I can’t tell you how disheartening it is to see more and more of the shill and troll accusations flying around by several of the anti-GMO supporters regarding Food Evolution. It’s maddening to me that a professor of nutrition is even using those terms and trying to back out of the film. So what’s wrong with this crier of shill and troll bit?
These are shills. Does it look human to you?
This is a troll. Does it look human to you?
This is my family. We indeed look human.
Can you see the difference between the trolls and shills and my family? The two images above are clearly not human and when people start resorting to name calling, it dehumanizes people. When you’re dehumanized to a troll or a shill, it’s easy to forget about the beating heart, the feelings, and thoughts of that person speaking out to you and challenging your beliefs.
When a person is no longer seen as human, it is easy to treat them badly. You can kick a troll and beat it into the ground, and you can throw that shill coin away. It’s just an object with no feelings and no life. When those objects are gone, it’s easy to forget about them. It’s abhorrent to do that to a human, but in reality, that is what we are doing when society uses fear and avoids facts in the discussions at hand. Once a person is seen as an object, it’s easy to do inhumane things to them. That’s the problem with calling people names like trolls and shills.
I’m deeply troubled by highly esteemed professors and celebrities going around calling others names. If they are leaders, does a leader seek to take away the human element of our world? Sure Food Evolution is a movie but it tells a powerful story of humans and what we’ve gone through. There are real stories in the movie and calling one’s story propaganda is hurtful. From the small papaya farmer in Hawaii to the African mother who is seeking to feed her children, we are no different from each other as humans. We bleed the same blood and we feel the pain of suffering. We want what is best for our families. I know there are others deserving the same comforts that I have which makes for a good quality of life. What’s wrong with stepping back and looking at the facts presented in Food Evolution that GM technology may be helpful? Are you not willing to learn the plight of others?
Brave people are willing to change their beliefs and lead us in the right way. Yes, you esteemed professors, you have a duty to your students and to the public to teach compassion and remind students that there’s a world far away from us that is affected by our actions. You can change your mind and know that others will thank you for it. You’ll face a lot of hate from such a challenge but be brave for the others that you will indeed help.
Please stop the troll and shill cries once and for all and start opening your heart to listen to the needs of your fellow human. May this story of biotechnology help others as it has helped my family. We are all human and need to help create that compassionate world for our children.
Just one of my little “trolls” that I love with all of my heart. She’s not propaganda and nor is she an object.
Thank you. I have a sense of how we got here but not a way back out. I think that Keith Kloor is right and this is largely a battle of values. Opponents draw such a hard line on this technology that it’s like a flag for tribal affiliation. Support for genetic engineering discredits any claim to other shared values like sustainable agriculture or ecological protection. Suggesting otherwise makes one a special threat deserving a special name.
The genetic fallacy (fallacy of origins) says that a thing is good (or bad) because of its source rather than because of an inherent quality. Biotechnology trips over this basic flaw of categorical reasoning. We know that what matters is what a gene does, not where it comes from. But genetics is super hard in the scheme of things most people know about. Categorizing by origins is relatively easy.
This is a more ubiquitous kind of logic error than I first realized. Appeal to nature is just one special case. So is Argumentum ad Monsantium. Even arguments of shill or troll are in effect genetic fallacy, meaning that “your argument is wrong because you are paid to make it” or “your argument is wrong because you like being provocative”. It’s a lot of work to actually debate the technology when it is so much easier to just discredit the person’s motives, which is to say the origins of the argument.
I think we have to hammer on this point for a while and see what cracks loose.
I have traveled to third world countries my whole life. I have seen subsistence farming and poverty. Most ‘anti GMO’ people in Hawaii are not against science as this article would have you believe. They are against spraying massive amounts of pesticides and herbicides into a fragile environment that has no ability to recover. They seem extreme and become extreme when no one listens to them because ‘contributions’ from these companies make their way into campaigns and other organizations. Common sense tells us that massive chemical dumping for any reason will eventually destroy our environment in Hawaii. Few would deny this. Experiments with herbicides and pesticides, although more costly should be done in controlled environments…not in open air environments like Hawaii. When you visit a third world farming community you need to look at Howard Buffet (Warren Buffet’s son). He creates an environment that defies famines and uses centuries old techniques that also embody modern knowledge. A GMO seed VS an organic seed? It depends on where. Howard Buffet is about empowering villages and nations to feed people while enriching their lives and the envirnoment. He is successful and bases his techniques on ‘science’. Read
Forty Chances’ by Howard Buffet. This article is so very wrong. If you live and work in these third world countries you know that ‘ if the birds don’t sing anymore’ something has gone terribly wrong. This above article is not what I have seen or experienced over a lifetime……it is simply not what ‘is’. I am so sad that it has been published without anyone actually going to these countries and talking to the people…living with the people. This article is very deceiving.
Unfortunately Susan, those in third world countries are using high amounts of pesticides with no protection because of the lack of technology.
Ask a farmer in the Philippines or in Bangladesh about how many times they must spray their crops. Their children are the ones spraying these crops too yet the anti-GMO folks turn a blind eye to that.
I have been to the developing world and I’ve know those from several countries who can attest to the truth that you’re avoiding. The well fed are leaving farmers and their family exposed to the so call pesticides that you’re against.
Did you even bother to watch the movie before coming here to comment???