Giant Chickens and Golden Rice, Not a Fairytale

‘Growth’ and ‘progress’ are among the key words in our national vocabulary. But modern man now carries Strontium 90 in his bones ... DDT in his fat, asbestos in his lungs. A little more of this ‘progress’ and ‘growth,’ and this man will be dead.
— Morris K. Udall


 

We have all seen an ad like this before, two knobby-kneed chickens standing beside one another. One is from present day and sports a gigantic breast that would put Pam Anderson to shame, the other is from an earlier decade and looks incredibly scrawny in comparison. You guessed it; I am talking about GMOs.

    We have turkeys and chickens that are unable to walk because of their unnaturally massive size; cows and pigs that develop inflammation, ulcers, and a whole host of reproductive issues, all due to genetic modification.

    Now let us take a moment to look at the other side of this. Food can be genetically modified to be disease resistant. This reduces the need for pesticides and herbicides that can be harmful; such as the infamous DDT, which has been responsible for everything from roofs caving in to mass rat infestations.Another important point is that GMO food can save the lives of millions of people in developing countries. A prime example of this is golden rice. It has been genetically engineered to contain beta carotene, a precursor to vitamin A, and is planned to be used to combat vitamin deficiencies in developing countries. Have a vitamin A deficiency can cause irreversible blindness and death.

    It is certainly easy to be biased against GMOs when access to supplements and vegan/organic/gluten-free everything is just one shopping trip away. But what about the sentient beings that are harmed in the meat industry? Are we helping developing countries or pushing the Earth’s capacity? The real question is where do we draw the line, at what point are we playing God.