My editor at The Daily Beast asked me to write an "End of the Year" wrap-up-type article, and I asked (read: begged and pleaded) if I could write a satirical 2015 summary a la Dave Barry, the fabulously hilarious columnist who has done just such an article every year for as long as I've been reading the newspaper. If you've never read any of them, click on that link. Seriously, do it now.
Anyway, the answer I got from her was a resounding "no". She was asking for a real article, one that was thought-provoking, interesting, and sciency with real actual science and stuff.
So here is what I came up with.
Since it was published earlier today I've already gotten a few vitriolic tweets directed at me:
MOST ASININE ARTICLE OF THE YEAR! The Year the Food Industry Gave in Anti-GMO Fear https://t.co/FfbduVpl0j via @thedailybeast @DocBastard— john (@lopezjohn639) December 19, 2015
Tweets like these tend to make me very happy, because they offer no actual response to the content of the article, just worthless, childish name calling. I would welcome some actual dialog about GMOs, because that might offer me a chance to educate some misinformed folks. But just like antivaxxers and creationists, the anti-GMO crowd seems to have already made up their collective minds, despite the lack of evidence that GMOs are in any way unhealthful.@DocBastard @thedailybeast How does being a doctor make you qualified to write about GMO's? Have an opinion on the Big Bang? Who cares.— Louis Proyect (@LouisProyect1) December 19, 2015
But they're genetically modified! That's über-scary! Frankenfood! Frankenfish! AAAH!!!
Nope, not scary. Just an unfortunate name. If they had been called "healthy fuzzyfoods" none of this uproar would have happened. Ok, that's probably not entirely true, but I think you get the point.
I welcome (relevant) comments, concerns and research regarding GMOs below. However, any and all so-called "articles" from Natural News, Mercola, Greenmedinfo, and their ilk will be deleted with extreme prejudice.
And don't worry - this won't replace my usual weekly post. Coming this week - the interview with Mrs. Bastard. Stay tuned.
[UPDATE 10 July 2020]
I have been informed by a very intrepid (and thorough) reader that there are several broken links in the Daily Beast article above. Unfortunately I have no ability to update the dead links on their website. However, the most important article, "An overview of the last 10 years of genetically engineered crop safety research", can be found by clicking here. Thanks very much to the alert reader for catching it and notifying me.