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Preparing Stone Soup to Protest GMOs

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Adam Eidinger

The Stone Soup we made outside the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition last month tasted a lot like minestrone with a dash of free speech. Over 300 safe food activists from across America — including children, parents and retirees, as well as seasoned Occupy Wall Street activists — came together to prepare and enjoy a 50-gallon vat of GMO-free soup out on the sidewalk. The family-friendly approach to last month’s protest is largely due to the nature of who makes decisions on food purchases at supermarkets across America: parents.

Parents want to know if the food that they’re feeding their children has been genetically modified. They do not want to bring their children into harm’s way, so they will avoid protests where they have reason to believe that the police will be heavy-handed. Anyone can occupy a public street corner and hold up a sign, but they must first feel empowered and unafraid to stand in the limelight.

Protesters at the Stone Soup FDA protest in Washington, D.C. Photo Credit: MA Right to Know

Of course, to solely credit parents like me is to ignore the wide swath of Americans who share the same concerns. Is our government doing enough to protect us from corporations like Monsanto, or working to line corporate pockets — and to hell with our health? Why is America lagging behind countries like China, Russia, United Kingdom, France, Germany and Japan when it comes to honest food labels? The answers to these questions are not only relevant to parents, but to all conscientious consumers.

Is a potluck protest with parents and children the new face of the protest movement? Well, yes and no. There are many ways to fight for justice — with kindness as well as traditional forms of resistance. It’s like a to0l kit, and sometimes a gentle touch can go a lot further than a big push.

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  • Anonymous

    I heard today that in Argentina there is a movement pushing back against Monsanto and its aerial sprayings and genetically modified seeds, which are destroying Argentina’s legacy of being the “bread basket of the world”. Because of austerity, their President has been forced to impose conditions that mothers in the province of Cordoba say have caused birth defects, cancers at a young age, and degradation of their once very fertile soil and means of livelihood.

    Reply and I can send details.

  • Anonymous

    there is nothing more important that supporting and sustaining our natural eco system(s) and food supply.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tammy.jennings.5688 Tammy Jennings

    Please, post details. Links would be great.

  • Anonymous

    Tammy,
    It was a program on “France Culture” (one of French public radio outlets — there are more than one), last week, on a platform called “Magazine de la Rédaction” airing most days around 6 p.m. E.U. time , and Monsanto was in the title. I heard it on a podcast.

    I don’t have link, but if you can’t locate it , get back to me

  • la

    I need a simple 1-10 list of what poor people can do or buy to support your endeavors.

  • Arianna

    Check your food labels ..if corn is on the label, think twice..if soy is, and you’re female, think 3 times..if you see something you can’t pronounce, don’t buy it. Ask your store about labels. Be a pest to your local government about labeling…..then tell everyone you know to do the same and explain why it’s important. If you are on SNAP, you can buy seeds and starts and plant your own garden to eat from. No, this is not impossible in the city, in an apartment, in public housing….it just takes ingenuity. Buy local if you can, if you can’t, then ask for it every time you go shopping….wherever you shop. Even the corner store can bring in some fresh fruits and vegetables if enough folks ask for it. Eat as close to the bottom of the food chain as possible (veggies). Cook from scratch and take time to enjoy your food.