Voices Blast Dow Chemical's 'Agent Orange' Seed Warfare
As the final public comment period wrapped up on Tuesday for the approval of Dow Agrosciences’ new genetically engineered and herbicide-resistant seeds,hundreds of thousands of people are demanding that the U.S. Department of Agriculture halt the “chemical arms race” that is poisoning our people and planet.
Dubbed “Enlist,” the corn and soybean seeds are resistant to the toxic herbicide, 2,4-D—a known neurotoxin that was part of the cocktail of chemicals used in Agent Orange spray.
According to food safety group Food & Water Watch, over 387,000 people responded to the USDA’s draft Environmental Impact Statement. Individuals who submitted comments voiced their personal concerns with the seeds as they urged the agency to reject their approval.
“This poison chemical company has the ruthless, malicious, heartless audacity to make such a request to have their poison, 2,4-D, a component of Agent Orange to be applied to their so-called GMO food crops,” wrote Lori Nakamura-Higa, the neice of a Vietnam veteran that suffered from Agent Orange poisoning, from Kaneohe, Hawaii. “I [am] reminded daily of the loss of quality of life trying to persevere with this plaguing struggle.”
“This chemical arms race with weeds means more pesticidal pollution, environmental damage, and higher production costs,” said Gary Rost, of Falon Heights, Minn. “[A]pproving this crop would take us backwards, seriously endangering human health and the environment.”
“You have a duty to protect the health and safety of the public. Dow’s applications are clear dangers and represent a violation of public policy,” wrote Ken Mason, Wilmette, Ill.
“Why in the world would we want to approve 2,4-D resistant corn and soybeans when Roundup resistant corn and soybeans have failed to do anything except to increase the use of pesticides?” asked Jean Bixley, Cambridge, Minn. “Pesticides are not healthy for anyone, and the government should be looking at ways to reduce or eliminate their usage, not increase it.”
“Big agriculture and chemical companies are not honest about the risks and someday we will all pay the price for their greed.” —Kevin Peroni, Denver, Colo.
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