Life Changers

The other day, I was given an opportunity to speak via Skype at the Voice of Farmers event held concurrently during the Monsanto Tribunal at The Hague. Having been a first hand witness as to what biotechnology has done for our family is a story that needs to be heard by the world.  Farming families who have adopted technology are the best sources for the potentials of this feared technology called GMO.

As I was preparing myself for this event, I was struck by the realization of how my life was changed by the papaya ringspot virus.  In just a matter of two years, a beautiful and productive field was going through a very slow death.  If this disease didn’t hit my dad’s farm at the time, I may be have different career path determined.  My dad wouldn’t have told me to forget about farming and I might have stuck with agricultural sciences.  My life has taken a completely different path because of one plant disease.


Just 2 years before the ringspot virus decimated this field.


What looks like a healthy tree is infected with PRSV and produces fruit that is not saleable and has decreased taste and texture.

This story may seem very insignificant in a country where very few farm, however when disaster hits countries where over 70% depend on a crop’s success, this can have huge consequences.  Families are affected by what happens on the farm.  Children may have nothing to eat and parents can’t send them to school.  Chronic malnutrition can set in with children being unable to reach their fullest potential.  With no income, there is no money to buy food also.

When I read an article by the Environmental Working Group attempting to debunk the need to feed the world, it angers me that well fed people can have the gall to share it on the internet.  People in the West have never suffered from starvation or malnutrition but are the first ones to deny others of food.  Food is what will improve human performance and capacity to do better things in the world.  The well fed are denying children and families this ability when they block technology.  It’s simply cruel to stand in the way without another option.

Biotechnology can be a life changer for all farming families worldwide if we stop and really see the consequences of not allowing access to it.  It’s utterly disheartening to me to realize that the people of Hawaii was used to send the world the wrong message about GMOs, when we know that papaya farms were saved by it.  The fact that the anti-GMO/organic proponents are focusing only on Monsanto shows that their bottom line isn’t about sole quality of organic food, but relies on fear and misinformation to maintain profitability.  If organic, non-GMO foods were so much better, why not fund studies to show its merits and sell it based on facts?

As I’m having more interactions with environmentalists, the sad truth comes shining through.  Marjorie Ziegler, a long time conservationist, made a comment to me on a fishing article today about how it was only okay for pono fishermen to fish the oceans. According to her, if one was a commercial fisherman, that wasn’t pono.

If you look closer at what is being said, those launching the attacks against farmers and fishermen, the very ones who feed people, are the self decided judges of this concept of righteousness.  They’ve proudly taken on the role of being the decider or who is allowed to fish and farm because they have decided for themselves that’s their role.  Since when has an environmentalist been put at the top of the chain to make unilateral decisions about what happens? It’s as if they think they are God in many ways.  This way of thinking shows why communities are divided when they are not capable or working with many parties being affected by policies they back.

It’s very important to save the environment but not to the point where an environmentalists makes decisions about who lives and who dies.  There is something very wrong when a person thinks that is their role in life.  Shouldn’t we adopt the attitude of how we can improve the lives of people so that they can live the best life they can? Why is it okay for someone who loves to protect nature to discount the lives of those fully intertwined in the environment? There’s a very narcissistic quality about the need to save earth and save themselves first before all others.  That’s a selfish way of thinking that one would not want the tables turned on them.

I have to chuckle when a few years back, the community group funded by Pierre Omidyar, Kanu Hawaii, would tout how it was about creating a compassionate Hawaii.  Recently, I picked up a Hawaii Center for Food Safety brochure stating Kanu was a supporter.  Being anti-GMO and aligning with CFS will not make for a compassionate Hawaii as we have seen and nor is it creating a peaceful world with the stances they support with going organic.  The organic industry is leading the charge to block the very tools that would make the world a better, less hungry place.  If one is so focused on what you’re eating, that mindset will never allow you to have an ability to be considerate of others who aren’t as privileged. Much of the environmental movement is funded by the wealthy and upper elite using the common man to fight corporations, which is really a hypocrisy.

Changing a life means not only changing yours, but realizing how you can impact others around the world who aren’t as lucky.  It’s our responsibility as people who have food in our stomachs and a roof over our heads to give back to others and stop taking away human potential.  You wouldn’t want someone denying you to becoming your best, so stop doing it to others.

