May 18, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – March Against Monsanto has announced that on May 25, tens of thousands of activists around the world will “March Against Monsanto.” Currently, marches are being planned on six continents, in 36 countries, totaling events in over 250 cities, and in the US, events are slated to occur simultaneously at 11 a.m. Pacific in 47 states. The San Diego March will be starting at 11am on May 25th at the Balboa Park fountain in front of the Science center.
Tami Monroe Canal, lead organizer and creator of the now-viral Facebook page, says she was inspired to start the movement to protect her two daughters. “I feel Monsanto threatens their generation’s health, fertility and longevity. I couldn't sit by idly, waiting for someone else to do something.”
Monsanto, the chemical conglomerate, has been the major force pushing genetically modified seeds, crops, and herbicides worldwide. Growing evidence suggests potentially serious negative health impacts from some of these products.
An organizer for the march in Athens, Greece, Roberta Gogos, spoke about the importance of the events in austerity-impacted South Europe. “Monsanto is working very hard to overturn EU regulation on obligatory labeling (questionable
whether it's really enforced in any case), and no doubt they will have their way in the end. Greece is in a precarious position right now, and Greece's farmers falling prey to the petrochemical giant is a very real possibility.”
Josh Castro, organizer for Quito, says he wants to protect Ecuador against Monsanto’s influence, too. “Ecuador is such a beautiful place, with the richest biodiversity in the world. We will not allow this Garden of Eden to be compromised by evil multinational corporations like Monsanto. Biotechnology is not the solution to world hunger. Agroecology is.”
Partners facilitating the organizing of March Against Monsanto include The Anti-Media, Activists’ Free Press and A Revolt - Digital Anarchy. Major sponsors include GMO Free USA, NationofChange and Films for Action. Official website: www.march-against-monsanto.com.
The site lists the following issues:
- 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-led research on the long-term effects of GM 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 too long, Monsanto has been the benefactor of corporate subsidies and political favoritism. Organic and small farmers suffer losses while Monsanto continues to forge its monopoly over the world’s food supply, including exclusive patenting rights over seeds and genetic makeup.
- Monsanto's GM seeds are harmful to the environment; for example, scientists have indicated they have contributed to Colony Collapse Disorder among the world's bee population.
The following solutions are proposed:
- Voting with your dollar by buying organic and boycotting Monsanto-owned companies that use GMOs in their products.
- Labeling of GMOs so that consumers can make those informed decisions easier.
- Repealing relevant provisions of the US's "Monsanto Protection Act."
- Calling for further scientific research on the health effects of GMOs.
- Holding Monsanto executives and Monsanto-supporting politicians accountable through direct communication, grassroots journalism, social media, etc.
- Continuing to inform the public about Monsanto's secrets.
- Taking to the streets to show the world and Monsanto that we won't take these injustices quietly.