California State Senate rejects GMO labeling again

Is it a surprise to anyone that this bill failed, when you have the likes of Monsanto and Dow Chemical buying the votes of politicians for sometimes as little as just a steak dinner? It is completely outrageous that Californians are not able to know whether or not food contains GMOs by looking at a label on the product. But of course, anyone who knows anything about the prevalence of GMOs in our food supply is aware that GMOs are found in 95% or more of everything that we consume. Why then are organizations and companies fighting so hard to not label GMOs? What harm could come from consumers simply knowing what we are consuming? And, what should we do about it?

It starts with education

What groups opposed this bill? Let’s look at the list below.

  • Agricultural Council of California
  • BAYBIO – Organization that supports the use of GMOs and their development
  • BIOCOM– Trade association for the likes of Monsanto and peers
  • Biotechnology Industry Organization – Claimed: World’s largest trade association for biotechnology
  • California Chamber of Commerce –Works on behalf of industrial farms and companies involved in the production and distribution of GMOs, etc.
  • California Citrus Mutual – Trade group
  • California Cotton Ginners Association- Trade group
  • California Cotton Growers Association- Trade group
  • California Farm Bureau Federation- Trade group
  • California Grain and Feed Association- Trade group
  • California Grocers Association- Trade group
  • California Healthcare Institute- Trade group
  • California League of Food Processors- Trade group
  • California Manufacturers and Technology Association- Trade group
  • California Retailers Association- Trade group
  • California Seed Association- Trade group
  • California Women for Agriculture- Trade group
  • Family Winemakers of California- Trade group
  • Grocery Manufacturers Association- Trade group
  • International Formula Council- Trade group
  • Pacific Egg and Poultry Association- Trade group
  • Western Agricultural Processors Association- Trade group
  • Western Growers- Trade group
  • Western Plant Health Association- Trade group

It is  clear why these organizations opposed bill SB1381. They represent industrial farming outfits that would face increased costs by having to label their products. When proponents of GMO’s speak about farmers, they never use the term industrial farms because that would denote large corporations (bad image). Instead they want you think that mom and pop farmers are against labeling, something that is not necessarily true at all.

Big agriculture/biotech (pleasantly named “life sciences companies”)are interested in keeping costs low in order to maximize profits in the short term by using genetically modified seeds from the likes of Monsanto. However, in the long run this will prove costly as bugs mutate and become resistant to things like “Roundup”. However, the companies reason that as this happens they will just keep adding to modifying the process and further distorting once healthy seeds. Who loses? We, the consumers do.

 

Continue to support the sponsors of SB1381

San Francisco City Hall

It is clear that the groups who oppose GMO labeling and their corporate sponsors will continue to pour money into defeating labeling in the future out of pure self interest – They want to keep the gravy train going for as long as they can. However, we as consumers have to take a stand and call for clear GMO labeling on everything we consume. If politicians are unable to help us, then we need to vote them out and fast. This is only going to the worse and we cannot afford to remain complacent.

We have to support the politicians who sponsored this bill as they continue to try and get this done. The sad thing is that the bill received 19 yes votes. Had it only received 2 more votes, it would have passed.

Even this vote was according to party lines. All “Yes” votes came from Democrats while the majority of “No” votes came from Republicans (75%). Why is it that the “so called” party of liberty and freedom chooses to side with censorship when it comes to something like this? Could it because they are in the pockets of the companies who manufacture/distribute GMOs?

You can read more about the bill here:

SB1381 voting rolls, courtesy of Legiscan here:

The sponsors of SB1381 are:

Senator Noreen Evans (D)
Senator Mark DeSaulnier (D)
Senator Mark Leno (D)
Senator Fran Pavley (D)
Assemblyman Marc Levine (D)
Assemblyman Mariko Yamada (D)

Voted YES:

Sen. Jim Beall (D)
Sen. Ellen Corbett (D)
Sen. Kevin De León (D)
Sen. Mark DeSaulnier (D)
Sen. Noreen Evans (D)
Sen. Loni Hancock (D)
Sen. Ben Hueso (D)
Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D)
Sen. Ricardo Lara (D)
Sen. Mark Leno (D)
Sen. W. Ted Lieu (D)
Sen. Carol Liu (D)
Sen. Holly J. Mitchell (D)
Sen. Bill Monning (D)
Sen. Alex Padilla (D)
Sen. Fran Pavley (D)
Sen. Darrell Steinberg (D)
Sen. Norma J. Torres (D)
Sen. Lois Wolk (D)

We need to shame those politicians, Democrat and Republican, who voted against this bill or who did not vote at all, and work to get them out of office. Interestingly, and according to plan, all Republicans voted against this bill.

Voted NO:

Sen. Joel Anderson (R)
Sen. Marty Block (D)
Sen. Anthony Cannella (R)
Sen. Jean Fuller (R)
Sen. Ted Gaines (R)
Sen. Cathleen Galgiani (D)
Sen. Ed Hernandez (D)
Sen. Jerry Hill (D)
Sen. Bob Huff (R)
Sen. Steve Knight (R)
Sen. Mike Morrell (R)
Sen. Jim Nielsen (R)
Sen. Tom Berryhill (R)
Sen. Andy Vidak (R)
Sen. Mimi Walters (R)
Sen. Mark Wyland (R)

Did not vote at all:

Sen. Ron Calderon (D)
Sen. Lou Correa (D)
Sen. Richard Roth (D)
Sen. Roderick Wright (D)

We are conducting a giant experiment on ourselves by using GMOs and there is no concrete science that proves GMOs to be safe. As a matter of fact, many countries have outright bans on GMOs because of serious health issues that some studies have uncovered. At the very least, we should have the right to choose whether or not to buy foods that contain GMOs.

Contact your congressman or senator and tell them you will not vote for them unless they support GMO labeling.

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