Lessons from the Farm


My kids are on fall break so this is one of the few times they get to go down to Grandma and Papa’s house.  Some of the time it’s playing and the other time is spent working on the farm.  To my older daughter, it’s not the best way to spend her time but she realizes that she can make a little bit of money so it’s not so bad.  For my younger daughter, her first words are, “Do I have to?”

When you’re 6 years old, it’s way more fun to be playing outside or on the IPad.  To spend hours on your feet and putting stickers on thousands of papayas, it’s not fun.  Heck, I remember as a kid how much I disliked the farm work day in and day out.

As my dad was overhearing me talk to my daughter about staying on task and helping out on the farm, he started to laugh and said, “Those words sound familiar, huh?” I thought to myself that what she is saying is exactly what me and my siblings used to whine about.  As much as I didn’t like working as a kid, it sure taught me a whole lot of lessons on how each of us are parts of the working machine and when one part isn’t working, the whole machine can’t function well.  It’s the same for a farm.

To make the work more fun for my daughter, I decided to make a little competition with her on who could sticker the fastest on their half of the case.  If it was a tie, then we’d have to play jon-ken-po (rock-paper-scissors Japanese style) and we’d get a winner.  This worked like a charm with her and she managed to stay on task for the entire 6 hours we all spent preparing some 5000 lbs of papaya.  She realized that she was an important part of the farm too that day.

As I’m teaching my children what it’s like to be part of a farm family, I’ve realized that everyone who works on a farm learns some lessons that very people ever get in life.  Here’s some of the lessons I’ve learned on the farm:

  1. You can’t always do what you want on a farm and you have to develop skill to do certain tasks.
  2. If you stop and commiserate about how awful your work is, you hold up the entire operation.
  3. You’ve got to be productive with your time because there’s always something more to do even if you’re tired as heck.
  4. You’re not always going to stay clean and sweat free working on a farm.
  5. There’s always bugs and other pests around that you can either freak out about or get over it.
  6. People are dependent on the work you do and want the best.

A farm relies on the community to survive and thrive.  From our customers down to our workers, everyone plays a vital part in it’s success.  If we don’t grow good food, our customers won’t support us so we’ve got to maintain a quality product and have it for them regularly.  If we don’t have the manpower, we can’t get any of the work done to get our fruit out or cared for either.  A farm is really about people power and having the community be it’s foundation.

What’s the biggest problem with continuing in the path we are taking in Hawaii?  With no support of our current farms and farmers, we lose the next generation of farmers and that is the worst consequence we will face.  No new generation wanting to take on family farms means a smaller percentage of people willing to grow food and grow Hawaii.  Farming families need the support of the community because their failure means a loss to everyone.

Our keiki are spending so much time focused on getting good rest scores and doing well academically, but aren’t learning some real life lessons.  The younger generation is afraid of hard work and lack perseverance.  When things look too daunting, they can’t pull through.  Who will stay farming if the concept of hard work isn’t a value that’s taught? A farm requires dedication, perseverance, a lot of toughness, a love for learning, and tenacity to get through tough times.

The only way we can grow Hawaii is to grow our people and grow leaders grounded in facts to have a clear idea of what we want for the future.  It’s about time that we go back to our communities and start cultivating relationships again because our future depends on it.  We have to get kids on the farm and keep the ones who are on there learning those important lessons if we are to grow Hawaii.


When Home is Out of Reach


This past weekend, I took my three kids to the dentist.  My older two daughters went in for their cleaning and I waited with my 22 month old son out in the waiting room.

Being a typical boy, my son was wandering around the room playing and talking about the fish tank.  A father sat on the side watching my son play.  He appeared a bit sad as he saw Connor busily exploring.

“I have a son too and I love watching the videos I have of him at this age,” he said.  “My wife cries every time she watches it because we miss him.  I just watch the videos alone then cry to myself.”

I was a little unsure about what to say and asked him where his son was.  He proceeded to tell me that his son went to school in the mainland and decided to stay because he found a good job up in Oregon.  He said that it a hard for his son to come back given how expensive Hawaii was.  His son couldn’t find the job he wanted and didn’t want to work at a hotel at the front desk.

