This Week on Between The Lines

Posted Aug. 12, 2015 for week ending Aug. 21, 2015

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"Grocery manufacturers and the biotechnology companies like Monsanto have spent tens of millions of dollars in states where (labeling laws) have been either in the legislature or on the ballot. We think that they've spent close to $100 million ... and then they shifted their attention to D.C."

– Patty Lovera, assistant director with the group Food & Water Watch, discussing the lobbying effort that succeeded in passing a House bill that bans states from requiring the labeling of foods that contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs).


Listen to the entire program using these links, or to individual interviews via the links appearing prior to each segment description below.

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House Passes Bill That Would Ban State Laws Mandating Labeling of GMO Foods

MP3 Interview with Patty Lovera, assistant director with the group Food & Water Watch, conducted by Scott Harris

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The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill on July 23 called the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act, which would ban all states from requiring the labeling of foods that contain genetically-engineered ingredients. Supporters of the legislation assert that there's no credible evidence that foods produced with biotechnology pose any risk to human health and safety. But the bill's opponents say that GMO foods have not undergone rigorous and thorough unbiased testing, and that consumers should have the right to know what's in the food they're eating, regardless of perceived hazards. Consumer groups have nicknamed the bill, the Denying Americans the Right to Know Act, or DARK.  Story continues

EPA Sued for its Conditional Approval of Nanotechnology Pesticide

MP3 Interview with Jaydee Hanson, policy director with the International Center for Technology Assessment, conducted by Scott Harris

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The International Center for Technology Assessment and the Center for Food Safety filed a joint lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on July 27 challenging the agency's conditional approval of the antimicrobial pesticide product called, "Nanosilva." The pesticide under scrutiny, which will be used in textiles and plastics, employs nanotechnology that breaks down silver into particles more than 1,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair. Conventional silver has been used as an antibacterial products for centuries, as it releases ions that are deadly for many bacteria and fungi. However, watchdog groups and scientists are increasingly concerned about the growing number of consumer products that contain nanoparticles that could pose unique hazards and long-term risks. Unless regulations are imposed, nanoparticles of silver, that combat stains and odors, may soon be embedded in children's toys, clothing, plastics and fabrics.  Story continues

Psychological Health of Police Officers a Critical Factor in Ethical Law Enforcement

MP3 Excerpt of talk by New Haven, Connecticut Assistant Police Chief Anthony Campbell, recorded and produced by Melinda Tuhus

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At least once a week, America wakes up to another police killing of an unarmed African American man or woman. The deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, Eric Garner in New York City and many others at the hands of police gave birth to the Black Lives Matter movement last year, which challenged a law enforcement and judicial system that was unresponsive to obvious cases of racial bias.  Story continues

This week’s summary of under-reported news

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Compiled by Bob Nixon

 

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