Letters to the Editor - Oct. 21, 2013

  • Written by Readers

We all have a right to know what we are eating and when our food has been adulterated.

Monsanto has never fully proven the safety of GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) seeds. They claim there is no significant difference between GMO seeds and conventional ones, but they also patent them at the same time. There is no ability to contain GMO seeds from contaminating other fields. A recent find of GMO wheat plants growing in Oregon (a variety that was never allowed on the market, but had been tested in Oregon a decade prior) is just one example of this inability to contain them.

Birds, squirrels and wind easily spread these seeds far and wide. One thing we do know for sure is that plants grown from GMO seeds will contain a large quantity of pesticides. That is the one thing these seeds were designed to do. Unfortunately, it also creates super weeds and bugs that are tolerant of these high levels of pesticides. 

Farmers using pesticides like RoundUp are advised to wear suits to spray the pesticides, yet we are told that it is safe to eat. The No on I-522 campaign has been claiming that requiring manufacturers to label their food products will cause increases in food prices. These same manufacturers manage to have a new label for every holiday. All one needs to do is visit a grocery store right now to see all the Halloween packaging.

The Green Party of Snohomish County endorses a Yes vote on I-522.

Debbie Shapiro, Officer at Large - Green Party of Snohomish County

I read B-Z Davis’ response to my recent letter to the editor with a smile on my face. B-Z should know, as a former school board member, that the most significant effect on public school enrollment is new housing development, not full-day kindergarten or smaller class sizes. It was on her watch that the district changed boundaries and moved hundreds of students around to try and manage the lopsided effect of new housing development. Northshore is not to blame for this situation; it’s a function of the Urban Growth Boundary, an outcome of the State Growth Management Act.

Development is restricted in the eastern part of the district, but as an attractive place to live, demand for homes has increased and the supply of those homes is only allowed in the north and west parts of the school district. We’ve all seen the explosion of new home construction happening now that there is more confidence in the economy. I’ve seen large developments nearing completion but nowhere near the eastern part of the district where development is restricted. District decision makers need to do the right thing and not wait for circumstances to "be assessed in the future." Delaying a decision and keeping parents in the dark as long as possible is not the responsible action to take. District leaders need to begin a public process to engage parents, staff and community members in the tough decisions that need to be made. Then there will be a clear roadmap between now and the "circumstances as they evolve." This makes sense.

Susan Stoltzfus, Woodinville

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