Monday, March 12, 2012

Misuse Of A Vietnam Era Tragedy
Mark Twain once said, “A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.” There was a perfect example of that last month. The Center for Food Safety (CFS) spread the term, “Agent Orange Corn” for Dow AgroSciences’ new biotech corn hybrids that are working their way through the regulatory process. These hybrids have been modified to be more resistant to 2,4-D, an herbicide that was introduced in 1948. This is being cast as a return to the use of Agent Orange and that is completely untrue. There is a lot of interesting detail behind this, but the CFS moniker for the corn is a classic case of information twisting – twisting in a way that is intentionally misleading. The reason that the term “Agent Orange Corn” is inaccurate can be discovered in a 1-minute Wikipedia search, but this did not prevent a host of of bloggers, environmental and Organic organizations, and even “news outlets” from uncritically passing along the disinformation.

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