Jan 11, 2013
Genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, are a hot topic these days, especially here in California with the try of Prop 37 (which would require that all GMO foods be labeled), but what are they really? Are they perhaps this mutant food that will eat you from the inside out, as anti-GMO activists would have you believe with their photo-shopped twisted Frankenstein apple pictures or are they simply another harmless product of genetic modification and agricultural advancement?
According to nearly all scientists, the answer is quite obviously the latter. According to a recent article published on Discover magazine’s website, to be anti-GMO is to be anti-science. This is due to the fact that there is no science supporting any health concerns associated with digesting GMO-infested food. It is a strong statement, but a highly accurate one. Ask any nerd in a lab coat and they will tell you that being afraid of GMOs is the equivalent of being scared of cheese. Unless you have turophobia, which is the clinical term for “fear of cheese”, then you probably are like every other American and eat the stuff on a regular basis. Just as in the case of cheese, GMOs are another outstanding triumph from the ancient world of biotechnology.
Without biotechnology, we would not have cheese or Gala apples or broccoli or any of the other average foods that we take for granted on a regular basis. The definition of biotechnology is to modify or enhance living things for the products, services, and goods. Humans do this naturally without giving much thought to it. As a species, we are constantly searching for better ways to improve our daily lives. Whether this means finding a faster route to work or changing the temperature setting on your freezer to keep your Ben and Jerry’s lasting longer, we are continually modifying our lives, most times without even noticing that we are doing it.
The only clear debate on whether GMOs should be placed in our food or not would come from an emotional response relating to people messing with your food, which is totally understandable. However, if you don’t like people messing with your food, then grow your own garden and stay in, but do not blame it on science. Scientists are perfectly happy to eat out.
For more information regarding GMOs, please check out:
Find Our Common Ground