I’m starting to think this is turning into “Activism Sundays”. This is what happens when I end up being turned on to some really interesting topics throughout the week that have a lot of impact on my life and I feel the need to share. While the kids don’t share my interests in these topics, I know that my kids are starting to find their own interests in being little activists. Maybe I should take more time to discuss how I feel about these things with my kids. I try, but they’re really not interested at this point. Well, maybe Corde is to some degree.
Anyhow, I was watching the movie Genetic Roulette. If you’ve got the time, I highly suggest you check it out. It’s got a lot of information on what we’re doing with GMOs in this country, and a lot of it is kind of frightening. Sadly, I’m also not surprised.
To give you a bit of background on why all of this makes such a mark on my life, you’ve got to understand a little bit about my own background. You see, there was a time when I actually wanted to be working in the field that makes these GMOs that I now so strongly disapprove of. I was lucky enough to go to a school of science and technology. At that point it was called a voc/tech. It was later listed as a school of “science and technology”. Now it’s simply called Minuteman High School. Because of my experiences there, I definitely promote schools like this instead of regular high schools.
While I was at this school I had the chance to explore a lot of trades, both science geared and more traditional things, like automotive. When we selected our major area of study, I chose biotech, which was interesting because my mom was taking the adult course in the classroom next door. For two years I studied biotech with a particular interest in plant technologies. I wasn’t much interested in making GMOs, but more in how it could apply to culturing rare forms of plants, and possibly in the idea of cloning plants in the rain forest in order to repopulate and preserve them. However, I was fascinated in the ability to genetically engineer plants. I couldn’t stop wondering the possibilities.
After two years I decided I’d had enough of biotech. It wasn’t the class itself that I’d had enough of, but the kids. I felt like I didn’t belong in the first group I was in, then I was transferred to the Biotech Academy, the kids who were really the bright shining stars of the school. In that group I felt like I was always being judged and found wanting because I wasn’t as incredibly educated as they were. It wasn’t that I wasn’t as smart as they were. I was just educated about different things. I preferred history over science. I transferred to their robotics program and eventually that’s what led my life here. Engineering definitely wasn’t what I wanted to do with my life either, though it was fun.
Anyhow, I was exposed to the idea of GMOs back then, but with the field being what it was at the time, I didn’t have any reason to stop and think maybe what we were doing wasn’t a good thing. No one really stopped to think making plants that were resistant to pesticides or produced their own natural pesticide would be bad. In my mind it would only make food healthier because they wouldn’t have to be sprayed with so many chemicals. Then again, I was never told exactly how these foods were meant to resist toxins or repel bugs. I just took it for what it was and accepted that this was a positive step forward for science and technology.
It was some point during high school when all these GMOs were being introduced to our diet that I started to notice something. I was suddenly finding myself unable to eat honey. It started out as just felling really ill, but it ended up with me curled up over the toilet just often enough to stop using it all together. It doesn’t even take much to upset my stomach. Even the small quantity used in commercially marketed green tea is enough. I can’t even have a sip without regretting it. It took forever to isolate because I guess no one is really allergic to honey. I did the research and even my doctor said it was the strangest thing she’d ever heard of.
Shortly after other health problems came streaming behind. Next it was hypoglycemia. After that it was a string of food allergies: tomatoes, processed sugars, dairy, eggs, MSG, soy, and now gluten seems to rearing up it’s ugly head. It makes it challenging to figure out what I can eat, and often times I just suffer with foods I shouldn’t eat because it’s all we can afford, which certainly isn’t helping the situation any.
Many of my friends and family have food allergies now that they’d never had before. Skin problems, like eczema, are starting to become more and more frequent. All of my children have problems with eczema on their scalp. It looks like cradle cap that never went away. Sometimes it’s better, but I’ve noticed it’s been linked to the way they eat. Digestive problems seem to be on the rise. Everyone I know has problems with a sensitive stomach and not always being able to digest foods well.
In a seemingly unrelated not, I’ve also noticed a rise in the number of friends I’ve had who seem to be incapable of having children of their own. They try and try, but they’re never able to find a cause to their infertility. I hadn’t thought about the possibility of infertility being linked to foods, but more the constant use of birth control in this country. I always figured messing with the logical order of things and body hormones were to blame.
Well, research in the end tells all as this movie would point out. GMOs are linked to some really nasty things. Food intolerance is on the rise and it seems that the removal of GMOs from a diet can even get rid of the allergy entirely. Gastrointestinal problems are on the rise, but removing GMOs seems to make a huge difference there as well. Skin problems tend to work themselves out better when a GMO-free diet is applied. Doing something as simple as avoiding GMOs makes a huge difference. I’ve even noticed the same thing. When I eat healthy, whole, GMO-free foods I feel a million times better. Unfortunately, I can’t afford that kind of diet, so I do the best I can.
Then there is the terrifying research that shows us just where the road goes when it comes to the foods we eat. GMO diets have been linked to some fairly scary stuff. In animals it’s been proven to be linked with infertility, serious illness, and even death. There have been animals that have turned cannibalistic. Even humans have suffered death directly relating to a GMO heavy diet. The results are positively terrifying.
More frightening, there is now a mystery organism floating around, something unidentified. It’s not a bacteria. It’s not a virus. It’s not anything we know. It’s some strange mutant that could have unknown possibilities. It’s terrifying to think that with all of our science we’ve managed to create something and don’t even know what it does. It could wreak havoc on our whole environment. The possibilities are staggeringly frightening.
That being said (and on a much…lighter note?) I think I’ve found where the zombie uprising will come from. All of these GMOs are going to drive people to become cannibals, seeking out live human flesh to devour. So, no, we don’t need to worry about some crazy virus or some government program to create super-soldiers. We just have to look out for those evil GMOs!