Golden Rice defies every anti-science convention that left-wing activists throw in front of biology. It is not controlled by Monsanto or any other company, it cannot possibly express anything harmful in humans, and it can't have any effect on the environment. All it can do is save 18 million children from dying due to vitamin A deficiency and another 18 million from going blind. That's the number of kids that have been harmed while environmental groups have worked peasant hordes into a rage and gotten them to attack Golden Rice fields.
Sputtering that evil biological tinkerers took a gene from corn and put it into rice and that turns it into Frankenfood just makes activists look dopey. They don't even know enough science to be wrong, they don't know any and don't want to know any. The critics of genetically modified food are a small cabal of crackpots like Jeffrey Smith, transcendental meditationist and yogic flyer, sprinkled with a few outlier scientists who should know better but intentionally misrepresent the technology to create cultural confusion.
Expect them to put on their anti-science fête at the next American College of Nutrition Annual Conference, since the moderator is supplement guru Dallas L. Clouatre, who throws around terms like pleiotropy to sound science-y but also endorses known fraud and anti-GMO activist Gilles-Eric Seralini and makes his living selling alternative cures. As with the recent food conference in Ireland, the scientists invited will simply be stoic punching bags for the fear and doubt pandering of the falsely equivalent opposition.
Benson rightly ridicules the "let them eat kale" mentality of progressive first world elites who raise money insisting poor people can buy organic food. He quotes Science 2.0 contributor Kevin Folta, who said, "It is easy to stand against a technology with a full belly and 20/20 vision."
Indeed it is. If activists can do better science, do better science. If their plan will feed the world, stop spending donations on new fundraising campaigns and help feed people.
Not everyone is on board with the kookier American and ridiculously anti-science European fundraising techniques, which consist of demonizing anything the left wing distrusts, like food, medicine and energy. David Ritter of Greenpeace Australia-Pacific is apparently quite reasonable for an environmentalist. He says he is pro-vaccine and flouride in water, hesitant on nuclear power (in Greenpeace-speak, that means against) but says that GM crops are not an issue that Greenpeace Australia-Pacific is campaigning about now. With those beliefs, he'd be thrown out of the gang here. Heck, he'd practically have to be a Republican in America.
It's almost as if environmentalists in Australia are like American environmentalists were before 1960; sane, taking each issue on its own merits, and actually concerned more about the environment than endorsing social engineering positions to create a fundraising umbrella.
Greenpeace long ago left normalcy behind, so tread cautiously, Mr. Ritter. One of their co-founders, Canadian ecologist Patrick Moore, said they are wrong on GMOs also and for that, they removed him from their history.