The dam has been breached; FINALLY! Monsanto’s Roundup poison has been judged by two juries to be cancer causing. Four years ago, the International Agency for Research on Cancer designated glyphosate, the primary ingredient in Roundup, as “probably carcinogenic to humans”. This is their highest designation for cancer causing based upon laboratory animal studies.
Two juries now have awarded judgments in favor of two people who pointed to glyphosate (Roundup) as the cause of their cancers. In the first case, DeWayne Johnson was awarded $289 million which was later reduced to $80 million upon appeal by Monsanto. The second case brought by Edwin Hardeman has now been brought to conclusion as well. The jury decided Roundup was a “substantial factor” in causing the lymphoma of the 70-year old who had used this toxic chemical on his property for many years. The award to Mr. Hardeman is also $80 million. There are thousands of law suits in waiting.
Recently, we learned that Costco, the large big-box retailer, has banned Roundup from its shelves. We also learned that Viet Nam has now banned the importation of glyphosate-based weed killers. This is the country we dosed with Agent Orange decades ago which became a never ending nightmare for the Vietnamese as well as for our veterans who served there. We have learned glyphosate residues have shown up in beers, cereals, snack bars, and some Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. France banned a version of Roundup in January due to health concerns. Several other countries have done likewise. Even the city of Miami has banned the use of herbicides containing glyphosate. Headlines say these chemicals are “killing Biscayne Bay”.
Roundup has been the most widely used glyphosate based herbicide (poison) in the United States for nearly 20 years. It is everywhere.
Why is that important to us? We are surrounded every year with fields of corn and soy beans. Most corn and soy beans here have been genetically engineered to withstand doses of Roundup and survive while the weeds in the fields are supposed to die. Roundup is sprayed on the fields around us by the hundreds or maybe even the thousands of gallons. We live in a sea of Roundup. More is used each year since “super weeds” have developed that refuse to die. More and different toxic pesticides are added each year.
And have you been to your local hardware store lately? You will see rows of Roundup on many shelves ready for you to buy and use around your homes. You will see it ready for use around schools and parks and other public property where we find both adults and more importantly, our children.
It is time for government officials, industrial farmers, and homeowners to seriously question the use of glyphosate (Roundup); a toxic chemical found to be potentially cancer causing to themselves and their families. In the meanwhile while use continues, all of us including our children could be faced with cancers that did not have to be.
Growing and pesticide season will be coming soon.