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Neil deGrasse Tyson defends pro stance on GMOs following video

| | August 4, 2014

This brief clip of me was posted by somebody:

Everything I said is factual. So there’s nothing to disagree with other than whether you should actually “chill out” as I requested of the viewer in my last two words of the clip. Had I given a full talk on this subject, or if GMOs were the subject of a sit-down interview, then I would have raised many nuanced points, regarding labeling, patenting, agribusiness, monopolies, etc. I’ve noticed that almost all objections to my comments center on these other issues.  I offer my views on these nuanced issues here, if anybody is interested:

Labeling: Since practically all food has been genetically altered from nature, if you wanted labeling I suppose you could demand it, but then it should be for all such foods. Perhaps there could be two different designations: GMO-Agriculture GMO-Laboratory.

Monopolies are generally bad things in a free market. To the extent that the production of GMOs are a monopoly, the government should do all it can to spread the baseline of this industry. (My favorite monopoly joke ever, told by Stephen Wright: “I think it’s wrong that the game Monopoly is sold by only one company”)

If your objection to GMOs is the morality of selling non-prerennial seed stocks, then focus on that. If your objection to GMOs is the monopolistic conduct of agribusiness, then focus on that. But to paint the entire concept of GMO with these particular issues is to blind yourself to the underlying truth of what humans have been doing — and will continue to do — to nature so that it best serves our survival. That’s what all organisms do when they can, or would do, if they could. Those that didn’t, have gone extinct.

In life, be cautious of how broad is the brush with which you paint the views of those you don’t agree with.

Read the full, original article: Anatomy of a GMO commentary

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Click the link above to read the full, original article.
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