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How can we argue that the labeling of transgenic plants through artificial selection...

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danielb77 | Valedictorian

Posted November 15, 2012 at 8:38 PM via web

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How can we argue that the labeling of transgenic plants through artificial selection should not be regulated and enforced by the government?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted November 15, 2012 at 8:57 PM (Answer #1)

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We can make this argument because genetically modified organisms (GMO) have not been shown to cause any health problems.  Therefore, labeling them or not labeling them should be an issue for the private sector, not the government.

Many people feel that GMO foods should be labeled and that the government should oversee this process.  They feel that GMO foods are potentially dangerous and therefore consumers should be warned so that they can know what they are ingesting.

If we want to argue against this, however, we can point out that there is only suspicion and doubt about GMO foods.  There is no proof that they can be in any way harmful to human beings or to the environment.  We can argue that governments should get involved in things like consumer decisions only as a last resort.  We can argue that the government should only require labeling in cases where it is necessary.  Since GMO foods are not dangerous, the government should leave things to the private sector.  If industry groups want to get together and create rules for who can label their food as “non-GMO” that is their business, not the business of the government.

We can say, then, that the government should not force labeling of GMO foods any more than it should require foods to declare that they have been fried or that they contain meat.

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