I could see some tears of sadness in the man’s eyes as he watched Connor run around.  He was really sad to not have his son home with family.  He went on about how he doubts there is a future for his son in Hawaii with the way jobs are here.  There’s no real incentive to return home.

As I listened to his story, I too did not want to move home.  When I finished graduate school and was applying for jobs, no one wanted to hire new grads.  I needed to have a year’s worth of experience just to apply.  I decided to stay in the mainland instead and had planned to stay there for good.

Thanks to my husband’s dream of farming and against my wishes, I did move back.  I’m fortunate to have a lot of family who helped us get started too.  I wouldn’t have been able to make it here financially without family given the high cost of living here.

There are so many Hawaii folks that I have met over the years who long to come back home but simply can’t.  It takes sacrificing career ambitions much of the time to return.  Hawaii’s job market is pretty limited depending on what one’s skill set may be.  It doesn’t help that starting your own business is very tough.  This isn’t a new phenomenon though.  Coming home is simply out of reach for so many.

Given what is happening to Hawaii, it appears that our local folks are leaving for better opportunities.  I’m hoping that I won’t have to feel the pain of missing my child who wants to come home but can’t.  Are we investing in bringing back our keiki who know and love Hawaii? Are they willing to take sacrifices to live back home? Something has to change or more local folks will leave and a small piece of local ways leaves with them.



“Make Loud Noise”


Last night as I was going through my newsfeed, several friends posted a video of the attacks still happening in Alleppo.  On the video was a very young child who was covered in dirt and blood who was a victim of the attack.  It also showed other young children who were maimed by the attacks there.  I cried after watching it and am still so sad by it.  It hit even closer to home since that baby looked so much like my son.

I can’t help but think about what kind of world we are creating if people are so willing to bomb communities and harm innocent children.  What are we doing wrong in the world that is making this happen?  That baby could’ve been one of our kids and there wouldn’t be much that we’d have control over to stop it.  It’s utterly heartbreaking.

Is this the world that my children will have to face when they grow up?  Do we want a world where you can’t even go to the mall or school without fear of some crazed person coming in and wanting to shoot or stab you?  I sure as heck don’t want to them to face that.

I’m starting to think that we as a free society is creating a very angry one.  Though a petition to ask a burger company to provide an option that they’ve never had and throwing them under the bus while doing it sounds inane, there’s something that bothers me about it.  It’s not about the petition or wanting a vegetarian option but the prevailing attitude that you can change things by making a loud noise.  Like the GMO issue where millions marched against Monsanto in anger got so much attention, a loud noise isn’t always the best way to do things.  Even with the protests against the pipeline making a media stir, I have to ask if being angry and making noise is really changing the bigger picture?

I’m starting to see that loud noises are only temporary and no truly having an impact overall.  It’s fueling an attitude that if you’re loud and mad about something, that’s the best way to see quick change.  It’s not necessarily good change if it wasn’t thoroughly thought out.  The loud noise against GMOs in Europe and the US have stymied efforts to adopt this technology in places that’s needed the most.  The idea that having enough people not always standing on fact but desires is enough to change policy is an dangerous stance to take.  The protests of Greenpeace worldwide has blocked the world’s ability adopt Golden Rice for nearly a decade.  The environmentalists have claimed victory in saving the earth from it, but malnourished and disabled children have suffered from the loudest demands.  They’ve made change but it hasn’t been for the betterment of society as a whole.

What has happened to the concept of making change by taking your own path and creating that better way that you think is superior?  Instead of resorting to attacking established businesses, why not be innovative and create your own company to to fulfill that perceived consumer demand?  Why use others successes to fundraise for your cause and go on your own merits to make that change you want to see?  Are you willing to take on that work to do that or do you choose the self-serving, easy path to create your “success?”

The prevailing attitude lately is make plenty noise to change things.  Once the noise is done, the work is over so one thinks.  The world doesn’t work that way and problems aren’t solved with a bandaid of noise.  Everyone has to take a commitment to be a part of the process to work together to figure out how to take the next step and what your contribution will be to address it.  Not only do we have to embody this attitude, but we need to teach this to the next generation so that they can be contributors to society instead of noisy complainers who aren’t sincere about making a world a better place.


