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Fwd: Urgent! Contact LaBonge & Wesson & appear Friday to support Prop. 37 (label gen. eng. food) (fwd)

From: Lori
Sent on: Friday, September 21, 2012 12:21 AM

Subject: Urgent! Contact LaBonge & Wesson & appear Friday to support Prop. 37
    (label gen. eng. food)

Please distribute this far and wide.  Some folks with the Prop. 37 campaign
wrote the first part -- with me changing a few words for clarity.  And I
wrote the 15 Reasons below that.  Please help contact these key City
Councilmembers so that we can move it from that committee to the full LA
City Council for hopeful endorsement.  Thanks so much,  Bruce



We have a big opportunity this week!  The LA City Council will vote on
whether or not to endorse Proposition 37.  A yes vote gives us great
credibility here in Los Angeles, and helps us get our message out in the
media.  I'm sure I don't need to go on and on about how important this is,
so let me just lay out how we're going to win. I know this is a long email,
but please bear with me and read the whole thing.

We need to do 2 things this week:

First, we need to generate phone calls to the 3 most important decision
makers on the council to ask them to support us.

There are three members of that committee and it is especially important for
them to hear from the folks in their districts:

Councilmember (and Council President) Herb Wesson

(very important as Huizar may not be there on Friday)

200 North Spring Street, Room 430
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Fax (213)[masked]


Councilmember Tom LaBonge (the most likely to him

Los Angeles City Hall
200 N. Spring Street
Room 480
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Phone: (213)[masked]
Fax: (213)[masked]



Councilmember Jose Huizar

City Hall Office
200 N. Spring Street, Rm 465
Los Angeles, CA 90012


Fax: (213)[masked]


He needs to hear why it won't cause lawsuits, why it won't affect small
businesses in his lower income district, why it won't affect the cost of
groceries for his constituents, and he needs to understand the provision
that stops labeling things as "natural"

People can find their districts here -

We need to ask everybody on any of our lists to check their district, and
make a phone call to their Councilmember.  If people don't live in one of
these districts, they can still make a phone call to their council member,
but these 3 councilmen are the most important.

Here's the link to the filing.  It's Paul Koretz who introduced it.  It's a
very simple measure, to have the City of Los Angeles simply endorse the


Second, we MUST turn out our best speakers and activists to attend the
public hearing next Friday.

We do expect the opposition to show up, so we should send out all the
volunteers that we can to come to the hearing, and potentially speak on
behalf of the proposition.  Maybe we'll get a quick yes vote,  but more
likely we'll need to have a show of strength and be prepared to ask for a
yes vote.

LA City Council resolution of support for Proposition 37
Rules & InterGovernmental Affairs Committee
Friday, September 21st
Room 1060

Sample Phone Script

"Hi, my name is _______ and I'm a constituent of Councilman ________.  I'm
calling to see how Councilman ______ is planning to vote on the resolution
to endorse proposition 37 this Friday."

If yes "Great.  I'm a voter and a supporter, I'm happy to hear that
Councilman _______ supports our right to know what's in our food"

If no or undecided "I'm a voter here in Councilman _____'s district, and I
would really like to see the councilman support proposition 37.  Proposition
37 is a common sense measure that tells people whether or not their food has
been genetically engineered.  The opposition would like the councilman to
believe that this proposition will raise food prices or create hardship, but
that's just not the case.  All proposition 37 will do is require labels for
genetically engineered foods, the same as in almost 50 other countries in
the world.  California will be the first state in the US to require
labeling, and I'm asking Councilman _____ to be on the winning side by
supporting parents, farmers, scientists, and medical professionals across
the state by voting yes on Friday."


Two things - phone calls from constituents, and we need to show up on Friday
AM.  Please let me know if you have any questions.  Can we do this?


15 Reasons to Label Genetically Engineered Food in California

1.  Californians have a Right-to-Know what is in our food supply, just as 50
countries around the world mandate labeling of GE ingredients / food
including all of the European Union, Russia, China, India, Japan, Australia,
New Zealand, and even Saudi Arabia!

2.  There is an average 10% DECREASE in CROP YIELD with GE crops.

3.  This is not like traditional breeding, but GE crops use recombinant DNA
technology to cross the trans-species barrier by inserting virus and/or
bacteria plus antibiotic-resistant markers into the genome of the GE seed /
crop which means such are part of every cell.  This is done to "achieve a

4.  The main trait chemical / biotech companies try to achieve is "HERBICIDE
TOLERANCE" (also known as "herbicide resistance") so unlimited amounts of
toxic broad-spectrum herbicides can be sprayed (including directly on the GE
crop) and it will still grow.  But superweeds are growing in GE crop fields
since there has been such massive use of broad-spectrum herbicide especially
Monsanto's Roundup (glyphosate being the active ingredient), so some GE crop
fields are using 20 times the earlier amount of Roundup or switching to the
more toxic Agent Orange component 2,4-D to kill the superweeds.

