Week 6- doesn’t rice have a say? by: l.a.Hernandez

This week’s discussion on Biotechnology was something that I do feel strongly about. I have to admit I didn’t see it coming when Professor spoke about it class. I think for me biotechnology is seperate from art and technology but now that I stop to think about it, i really dont know why I thought that in the first place. I always associted it with sustainability - even though I know it’s not sustainable.

Biotechnology as it applies to GMO is worth concern. I have been informed a great deal about this and I have found the problem was never that there wasn’t enough food available. The problem was that it wouldnt get to the population that needed it the food the most. So when we have large corporations like Monsanto alluding to the idea that they’re doing something for the poor and their technology will help 3rd world countries I don’t understand at all. They’ll be the only ones profiting while people are still starving. It’s not like they’re donating! And even then, if that was what they were doing, they dont need to genetically modify crops to donate- especially when they know about seeds and land and how they effect the future of an environment. This makes no sense to me. I have to admit though, at first I really thought that ‘frankenfood’ would be good for the people who are malnourished in third world countries and that they would be healthier because technology managed to find a way to make the earth’s staple (rice) have more essential vitamins. This was truly niave of me. It was never about that. I strongly feel that world hunger is not a result of rice not being nutritional enough or that there’s not enough food. This is foolish. The problem is the system, the corporations that seek only to make profits and sells stocks. Maybe I would feel different if this food really did get to the people it supposedly was intended for. In terms of really solving the problem of world hunger, would that be better than have a geneticall crumbling environment? I dont really know what to think about that. It is difficult to do so when you know that these people aren’t being helped by corporations that claim to be assiting them.

Earlier in the year, there was a series of sustainablity movies that were shown on this topic. I believe they have picked up this quarter as well, in the sproul lecture hall. One movie that was really interesting was king corn. I have included a link to the trailer. It just basically talks about corn and its production. I dont think it is as pertinent to rice but in the sense that it makes it diet, then it is very relevant.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pr5HQrgg9mM

Also I have included a link to an article published by Greenpeace in 2007 at BioAsia. Greenpeace attending in a type of protest planting faux rice plants as time bombs, as if to say GM rice is a time bomb waiting to exlode the environment. As if things aren’t hard enough for Greenpeace in litterally trying to save the Earth, they also have to worry about money thirsty corporations altering crops and what that does to the environment.

http://www.greenpeace.org/seasia/en/news/greenpeace-shakes-biotechnolog

by: Luis Hernandez

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