People have to be in the fields, getting their hands, dirty, and committed to solving a problem.  Just making noise  over consumer demands have never had a truly lasting impact on society.  


Dishonesty is Unsustainable

The more I pay attention to what the anti-GMO activists do and say, I’ve come to realize that after 3 years of their charades, some people are getting a clue of the sham that they are pulling.  When the lady who accused my dad of poisoning her has the guts to come and apologize to him and even give him a hug, it tells me that there is hope.  She could have easily forgotten it and walked by the fields but she didn’t.  She came and did the right thing.

As I was listening to Ashley Lukens, the director of the Center for Food Safety, talk on Thursday, I heard some very interesting claims being made.

“I also wanted to thank my friend, and fellow academic, Robert Perkinson and the American studies department, for creating this space here at UH for us to bring.  I just want to thank Robert.  Robert has helped to bring a lot of great thinkers to Hawaii in the 10 years I’ve lived here.  I’ve had the opportunity to meet with activists from around the world who work with a variety of issues and it’s because Robert has this incredible willingness to navigate the complex hierarchy of UH Manoa like nobody I have ever seen. It takes about 72 pieces paper all signed off with the perfect signature to reserve a room and do it every time so I really appreciate it.  Anyone who is a professor here at UH, this is the unpaid labor of being a professor and I really appreciate you.  And also the Chancellor’s Thought Leader Series helped us put this on and the UH Office of Sustainability.”

She makes the claim that the Chancellor’s office helped with this event, which caught me by surprise.  She also has it in her citation-free handouts that UH is a partner of the Center for Food Safety.


Enter a caption

Just like the name of their group, the Center for Food Safety, they use deception to get the public to believe their legitimacy.  The name alone makes make people think that they really are a food safety group and yet no one ever questions the fact that there’s nothing on the hepatitis A outbreak.  Nor do they ever post any food recalls either to inform the public.  By putting the University of Hawaii’s name on their “partners,” the unsuspecting person will think that if the university supports it, then they must be genuine.

Being the skeptical person I am, I decided to contact the Chancellor’s office directly and find out the truth.  Turns out, Ashley Lukens wasn’t totally truthful that night to the large audience in attendance.  Here’s the email I received back from Dr. Clifton Tanabe, the executive assistant to the Chancellor.

“I’m the executive assistant to the Manoa Chancellor.  David Lassner asked me to look into the Center for Food Safety event held on Sept. 14 at the UHM Architecture Auditorium.  I have learned that this event was not endorsed nor sponsored by the Chancellor’s Office.  Robert Perkinson (who, I understand, may have helped with arrangements for the auditorium) does organize a different speaker series for the Chancellor’s Office, but this event was not at all part of that series.”

Once again, Ashley must think that people don’t pay attention to what their group says.  Yes, your die hard GMO free activists believe and worship what you say but everyone else doesn’t fall for your shtick at all.  She’s an expert of political manipulation and it’s getting to be pretty easy to pull her “information” apart because it’s fact-less.

The emotional arguments made by the Center for Food Safety can go all over the place.  They have no bar in what they will claim or say, much like what the Food Babe does.  Therein lies the huge difference between the anti-GMO folks and the rational, logic based, science supporters.  We’re tied to facts that can’t go all over the place.  We are bound to what the evidence shows and Ashley and friends will do and say anything to get their way.

That reckless way of behaving and acting can only last so long before people get tired of it. Like the Babes Against Biotech’s Nomi Carmona giving up the 300 domain names she registered of people in the ag community, these kinds of actions can only last so long.  These folks will learn the lesson that you can only fool people for so long before they realize what has been done.  Meanwhile, the farmers are still producing crops and the GMO free activists are still yelling and giving the bird with no farm or actual product produced from it, other than their historical tantrums documented online.  The ugly mark they made in the world and the dishonest tactics they launched will be sustained in history forever.

The Anti-Intellectuals: Earthjustice and the Center for Food Safety


The anti-GMO folks say some pretty amazing things and have very incredible ideas as to what it is.  To those who have no clue on some basic science, logic, and critical thinking, it’s easy to get sucked up into this because there is a lot of repetition and emotion in all of the anti-GMO messaging.  Every once in awhile, some of them will piece the information together and say some really wild things.

