Thanks to Stephanie Seneff for the article.
My name is Robert, and I am a Cornell University undergraduate student. However, I’m not sure if I want to be one any more. Allow me to explain.
Perhaps the most potent example is , and the affiliated corporations such as . I’d like to share how I became aware of this troubling state of affairs.
Throughout my secondary education, I’ve always had a passion for science. In particular, physics and mathematics captured my fascination. My sophomore AP physics teacher, Mr. Jones, became my main source of motivation to succeed. He convinced us students that our generation was crucial to repairing humanity’s relationship to science, and how we would play key roles in solving immense global issues, such as climate change. Thank you Mr. Jones! Without your vision, I would have never had the chance to attend such an amazing university.
I came to Cornell as a freshman, deeply unaware of our current GMO agriculture paradigm, and my university’s connection to it. After two years of school, however, I was reluctant to continue traditional study. I never felt quite at ease, jumping through hoops, taking classes and tests that didn’t inspire me, in exchange for a piece of paper (degree) that somehow magically granted me a superior life. I know many undergraduates fit right in with the university education model, and that’s fantastic. I certainly didn’t, and my mental and physical health began to suffer as a result. I was left with no choice but to take a leave of absence, and pursue another path.
Instead, I began to self-study nutrition out of pure necessity. Luckily, I found Cornell Professor Emeritus T. Colin Campbell’s legendary epidemiological research on nutrition and human disease. His evidence was so clear that I quickly transitioned to a plant-based diet. This personal dietary shift had profound benefits, dispelled my depression, and led me to a deep fascination with the precursor to nutrition: . I became particularly interested in . I was astonished to learn that there existed , and that they were far During my time away from Cornell, I participated in three unique seasons of agroecological crop production, with incredible results. I am immensely grateful for these experiences.
It’s impossible to study and practice agroecology without becoming deeply aware of the other end of the spectrum:
Currently, theof US commodity crops (corn, soy, alfalfa, sugar beet) are genetically engineered to either withstand Roundup herbicide or produce Bt toxin pesticide. These “technologies” are ecologically damaging and unsafe. . The remainder generally gets converted into corn syrup, white sugar, vegetable oil, or biofuels — you know, ! This combined approach of growing GMO commodity monoculture crops, and feeding them to factory-farmed livestock, is . It’s also a leading contributor to climate change. In fact, some experts believe it to be .
As Professor T. Colin Campbell will tell you, the foods that come from this system (animal products and processed foods) are responsible for causing the vast majority of chronic disease. That’s a story for another day.
Cornell’s GMO Propaganda Campaign
I came back to Cornell a changed person, with a drastically different perspective. I was in for quite a shock, however:. I was expecting members of an intellectual community coming together, with proponents and critics of GMO food each giving the best verified evidence they had to support their cause. Given all that I had learned about GMO agriculture, I was excited to participate for the “GMO skeptic” side.
There were a total of 4 active professors in the course, and several guest speakers. They took turns each session with exactly zero critical examination of GMOs. Here are some of the more memorable claims I heard that fall semester:
It gets better. , documented this in an article titled . I highly recommend giving it a read, for further context.Jonathan Latham PhD, virologist and editor of
Perhaps saddest of all was the inclusion of several visiting African agriculture-academics in the course. They were brought here by the “Cornell Alliance for Science”. This organization was completely funded by a $5.6 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and appears to espouse only pro-GMO rhetoric. For those of you who are unaware, Bill Gates is a proponent of using agricultural biotechnology in Africa, India, and other developing regions. So… after all, who could question the expertise of an Ivy League powerhouse such as Cornell?
I then learned of Cornell’s deep historic ties to the biotech industry, which explained what I witnessed in the “GMO Debate” course. Notable examples include the invention of both the controversial bovine growth hormone, and the particle bombardment (“gene gun”) method of creating GMO crops. Both of these cases are connected to Monsanto.
To say the least, I was completely stunned.
What I’m going to do about all of this
You didn’t think I was just going to complain about a pro-GMO, industry-sponsored Cornell all day, did you? Good, because I have come up with a plan to create actual, lasting change on campus.
