Over the past few years, there has been a battle over the safety of genetically modified organisms, or GMO. Though there has been progress in public education and labeling, it has been slow. As much as I would love to go into why GMO is morally and ethically wrong, I’m preaching to the choir. I’m focused on a different battle within the same war. The language.
The truth of the matter is that the companies who develop the GMO products have us by the proverbial balls. In labeling the products GMO, that gives them the freedom to fire back with an argument that’s, quite frankly, hard to come back from. Their argument is that GMO happens in nature. Though I find it funny that a bunch of people who generally don’t believe in evolution would use this as an argument, it’s a solid one. Nature does indeed have the ability to modify anything in order to ensure its survival. Simple evolution.
I propose that we change our language. Instead of the term ‘GMO’ or ‘Genetically Modified’, we need to be using the term ‘Genetically Engineered’. This is a term that implies that the product was created by man rather by nature.
As always, I stand by my belief that we have the right to know what we are eating. I stand by my belief that knowing what we’re eating is a basic human right and that labeling is the moral and ethical solution, but we first need to change our language.