I can tell that these folks really don’t critically analyze what their saying.  Most don’t have enough of a background to come up with a decent understanding of the science and will never go back to actually learn, which shows the anti-intellectual nature of this movement.  Nor do many people even remember what they have said before and easily get called out it.  The impulsive nature of what they say and do is reflection in the lack of self control and only leads to unforeseen consequences that further shows the true colors of the movement itself.

I happened to pick up a flyer from the Food Babe event put out by the Center for Food Safety the other night from their community education table.  Like their previous publications, there is never any sources for a person to go back to for referencing the source, nothing.  The unsuspecting person will get entranced by the beautiful imagery of taro fields, babies, and grass huts nestled in a valley.  The colorful nature of the booklet and high quality printing gives the illusion of something legitimate to the public.  The printed materials are written very much like a religious handout to get people to believe in the cause.

It looks so good that it would not be something deceptive but in reality, is completely a facade.  Looking at this would not make you want to question the info presented because it looks so important.  It easily fools so many people into believe that CFS is a “legitimate” food safety group despite nothing in the booklet referring to food borne illnesses and actual safety issues in our food supply.  There’s nothing mention of the food recalls at all or anything on the hepatitis A outbreak in Hawaii.  You simply get the feeling that their there to save you from poisoning.

In one of the handouts, I read an interesting passage on the EPA and regulation of public health risks.  (Note: nothing mentioned about REAL health risks and the Food Safety and Modernization Act that does protect people.)


The Center for Food Safety is telling people that the EPA can’t be trusted.  Their specialty is creating doubt in people who will never take the time to critically question what’s being presented.  The typical anti-GMO believer just repeats these phrases.  (Note: The “minuscule” contribution of the seed industry is not mention that it’s valued at over $150M to our state’s economy and leads in agricultural activity.  But hey, that’s not important to mention!)

In order to critically think about an issue, one must be able to synthesize all information being presented.  That includes remembering anything else that was said earlier by other people.  Not even a month ago, Earthjustice’s attorney, Paul Achitoff, announced that they were suing to get the EPA to regulate pesticides in Hawaii because the state was allegedly “failing.”


Let’s see here.  Earthjustice and the Pesticide Action Network wants the EPA to regulate pesticides in Hawaii, meaning that they will trust the agency.  However, back in 2013, they headed to the Kauai County Council, under Councilmember Gary Hooser’s lead, to have the county regulate pesticides and GMOs because they didn’t trust the EPA or state.  They also tried to pass county ordinances on Maui and Hawaii alleging that the state and federal government were not regulating the issue adequately.  Now they are changing their tune and trusting the EPA again???

Do the GMO free folks think everyone is absentminded???  These folks say one thing and then take a different action that completely contradicts themselves.    Ashley Lukens of CFS has repeatedly said that she wants the state to pass a buffer zone law but then her pal, Paul Achitoff of Earthjustice doesn’t trust the state and wants this regulation held with the EPA.  If buffer zones become law, will Ashley suddenly trust the state’s handling of the matter?  Before that they wanted the county to regulate and confidently told taxpayers that it was this piece of legislation was legal, dismissing the county’s legal review that it wasn’t in it’s scope.  The courts have ruled that the environmental groups were wrong and in reality, deceived the public.

These groups are causing mass chaos and confusion in the public to.  They’ve been at it for the last 3 years.  Three years of constant fear mongering in our communities has consequences to even small farmers.  Some hardcore believers continue to follow them blindly and never bother to think about what’s being said.

The beautiful thing about this mucked up movement is that some people are waking up and swimming out of the ocean of fear.  Remember the incident a few months ago when my dad was verbally abused and threatened by the lady who lived uphill from our farm?


That same woman showed up on our farm again this past Monday.  Everyone working that day had a sinking feeling when they saw her approach my dad on the field. My brother was ready to jump off the tractor to defend him if it was needed.  However, instead of yelling at my dad, she did something completely different.

She proceeded to apologize to my dad.  She told him that she had realized what she did was completely wrong and she was sorry and asked for his forgiveness. Taken by surprise, he did forgive her.  He was thankful that she came back to talk with him.  She then went up to him and hugged him and left.