A student-led, expert-backed, evidence-based GMO course
I have decided to host an independent course on the current GMO paradigm, in response to Cornell’s course. It will be held on campus, but will have zero influence from Cornell or any biotech organization.This lecture series is completely free, open to the entire Cornell community and broader public, and will be published online (for free, forever) at my project, .
, of and fame, will be introducing the course on September 7, via video presentation. She will be speaking on how GMO agriculture is unnecessary to end world hunger.
is a public interest attorney and author of the powerful book which Jane Goodall (in her foreword) hails as “one of the most important books in the last 50 years”. He will be giving two lectures that elaborate on the themes in the book’s subtitle and demonstrate that the GMO venture has been chronically and crucially dependent on deception, and could not survive without it.
will be giving two lectures, on the dangers of Roundup Ready and Bt crops, respectively. He will also be participating in our special October 5 , representing the anti-GMO panel, alongside , a senior scientist for the Consumers Union. Jonathan has so his expertise is guaranteed.
is a geneticist and editor/science director of the Bioscience Resource Project. She will be giving a lecture on how GMOs are actually created, to dispel any industry myths of precision, accuracy, or deep genetic understanding.
is a geneticist with an interesting history — she was on the team of genetic engineers that created the first commercial GM food crop, the . She authored a book on her experience, titled . Her lecture will be a historical and personal account of the science, regulation, and commercialization of genetically engineered foods, effectively giving context for today’s GMO paradigm.
My personal scientific hero,, who started me on this whole journey years ago, will not be speaking on GMOs per se … but address some critically important, related topics: . He began his Cornell career over half a century ago, and has “seen it all”. He has fascinating anecdotes that will illuminate these campus-wide issues beautifully.
, if you’re reading this, I know how passionate you are about saving our species, our planet, and all of its beautiful inhabitants. Your wise presence in this project would take it to the next level. Alternatively, please consider a short video interview. Same for you !
All in all, our independent GMO lecture series will focus onthreats and solutions to our current ecological crisis … and perhaps most importantly, will feature 100% less Monsanto influence than Cornell’s course! Sounds good to me.
Taking it further
I’m on my second leave of absence from Cornell to work on this project, and due to my experiences, I have somewhat given up on a Cornell degree … not that I was ever intensely focused on attaining one. This GMO course is by far the most important thing I can do with my Cornell “career”. However, it is just the beginning of my plan.
Remember the $5.6 million Bill Gates gave Cornell through his foundation, to push the pro-GMO propaganda? Well, to coincide with our course, we’re launching an initiative to raise the for more information, but in essence, this would finance:to sponsor more appropriate forms of agriculture, educational outreach, and activism. Go to
Mr. Gates, if you truly care about feeding the world in a safe and sustainable manner, and if you are truly dedicated to science and to the kind of open, fact-based discourse on which it depends, I implore you to learn the important facts about which you have apparently been misinformed — and which are being systematically misrepresented by the Cornell organization you are funding. You can easily gain illumination by readingby Steven Druker, one of the key contributors to our independent GMO course. You might find Chapter 11, on the ramifications and risks of altering complex information systems, of particular interest. You are, after all, the world’s most famous software developer!
As the chapter demonstrates, biotechnicians are significantly altering the most complex yet least understood group of information systems on earth — the ones that undergird the development and function of living organisms. Yet, they fail to implement the kind of safeguards that software engineers have learned arewhen making even minor revisions to human-made systems. Can this be legitimately called science-based engineering?
Bill, feel free to reach out to any of the experts in our course, and don’t be hesitant to update your views on GMO agriculture in light of new understanding. A genuine scientist lives by this principle.
I Invite you all to go to and explore my proposals more. Please bear with the construction of the site in the coming weeks, in preparation for our amazing GMO course!
We live in somewhat of a scientific dark age. Our universities have become extensions of corporate power, at the cost of our health, livelihoods, and ecology. This has to stop, yesterday. We cannot afford to spread lies to our undergraduate students. Cornell, please reconsider your ways. Until you do, I will be doing everything in my power to counter your industry GMO propaganda efforts with the facts.
contact (at) gmowtf.comI hope you all do go there.
We can win this battle. Starve the monster, and it DIES.