OpEd by Zen Honeycutt
I intended to write this article and title it ”How Monsanto Has Ruined Our Lives.” But then I realized it is not just Monsanto who has done these things. They led the way by developing GMOs that can tolerate herbicides and have pesticides built in, but they should not get all the credit. US companies Dow/Dupont, and EU companies Syngenta/ChemChina, BASF, and Bayer/Monsanto have had numerous lawsuits against them as well for egregious crimes against humanity. For now however, because I am not European, I am going to focus on what’s happening in the Good Ol’ US of A.
Below is is only a partial list - 14 ways in which Monsanto and all the makers of GMOs and related chemicals have ruined American culture.
Keep in mind this list only pertains to the people who are fully aware of the ways in which GMOs and related toxins can harm our health and life on the planet. For instance, they know that at very low levels, parts per billion and even parts per trillion, glyphosate-based herbicides (GBH) like Roundup and Rodeo can cause a myriad of health issues. 80% of GMOs are engineered to withstand glyphosate based herbicides. But avoiding GMOs is not good enough. GMO farming has lead to the widespread us of GMO related chemicals in conventional, non GMO farming as well. GBH are sprayed on non GMO, non organic crops like wheat, beans, peas, sugar, soy, and oats as a drying agent and on the soil of thousands of crops, like potatoes,carrots, grapes and berries. The crops then uptake into the plant or fruit and end up in your meal or beverage. Glyphosate does not dry off, wash off or cook off.
Coffee and chocolate: Arrgh! Although conventional coffee and cocoa is not GMO yet, it might soon be. GMO companies are arguing that they should be due to the threat of climate change. The thing is that the GMO/chemical companies have contributed to climate change by pushing the use of billions of pounds of toxic chemicals that destroy the soil and its ability to sequester carbon and fight crop disease...so they are causing the problem, and they also want to profit from “fixing” it. So, if you drink non organic coffee and/or chocolate, unfortunately you are contributing to the use of toxins, crop disease, and climate change which may very well soon lead to GMO coffee and cocoa.
- Gas: They tried to grow GMO corn for ethanol and it turned out to be far worse for the environment than claimed. It uses MORE resources, destroys the soil, pollutes the water, and the chemicals sprayed on GMO crops kill off unintended species like Monarch butterflies, bees etc. So...
- Sleep: Humans are not just having trouble sleeping because we are stressed out about our corrupt government, climate change, addiction, homelessness, civil rights injustices, and medical health fascism. The DAILY EXPOSURE OF GMO related toxins (and possibly GMOs all on their lonesome) means that our gut bacteria is constantly being destroyed. Our gut bacteria is where Tryptophan makes Serotonin, Melatonin, Guerin, Vitamin D, B-12 and other hormones ESSENTIAL to the functionality of our bodies. For instance, if we don’t have enough Melatonin, we can’t sleep.
- Depression, Anxiety, and Divorce: Sleepless nights, no matter how great life is, make anyone unhappy, cranky, anxious, say things they regret, slip into guilt and self-deprecation, and might even create defensive, aggressive behavior resulting in divorce. Think about what causes a divorce - usually things that are said in the heat of irritability. Over time, that irritability piles up to be intolerable. Also, other factors play into the downfall of our relationships: if we don’t have enough Serotonin, we can’t feel satiated (nothing is ever enough...think OCD, obesity, porn addiction that leads to affairs, obsessive game playing) or happy. The inability to feel satiated leads us to...
- Addiction: Without the ability for our bodies to feel satiated, it doesn’t matter how much we pray, go to AA meetings, avoid the addictive substance, or take other drugs to mask the addiction. Our bodies simply cannot feel stable and healthy if we are destroying our gut bacteria. We are dependent on our gut biome to manufacture mood-regulating chemicals like Serotonin, and are left deficient when chemicals like glyphosate destroy that vital biome. So this opioid addiction which leads to a myriad of problems including suicide... I blame it on Big Ag just as much as Big Pharma. What you eat plays just as much a role, if not more, than what medications you take.
Vegan and Vegetarian Foods: “Healthy” vegan and vegetarian foods, when they are not organic, are exposing consumers to the highest levels of glyphosate-based herbicides found in almost any foods. Wheat, garbanzo beans, white beans, lentils, oats, soy, and other grains have been found to have very high levels of glyphosate-based herbicides due to the use of spraying GBH on crops as a drying agent. GBH’s (in most of our nonorganic foods) can be endocrine disrupting (change sex hormones, birth defects, miscarriages, shorter gestations, and lower birth rate), cause non alcoholic fatty liver disease, be an antibiotic - killing beneficial bacteria in our gut and weakening the stronghold of our immune system, and cause cancer (studies show a 41% increase of non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma with exposure to Roundup). Eating hummus and whole wheat pita bread for lunch on a consistent basis could literally lead to cancer. Furthermore, eating healthy food is not high on the list of priorities for everyone. Many of us just want to enjoy life and indulge. But here’s the problem: Monsanto and friends have ruined that too.
- Holidays: Eating foods that our parents or in-laws have made for decades is now no longer safe. Family gatherings, instead of being joyful, are often dreaded, just because of the food that will be served. Non-organic foods like GMO potatoes, RBGst GMO growth hormone in milk and cheese, glyphosate on wheat, SynBio in vanilla, CRISPR in mushrooms, and more have now completely ruined Grandma’s scalloped potatoes. Auntie Sue’s Mac-n-Cheese, your sister’s angel cake, and Grandpa’s stir fry garlic mushroom topping that your husband loves to pile on Uncle Joe’s marinated medium steak, which is also ruined by the way, have been dangerously manipulated by factory farming and GMO animal feed. Oh, and those alcoholic beverages we like to indulge in in over the holidays? Most wine and beer tested have been found to contain glyphosate. They have ruined our way of celebrating! Not to mention the stress of trying to educate non-willing family members on why you do not want to consume what they have lovingly prepared. Thanks Monsanto, you ruined many of our family relationships, too.