In the midst of massive fear and confusion, there is beauty.  People can change if those in the agricultural communities keep speaking up and telling our stories and what we face.  Our stories of what we do will be heard above those who seek to destroy us.  We must never forget that the farmers are the pillars of our communities.  It’s their work that gives us the freedom to not be on the farm.

It is through learning that people can change.  Who is ready and willing to commit to learning about farms from farmers? We can’t continue to move forward if people are having to defend their work.  We have to start listening to the right people who are on the fields, working the lands and feeding us.  That’s the pono thing to do.




The Allure of Anti-Intellectualism

Tonight I decided to attend the “Ethics of Eating” sponsored by the Center for Food Safety and featuring Vani Hari, the Food Babe.  It was a free event held at the University of Hawaii thanks to a Dr. Robert Perkinson, an American Studies professor, who helped to get this event a venue at the Architecture School Auditorium.  I wanted to hear what this “food activist” had to say and see what kind of people attend these events.


I got there with my friend, Sarah, at 5 pm to check out the True Food Market held out in the courtyard.  I decided to wear my March Against Myths I love GMO shirt to distinguish that I wasn’t a true believer.  I did get some odd looks but no one approached us which told me the anti-GMO emotional tones must be settling down a bit.


In order to get something to eat, you had to pay $5 to get a bunch of tickets for various vegan foods.  I didn’t think that there would be food, so I had gotten a plate lunch from L&L BBQ prior.  Not realizing that the event was vegan, I still sat there and ate that piece of unethical, Monsanto grain raised, industrial piece of chicken and some GMO macaroni salad.  It smelled delicious but I bet it raised some eyes in the crowd smelling it. I already started the evening showing how unethical I eat apparently.


As more people started to gather in, it was fascinating to see so many people crowding into listen to a person who has no background in what she’s talking about.  There was an older woman with long scraggly hair and collagen pumped up lips, some Hawaiians, older adults, people of all walks of life there.  There were even young kids with their parents joining in too.  I estimated that at least 250 came to listen to her.


Lots of GMO cotton was being worn in the courtyard this evening.  People were wearing t-shirts, jeans, sundresses, cargo shorts, and aloha shirts that were clearly made from biotech cotton.  Not only was there a lot of cotton, Ashley Lukens, the director of CFS, pictured in the black and white jumpsuit was baring her tattoos and her freshly chemically treated hair too.  She had a “Community Propaganda Education” table set up with all of her flyers touting that people were being poisoned by GMOs and pesticides.  I had a feeling that she’d use this event to “inform” people about GMO ground zero.

Eventually, we finally got to enter the auditorium and find a seat to actually hear the panelists and the Food Babe herself.  It started off with Ashley Lukens talking about how “f**king amazing” some people are and more curse words in front of all the young children sitting the the audience.  I was appalled of how classless it was to openly swear knowing that young kids were  in the audience.  I thought it was inconsiderate to those parents who were there.  But then again, this is how the anti-GMO folks forget to be considerate of others much of the time.

They were passing out cards to fill out any questions also.  It was quite funny how these question cards somehow was passed around us and that when the basket came back, it was empty.  I guess it was symbolic that in this cult-like atmosphere, questioning the authority is never tolerated.


After Ashley gave her profanity laced introduction, Hanohano Naehu, from Molokai did a rap song about the evils of corporations and GMOs.  The malama the aina bit came out and no pesticides got mingled in the lyrics too.  The battle cry came out too that they had to protect people by fighting this perceived bad guy.  He even decried that science was bad.  I almost felt that I was in a church service where people start singing hymns to get the congregation going, especially when they’d get the crowd to throw in the “ea” chorus.  He had some choice words put in his song too that were not appropriate for young children.

Then the panel started off with their stories about what brought them there.  There was Kaui Sana, from Mao Organics, a Doorae Shin, from the Kokua Foundation, and the Food Babe herself.  I honesty think that the most reasonable person on the panel was Kaui who talked about the need to return to the land and learn how to grow food.  The stuff that Doorae was saying about veganism and her encouragement to watch movies to learn about food was typical preaching with no promotion of critical thinking.  The Food Babe was doing her typical story of unhealthy eating led her on this mission, and how biotech is after her personally, and even how a Southern Kauai baby has liver cancer from pesticides. (She even had to throw in the dramatic cries too when telling the story of the baby.  Problem is, there’s no GM farms in Southern Kauai, but the true believers don’t even think to ask.)  The funniest thing she said was that she was glad she didn’t go to law school and became a food activist, likely knowing that it’s much more profitable.

