Thousands Around World Marched Against Monsanto

Search form

Thousands Around World Marched Against Monsanto

Thousands Around World Marched Against Monsanto
Tue, 5/28/2013 - by Rosanna Xia
This article originally appeared on Los Angeles Times

Hundreds of protesters took to the streets in downtown Los Angeles on Saturday as part of a global series of marches against seed giant Monsanto Co. and genetically modified foods.

Organizers said the “March Against Monsanto” demonstrations were being held in some 300 cities in more than 44 countries this weekend. The event — a social media-generated call to action against genetically modified foods and the multinational corporations that produce them — marked the first such global, unified protest for this cause, organizers said.

In Pershing Square in downtown L.A., a diverse crowd marched toward City Hall at about 11 a.m. Many carried colorful signs with messages such as “Label GMOs, it’s our right to know” and “Real Food 4 Real People.” One adult protester arrived in a cow-print onesie and a sign that said: “Happy cows do not eat GMOs.”

The event temporarily closed Hill Street between 1st and 5th streets as the group marched to City Hall. Rallies and speeches will be held until 5 p.m. Saturday, with volunteers distributing information about health and political concerns regarding genetically modified foods, said Dorothy Muehlmann, 30, of Corona, who organized the L.A. march with about 30 volunteers and help from groups such as Occupy L.A. and Anonymous.

“We’re marching to raise awareness,” she said. “This is not just a ‘boo Monsanto’ protest. We want more people to know so they can make their own decisions.”

Monsanto, a multinational firm based in St. Louis, told Associated Press on Saturday that it respects people’s rights to express their opinions on the topic, but stands by the seeds it sells. The seeds help farmers produce more from their land while conserving resources such as water and energy, Monsanto said.

Muehlmann said the issue has gained momentum in the last year, particularly after the defeat of Proposition 37, a ballot measure last November that would have made California the first state in the nation to require labels on some fresh produce and processed foods, such as corn, soybeans and beet sugar, whose DNA has been altered by scientists.

Opponents of Proposition 37 successfully argued that it was expensive, bureaucratic and full of illogical loopholes for certain foods, such as meat, dairy products, eggs and alcoholic beverages. The measure was defeated with 53% of voters casting ballots against it. Despite the measure's defeat, supporters said the concerns of the millions who voted for it remained valid.

"We believe it's a dynamic moment for the food movement, and we're going forward," he said.

The debate over genetically engineered food has been going on since the crops became widespread in the mid-1990s. In 1992, the FDA concluded that there was no difference between genetically engineered and non-engineered plants.

On Thursday, the U.S. Senate rejected – by a vote of 71 to 27 — an amendment to let states require labels on food or beverages made with genetically modified ingredients. Many at Saturday's rally in L.A. said the Senate's action added political urgency to their cause.

“Someone has to stand up for it, and obviously I’m not standing alone,” Muehlmann said, looking at the hundreds around her banging drums and drawing more signs. One waved a poster saying, “Don’t let corporate greed dictate your health.”

Local protesters Saturday rallied across Southern California, including in Venice, Long Beach and San Diego, organizers said.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Article Tabs

The fight for net neutrality, like the fight for an open and free Internet, is a clarion call for Internet users and content creators to defend what has made the the web one of the world’s greatest enablers of social and economic progress.

Keystone XL pipeline, carbon emissions, tar sands, Oceti Sakowin people

The Oceti Sakowin people are mobilizing a resistance that could be the game changer in the fight to stop the proposed Keystone pipeline and help shut down the tar sand projects in northern Alberta.

Occupy was brilliant in getting a message across, but these protests are specifically and deliberately setting out to disrupt the functioning of the city until attention is paid to their grievances.

Britain’s colonial legacy is a living one – no one is born prejudiced, but in Britain all of us are born into racism.

Most Americans are unaware of the true financial value of solar today.

Powell Memo, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, total boycott, economic alternatives, worker-owned businesses, student debt, student loans, banking alternatives, move your money, Strike Debt, Rolling Jubilee

This is a strategic memorandum to all movement organizers, social justice organizations, and free citizens disgusted with a corporate state that has systematically extracted our wealth and resources while giving back nothing in return.

Posted 5 days 33 min ago

The annual conference features globalization’s "Mafiocracy" of bankers, industrialists, oligarchs, technocrats and politicians who promote common ideas and serve common interests: their own.

Posted 6 days 2 hours ago

The left-populist party headed by Alexis Tsipras is positioned to win Greece’s elections Sunday on a progressive platform to reverse austerity cuts imposed on the country over the past half decade.

Posted 4 days 22 min ago
The Davos class run our major institutions, know exactly what they want, and are well organized, but they have weaknesses too.
Posted 6 days 2 hours ago
Antiquities Act, land preservation, national parks expansion, pipeline spill, oil spills, Bridger Pipeline LLC, Exxon Mobil pipeline spills, Keystone XL pipeline

Some residents are reportedly smelling and tasting oil in their drinking water, causing the EPA to test water samples and the city water plant to cease drawing water from the river.

Posted 6 days 2 hours ago

The pay ratio between the highest- and lowest-paid worker-owners in cooperatives is between 3:1 and 5:1, compared with a ratio of roughly 600:1 in traditional corporations.

Five "unelected, unaccountable kings in black robes" are systematically stripping Constitutional rights from real, live human beings and giving those rights to corporations and a very small group of plutocrats.

warrantless spying, NSA, illegal spying, Fourth Amendment Protection Act, OffNow coalition, Patriot Act, metadata collection, William Binney

Efforts to stop warrantless NSA spying are off to a fast start in the 2015 legislative session, as lawmakers in four states have already introduced bills banning material support or resources to any federal agency engaged in illegal spying.

The government aims to prove that Ross Ulbricht is the man behind the online persona Dread Pirate Roberts, the administrator of the Silk Road online black marketplace.

Keystone XL pipeline, carbon emissions, tar sands, Oceti Sakowin people

The Oceti Sakowin people are mobilizing a resistance that could be the game changer in the fight to stop the proposed Keystone pipeline and help shut down the tar sand projects in northern Alberta.

Sign Up