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Monsanto: Innovator or stone cold killer?

todayMarch 2, 2015 8 1

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By Katelyn Hawkes
Blog Content Contributor

*KTSW consists of and respects varying opinions within its staff. Opinion articles do not reflect the opinion of KTSW as a whole.

There has been a lot of controversy in the media about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and the questionable reputation of the Monsanto Company. But what does it mean for our crops today? How do we, the people, benefit from GMOs? What does the Monsanto Company have to do with it all?

Photo credit: Waking Times
Photo credit: Waking Times

GMOs are modified crops through genetic engineering, which create combinations of plant, animal, and viral bacteria that do not naturally occur. Monsanto claims that modifying crops in a lab give the plants the ability to tolerate outside pressures, enhanced nutrition as well as consumer and farm benefits. Monsanto also claims that these genetically modified crops produce it’s own insecticide.

Insecticide? There is no way that a modified crop that produces a chemical to kill off bugs is safe for human consumption. According to the Monsanto website, genetically modified crops have “no credible evidence of harm to humans or animals.” It only makes sense that the company who is modifying our crops would say that the evidence isn’t ‘credible.’ It turns out that 60 countries, including Japan, Germany, Greece, Russia, France, and Australia have bans on the production of GMOs. According to farmers, these crops with herbicide tolerance have resulted in ‘super’ weeds and bugs, which can only be eliminated with higher-toxicity poisons, like RoundUp, another Monsanto product. Go figure.

Monsanto started out in 1901 with their first product, saccharin, which has been linked to liver cancer. In 1965, they created Agent Orange for use in the Vietnam War. Millions of people, in Vietnam as well as America, are still dealing with health problems and genetic diseases from exposure to Agent Orange. However, on their website, Monsanto claims that, “a causal connection linking Agent Orange to chronic disease in humans has not been established.” However, the US Department of Veterans’ Affairs claims that 14 diseases and cancers have been linked to the exposure of Agent Orange.

In 1994, Monsanto get’s it’s first biotech-hormone approved, called Posilac, otherwise known as the hormone rBGH. Posilac forces cows to produce more milk. This unnatural increase causes an udder infection, which generates pus that leaves residue in the milk. This hormone also causes an increase in a linked hormone called Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1, or IGF-1, which acts as a cancer accelerator, linking to breast, prostate, and colon cancer.

Should we trust a company that genetically modifies organisms to produce unnatural levels of hormones and chemicals that harm us? Not only do these chemicals harm us, but Monsanto’s pesticide killer, RoundUp is also harming the tiny creatures that inhabit the earth. The Monarch butterfly is becoming an extinct species due to the lack of the milkweed plant, the butterfly’s main food source. When honeybees come into contact with glyphosate, an active ingredient in RoundUp, they lose the ability to eat, identify, and track food. This means less pollination. The exposed bees also bring back the chemical to the hive, contaminating the rest of the colony and its honey.

Photo Credit: Modern Farmer
Photo Credit: Modern Farmer

I don’t know about you, but it seems this company does not have our agriculture in its best interest. There is so much research and data that proves that Monsanto products are bad for the human race and this earth, so why are we still eating it?

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