I had to leave early from the event to get back to my kids but left the event really sad in many ways.  How is it that a place of higher learning like the University of Hawaii can bring in a charlatan who takes advantage of people’s ignorance and fears under the guise of of “education?”  It was an American studies professor that helped get the facilities to have her “preach” her message too.  Meanwhile, the people at the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources are doing work to develop better plants and methodologies as part of it’s mission as a land grant college.  The law school, Hawaiian studies program, and now an American studies’ professor is participating in touting the anti-GMO rhetoric that can impede research and innovation.  That is utterly disturbing to me at at time when Hawaii “intellectuals” were all talking about the need to do something about climate change.

The social justice warriors, backed with anti-corporate conspiracies and emotions, are all energized by how they feel and their need to feel like their saving the world with how they eat.  The repeatedly say that they don’t need science and that they aren’t against science, which is truly sad.  These folks are about how they feel and using simple ways, a heuristic, to make better decisions about what they eat and how they live.  Food Babe is the preacher to the masses as we are seeing when she states things like don’t eat things you can’t pronounce or go organic.  You’ll never see her talk about the physiology of eating, human metabolism, exercise, or other evidence based ways to become healthier or live better.  She will never talk to people about DNA, plant breeding, crop protection, or basic farming either to encourage learning.  People love her because she’s the simple way to better their lives without really having to think hard about it.  She encourages others to just believe her and don’t question because everyone is attacking her and not her information.  Any contrary information is all a conspiracy and media manipulation despite her being very much involved with those actually manipulating the media.  Wanting to learn about science is condemned by people like Ashley and Vani.

I get it that people want to be healthy and what the Food Babe touts is easy to follow and boosts self esteems.  Who doesn’t want to feel better about themselves?  She really creates true believers that don’t think or question information to make good decisions.  It’s just easier to go after things that they think are making them healthier with her Food Babe Army.  She encourages people to go after companies and “change” them without even disclosing that she makes money each time she does that through affiliate links and other ways.

I feel like I lost brain cells tonight after listening to much of what was being said.  I’ve also realized that this isn’t anti-science but more of anti-intellectualism.  No one needs science is what activists always yell.  From the TMT, to fishing, to GMOs, and any other issue, the science and facts are totally rejected.  When we reject those objecting measures of what we are seeing, we can never find a common ground to work together from.  There’s no critical thinking that will utilize a good rationale to help people think and problem solve together.  They just want quick and easy solutions and a mob of believers is the way to do it.

Without an intellectual conversation about our world, we can’t solve the real problems at hand.  Obscuring facts and impeding progress with conspiracies are only blocking innovation and genuine ways to address saving our planet.  Though the Food Babe may make people think she’s making the planet better, she is actually contributing to problems by blocking progress and profiting from her efforts to misinform.  Ashley Lukens and her Center for Food Safety followers are also impeding the world’s ability to do things better by attacking a technology that could make it cleaner.  It’s all about what “they” eat and how it makes them feel better and nothing about what anyone else has to eat, which is a selfish, pompous way of thinking.

People involved in an intellectual movement will know some basic tenets on how to do things.  They will research the issue well and learn all side of the it by talking to all parties.  When it comes to Hawaii, they must consider the culture, people, and history to create a collaborative way to address the problem at hand.  People involved must have a willingness to learn and work together to come up with a good plan for the future.  They will seek facts and go to the sources to develop a plan based on those facts.  The Center for Food Safety and the Food Babe clearly show that that they aren’t about intellect and creating a real plan to address their perceived problem.

As much as they claim to want to “help” Hawaii, the know nothing about agriculture and local ways when they give Vani a closed lei while being 6 months pregnant.  It’s taboo to do that according to Hawaiian culture.  Even the Hawaiian rapper didn’t even notice it on Vani either.  She wore that lei all night.

I heard a great quote that social justice warriors tend to protest the things they know nothing about.  Need evidence of it?  Just look at the characters involved.