I’ll get right to it. I’ve grown weary of the antics of March Against Monsanto. Along with two of my friends, I’ve started a movement to oppose the misinformation this organization propagates. Known as MAMAM, our acronym stands for both “March Against March Against Monsanto,” and “March Against Myths About Modification.”
March Against Monsanto’s Wikipedia page describes it as follows:
“The March Against Monsanto is an international grassroots movement as well as a protest against the Monsanto corporation and genetically modified organisms (GMOs).”
From the March Against Monsanto website:
“Research studies have shown that Monsanto’s genetically-modified foods can lead to serious health conditions such as the development of cancer tumors, infertility and birth defects. In the United States, the FDA, the agency tasked with ensuring food safety for the population, is steered by ex-Monsanto executives, and we feel that’s a questionable conflict of interests and explains the lack of government-lead research on the long-term effects of GMO products. Recently, the U.S. Congress and president collectively passed the nicknamed “Monsanto Protection Act” that, among other things, bans courts from halting the sale of Monsanto’s genetically-modified seeds.”
For the past two years, the March Against Monsanto has held annual events worldwide. Estimates have put international participation from hundreds of thousands to two million protesters. While many participants march with good intentions, and aspirations of improving our food system, organizers and NGOs backing this movement have spread fallacies about biotechnology and agriculture.
As I’ve stated time and again, the weight of scientific consensus shows that GMOs do not cause deleterious health effects. Further, MAM’s claim that there is a lack of governmental research on the long-term effects of GMOs products is blatantly wrong. I challenge MAM and anyone claiming otherwise to query the GENetic Engineering Risk Atlas (GENERA) website, “a searchable database of of peer-reviewed scientific studies on the relative risks of genetically engineered crops.” There have been hundreds of government-funded studies worldwide on the effects of GMOs on health, the environment, specific GM traits, and more.
MAM: Disingenuous, delusional, and offensive:
Not only are March Against Monsanto’s messages often inaccurate, but also disjointed, and even offensive. In addition to opposing Monsanto Corporation, they seem to oppose GMOs, and biotechnology in general. In recent times, MAM has jumped on the anti-vax, naturopathic cancer cures/”they” are withholding cures for cancers, and even chemtrail conspiracy bandwagons. MAM has compared its movement to the Civil Rights Movement, co-opting images and quotes from American heroes like Martin Luther King, Jr., and Rosa Parks. MAM, if you truly believe that your civil rights are being infringed upon and that you’re justified in comparing yourselves to the Civil Rights Movement, you’re delusional.
We at MAMAM believe in the public’s intelligence:
We stated the following in our movement’s official announcement, which you can read here:
“Fringe activists like the leaders of March Against Monsanto spread unscientific propaganda, promote distrust of scientific consensus, use junk rhetoric, and leverage fear. Conversely, we hope to leverage the public’s thirst for reason and knowledge to showcase the potential of GMOs to alleviate hunger and promote sustainability. While fringe anti-GMO activists play on consumer ignorance using scary, fallacious imagery like syringes in tomatoes, we’re convinced the majority of the public is intelligent, albeit misinformed, and eager for an objective view of food, farming and biotechnology.”
We aspire to remain as positive as possible, and assume intelligence and non-conspiratorial thinking in the majority of the public. The myths and misconceptions running amok on the internet will be detrimental to scientific progress, and to the development and improvement of technologies and products with the potential to alleviate hunger, malnutrition, and harm to the environment.
March Against Monsanto presents its followers with an illogical set of choices. We present our own set of choices:
My regular readers are aware that sometimes I speak in frustration and angst about these issues. Nevertheless, the primary reason I am so outspoken in my support for GMOs and biotechnology is love. If I assume that all people love their families as much as I love mine, then I must advocate for the best bet for everyone worldwide. I am aware that this might sound absurdly lofty, but I can’t enjoy my privileged existence and be silent while beneficial technologies are thrown under the bus.
Please stay tuned to see how the MAMAM movement develops. In the meantime, you can follow along or help us promote by:
1. Reading and sharing our official announcement here
2. Following or tweeting along with hashtag #MAMAM on Twitter
3. Joining our movement here