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Compare impact of food-borne pathogens to impact of terrorism

  • Published in Letters

To The Daily Sun,

We are 110 times more likely to die from contaminated food than from terrorism. That being said a few statistics are in order. The U.S. has 14 trillion dollars on national security in the past 12 years and here are the results of this delusional paranoia: two destructive wars; an illegal surveillance state and a military style domestic policing courtesy of Israeli special forces. And in spite of all this we couldn't even prevent a couple of amateur murderers at the Boston Marathon.
With all due respect for the victims of 9/11, fewer than five hundred Americans have been killed by terrorism in the past 40 years and since Osama bin Laden's death only 17 U.S. citizens were killed in all terrorist incidents worldwide. The core leadership of al-Qaeda numbers about three to four hundred and its few thousand members operate mainly within the borders of Muslim countries.
By contrast, a typical year for food-borne pathogens causes tens of millions to be sickened, a hundred thousand to be hospitalized and three thousand deaths. Meanwhile the FDA (not one of my favorites) is struggling to get a paltry sum of one billion for the 2014 budget. In an age of global agriculture and food distribution this is criminal. If this "war" on terror doesn't sound rational then you either have to be from another planet or a right wing republican. Sometimes I think they are one in the same. So if the "axis of evil" is all that we are worried about then we have nothing to fear outside our borders!
We haven't even touched on genetically modified organisms (gmo) which are suspected of causing a whole host of diseases — especially in children. If one tried to read the ingredient label on a can of green beans and it read: "none of your business", I would imagine one would be upset? The N.H. Legislature is due to vote on GMO labeling in the near future. It would be wise to contact our district representatives and let them know that our food supply "IS our business". Our representatives need to "man-up" and "woman-up". They can send a clear message to Monsanto/Dupont by passing HB-660. When asked why most of the civilized world either bans or at the very least requires labeling of genetically engineered food, Tara Sad of District I and the Democratic chair of the Agricultural Committee replied: "they're wrong!". I really tried hard to pin the resistance onto Republicans but it's plain to see that members of both parties need convincing. Here's the irony of it all. Opponents of the bill talk about the "skull and cross bone" effect, which is interesting coming from those who are protecting Monsanto — the largest manufacturer of poisons in the world! Thank you Suzanne Smith, co-sponsor of the bill and representing District 8. You are the voice of reason.
Here are the three sub-committee members that we should all write: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (good luck with this one!)

George Maloof