Wednesday, March 27, 2013
"Monsanto Protection Act" Sneaks Through Senate
"Monsanto Protection Act" Sneaks Through Senate
"When the Senate passed a budget resolution Wednesday that appears to prevent some of the potential damage from sequestration, the Continuing Resolution included several food- and agriculture-related earmarks.
But one inclusion in particular is especially controversial. The “biotech rider” would require the USDA to approve the harvest and sale of crops from genetically modified seed even if a court has ruled the environmental studies on the crop were inadequate. This aspect of the bill infuriated many sustainable food and agriculture groups, who nicknamed the bill the “Monsanto Protection Act.”
If signed into law by President Obama, here’s what the Monsanto Protection Act would do: It will allow farmers to plant, harvest and sell genetically engineered plants even if the crops have been ruled upon unfavorably in court. A Center for Food Safety statement called the rider “an unprecedented attack on U.S. judicial review of agency actions” and “ a major violation of the separation of powers.”
But perhaps more frightening, other critics say, is that the Monsanto Protection Act threatens the health and wellbeing of the public by undermining the federal courts’ ability to protect farmers and the environment from potentially hazardous genetically engineered (GE) crops.
The Monsanto Protection Act was slipped into the bill while it sat in the Senate Appropriations Committee, chaired by Maryland Democrat Barbara Mikulski. According to the Center for Food Safety, the committee held no hearings on this controversial biotech rider and many Democrats were unaware of its presence in the larger bill.
“In this hidden backroom deal, Senator Mikulski turned her back on consumer, environmental, and farmer protection in favor of corporate welfare for biotech companies such as Monsanto,” Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety, said in a statement. “This abuse of power is not the kind of leadership the public has come to expect from Senator Mikulski or the Democrat Majority in the Senate.”
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This proves that both parties are guilty of precipitating this downward spiral in our democratic process. Dysfunctional is not the word to be used to describe what is going on in Washington DC. The word is criminal. However, some partisans will now only focus on the "right" regarding influence and some others will focus on "free markets" in excusing this gross violation against freedom and the environment. This is the crux of all of the problems we now see in this country. Everything is made political and everything is based on ideology rather than morality, principle and sound science.
And this decision is a blatant slap in the face to the farmers of this country and the world who work their land sustainably; consumers who deserve the right to know what they are eating; the court system and most importantly the checks and balances our founders died to institute because they are what keep us from falling into Fascism. But we have done just that... we have fallen into Food Fascism.
Looking at how sneakily this was backdoored to circumvent the people and the courts reveals as well that they in this Senate and Congress know that a majority of Americans OVERWHELMINGLY oppose GMOs and with good reason. As one of those Americans who have been reporting on this stealth attack on our food system and biodiversity I am here to say, you have laid the gauntlet down now.
You are now all accomplices in the monoculture destruction of our biodiversity and the destruction of any shred of democracy that may have been left in this country. You support pesticide poisoning of children. You support death squads. You support poverty. You support famine. You and your benefactors at Monsanto and other biotech/chemical companies may think you have won, but showing the world that you have to sneak around because this "substantially equivalent" garbage which is anything but substantial or equivalent tells the real tale.
How many more farmer suicides will it take? How many more failed experiments? This fight has just begun.
Now, Obama has a chance to veto this by today and tell them to take out Section 735...
(Leaving space to report on the outcome of that.)
OK. Well, to no surprise Obama signed it late last night because in essence he doesn't care about your children (while his children of course eat from an organic garden) only about being part of the machine.
Obama Signs Monsanto Protection Act/Take Action
My message sent to President Obama:
This is blatantly undemocratic and a danger to the biodiversity of our planet. Citizens have the right to know what they are eating. Your children Mr President eat from an organic garden. Many in this country cannot afford that. Relegating them to pesticide ridden untested GMOs is a doorway to more diabetes and obesity. We need a leader who will put them before corporate welfare. And really, you can't say you care about healthcare if you sign bills like this. How very disappointing.
Please, go to this link and sign this and demand GMOS be labeled!