A Vent on Glyphosate

Take the spotlight away from Deflategate and aim it at glyphosate, an active ingredient in Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup since the 1970s. Around for over 40 years, glyphosate has found its way into our drinking water like many other toxic byproducts from the creations of our esteemed chemists. I am not denigrating innovation, I am just venting my frustration over the paradoxical mess we, as a society, have gotten ourselves into. We want to make great discoveries, such as controlling the growth of our crops to feed the masses. But like mass production of clothes, quality can be compromised.

I started to write about glyphosate after reading an article by Dr. Mercola about GMO labeling across the U.S. The article reported that the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) of the World Health Organization declared glyphosate a “probable carcinogen.” Intrigued, I went to IARC’s website to learn more about it and landed on its Home page. Because the organization’s specialty is cancer, there were various articles about the subject.

A press release dated 1/13/15 caught my eye. The lead-in read: “Most types of cancer are not due to ‘bad luck’—IARC responds to scientific article claiming that environmental and lifestyle factors account for less than one third of cancers.”

After reading the release, I was not surprised about IARC’s conclusion, which was “. . . a majority of the most common cancers occurring worldwide are strongly related to environmental and lifestyle exposures. In principle, therefore, these cancers are preventable; based on current knowledge, nearly half of all cancer cases worldwide can be prevented. This is supported in practice by rigorous scientific evidence showing decreases in cancer incidence after preventive interventions. . . .”

So that brings us back to glyphosate. Is the price we are paying for a weed-free cornfield really worth it?

IARC’s findings indicate that we can do something about our environment, but it goes back to convincing the lawmakers, corporations, and individuals.

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