Yes, chemical / biotech companies aren't focused on feeding the world, but
want to SELL MORE CHEMICALS.  (Not too surprising since they are chemical

5.  The next main trait sought by GE crops is to put INSECTICIDAL BACTERIA
into the genome and thus into every cell of the plant (especially used in
corn and cotton) - and these Bt (Bacillus Thurigiensis) crops must be
registered with the EPA as "pesticides."  The Bt toxin causes insects'
stomachs to rip open, and is negatively impacting honeybees, Monarch
butterflies, livestock, and humans as well.

Bacillus Thurigiensis is a natural pesticide. It sometimes is the last
resort of organic farmers to control a pest which may overwhelm their crop.
But some bugs are getting resistant because of the Bt in every cell of GE
crops in areas where GE crops predominate such as the Midwest.  The natural
Bt biodegrades in sunlight in a few days and one can rinse it off - clearly
this does not happen when there is Bt in every cell of a GE crop.  (The next
main trait after "herbicide tolerance" and "insecticidal bacteria in every
cell" is to include both these traits all within one crop.)

6.  Labels often change, and Prop. 37 gives food companies over 19 months
before they are supposed to label the products with GE ingredients. And it
is not like the major food companies do not know what to look for and label
since they ship products to many countries that require GE food labeling -
with some of those companies keeping GMOs in U.S. products while using
non-GE ingredients in countries that require GE labeling.

7.  Prop. 37 will not require expensive lab testing by food companies, and
there will be no punishment or legal award to those taking companies to
court who unknowingly have GE ingredients in their products.

8.  There is no labeling requirement under Prop. 37 if a GE ingredient
weighs less half of 1% of the product weight.

9.  Bars, alcoholic beverages, and restaurants are exempt from labeling
requirements since Prop. 37 focuses on the major players and does not want
to burden mom and pop businesses (note there is some GE yeast in some
alcoholic beverages).

10.  Medical procedures using GE crop material are exempt from Prop. 37

11.  In regards to GE ingredients' impact on human health, the American
Academy of Environmental Medicine position paper calls for a moratorium on
GM foods and recommends that doctors prescribe a non-GMO diet for their
patients: "there is more than a casual association between GM foods and
adverse health effects," "GM foods pose a serious health risk in the areas
of toxicology, allergy and immune function, reproductive health, and
metabolic, physiologic and genetic health."

12.  The chemical companies (partly through their front group Crop Life
Int'l) spent $6 million to convince Oregon voters to reject GE food labeling
back in 2002 by claiming that it would hurt small farmers.  On the contrary,
the giant operations grow most of the GE crops, as well as some other
farmers suckered into it by Monsanto and other slick salespeople.  Monsanto
routinely sues farmers whose land is growing their patented GE crop - even
though it is a result of the wind blowing seed onto the land or a bird
depositing the seed on that farmer's land.  Close to a quarter million
farmers in India have committed suicide (mostly by drinking Monsanto's
Roundup herbicide) due to being scammed out of their land due to their debt
after Monsanto raised GE seed prices by 8000%.  Permanent genetic
contamination is the threat to small, medium-size, and large farmers (both
standard commercial and organic) - not Prop. 37.   Most farmers in
California do not grow GE crops - it is mostly huge cotton operations in the
San Joaquin Valley as well as some GE corn (partly encouraged by the push
for ethanol production).

13.  Agronomists report that nearly 99% of global crop diversity was lost in
the 20th century alone.  This results in reduced nutrition (exacerbated by
the massive chemical use killing soil organisms).  Noting this and recalling
(for instance) the potato famine in Ireland due to the focus on growing just
one kind of potato, why devote tens of millions or even hundreds of millions
of acres to GE crops that are manufactured in the lab and are exactly the
same?  Isn't this asking for trouble and massive crop failure??

14.  Now, to address the GRAND CONTRADICTON hopefully using common sense.
Chemical / biotech companies patent their GE crops/seeds because they claim
that they are so unique they deserve such recognition by a patent.  However,
those same companies are happy to hear that their buddies at the FDA and
USDA will not require safety testing because those companies have assured
them that the GE crop is "SUBSTANTIALLY EQUIVALENT" to the non-GE varieties
of the crop.  Common sense would make one conclude that they are not being
straightforward and thus are scamming us!

15.  Beware of the New Generation of GE Crops !!!  If you think we've seen
problems to this point, check this out.  Due to plants growing immune to the
overused broad-spectrum herbicide (especially Roundup), there are
applications to deregulate / commercialize (and allow in the food supply)
new GE crops resistant to two kinds of herbicides.  One is an herbicide
which targets grasses and narrow-leaf vegetation.  The other kind of
herbicides to which the new GE crops would be tolerant are the Agent Orange
components - the chlorophenoxy herbicides (which necessarily contains dioxin
contaminants due to its manufacturing process).  Manufacturing of 2,4,5-T
and 2,4,5-TP ceased in the 1980s, but there is still widespread use of Agent
Orange component 2,4-D.  (Agent Orange was a 50/50 mix of 2,4-D and
2,4,5-T).  Approving these crops - such as Dow AgroScience's DAS[masked]
corn would be a great leap in toxic exposure for farmworkers and consumers,
and reproductive & other health problems will greatly increase.

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