For assignment number two, we were to read the article titled, "Should consumers be concerned about bio-engineered crops?" This article contains two major claims. The claim we are focused on is by William Freese which is, genetically altered corn has contaminated foods and may make people sick.
In the case about genetically altered crops, especially directed towards Aventis CropScience and other bio-tech companies, the author presents many arguments supporting his claim. One of the first arguments is that Cry9C, a protein in StarLink corn, might cause serious allergic reactions if ingested by humans. Another argument is that Cry9C has contaminated tens of millions of supermarket products due to the negligence of Aventis. A third argument is that genetically engineered genes could exert "pleiotropic," or unintended, effects. The fourth argument in this article supporting the claim is, genetic engineering represents the latest phase in the relentless industrialization of agriculture that has degraded our farmlands and environment and laced our foods with toxic chemicals.
Not only does this author give arguments about the claim, he also gives plenty of evidence to back it up. First of all, 200 people have suffered from allergic reactions to StarLink. At least 94 of these individuals sought medical attention and 20 of them visited emergency rooms. A second argument is that more than 80 seed brands are now contaminated with things such as blood thinners and rabies vaccine. This also clearly demonstrates that cross-pollination occurs at much greater distances than once believed. Another piece of evidence given is that since 1997 Aventis and the Government have known that StarLink's Cry9C protein probably is glycosylated. .
In this article there are few arguments and evidence against the claim do to its one sided opinion. One argument against is that contamination is so widespread that Cry9C should be approved.