Memorial Day and Our March on Monsanto

photo courtesy of Michael Elliott at http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

photo courtesy of Michael Elliott at http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

Today is Memorial Day in the United States; a day when we remember and honor the servicemen who have sacrificed to protect our liberty.

Since America was created, our servicemen have fought to defend the American people from world-wide threats to our way of life; a way of life based on the opening words of the Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Although I never had the privilege of being a military wife or military “brat”, at any family gathering I can spot nearly all branches of the American military represented amongst my relatives. We are a family of military honor and duty, devoted to preserving the American way of life.

I am so proud of my family for always responding to the call to duty; for offering to sacrifice even their lives for the protection of the rest of us. I know they all served and fought because they believed in freedom and wanted to do their part to ensure their families would be able to grow and thrive in a country that allowed them the hope of choice and autonomy.

So I respect our servicemen. I honor them. I admire them. I support them.

And on this Memorial Day, as I think about what exactly our servicemen have fought to protect, I can’t help but feel that we are dishonoring their efforts.

There is a danger that has grown in this country. It has snuck in through backdoors and in shadows. It has tricked us and lied to us. In our ignorance and complacency, we have allowed this clear and present danger to take root in our lives.

This danger is real, make no mistake! It is a danger to our way of life, and even to our actual LIVES. This danger is exactly what our servicemen have always fought against: an entity that cares little for our freedom, our health, and our lives.

What is this danger?

Monsanto, and their Genetically Modified Organisms.

Now, I am no scientist. I am simply a Mother with chronically ill children who are seriously affected by the food they eat, and I try to learn everything a person in my circumstances can learn about how to keep my children healthy, and why they are sick in the first place.

And I believe Monsanto has harmed my children.

There is a wonderful documentary called “Seeds of Death: Unveiling the Lies of GMO’s” that I strongly recommend you watch. It is long, but it is 80 minutes that will change your outlook forever. Please; I feel so strongly that this should be watched that I’ve posted it below. Please click and watch. (Though you might want to finish reading before you click…it is 80 minutes long!)

There are so many things about Monsanto that offend me that I hardly know where to start. There’s the way they persecute farmers and destroy them. There’s the arrogance they display in thinking they can improve on nature with cross-genetic seeds. There’s the corrupt manner in which they conduct their business. There’s the disdainful conviction they have that their way is the right way and the rest of us are too stupid to be allowed to make a decision for ourselves.

But the thing that (pardon me) pisses me off the most about them is the fact that they decided (and were allowed) to make all the humans of the world into lab rats for their experiments – without our consent or even knowledge.

In 1996 GMO soy, corn, cottonseed, and canola were introduced into the food chain. I didn’t know this had happened, and even if I had, at 19 years old I wouldn’t have been aware of the dangers. Now, I am aware.

As any Food Allergy Family will tell you, soy and corn are in everything! This means that 17 years ago, we all began eating GMO’s on a regular basis.

Well, what’s the harm in that? – you may be asking. Seriously, watch the video. It is the clearest, most thorough explanation I’ve ever seen to explain the dangers of Monsanto and GMO’s.

But I’ll attempt to summarize. In 1996, the FDA’s own  scientists were concerned that these new GMO’s – based on studies THEY did at the time – would increase allergies, asthma, leaky gut, exacerbate current medical conditions and even CREATE new health concerns in the American population.

Thanks to Monsanto’s bribery and lobbying, they were told to shut their mouths. The FDA allowed GMO’s to be introduced into our lives.

Now, here’s a little interesting tidbit I’ve learned as an FPIES Mama: children who are sensitive to soy are often sensitive to peanut, because they are both legumes and are very similar in make-up.

From 1997 to 2002, the number of children with peanut allergies in the U.S. doubled. DOUBLED! This during a time when awareness of food allergies did not rise at all, which leads one to conclude that people were not simply “making the allergy up” or “imagining it”.

Is this coincidence? I think it unlikely, especially considering the concerns of scientists at the time.

Far more frightening to me, though, is the evidence that GMO’s do not just pass through our system, causing only temporary harm. No, the evidence exists that their un-natural DNA becomes a permanent part of the DNA of the bacteria that reside in our guts!

We all have gut bacteria; it is healthy and necessary for life – why do you think everyone wants to eat probiotics? Yogurt doesn’t taste that  good, after all! But it has lots of good little bacteria growing in it, and those good little bacteria help keep our digestive tracts plugging along efficiently, making us healthy humans.

But the GMO versions of foods are not the same  as the original food they are meant to replace. Sometimes the RNA of our existing bacteria react unexpectedly to the GMO’s unusual DNA and trigger mutations in the DNA of the bacteria, causing it to permanently be altered.

