Sunday, January 12, 2014

GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOODS! SO SCARY! (not)

More proof that some smart people just aren't so smart.


A well-kept secret from a marketing guy: most of the 'feel good' stuff you hear/see in advertising for products are clever twists of half truths, like hair is manufactured through our follicles from vitamin B5, so shampooing it with B5 must be good for your hair.  That's like saying humans need water to survive, so go swimming once a day.  You have to EAT vitamin B5 to grow hair, not bathe in it.

Every apple you eat is "genetically modified".  Every single one.  They were cross-pollinated and grafted and selected carefully over many years to become a Red Delicious or a Granny Smith.  Their GENES were modified to make them look/taste the way they do.  YOU are genetically modified --  Natural Selection and your parents manufactured you from genes. When someone kisses you and ingests some of the cells from your inner cheeks, he or she does not start transforming into you.

Modifying plants and animals genetically does not somehow make the pest-resistant wheat you eat into a dangerous substance that will turn your kids into monsters.  The 'modified' DNA of a Holstein cow does not turn the hamburger meat into a perilous horror story ingredient that will somehow give you allergies or make you glow.  It's just meat.  It's just wheat.   

But we humans, with our overly complex brains, have a built-in pathway in our brains that makes us highly susceptible to believing in angels and fairies and gremlins and gods and Pro Vitamin B5 and conspiracies and the power of positive thinking and horoscopes and psychics and aliens visiting the planet earth.  Politicians leverage this tendency to get elected by playing on our darkest convictions (vote against that other guy because he doesn't believe in 'our' god or because he's not from 'our' race/culture).  Jenny McCarthy leverages it to try to convince the rest of us that her own genes and bad luck were not responsible for her son having autism, she totally erroneously claims vaccines were because they have scary sounding things in them and they get injected into our babies like 'mad scientists' do in horror shows.

Genetically modified plants are saving the undeveloped world's population from starving by creating strains that will grow in dry conditions and are resistant to pests.  Genetic modification is making our world a much better place for us to live in.  There is nothing, NOTHING, harmful or scary about ingesting and digesting ANYTHING that is genetically modified.  NOTHING.  ....but it is SO MUCH FUN for our brains to worry about bullshit like this. 

Be smart, buy genetically modified foods for your kids and get the most out of just how smart we human beings are.   Spread the truth, not scary fiction.  Fight your brain's tendencies to believe in and obsess over bullshit.

Image Source:  © 2012 Nature Education Courtesy of Ania M. Wieczorek and Mark G. Wright. All rights reserved.
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In a related vein, the WORST perpetrators of "I'm protecting my children!" are actually just pleasing their own brain's demands and are doing something really, really stupid for their children.  LINK TO POST.

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