Saturday, March 25, 2000, 10:49:08 PM, you wrote in relation to E. Ann
Clark's concern regarding GMOs and open pollination in the organic
tree fruit industry; plus "The Stations response to our concerns":
>> to send us a document entitled "Regulation for Biotechnology" that
>> says that organic growers should increase their buffer zones to
>> avoid contamination by pollination.
DW> I'm kind of mystified by all this. First, the edible portion of
DW> the apple is entirely maternal tissue. Second, apples are
DW> virtually 100% vegetatively propagated. Even if all the nightmare
DW> scenarios about GMO hazards came true, none of it would matter in
DW> the case of apples.
That was a "reasonable" response on your part. However, I must point
out that while the situation you point out does indeed represent the
current status quo relative to drupe production, it forms part of a
continuum based on how apples actually got to be apples, rather than a
few men's petty, little short sighted response to that evolutionary
effort on the part of an organism capable of more than they themselves
are - unless you believe the barbaric and myopic exploitation you
describe of a fruit trees capacity to produce a life giving substance
(sustaining, sustainable substance would also be accurate); has really
been permanently relegated to the silly role inherent to your
The problem underlying both current conventional agriculture's
approach (of which GMO are simply the latest fad / expression), is
that this "way" of "working with trees" happens to cut short the trees
evolutionary process. The obvious assumption here is that now "Man"
will decide how and when trees will evolve, and do so using
recombinant means, as defined by his own short sighted interest in
converting apples into an exchange medium ($), rather than a "life
giving, sustaining, sustainable substance".
The point being that while the above is indeed true, it's also
reversible and won't last much longer (i.e. through this century).
The principle concern here is obviously one of: "Who's world is this"?
The response Ann describes here assumes that the "organic minority" -
just a bunch of "kooks" anyway, according to the still lethargic (but
less so, after the 1998 response to the NOP Rule) "dominant"
perspective, must give way (move back, and farther back; as if they
were akin to those who suffered the process described in "Bury my
Heart in Wounded Knee) to the "unstoppable wave of the future" - not
just the GMO wrinkle but the underlying assumption regarding the
plant's nature in relation to "man's capacity to modify that nature
according to his own deviate goals". You are right in that nature
remains relatively protected from these deviations. It's just that
neither man nor fruit tree are fulfilling their destiny that way.
I sincerely hope you're capable of assimilating what I'm telling you
here. While your statement is technically correct, is doesn't take
into account the context in which that which is occurring exists;
therefore you fail to see where things are really moving. Man is just
part of a greater picture, one that gave rise to his existence and on
which he depends, much more than "some of us" realize. No matter:
Others of us know why we were born and are not inactive in that
The immediate question is: "Who will give way to who"? Technologies
like the Internet have also changed the scenario, so that the wounded
knee syndrome is likely to occur now. People are a bit better
organized and their ability to expressive their concerns is more
easily distributed than before.
A lack of response on your part will indicate no more than your
continuing failure to comprehend the importance of working with rather
than against other organisms (including man) and the true (here we can
give an evolutionary weight to the word) nature of each.
But I can accept that, on your part - if not in nature itself.
A "Regulation for Relegating Biotechnology" will follow the one E. Ann
Clark described and tie things up in court while the greater and
substantial public's interest is defined - again and again.
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