and organic foods. This is the reason why environmentalists and even common consumers are worried about the growth of this industry and the stance that the government has taken in response to this growth.
Junior Anchalee Pagsanjan says, “Genetically modified organisms should not be legal because they threaten the growth of regular foods and are not as good for us as regular fruits and vegetables. Also, these superbugs threaten our ecosystem today and can cause a lot of damage in the end. The president should not have passed this act and large companies like Monsanto should not be allowed to produce whatever they want without any regulation or punishment.”
The unregulated growing of genetically modified foods is outrageous and large companies should not be allowed to grow whatever they want just because they have a large influence in the government. GMOs have only worsened the problem of superweeds and superbugs, and have halted the production of fresh produce and organic goods.
The fact that the President passed an act into law without even knowing it shows us how the government can sneak laws into action and please the large companies that work with them. In the past, GMOs were regulated and courts were allowed to stop businesses from growing them, but now large companies can grow them without penalty. Hopefully, the government will realize its mistake and repeal the Monsanto Protection Act.