Science in Society Archive

Call for Direct Witness Evidence of GM Hazards & Failures

Dr. Mae-Wan Ho

In February, 26 scientists wrote to the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) in the United States, expressing concern that they are being blocked from conducting independent research into GM crops by biotech corporations, and hence the information submitted to the EPA and other regulators are biased. Earlier in the same month, the group, Sense About Science (SAS) based in the UK, which describes itself as “a charitable trust to promote good science and evidence for the public” published a pamphlet Making Sense of GM, to help overcome “misconceptions” that have prevent the public from accepting GM crops and all the benefits they will bring. It was exposed in the public media as having been sponsored and co-written by Monsanto’s former director of scientific affairs (see Corporate Monopoly of Science, SiS 42). Corporations are aiming for an absolute stranglehold on scientific research and the flow of scientific information.

We have exposed the lies and half-truths concerning the performance of GM crops in the past partly by asking protesting citizens to photograph field trials or problems caused by GM crops near them, which we make available to the public and policy-makers (see Citizen's Vigil Exposes Bad Science in GM Crop Trial, (http://www.i-sis.org.uk/MunlochyVigil.php)  SiS 13/14; Bogus Comparison in GM Maize Trial, SiS 22; Deadly gift from Monsanto to India, SiS 38). This kind of direct witness evidence is very important; but is inadequately and only sporadically documented. This makes it easy for our regulators to ignore it, using the lame excuse that they are relying only on evidence “peer-reviewed and published” in scientific journals.

Fortunately, the law courts do not take that view. Such witness evidence, properly documented, is powerful, and often sufficient for incrimination. We should take inspiration from Georgina Downs’ High Court victory on 14 November 2008 (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article5161219.ece). The judgement concluded that the British government has been acting unlawfully in its crop spraying policy and failing to protect the health of the public living near agricultural land. The evidence included a two part video, together with pesticide-soaked mannequins having a ‘picnic’ during a spray.

I-SIS has already accumulated a large dossier of evidence (GM Science Exposed., http://www.i-sis.org.uk/MunlochyVigil.php), and your help in assembling witness evidence may be just what’s needed to make the case for a global ban on environmental releases of GMOs that we have advocated since 2003 (see The Case for A GM-Free Sustainable World, Independent Science Panel Report, http://www.i-sis.org.uk/onlinestore/books.php)

Please submit to us photographic and video evidence of hazards and failures

This could consist of failures of GM crops (including monstrous plants such as those observed in Mexico), death and sicknesses of animals or human beings exposed to GM crops that you have personally experienced, or witnessed in your community or neighbourhood. Evidence from experiments that you have conducted will also be appropriate.

Be sure to include detailed documentation of the subject filmed or photographed, giving date and location, including your name, e-mail, address and telephone number, as we may contact you for an interview. These details will not be disclosed without your permission.

Article first published 14/04/09



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There are 5 comments on this article so far. Add your comment above.

Sharon Medway Comment left 5th May 2009 13:01:00
There is too much money at stake here. These companies want world domination through food. It is not some conspiracy theory - it is a fact. They are even producing plants that "commit suicide" after one generation so that they can make profits continuously. Aside from the genetic problems which cannot even be traced because of the amount of the GE/GM organisms out there. This should scare the hell out of people and they do not even know they are eating it. Thank you for your bravery and dedication to this issue.

Louis Krut Comment left 15th April 2009 20:08:11
Dr. Wang Ho: Thank you (again) for keeping at us. In our age, in which the giant corporations rule the world, it is difficult to overcome their influence. Our only weapon is knowledge, and your mission to keep us informed provides the best chance we have of surviving in a form we would recognise. We might not be the best there could be, but we are the best we know. We cannot know what alternative(s) might be generated and that should frighten us enough to stop our mad charge into areas best left unexplored. It is an old lesson, but one we have not yet learnt.

Rory Short Comment left 15th April 2009 20:08:09
It is a great relief to hear that genetic science has caught up with my gut feeling that genetic engineering is a dangerous activity especially when the GMO's are released into the environment.

Bridget HamelSmith Comment left 20th April 2009 16:04:12
This is deeply disturbing to me that those giant corporations continue to do as they please in interfering with our food crops for their 'misguided gain' - It is so true that great technological knowledge in the hands of the 'unwise'is a very dangerous situation! It seems clear to me with very little scientific understanding, that this is the reason why we now have so many more auto-immune diseases and growth of cancer in younger people. A fascinating subject but in my mind one that should not be played around with.

Dr Yzterbaard Comment left 9th January 2011 12:12:21
This chills the spine and numbs the mind. Imagine what 4 generations of multiple and ongoing 'immunization' has done to us? Live pathologic DNA injected since birth in almost every human being on earth. Blood tranfusions from 'donors' . Every injection suspect. Now the ingestion of untried genetic material in the GMO foodchain. Every can of cola fortified with GMO high fructose corn syrup. Every potato, every grain product suspect, almost every chicken and beef dish raised on the gmo corn and gmo soya hatchery and feedlot. And no way to reverse a milion years of evolutionary survival, in each of us, all destroyed in our lifetime. Is this in the name of Profit or Stupidity?

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