May 23rd is fast approaching, bringing with it an international day of misinformation with the annual March Against Monsanto. The MAM movement began in 2013 as a grassroots response to the failure of California proposition 37, a ballot initiative that would have required labeling of foods made with genetically engineered ingredients. MAM has since evolved into a full-blown promoter of conspiracy theories ranging from chemtrails to anti-vax, to “big pharma is withholding cancer treatments” varieties. Backed by the organic industry, and with visions of syringe-laden tomatoes and cackling corporate bigwigs dancing menacingly in their heads, hundreds of thousands of concerned protesters gather around the world to march.
Issues surrounding food incite passion. Food traverses all of our lives, across culture, science, politics, land use, nutrition, genetics, health and history. But because food is so important to prosperity, the claims made about it must be carefully scrutinized. March Against Monsanto doesn’t carefully scrutinize claims. The organization’s mission statement is a collection of false claims and conspiratorial leanings, and the group actively encourages extremist dialogue. Instead of saving people from poison, it is poisoning the debate about our food. We’ve allowed MAM to spout out such misinformation for long enough. Unchecked, this denialism threatens the advancement of technologies with the potential to provide real solutions to help feed an ever-growing population while preserving our resources.
Issues surrounding food can be divisive, but can also bring people together. What do a scientist and genetic engineer, a vegan animal-rights activist, and a science-popularizer mom have in common? Among other things, we all oppose the misinformation MAM promotes. This is why Karl Haro von Mogel, David Sutherland and I joined forces to start #MAMyths: March Against Myths About Modification.
Here is how you can join our first annual event:
Who: Everyone who wants to help promote evidence-based information about food, genetics, biotechnology, and science.
What: March Against Myths About Modification!
When: Saturday May 23rd, 2015
- Online on social media using hashtag #MAMyths in conjunction with #MAM and #MarchAgainstMonsanto. Here are our Facebook and Twitter.
- Chicago, Illinois, USA (The three co-founders will attend in Chicago. There will be beer after the event.)
- Portland, Oregon, USA
- Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
- Humboldt County, California, USA
- Olympia, Washington, USA
- Seattle, Washington, USA
- Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada
- Brisbane, Australia
- Washington DC, USA
- Inland Empire, Rancho Cucamonga, California, USA
- Organize your own chapter by filling out this form
How you can help:
- If you know any media contacts or reporters, please inform them about #MAMyths
- Share this post
- Join one of the local events on the list above, make your voice heard on social media on May 23rd and every day
- Tweet and post on Facebook with hashtag #MAMyths about why March Against Monsanto promotes misinformation
- Talk to your family and friends about the benefits of biotechnology
- Like our Facebook page
- If you’re a scientist, farmer, or an expert in this area and you want to help our cause, please email Sara at [email protected]
Remember, we will certainly be the underdogs at our first annual local marches, but we’re excited and we’re not intimidated. Please feel free to contact us with any additional questions. See MAMyths.org for details