A new Facebook friend has planted a seed in my mind for a way to pay for it.
He posted a picture of some lovely young women holding signs that read “No GMO” and “Ban GMO” and chastising Dow, Syngenta and Monsanto for suing Kauai County in Hawaii, which voted in November to bag GMOs, except for papayas. The law goes into effect in August.
“Shame on you for suing Kauai County for the right to spray poisons next to our homes, schools and hospitals,” the sign read.
The women parade under the name “Babes Against Biotech.”
My friend, Chuck Lasker, mocks them for showing up late to a rally but parading their signs anyway, missing a crowd of thousands of other anti-GMO activists by an hour or two. No refunds on the donations to their cause, which surely raised enough for the women to treat themselves to a night on the town.
I can think of only a few things stopping me from starting my own activist organization to fund a trip to Hawaii for me to hold an anti-GMO sign for a couple of hours.
I am not a “babe” by anyone’s terminology. Also, I am not against biotech. Still, I think we can work this to our advantage. I will hold that sign. I want to see the beaches too.
Controversy about GMO crops seems to have charged debate in many political arenas in Hawaii, which has become an epicenter of GMO angst. It seems born of Hawaii’s role for many decades in corn crop development.
The climate allows seed companies to cram three or four seasons of seed production and testing into a year, which speeds up research. The best performers are sent elsewhere for more growing trials.
As more GMO crops need to be tested, they get a turn in Hawaii’s crop development system.
In an article posted in March at Reason.com, a Hawaiian food author and historian suggests the anti-GMO debate in Hawaii follows the sociological fault lines between people who have lived in the islands for generations and those who are newcomers from the mainland.
“For the locals, the islands have always been a place of high-tech agriculture,” Rachel Landan, author of “The Food of Paradise: Exploring Hawaii’s Culinary Heritage” and “Cuisine and Empire,” said in the article.