The very first article I read about HR933 explained the legal language and explained how “The Right” is getting a good laugh out of the “The Liberal” reaction. I can’t find that article now because it is buried in what I think is an over-reaction. Before you take a side on this one, do some research.
Fueled by sites like “Infowars” and “NaturalNews”, fear mongering is rampant over the Farmer Assurance Protection Act. It has been labeled the “Monsanto Protection Act” and claims are everywhere of how it “slipped through”. I’m 5 pages into Google and can’t find one article that is not inflammatory. It seems to be the worst kept secret in Washington. Even sports fans in Arizona have noticed it.
If you want to give in to the fear, here are 5 TERRIFYINGfacts. Fact 1 is just unsubstantiated claims and the rest are how government currently works. We should be changing how government works, but screaming about this bill is not going to accomplish that.
If you haven’t seen the Act, here’s a simple summary, “What it says is if you plant a crop that is legal to plant when you plant it, you get to harvest it,” Blunt told Politico. “But it is only a one-year protection in that bill.”
My biggest problem with this is those who are against it are assuming that farmers are stupid. They assume, and sometimes say it outright, that farmers are slaves to Monsanto. Not so. Farmers are running a business. They can choose their suppliers. If they suspect a product is going to be difficult to market, they aren’t going to plant it. This provision says that one judge can’t stop a farmer from cultivating the food that they planted. It says the FARMER can REQUEST that they bring their crop to market and the Secretary of Agriculture has the final say, not a federal court judge. It says the Secretary will REVIEW and ANALYZE the case.
To believe that this is terrifying is to believe that our government would authorize the harvesting of poison after they have seen sufficient evidence of the poisoning. Not one of the articles I read stated any specific poison or gave any links to data explaining exactly what is so frightening about GMOs. One article alluded to “unintentional” proteins. I’m not defending GMOs, corporations or factory farmers, I’m only asking for reasons to be so alarmed.
The Corvalis Advocate notes that all farming, since the beginning of the Agricultural revolution in the Fertile Crescent, has been altering the environment. Monsanto seeds aren’t flying everywhere and changing everything. I know of only one case of a farmer being sued by Monsanto, and that farmer deliberately plowed around a small patch of Monsanto seed in his fields to encourage that seed to spread. In other words, he wanted it to crossbreed with his existing corn and improve his yields.
If liberal, caring, organic loving people give in to this kind of discussion, we only contribute to the lowering of the standards for reasonable discourse. Liberalism accepts that no single person is always right. It puts the value of listening above the values of giving witty retorts and crushing your opponent with rhetoric. It looks for evidence, not conspiracy.
Much has been said since this last election about how the Republicans have come unmoored from their traditions, and that is no doubt true, but it seems to me that liberals have also lost their foundations and are giving in to the dichotomous thinking and thoughtless speech habits of those we denigrate. Perhaps a review of our history would be helpful.