Why Consider GMOs?

What’s unique about the topic of genetic modification is that it is common in my own culture. Eating, like every daily ritual I perform, from brushing my teeth to taking a shower, is not something that I think too much about. It’s hard to maintain cultural relativism when what you do has become habit. However, when I do take time to think about what I am eating and why, I feel uncomfortable.

A few years ago, I watched the movie Food Inc. which showed disturbing images of suffering, sickly animals being killed in slaughter houses and sold in American markets. After viewing the film, I decided I was going to become a vegetarian to take a stand against animal cruelty. Unfortunately, my vegetarian-kick only lasted a few weeks. I found it nearly impossible to maintain a healthy, balanced diet without consuming meat.

The American economy is heavily reliant on genetically modified meat products and chemically composed junk food. Why is it that we continue to eat this way despite criticism from other cultures, and our reputation for being unhealthy, “fat” Americans?  In future blog posts, I hope to focus more on trying to understand why genetic modification makes sense for our culture.

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One Response to Why Consider GMOs?

  1. kgurnari says:

    I found your blog very engaging! I think you chose a topic that relates to our everyday lives. Throughout your blog I was constantly wondering, “What foods do I eat that are genetically modified?” I like your blog post that mentioned your walk to CVS because it really gave me a perspective about how many things could be overlooked with the food that we consume. The fact that the Ben and Jerry’s ice cream added an excerpt about GMO food is very interesting because I’ve had the ice cream on many occasions and never even thought to read the label that included that piece of information. I am totally interested in your blog because I enjoy eating healthy and our food culture definitely interests me because many aspects are so artificial, as you mentioned. Also, throughout several of your blogs you did a good job engaging with the course material from class by mentioning “The Christmas in the Kalahari” reading, the government policies and gay rights lecture, and the babies unit. All of these aspects of our class helped tie together what we do in class to a real life modern situation in our society. Your blog really surprised me when you said that about 70% of the foods in our grocery stores are GMO. From this statistic I feel like it is impossible to avoid these foods and eat healthy in our culture. I am a vegetarian and still wonder what exactly I am eating, especially after reading your blog. It is scary to wonder that even fruits and vegetables can be genetically modified. So far I think you’ve done a good job engaging the reader by discussing a relevant topic in our society, mentioning your own experiences with this topic, and by incorporating course material. As you finish your blog don’t forget to describe how your engagement has resulted in an understanding of the internal logistics and practices of your culture site and reflect on how a cross-cultural engagement can serve to change your own beliefs and understandings of the world. But, these can be easily incorporated as you begin to sum up your blog. You’ve already substantially described your culture site, your choice of cultural engagement, your understanding of culture, the methodology you used to engage with your culture site, and engaged explicitly with course material. I think your blog is really good and that you are on the right track.

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