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The Brett Winterble Show

GMO non-labeling bill is full of bad news bears

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You visit the grocery store perhaps on a weekly basis. Some of you are more of a twice or thrice a week shopper. Whatever lifestyle you live, that is all on you and more power to you to go about your lives in trying to eat healthier and smarter in any way, shape or form.

There are a majority of "non-organic" produce and products throughout just about every grocery store. You should know, if you don't know already, that items that have ingredients you can't pronounce are going to be relatively cheaper for you to purchase. However, who knows what kind of effects those products will have on your body as a whole.

Also, one must understand that companies will cut corners to save costs and it will still be considered "acceptable" within the legal limits. There's also an onus placed upon us, as the consumer, to read the ingredients and fine print on products to know exactly what we're putting in our bodies.

That being said, it's no surprise that President Barack Obama signed into law a bill that removes any information that shows you, the consumer, whether a product is free of genetically modified organisms (GMO).

With a few strokes of his pen Obama scratched out the laws of Vermont, Connecticut and Maine that required the labeling of genetically engineered foods.

He also nullified the GE seed labeling laws in Vermont and Virginia that allowed farmers to choose what seeds they wanted to buy and plant. And for good measure he preempted Alaska’s law requiring the labeling of any GE fish or fish product, passed to protect the state’s vital fisheries from contamination by recently approved genetically engineered salmon. (AlterNet)

Why can't some states apply their own laws? I don't truly understand this particular "executive order" by the president. I understand he has the authority, but I don't understand the reasoning. NOTE: Please don't come in with those comments of, "The President has the power to do what he wants. You don't need to know what his/her reasoning is when he/she signs a bill." That's a load of garbage. Pardon me... I meant genetically-modified garbage.

The other really important aspect to this story, is the alleged discrimination carried out by President Obama in signing this law.

According to Obama’s own Food and Drug Administration, if enacted, the bill would exempt most current GMO foods from being labeled at all. The FDA further commented that it “may be difficult” for any GMO food to qualify for labeling under the bill. And for any GE foods that might be covered, the bill allows for food to be “labeled” through a digital system of QR codes that can only be accessed if the consumer has a smartphone and reliable internet connectivity

Unfortunately for one-third of Americans, it seems President Obama does not know the digital divide is real. More than 50 percent of America’s poor and rural populations—a disproportionate number of which are minority communities—and more than 65 percent of the elderly don’t even own smartphones, and for those that do, many cannot afford monthly payments, or live in areas lacking internet access. A minimum of 100 million Americans will not have access to food information because of this labeling system.(AlterNet)

I totally understand why this is difficult for those in rural and poor neighborhoods. There are swaths of families who are struggling to make it every single day, week, month and year under whatever circumstances are in their lives. However, if that family really wants to make the effort and take the initiative to pay for items that they want to feed for their children, why does the federal government have to rob them of that "right?" It makes no sense to me.

While it's feasible that the President is also trying to make sure we get to a time in our lives where we don't have to worry about genetically-modified foods and everything that's being sold in our stores is relatively safe for us to eat, it's also completely unfeasible to think that can happen. We live in a world where corners will be cut no matter what. Don't let Washington, D.C., and our politicians be the only example of lobbyists and groups that try to persuade our elected officials to make laws happen. This happens at the state and local levels too.

We need to take it upon ourselves, not necessarily to repeal such a law but, to know what we are putting into our bodies. If you seriously have trouble pronouncing a good chunk of ingredients that are in your cereal, granola bars, toasted pastries, dressings, salads, meats, and other snacks, then it's probably best to put it back on the shelf. If you're truly concerned about this, then do the best thing you can do. Speak with your wallet. Stop purchasing those items. If word gets around quickly and reaches a certain point, then the manufacturers of such products will think twice about cutting corners.

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