Did you catch that? Our life-giving, health-enforcing gut bacteria are mutated permanently!

And it’s a done deal. We all are already affected. Our children are already affected.

Oh, how our children are affected! Allergies are increasing, rare diseases are increasing, autism is increasing, auto-immune disorders are increasing…do I know for a fact that Monsanto’s GMO’s are the sole, direct cause of all of this? No, I do not.

But I like to think I can see the forest for the trees.

All of these things have increased dramatically since – when? The mid-1990’s.

GMO’s were introduced – when? The mid-1990’s.

Has anything else major changed in the world that would affect every single person in the same time frame? No.

At the very least, there is a correlative relationship between the two; scientists, however, have actually made the claim that this is, in fact, a causal relationship.

I don’t need a microscope or an advanced degree to see that for myself.

I look at my children, my sweet, adorable little boys, and see that they struggle with so many food issues, so many gut imbalance issues, and are so sensitive to everything they consume, and I have rather un-Christian thoughts about Monsanto and GMO’s.

Because I have no doubt that my children – while possibly genetically pre-disposed to having some sort of allergies – were pushed over the edge into a world of life-threatening, severely inhibiting allergies due to the presence of GMO’s in our diets.

I didn’t know in 1996 about any of this. I didn’t know about this in 2008. I didn’t start to educate myself until 2010. My real education has only come in the last 10 months.

And let me tell you – ignorance may be bliss, but it sure as hell hurt my children.

That is why last Saturday my family, along with 2 million other people across the globe, Marched on Monsanto.

My family did not fight in wars and serve in peacetime to allow a corporation to dictate to us what we will eat. They did not do what they did so we would live in a world where we are considered too idiotic to make an informed choice for ourselves. The servicemen of our country did not sacrifice in their many ways so we could find ourselves, once again, the subjects of a cruel and careless ruler.

In 1776 the Revolutionary War was fought against King George, a ruler who gave the colonists no voice in their own self-management.

In 2013 we are ruled by Monsanto, via a bought and paid for government, whose goal is to keep us ignorant of the poison they are forcing down our throats via “legal” means.

They are threatening our lives. They are steadily removing our Liberty. And they are a serious threat to our pursuit of Happiness. (Can any mother be completely happy with her life if her children are chronically ill?)

So we marched. We marched for my children, for my grand-children, for my great-grandchildren. We marched for the servicemen of American history and present. We marched for the future of mankind.

As I said in the beginning, our servicemen have fought to defend the American people from world-wide threats to our way of life; a way of life based on the opening words of the Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

I also said I believed we were dishonoring their efforts. They fought to protect us from foreign threats. If we do not fight – here and now – against these domestic threats…their sacrifices will have been for nothing.

This Memorial Day, remember what has been given to you. Remember the sacrifices so many men and women have made to give you the life you now lead.

Honor them by taking a stand. Educate yourself. Read about GMO’s. Plant a garden. Write your Congressmen and Senators. Write the President! Become an activist. We MUST insist on GMO labeling, at the least. We should push for the banning of GMO’s entirely. Let the world know that we will no longer eat Frankenfoods – including the currently-being-considered Genetically Modified Salmon.

If you won’t do it to honor our ancestors…

Do it for your children.

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While at the rally, I chatted with the man who organized our March. While thanking him for his work, I told him my belief that GMO’s are involved in why my kids are so allergic. It came about that I was offered a chance to speak when we returned from the March!

The crowd had thinned out quite a bit at that point, but it was still good turnout. I’m a bit proud of myself for speaking completely off the cuff to a group of people like this!

So, yes, I am bragging a bit to include the video of my extemporaneous speech here, but I’m mainly including it to give you an example: be brave! Step outside your comfort zone! If a Mama wearing her baby can brave the last minute nerves of public speaking, you can handle writing letters and voting appropriately!

(I didn’t take this video, a lovely new acquaintance I made at the rally was nice enough to send it to me. Thanks, Cydni! But I couldn’t figure out how to edit it. There is another speaker ahead of me on this video – he was very interesting, but if you’d like to skip to my part, it starts around minute 5.) 

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Editorial note: I did not include very many links or references in this post for a few reasons. One, it’s all terribly easy to find this information online through simple searches. Two, I was so impressed by the cohesiveness of the “Seeds of Death” documentary that I was often using data I gleaned from it – and at the end of their movie is a LONG list of sources that any of you can check out if you’d like. Three, I’m tired!

But I assure you, this is all the truth to the best of my understanding, references notwithstanding. Fortunately, my English teachers will not be grading this post.

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