As I followed the last hearing Thursday for the Kauai County Council to decide on whether to override the veto of the controversial Bill 2491, it was no surprise that the events leading up to it would be chaotic. When you see the kind of commentary that the anti-GMO club has spewed out all over the social media and beyond, their behavior of the day is of no surprise.
Grown adults being rude to others and making accusations and threats against their perceived foe. Essentially this made them bullies all in the name of misinformation and ideology about biotechnology. The most disturbing part of the whole event was that it was clear that none of the leaders who supported this bill ever acknowledged the threats and violence made to seed workers, scientists, and the mayor. It was completely ignored as if it was what they wanted to happen. They did have to state to news outlets that those folks were not representative of the anti-GMO movement. Sure.
What was supposed to happen on Thursday was a vote to put an end to the issue for once and all. That did not happen when it was recognized that they did not have the vote to push this override through. It was then decided that there would be a deferral and then a vote after the 7th council member was appointed even though they decided on an earlier meeting to vote with 6 members. That maneuvering would give them enough votes for the override. Note that they had early agreed to no defer it any longer but suddenly backpedaled on it.
That backpedalling is a classic example of the lack of leadership and integrity of those serving in public office. They took an oath to uphold the laws and serve impartially to the best of their duties. Are they really doing that in this case? These four people promised the public, not just the anti-GMO activists, to uphold those duties to do what is in the best interest of the community. Obviously, they have no integrity by what we’ve seen by their actions. That is really a sad, sad day for Hawaii.
We teach our kids to be honest and true to our word. We value conducting ourselves in an ethical manner in all of our actions. We value honestly and integrity in our children. Those lesson in turn help to develop a conscience in them so that they know right from wrong. We, the adults show them this and are the example to folks. However, in the case of the county council, those basic rules and values are forsaken and what we see upon us is the mess they’ve created. These lost leaders have thrown the whole community into a divided one by choosing to ignore the evidence and prefer to align with activists with an obvious agenda. They have also taken advantage of local style of not speaking up and listening to the loudest of the bunch.
The short term consequence might mean that this kind of bill gets passed but the long term issues will be much more costly for all. These leaders have lost sight of where the evidence leads us and how we’re going to get there. The leadership needs to guide us based on what the evidence shows, not what a bikini clad activist or a mixed martial arts fighter demand. These activists are only about taking and not about providing options and solutions to the most valuable folks in our society today, and that is the farmers and scientists.
As much as they may have tons of testimony and hours of videos of testimonies asking for such a law, don’t forget to consider how that meal you just had got to your table. That testimony didn’t get it there, it was a farmer and that’s the one you should be listening to. Our leaders owe it to our farmers to stand their ground an listen to the right people to make he best decision for all.