January 23, 2012
Do you know what’s really in your food? Maybe you think you do. But you don’t know what the major food companies are trying to hide from you. Many companies such as Tyson want to prevent you from knowing that most of their product is genetically engineered. Genetic engineering is wrong and should be stopped. Genetic engineering can have many negative effects. It can cause allergies (Smith). It can even cause food to be toxic or carcinogenic (Cummins). Genetically engineered food can harm the environment (Torr) and is also cruel to animals (Rifkin). Genetically modified foods may cause allergic responses (Smith). Jeffrey Smith, author of two books about the risks of genetically modified foods, states that one genetically modified GM food, soy, is linked to the soaring number of allergic reactions to products containing GM soy. The lack of mandatory labeling for GM foods in the United States leaves millions of Americans unaware of the risks within their diet. Without labeling, the only foods safe from GM contamination are organic foods, which are not permitted to contain GM components, or foods specifically labeled non-GM. Genetically engineered food is dangerous (Cummins). Ronnie Cummins, national director of the BioDemocracy Campaign, a grassroots organization that promotes organic food and opposes genetic engineering in agriculture, states that genetic engineering of crops can result in foods that are toxic and carcinogenic. She warns that widespread planting of genetically engineered crops could cause unexpected harm to the environment; as crops are engineered to be resistant to weeds, insects, and viruses, evolution will drive these pests to become stronger and more dangerous. This will only evolve into larger problems later. Genetic engineering is cruel to animals (Rifkin). Jeremy Rifkin, president of the Foundation on Economic Trends in Washington, D.C., and a frequent critic of biotechnology, states that 9 billion animals raised each year by America's meat and dairy industries might be the most forgotten creatures in the nation. Intensively confined, physically deformed, and genetically manipulated, the majority of farm animals feed a nation that is too uncomfortable with their plight to focus on it. In 2000 and beyond, assembly-line treatment promises to worsen, the number of animals promises to grow, and the animal-protection community will face a heightened struggle to reform the way animals are reared and raised for human consumption. Genetically Engineered Crops Are a Danger to the Environment (Torr). James Torr, states that genetically engineered crops pose a range of serious environmental impacts, including damage to the soil, to insects, and to biodiversity. And although the impacts of a disastrous oil spill, for example, are without question severe, genetically engineered crops pose even more profound problems. As living organisms, once released into the environment they may never be recalled. So if a problem is discovered after crops have been introduced, correcting the mistake may prove to be impossible. Genetic engineering threatens biodiversity (Kingsolver). Barbara Kingsolver, a well-known author who has worked as a biological researcher, an environmental activist, and a science writer, states that Genetic diversity is nature's way of assuring that species will endure over time, weathering all types of environmental changes. This diversity has been compromised in modern agriculture because a few large corporations control agriculture and sell relatively few varieties of seeds, resulting in crops that are genetically uniform. With the introduction of new genetically engineered crops, the old seeds of the land races die out, cancelling nature's insurance policy. No crops could be engineered that would have the resilience of the old seeds, for genetically engineered genes do not have the inherent survival capability of genes that have evolved over three billion years. Genetic engineering is wrong and should be controlled. Why do this to our society? The animals suffer and so does the environment. People can get sick or die from the Ecoli. The genetic engineering causes allergic reactions (Smith) and is dangerous (Cummins). Genetic Engineering is cruel to animals (Rifkin) and harms the environment (Rifkin). Genetic engineering also threatens biodiversity (Kingsolver). It’s your choice on whether to support genetic engineering or not but next time you eat from a fast food restraint think of these facts. Source Citations:
•"Genetically Modified Foods May Cause Allergic Responses" by Jeffrey M. Smith. Food Safety. Judeen Bartos, Ed. At Issue Series. Greenhaven Press, 2011. Jeffrey M. Smith, "Genetically Engineered Foods May Cause Rising Food Allergies," Institute for Responsible Technology, May 2007. Copyright © 2007 by Virago. Reproduced by permission by Time Warner Books UK • "Genetically Engineered Food Is Dangerous" by Ronnie Cummins. Genetic Engineering. James D. Torr, Ed. Opposing Viewpoints® Series. Greenhaven Press, 2001. Reprinted from Ronnie Cummins, "Hazards of Genetically Engineered Food and Crops: Why We Need a Global Moratorium," from the BioDemocracy website. Reprinted with permission from Organic Consumers Association and BioDemocracy Campaign • "Genetic Engineering Is Cruel to Animals" by Jeremy Rifkin. Genetic Engineering. Lisa Yount, Ed. Current Controversies Series. Greenhaven Press, 2002. From "Future Pharming," by Jeremy Rifkin, Animals, May/June 1998. Copyright © 1998 by Animals. Reprinted with permission. • "Genetically Engineered Crops Are a Danger to the Environment" by Genetically Engineered Food Alert. Genetic Engineering. James D. Torr, Ed. Current Controversies Series. Greenhaven Press, 2006. Genetically Engineered Food Alert, "Environmental Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods," www.gefoodalert.org. Reproduced by permission of the National Association of State Public Interest Research Group (PIRG). • "Genetic Engineering Threatens Biodiversity" by Barbara Kingsolver. Genetically Engineered Foods. Nancy Harris, Ed. At Issue Series. Greenhaven Press, 2003. Barbara Kingsolver, Small Wonder. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2002. Copyright © 2002 by Barbara Kingsolver. Reproduced by permission.