Recently Natural News put out an article titled “Court rules organic farmers can sue conventional, GMO farmers whose pesticides ‘trespass’ and contaminate their fields” The article puts forth the supposition that this is a good thing, and somehow a victory by organics over Monsanto:
<snip> The stunning victories of both the Johnson’s and Jacob’s Farm / Del Cobo against their chemical-polluting neighbors is huge, in that it represents a new set legal precedent for holding conventional, factory farming operations responsible for the damage their systems cause to other farms. And with this new precedent set, many more organic farmers, for instance, can now begin suing GMO farmers for both chemical and genetic pollution that drifts onto their farms. <end snip>
A stunning victory? I don’t think so. In fact, I believe that this is a set-up, and not a precedent at all, but a planned maneuver by a wily and unscrupulous government agency and Monsanto. The fact that GMOs are acknowledged as a contaminant is good. However, let’s take a closer look at just what is really going on behind the scenes, and why I believe this is a divide and conquer strategy put in play to further erode our agricultural base, and drive family farms out of business.
At first glance, farmers being able to sue other farmers for GMO contamination seems to be a good thing. Farmer contaminates farmer’s field, farmer sues for loss of crops. Everyone is happy, right? Wrong. The fact is that in this particular case, organic farmers only won this victory because the farm that did the contaminating was habitually violating already existing pesticide laws. This does not address the real issue, which is why invasive crops are allowed to grow right next to conventional crops to begin with. There are two victims here, besides the people who are being fed GMOs without their knowledge or consent. Both farmers are victims in this scenario.
Farmers who buy GMOs are victims of corporate greed, trickery, and Monsanto’s covert agenda as well as the organic farmers who are trying to keep from getting contaminated. Yes, the GMO farmers should not buy the junk in the first place. But let me ask you something: When you go to the grocery store, do you look at the label of each and every thing you buy? Do you know what the ingredients are in all of the foods you eat? Can you even pronounce half of them? And once you get the food home, even if it contains something that you’ve never even heard of, do you still eat it, or do you throw it away? If you answer no to these questions, can you really fault farmers for doing the exact same thing that you yourself are guilty of?
Let’s get real. Most farmers have been hoodwinked into getting Monsanto seed, and once caught in the trap, are held there or face the very real probability of losing their farms and livelihoods. Conventional seeds are becoming harder and harder to get thanks to Monsanto’s penchant for buying up every large seed company it can get its dirty little mitts on. This company is literally able to create an artificial seed shortage so that the only seeds farmers can get at times are GMOs. And once you go GMO, good luck getting rid of Monsanto.
Enter Monsanto’s Technology Use Agreement, which specifically leaves the farmers who buy the company’s genetically engineered seed with all of the liability should neighbors who have been contaminated decide to sue. And did I forget to mention that most buffer zones for GMOs have been eliminated? As well as most regulations. Isn’t that special. That means a farmer who buys certain GMO seeds can plant all the way to the edge of his property, with Monsanto’s and the USDA’s blessing, contaminate his organic neighbor’s crops, get sued by the poor guy who has now lost his organic certification if anyone actually takes the time to test for GMO contamination and tells the USDA’s National Organics Program (NOP) about it, and both lose because of the loss of crops, time, lawsuit expenses, and judgements.
The ONLY entity that wins is MONSANTO! This pariah of a company just sits back and watches the infighting while tightening the noose around the world’s neck by spreading its filthy GMOs around the planet unabated and aided by the USDA. They’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain, while farmers waste time, go into debt suing each other, and face the real probability of losing their farms and livelihoods. Game over, farmers lose, Monsanto wins. And that’s how you play Monsantopoly.
And if you think you can depend on the Center for Food Safety to come to the rescue, think again. Contamination and USDA deregulation continue at breakneck speed, and the most damning evidence against contamination has not even been entered into the court records. Why? Could it possibly be because this organization is heavily funded by the opposition?
I’ve got an idea! Why not sue the people who made the decision to allow Monsanto to wreak havoc on our food, destroy our health, monopolize the seed industry, and poison the planet along with every living thing on it, personally? Do we really want to fight each other? That is what they would have us do. Anything to distract from the real issue. And that is:
The bastards that decided to allow Monsanto to poison us with no real oversight or regulation need to be held accountable on an individual basis.
You see, the real issue is why are Monsanto and all those responsible for aiding and abetting Monsanto able to walk away from all lawsuits for contamination of crops that they and the USDA say can be planted with little or no boundaries or restrictions whatsoever, while the farmers who swallow the lie bear the brunt of all lawsuits for inevitable contamination?
This is not a victory over Monsanto! This is a victory by Monsanto and the primary agency that supports it, the USDA.
So, tell me again: Just how does pitting farmer against farmer, leaving Monsanto scott free even remotely look like a victory by organics over Monsanto? I really want to know.
© 2011 Barbara H. Peterson