Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My thoughts on Prop 37

Given that the electoral college has yet to be dissolved, I'm at peace with knowing my vote for President is irrelevant.

The propositions, however, are another story, and although in the past I've been happy to insure my taxes don't go up by merely voting NO on Everything, this year there are some challenges.

First, Prop 37 - the labeling of GMO foods.

I'm on both sides: Simply, I want to know what's in my food so I can make an informed choice on what I want to put into my body. Now more than ever we are bombarded by chemicals, and I choose to opt out of that.

Unfortunately, this is not a simple issue. It's true that GMO is nothing new, and in many cases it's not actually evil.

In every election I remind people that the only way to see what any legislation is (and who will Really benefit from it) is to see who's for and who's against. I fear that although Prop 37 is being sold as a "David and Goliath" story (peace-loving humans on the left/evil conglomerates on the right), that our passing this proposition will only make things worse for the struggling independents (and probably kill farmers markets because they won't be able to afford to comply with the nifty new laws).

The small farmers can't afford the testing and requirements. The big farms don't care (and actually benefit) because they can pass on the costs while crippling their smaller competitors. We are already facing huge increases in food prices with the drought, and Of Course remember ADM and its Washington butt buddies have us wasting 40% of our corn crop on ethanol.

Yes, part of me says, "It's a start, so let's pass it." The bigger part of me worries that it will do more harm than good, that Monsanto (and other super-giants) have endless funds to do whatever they want, easily circumventing any piddling laws we mortals might pass.

Conflicted. That's me. I have thoughts on the other propositions, but so far this one hits me hardest.

Read, if you dare:,_Mandatory_Labeling_of_Genetically_Engineered_Food_(2012)

And here's what NPR has to say: