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The Fuel for GMO: Monsanto
Monsanto the Monster
Jerry Rosman was an Iowa swine farmer until he started growing GMO corn. Without second thought, he fed the cheap grain to his pigs. Before long, they were all infertile and Jerry was bankrupt. GMO corn is the most subsidized crop in Iowa; farmers are actually promoted to grow it through government subsidies. At the end of each season there are mountains of corn stacked tall. But not the delicious, succulent corn we know and love; this corn is not even edible in its original- on the cobb- state. It has no flavor before it goes through a rather scientific process that transforms the corn chips into a cheap substitute for sugar, popularly known as “corn syrup.” The corn that does not infiltrate our direct food system is being fed to our livestock.
Cows are meant to eat grass; their insides are crafted in such a way that grass is necessary for proper development, digestion, and health. Eating an all corn diet literally tears a cow’s stomach apart by creating an extremely acidic environment known to tear painful holes in the cow’s gut. Cows that are corn fed are 80% more likely to carry diseases such as E coli and while more risky to eat, they don’t provide nearly the same nutritional content of grass-fed beef. We are coming to find corn-fed beef is worse for us than no beef at all. The consequences of this will be seen in years to come; we are the lab rats for GMO. Which by the way has not been coined “safe” for human consumption, yet all of us probably consumed some today- willingly or not.
Despite all these setbacks, GMO corn remains popular as a cheap way to quickly fatten up cows. A cow can be ready for slaughter in fifteen short months on a corn diet, yet if they were not slaughtered so young they would quickly die on their own- their insides a wreck from their inadequate diet. This corn doesn’t just make cows fat, since “corn syrup” and other GMO products have infiltrated food supplies, the obesity rate has steadily inclined.
The Face Behind GMO: MONSANTO
Born in 1901 as a pharmaceutical company, Monsanto has had a long and legally challenging past. For many years they were a leader in chemical production, eventually producing the Roundup products many consider a staple in pest control. Farmers were unable to use these harsh pesticides on crops because of the detrimental effects they have on natural plants. Therefore, Monsanto created a loophole, a way for farmers to use their pesticides in mass quantities; they genetically engineered a seed that does not die from pesticides, in fact Monsanto forces farmers to layer these crops in the dangerous mist.
Under heat but still conducting business, with a record like Monsanto any average Joe would be locked away by now. Here’s an overview of only a small percent of the damage and destruction Monsanto has spun in the last several decades...
- 1965-1972, Monsanto hired contractors to dump their highly toxic waste into UK landfills. The company was fully aware that these chemicals would harm the surrounding people and environment.
- On board with herbicidal warfare, Monsanto helped create the chemical known as Agent Orange which caused extreme deformities.
- In Iowa, there has been an 80% decline in Monarch butterflies since the widespread use of GMO crops began in 99. "When we put something out there,” John Pleasants, a monarch researcher from Iowa stated, “we don't know always what the consequences are."
- Farmer, Rodney Nelson found himself in the same situation as 145 other individual farmers sued by Monsanto for patent infringement. These are poor farmers being sued by a very powerful company, all because some seeds were accused of being replanted; where is the justice in that?
- In Argentina, reports have now surfaced that Monsanto forced farmers to use a pesticide on their tobacco farms that caused “devastating birth defects.” The farmers were forced to give up native tobacco growing practices for Monsanto’s alternative. This alternate forced Argentinian farmers to use mass amounts of the company’s pesticide, Roundup. Because of its high concentration in glyphosate, the spike in nearby sick children is calling Monsanto responsible.
- They have been identified by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency as being “potentially responsible party” for 56 contaminated sites in the US.
- Milk with rBST, that’s them too! They love it actually and don’t want it to be reported on the labels because it dramatically reduces their profit. People don’t want milk with those chemicals but Monsanto does not care, they are livid about the labels; claiming their rights to cut cost and increase revenue is being infringed upon. In protest they started their own movement, one that claims rBST is not bad for us. Ironically, the only people backing this directly profit from Monsanto.
- In 2005, charged with Foreign Corrupt Practices after caught bribing multiple high level Indonesian officials with sums of $50,000 in cocky hopes they would bend the rules on their environmental assessment.
For Monsanto’s financial gains, no cost seems too high. The company has a hideously humiliating track record. Despite having caused illness, poverty, and destruction to our people, animals, and environment, Forbs listed them as the 2010 company of the year. Based off of what, who can screw the planet up fastest? Money speaks so loud we often don’t hear the cries of our planet, people, and even loved ones. Even more sickening? All of us tax payers have collectively contributed $77 billion dollars to the GMO industry- and yet the kids in this nation are denied smaller class sizes.
Who’s making these decisions?