Nothing says “Owned by Monsanto” like House Joint Resolution 7 &11 put forward by Rep. Jason Smith, newly nominated candidate for Missouri’s US Congressional District 8, and Rep Reiboldt of the 160th. The bill just passed out of the House committee and now moves on to the House floor.
This bill (HJR 7 & 11-rolled together) is to become a Missouri Constitutional Amendment ballot initiative if it passes out of both Houses of the Legislature….and it, unlike raw milk, is inherently dangerous and should never be approved by anyone, for any reason.
The sell on this bill is that animal rights advocates are endangering all farmers and ranchers by advocating to constrain every day practices in agriculture. While it IS true that animal rights activists and bureaucrats are trying to stop people from disbudding, castrating, vaccinating and other things, some of which may be truly objectionable, this proposed Constitutional Amendment will ensure that CAFO’s (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations) proliferate, and lay the ground for no holds barred transgenic manipulation and proliferation of ALL genetically engineered organisms in our State.
A missouri television station covered this in their typical (arguably necessary) sound bite manner here:
Here is the full text of the Amendment copied from http://www.moga.mo.gov, the bold text within the verbiage is what we need to concern ourselves with. It won’t all appear on the ballot across the State should it pass the legislature.
“Submitting to the qualified voters of Missouri an amendment to article I of the Constitution of Missouri, and adopting one new section in lieu thereof relating to the right to farm.
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring therein:
That at the next general election to be held in the state of Missouri, on Tuesday next 2 following the first Monday in November, 2014, or at a special election to be called by the 3 governor for that purpose, there is hereby submitted to the qualified voters of this state, for 4 adoption or rejection, the following amendment to article I of the Constitution of the state of 5 Missouri:
Section A. Article I, Constitution of Missouri, is amended by adding one new section, 2 to be known as section 35, to read as follows:
Section 35. That agriculture which provides food, energy, health benefits, and security is the foundation and stabilizing force of Missouri’s economy. To protect this vital sector of Missouri’s economy, the right of farmers and ranchers to engage in modern farming and ranching practices shall be forever guaranteed in this state. No law shall be enacted which abridges the right of farmers and ranchers to employ agricultural technology and modern livestock production and ranching practices.
Section B. Pursuant to Chapter 116, RSMo, and other applicable constitutional provisions and laws of this state allowing the General Assembly to adopt ballot language for the 3 submission of a joint resolution to the voters of this state, the official ballot title of the amendment proposed in Section A shall be as follows: “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to ensure:
• That the right of Missouri citizens to employ modern farming and ranching practices and equipment shall not be infringed”.
We must ask questions…What is “modern” in this language? Is it using electricity and machines? What does that actually mean?
So, the voters will get this question: “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to ensure that the right of Missouri citizens to employ modern farming and ranching practices and equipment shall not be infringed”
But behind the scenes, and NOT on the ballot, if Missouri voters accept this proposal, they would be approving the entire bold section above forever in our Constitution! Including that dastardly last sentence.
Here it is again:
No law shall be enacted which abridges the right of farmers and ranchers to employ agricultural technology and modern livestock production and ranching practices.
In light of Monsanto being headquartered in St Louis as they are, and Monsanto’s roughly 90% control of the total crops in genetically modified corn and soy, having sold their GMO pig, and moving ever forward in patenting and mutating all life on the planet, that scares the heck out of me!
Would this proposed Amendment destroy any chance of our ever having a right to know if we are eating GMO products or not? It sure could be argued that letting people know what they are consuming would prohibit farmers from using some “modern” “technology” in their ag endeavors.
This bill is NOT good for farmers. It will greatly increase further consolidation of agriculture, increase proliferation of genetically modified patented life forms, and destroy local control of the spread of the consolidating (ie. Family Farm Destroying) CAFO’s.
There is only one segment of the population that this is “good” for. The Biotech and Mega Farm Corporations.
We must call our representatives and let them know this bill has major problems. Not the least of which is that the voters won’t even see the entire language they are supposed to vote on. There are some truly good legislative efforts in the House and Senate right now….this just is NOT one of those.