info4action archive


GE -Third US Anti-GE Action This Week

Date: September 15, 1999 Contact: Jeffrey Tufenkian 619-584-6462

Third US Anti-GE Action This Week

An underground group leveled a University of California, Davis genetic
engineering test site early Tuesday morning according to an anonymous
communiqué released today.
In the third attack on genetically engineered (GE) test sites this week in
the US, the group calling themselves Reclaim the Seeds uprooted and topped a
quarter acre of GE "Round-Up Ready" sugar beets.
"We see what the corporations give back to the public," commented Reclaim
the Seeds spokeswoman and sugar beet enthusiast, Johnna Appleseed.  "They
give back holes and scars in the ground, clear-cuts in our hills, and paved
wastelands in our cities; they give back water too toxic to drink, air too
dirty to breathe, and food too mutated to eat."
Details of past anti-GE actions are available by contacting
Genetix Alert is an independent news center which works with other
above-ground, anti-genetic engineering organizations.  GA has no knowledge
of the person(s) who carryout any underground actions.  GA does not advocate
illegal acts, but seeks to explain why people destroy genetically engineered
crops and undertake other nonviolent actions aimed at resisting genetic
engineering and increasing the difficulty for entities which seek to advance
genetic engineering or its products.  GA spokespeople are available for
media interviews.

Reporters and other interested parties may contact Genetix Alert at:
phone: 619-584-6462, fax: 619-528-1449
PO Box 3992, San Diego, CA 92163, USA
contact: Jeffrey Tufenkian
(communiqué follows on next page)

Reclaim the Seeds Attacks Genetically-Engineered "Round-Up Ready" Sugar
Beets at U.C. Davis
RTS Communiqué, September 14, 1999

In the cool and silent early hours of September 14, an agricultural
biohazard at the University of California-Davis (UC-D), was leveled by the
group "Reclaim the Seeds." Under cover of night, clad in masks and guerilla
gardening gear, the vegetable-loving plant defenders uprooted and topped a
1/4 acre of genetically-engineered (GE) "Round-Up Ready" sugar beets.
"Round-Up Ready," a brand name coined by the chemical corporation Monsanto,
refers to the plant's genetically-altered tolerance to Round-Up, the world's
largest selling herbicide. This sugar beet site, hidden from public view and
knowledge like most GE sites, is a staging ground for one of the most
dangerous scientific and corporate endeavors of our age.
This act of resistance to genetix is the second in two months for lucky
Davis. In our first action one month ago, Reclaim the Seeds cut down 2 acres
of Round-Up Ready corn, located just adjacent to the sugar beets site. We
proclaim these acts as self-defensive measures on behalf of all beings
against Monsanto, UC-D and the university system's corporate boot-licking,
and the global GE takeover!  This was also done in response to UC Davis'
recent collaboration with Jackson Laboratory, the world largest distributor
of genetically altered mice.  These menaces have come up with over 2300
different ways to make the lives of research mice miserable, including
genetically engineering them to have cancer,  diabetes,  be obese, or born
without an immune system. This contract is expected to double the amount of
research mice on campus to about 30,000.  UC Davis needs to understand that
genetic engineering of any kind will not be tolerated.
Monsanto has invested heavily in agriculture as a way to insure that
agribusiness continues to be dependent on Monsanto's toxic herbicides and
pesticides. This is a microcosm for the larger picture of merging corporate
interests creating monopolies in many markets, and very significantly, in
food. In this day and age, food is not a right, but an industry. This
neoliberal economic trend means there will soon be only one choice for the
people: the corporation's choice. Monsanto aims to convert the domestic
soybean production to 100% GE by the year 2000.
Monsanto is currently under attack on many fronts globally, and outrage and
action are increasing all the time. Concerned individuals, environmental and
social justice groups, farmers, and governments across the globe are
speaking out, protesting, destroying crops, and, in a growing number of
cases, restricting or banning the import of GE food. Considering the
products Monsanto has contributed to the planet (Agent Orange, PCB's, DDT,
Bovine Growth Hormone, etc.), this distrust and enmity should be no mystery.
Reclaim the Seeds spokeswoman and sugar beet enthusiast Johnna Appleseed
commented, "We see what the corporations give back to the public. They give
back holes and scars in the ground, clear-cuts in our hills, and paved
wastelands in our cities; they give back water too toxic to drink, air too
dirty to breathe, and food too mutated to eat; they give back houses we
cannot afford to live in and jobs our bodies cannot do for long without
breaking. The wealth of the corporate elite rains down acidic and bitter,
leaving messes it will take generations to clean up. Corporations give back
to the people death.
"We are responding as a united force,  strong and sure. Reclaim the Seeds
will continue to find the fields and greenhouses of GE biohazards, to find
the corporate headquarters and offices, and we will act! Resistance to
genetic-engineering is as transnational as the corporations themselves!"
GE crops are poorly-tested and unpredictable. They are referred to by many
as "Frankenfoods," the name being used in all seriousness as the situation
grows more dangerous and irreversible every day. Geneticists supposedly
pursuing the noble paths of "education" and "discovery" are driven by
corporate interests and financial gain and are not accountable to the
citizenry or to any moral and practical considerations. Learning and
research set for ill gains are not "noble" or worthy of existence and must
be stopped before it is too late.
Cross-pollination of GE crops with organic and non-GE crops is occurring at
an alarming rate and there's no going back. Small organic farmers near GE
fields are having their crops contaminated by this cross-pollination. Land
planted with plants engineered to be resistant to certain pesticides gets
heavily sprayed, and soon the insects in the area evolve to be resistant to
the pesticide as well. Moreover, Monsanto prohibits the saving of their seed
by their customers with a contract, and sues when this is violated. This
ensures that farmers become dependant on buying unpredictable seeds from
Monsanto every year, and it eliminates the ancient knowledge of seed saving.
All this spells out the pollution of the world's gene pool, critical loss of
genetic diversity, and disaster for the world's food supply. Coming from
both an ecological and a social justice perspective, GE means destruction.
This is why groups working on many issues and from many backgrounds are
coming together to fight the nightmares of Biotechnology.
This crop-pulling event is in solidarity with the Karnataka State Farmers
Association of India, who issued a call for nonviolent direct action against
GE in a campaign called "Operation: Cremate Monsanto." In Karnataka, farmers
have gathered on Monsanto's fields and publicly burned the crops. Reclaim
the Seeds also dedicates this action to farm workers of the world who are
exposed to deadly poisons-the herbicides and insecticides of profit. Let
this be a rallying cry for all those fighting for justice and freedom and
against the biotechnology industry!
Si se puede,
Reclaim the Seeds