Monsanto, Obama and Genetically Modified Marijuana: An Inconvenient Truth
Posted by Marijuana Doctors on 04/07/2014 in Medical Marijuana Laws
The number of specially cultivated strains is almost incalculable, as are the reasons for their cultivation. There’s been an enormous amount of emphasis placed on strains such as “Charlotte’s Web,” grown with an intentionally high CBD count, and lowered THC count for children suffering from seizure disorders. Each strain is incredibly unique in that no two strains have the same level of CBD or THC. Certain strains offer more relief in easing chronic pain whereas another may help to alleviate muscle spasticity. Particular strains can aid patients with seizure disorders while other strains can benefit certain neurological damage. In this regard, no two types of strains are exactly alike. This is why variety is absolutely paramount to the cannabis industry.
A brief background into the prohibition of marijuana in our country:
In 1914, Ford Motor Company announced its eight-hour workdays and daily five dollar wage for employees, green beer was invented by Dr. Thomas H. Curtin and later displayed in the Bronx for curious consumers and New York City made marijuana a prescription only medication. In part, this step was taken to combat the over-the-counter addictive medications such as morphine, cocaine and opium. In 1930, a man by the name of Harry Anslinger was officially named the nation’s first drug czar, overseer of the Bureau of Narcotics. In an attempt to fully employ his racist beliefs, Anslinger single-handedly transformed marijuana into a highly stigmatized, “hellish as heroin” drug. Verbatim, Anslinger reported, “Reefer makes darkies think they’re as good as white men…the primary reason to outlaw marijuana is its effect on the degenerate races.” Of course, he didn’t stop there. He went on to describe the common marijuana user, “…most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos, and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz, and swing, result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers, and any others.” Featured in The New York Times Magazine in 1914, Dr. Edward Huntington Williams wrote that “once the Negro has formed the habit, he is irreclaimable. The only method to keep him from taking the drug is by imprisoning him.” Odd isn’t it? How this seems to pretty accurately measure up to the inexcusable racial disparities still very much prominent in the American prison systems today?
(Above: A group of Monsanto researchers tend to a soybean crop in Illinois. The company has raised eyebrows and tempers over its use of genetically modified growing. Collectively, the European Union governments delivered a blow to the biotechnology industry, allowing Austria and Hungary to maintain national bans on growing genetically modified crops from Monsanto. The United States, unlike these countries, has placed legislation protecting this company.)
Like this, prohibition reared its ugly head. The rush to incriminate marijuana users and prohibit the plant altogether became more of a racism-cultural war than anything else. Unfortunately, because draconian systems are still very much in place when it comes to cracking down on marijuana use, and because our government truly is the biggest business in the nation – we can depend on this one constant pending any legalization of the plant, for medical use. There is, and will continue to be a looming threat and probable catch-22 if marijuana ever becomes legalized nationally for consumption. This is why.
Here are the facts regarding GM corporations in our country: “Syngenta, along with bio-tech giants Monsanto, Bayer, Dow and DuPont, now control nearly 100% of the global market for genetically modified pesticides, plants and seeds. And, in a quiet attempt, the US House of Representatives passed a last-minute addition to the already existent Agricultural Appropriations Bill and on March 26th, Obama signed the “Monsanto Protection Act.”
“After his victory in the 2008 election, Obama filled key posts with Monsanto people, in federal agencies that wield tremendous force in food issues, the USDA and the FDA: At the USDA, as the director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Roger Beachy, former director of the Monstanto Danforth Center. As deputy commissioner of the FDA, the new food-safety-issues czar, the infamous Michael Taylor, former vice-president for public policy for Monsanto. Taylor had been instrumental in getting approval for Monsanto’s genetically engineered bovine growth hormone.”
Monsanto, BASF, Bayer, Dow, DuPont and Syngenta make up the “Big 6” – absolutely dominating the world’s pesticide and seed markets. Collectively, the Big 6 has contributed over $20 million dollars in funds opposing Proposition 37 – an iniative that would mandate the labeling of genetically engineered food for sale to consumers. This provision works to protect big time biotech corporations from lawsuits regarding health risks and its direct correlation to the crop’s consumption.
“But Obama ignored [the petition],” wrote Connor Sheets of the International Business Times, “instead choosing to sign a bill that effectively bars federal courts from being able to halt the sale or planting of GMO or GE crops and seeds, no matter what health consequences from the consumption of these products may come to light in the future.”
Until Obama signed off on this protection act, federal courts had the power and authority to halt sales or testing of these plants if they felt that the public health at large was being threatened or jeopardized in any respect. The court system, however, has been denounced of that authority and no longer has the right to protect the consumers.
What it all comes down to is sacrificing quality for quantity. Monsanto’s agenda is non-secretively to monopolize the world’s food supply as we know it. At this rate, and with their newly signed off protection advantage, it is not difficult to see the control that major GMO corporations have over our government.
Sara Miller, spokesperson for Monsanto Public Affairs, claims, “Monsanto is not conducting research in this area and I am not aware of any legitimate research in this area under development by other seed companies. Any rumored involvement by seed companies is ‘urban legend.’” And though this may be true, it is vital to remember that under the recently signed bill, Monsanto no longer has the obligation to make known their developments.
Putin has expressed his “extreme outrage” over the Obama administration’s continual protection of major pesticide profiteer Monsanto. So outraged by the fact that the administration refused to address this matter, that Putin refused for three hours to even meet with Kerry who had travelled for diplomatic purposes. Where the European Commission voted on a two-year ban on these “bee killing” pesticides, the US government report miraculously found multiple causes for the honey bee collapse.
We know that big money talks. And in this case, speaks volumes to the level of control and persuasion harmful corporations can have over the most powerful entity of all. Though we cannot say with absolute certainty what Monsanto’s next big moves are, we can access that perhaps the greatest benefit of a maintained federal prohibition on marijuana is the inability for any one of the “Big 6” corporations to dominate and destroy cultivation as we know it. The manipulation and health-risks involved in establishing one standard strain with the greatest yielded crop for maximum financial revenue is immeasurable. And if political trends continue as such under the Obama administration, we can say goodbye to variety, strength in strains and healthy alternative medicine as we know it.
Though the Obama administration has expressed defiant hesitation to lift the federal ban from marijuana, a recent announcement made by attorney general Eric Holder has insinuated a potential rescheduling of the plant altogether. If that is seen through, the catch-22 of legal medicine, without all its benefits will truly come to light. All the medicinal benefits delved into by dedicated growers and caregivers that has worked to save hundreds of lives nationally can no longer be utilized with the illumination of “lesser” strains. That which thousands have rallied for around the country, and that which makes medicinal marijuana so medically purposeful would be gravely compromised in the name of big business, and that – is an inconvenient truth.