- Halloween: is completely ruined. My kids can’t go trick-or-treating now without the completely depressing experience of either throwing a bunch of enticing smelling candies in the trash or giving them to their friends with the knowledge that they are contributing to poisoning them. Monsanto, GMO companies, and the FDA, and EPA have all ruined Halloween for my kids. No wonder so many Americans and global citizens not only don’t trust you, they actively hate and march against you.
- County Fairs: Remember as a kid when we could eat the cotton candy til our faces were covered in a fuzzy, sticky mess and we thought we might pass out or puke? When we could relish the salty, greasy deliciousness that a corn dog was? Or as teenagers we could lick the butter dripping off a cob of $5.00 roasted corn and not feel the least bit ripped off? Because it was sooooo good? We hardly ever go to a country fair anymore because our kids are so depressed by all the stuff they can’t eat, and honestly because I am so depressed by seeing the high numbers of morbidly obese people at the fair who are eating the food. It’s depressing. Stats say 40% of Americans are obese. According to county fair sightings, it’s more like 80%. Oh, and let’s not ignore the coincidence that most of the federally funded cancer, heart and varied health associations in America get billions of dollars from big chemical and GMO companies and the ag industry that uses their grains. It is no surprise that they don’t advise that we avoid GMOs, canola oil, red meat, fried foods, and sugar. That would be too inconvenient.
- The Disease of Ease: I count Monsanto and friends as the number one culprits of contributing to the American epidemic of the Disease of Ease. Fast, cheap, tasty, salty, sweet, and easy fast food infected us with the disease back in the 50’s and have been growing ever since. We want everything now. And having fast GMO food joints on every corner of every American town completely ruined our connection to how food is made, stored, cut, cooked, and slowly eaten. Eating should be an act of reverence for what nature provides us. Instead we are mostly addicted to fast, cheap, tasty, and easy. It makes for a very impatient, disconnected, depressed, and sick population. When people are sick they go to the hospital...which is also a problem now. It’s not as safe as we once thought...
Cotton: Hospitals use “sterile” cotton gauze pads. GMO cotton has taken over the cotton industry. They have tested positive for glyphosate herbicides. So even when you need a sterile wound covering, Monsanto is there, messing it up. Cotton is not the way it was when our grandparents were kids. It is very difficult to find organic cotton and when you do it is easily 5x more expensive than conventional t shirts, sheets, or sanitary pads. And yes, you do have to buy organic diapers, tampons, and pads if you want to avoid GMOs and toxins because glyphosate has been found in them too.
Fertility: Speaking of grandparents, our grandfathers could get our grandmothers pregnant by winking at them. There is a reason why back then a family of 12 kids was common and now it’s not. And it’s not just because we are more educated, know that kids are freaking expensive, and most of us don’t grow our own food or livestock, so we don’t need a herd of farm hands. (Growing our food would make a bunch of kids less “expensive” by the way...but that’s another article.) A major reason why Americans (and populations around the world) are having less children is because they can’t. Or they choose not to because they actually “fear their bodies might be too toxic.” (This is a real quote from a real millennial couple. This is tragic.) Why is this happening? GMOs have been shown to cause off-target mutations. The related chemicals have been proven to cause endocrine disruption, miscarriages, and more, as I mentioned earlier. Monsanto’s lead toxicologist Donna Farmer was discovered to have edited out the words “may have” caused miscarriages in a scientific animal study about glyphosate exposure. This is an unspeakable crime against humanity.
Water: Glyphosate-based herbicides (GBH) are allowed for use directly in our water (it is used as a water plant weed killer) and can increase the growth of green algae which feeds Red Tide and killed millions of marine life in Florida. So it would make sense, but it not excusable ro acceptable, that glyphosate now contaminates the majority of tap water and streams. Our wildlife and insect populations are plummeting. 1 out of 2 of our children, whose liver and kidneys are incapable of detoxing the way and adult’s can because they are not fully developed, have a chronic illness. Water is life. But when it contains poisons, it can also be our death.
Soil: Without healthy soil, we don’t have healthy plants, livestock, wildlife, marine life, or human population. GBH has been shown to destroy beneficial microbes in the soil and kill more than 50% of the worms in one application, leading to lower soil quality, less water absorption, lower nutrients, higher drought and erosion, and likely higher levels of mold, disease, and fungus due to the imbalance of beneficial bacteria in the soil. Depletion of the soil quality means, in some areas around the world, it is predicted they only have 12 years left to cultivate crops. Poorer soil quality also means a decreased ability to sequester carbon in the soil, increasing climate change. You can see where I am going with this. Monsanto and their cronies have really ruined, not just America, but the planet.
So, there you have it: 14 ways in which Monsanto and cronies have ruined our way of life. I am sure there are more ways. Can you think of any?
What to do about this besides grit your teeth and rage? Eat organic. Opt out of the Big Ag GMO chemical farming industry by buying and growing organic and regeneratively farmed food. Also, opt out of Big Pharma (all have sister companies that are Big Ag) by treating your family with food as medicine. Don’t stress about why are they doing this - we know why, it’s all about money. We stop them from ruining our lives by taking the power back and educating ourselves. Learn about the herbs, barks, teas, and tinctures that our ancestors used and regain the knowledge and power we have had for thousands of years....before Big Pharma and Big Ag came along and ruined almost all of our ways of life.