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DARK Act now being debated in the House: would block GMO labeling laws nationwide, leaving consumers in the dark


GMO labeling

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(NaturalNews) Although there has been very little media coverage regarding it, a bill being debated in the House this week has enormous negative implications that will potentially affect the health of every single American citizen.

The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015 is a bill which, if signed into law, will effectively block any state legislation requiring the labeling of foods containing GMOs.

Nicknamed the "DARK (Denying Americans the Right to Know) Act," the legislation would establish a "voluntary" GMO labeling policy at the federal level, meaning that individual states would lose their right be able to pass any mandatory GMO labeling laws.

Introduced by Rep. Mike Pompeo, a Republican from Kansas, the DARK Act has been condemned by consumer advocates, environmental activists and others who believe GMOs pose a serious health risk.

Scott Faber, one of the leaders of the movement opposing the bill said:

"The whole purpose of this bill is to block state GMO labeling laws and rob the FDA of the ability to craft a national GMO labeling solution. Pompeo's solution is to double down on the voluntary GMO program that has been a total failure and to block any mandatory disclosure by states or the federal government."

The DARK Act's provisions go far beyond GMO labeling, however. As if the blocking of labeling wasn't enough, the bill also would strip states of the ability to impose health standards on and otherwise regulate the GMO agriculture industry within their borders. In other words, state and local authorities would not be able to protect agricultural workers or establish safety zones where the use of "probably" cancer-causing glyphosate and other GM industry chemicals is forbidden.

The establishment of buffer zones around schools, for example, would be restricted.

Americans want GMO labeling

Pompeo has ridiculed those who oppose the legislation, calling them "radical left group" members. The truth is, 90 percent of Americans support GMO food labeling - that's hardly an obscure radical splinter group.

He has stated that the bill was designed to "provide clarity and transparency in food labeling," when in fact it would cause precisely the opposite effect.

His defense of voluntary labeling is based on his assertion that there are no "health or safety" issues regarding GMOs. Numerous studies have shown that the herbicide glyphosate and other chemicals used by the GM industry are indeed dangerous, not to mention legitimate concerns about the possible dangers of eating genetically-modified foods.

Monsanto and the other biotech giants, have poured millions into skewed research and misinformation campaigns, while lining the pockets of politicians.

It's hard to understand how the bill garnered the co-sponsorship of 91 Republican representatives, considering their party's alleged support of state's rights. It can be taken as an indication of just how powerful the GM industry lobbying machine in Washington truly is.

Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., said:

"It's ironic that so many of my Republican colleagues espouse state's rights, but the bill before us does just the opposite. It preempts states from establishing their own labeling laws, and it would invalidate laws already passed in states like Vermont, Maine and Connecticut."

President Obama has said that he would support GMO labeling, but that was eight years ago. Pompeo and others are predicting that Obama will "get this right" - in other words, he will likely sign the bill into law if it passes the Senate.

If he does, it will prove to be another example of the president's having gone back on his word; promising something and then acting in the exact opposite fashion.

From a campaign speech in 2007:

"Americans should know where their food comes from. We'll let folks know whether their food has been genetically modified, because Americans should know what they're buying."

Let's see if he can keep his word for once. I certainly wouldn't bet on it.

Sources:
http://gmwatch.org
http://www.ibtimes.com

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