Thursday, August 29, 2013

GMOs: Film series to prompt Initiative 522 discussion - News

GMOs: Film series to prompt Initiative 522 discussion - News:

Sitting in a corner of the Port Townsend Food Co-op, Judy Alexander is anxious to share what she learned at the Justice Begins with Seeds international conference in Seattle earlier this month.
A food activist for six years who last year won the Eleanor Stopps Environmental Leadership Award for cofounding Local 20/20, Alexander has organized a free film series starting on Aug. 26 to put the issue of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on the discussion table in Jefferson County. She’s done this because she’d rather have GMOs on the discussion table than on her dinner plate.
The film series is timely because of statewide Initiative 552, which would require foods produced entirely or in part with genetic engineering to be labeled. The measure is on the Nov. 5 ballot.
“My hope is that this film series ignites an interest in our community to not only use this information and commit themselves to our local organic farms and passing I-552, but also to go to other communities in Washington to help other people have access to this information,” Alexander said.
Alexander is keenly aware of what happened last year in California when a similar measure was on the ballot there.
“Some 60 percent were going to vote yes, and in the last 45 days leading up to the election, Monsanto spent $1 million a day convincing voters that their food costs would rise and that the law was confusing and not well crafted Just placing doubts in people’s minds can go a long ways toward undermining people’s whole-hearted support for a good law,” she said. “They [proponents of the initiative] had just under half the votes.”

“My point of doing this film series is to inoculate our community and prevent them from being vulnerable to what Monsanto is going to do,” she said. “It’s not an ideal time to do a film series. You want to be out taking a walk in your garden. But I want people to see these movies.”

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