To the editor:
followed several trials with Monsanto’s involvement, I was not surprised to
find yet another case headlining on Huffpost Green’s website on February 19.
Mark Sherman’s article “Monsanto Seed Case Reaches U.S. Supreme Court,” evoked
momentary shock from me, though at this point, being so familiar with
Monsanto’s history, I can’t quite understand why I still have that reaction. I
suppose it’s simply because I cannot wrap my head around how unjustified the
company’s actions are. According to the article, Vernon Hugh Bowman, an Indiana
soybean farmer, is the latest victim of Monsanto’s overpowering monopoly of the
farming industry. Accused of violating the company’s patents on soybean seeds,
small-town Bowman will put up a fight against a multi-billion dollar
Think of how preposterous this notion seems: to patent a living organism. Essentially,
under the guise that that is acceptable, that would be (though highly
exaggerated) as though, as though I could patent a human life. That notion is
ludicrous and would be vehemently protested by multiple (if not all)
organizations and humans alike. Why, then, does no one bat an eyelash at
Monsanto’s ownership of most of the soybean industry? Soybean seeds are,
technically, a living organism. Monsanto limits the possibility for independent
farmers to survive without any regard for their well-being, but also their
health. How can a crop sprayed with pesticides kill bugs and parasites, but not
harm the people who consume them? Genetically modified organisms infused into
our foods are potentially dangerous and an unexplored field of food processing.
Monsanto, with over 90% of soybean seed ownership, makes it nearly impossible
for consumers to avoid purchasing their GMO products.
Farmers are left no choice in the matter- they must bow to Monsanto’s demand. Lawsuits are inevitable solely because of pollination. If a farmer refuses to invest in
Monsanto’s products, their seeds will pollinate with nearby Monsanto seeds, and
lo-and-behold, that farmer has a lawsuit against him for stealing Monsanto’s
products. To avoid such tribulation, they must invest in Monsanto’s products.
Monsanto, then, soaks them dry of any monetary gain that the farmer may be
hopeful for because the seeds cannot be reused, but must be repurchased every
harvest season. Imagine a product you could only use once; a shirt that could
only be worn one time, a pair of shoes or glasses that must be purchased new
each day. We cannot wrap our minds around such lunacy, and yet, it seems
completely logical when Monsanto poses such a proposal.
I understand that every company must make money in order to survive. I understand
that economic survival is a challenge, especially in the current economic bind
we find ourselves trapped in. Monsanto is not in such a bind. Monsanto creates
the bind that holds so firmly on farmers. I ask the writers of Huffpost Green
to continue to enlighten readers of Monsanto’s oppressive nature so that maybe,
somehow, the victims of its tyranny may be heard, even if it is outside the