Air Date: Week of October 8, 1999
Our series on Salmon and Society in the Pacific Northwest continues to draw strong responses. We also received a lot of comments on last week's call from a Tennessee farmer who defended genetically-engineered food.
CURWOOD: Time again for listener comments.
(Music up and under)
CURWOOD: Responses to our series on Salmon and Society in the Pacific Northwest continued to dominate our mailbag.
Bruce Lovelin of the Columbia River Alliance writes, "Your story on efforts to recover salmon is one of those worn-out, dams-versus-salmon stories that does little to inform listeners of anything new. There already exists considerable support for saving salmon in all quarters of the Pacific Northwest, including industry. Hundreds of millions are being spent on efforts to improve the dams for successful juvenile and adult salmon passage. And it is an effort we in industry financially support. Where's that message?"
Meanwhile, our report on salmon runs in urban areas drew this response from Brian Buchbinder, who hears us on WBGO in Newark. "Your reference to one hundred years of settlement in describing the Pacific Northwest was simply not correct. Could you have forgotten,” he wrote, “that coast has been settled by Native Americans for thousands of years? And the salmon did just fine. It was only after 150 years of, quote, "settlement" by other Americans -- us, that is -- that the natural resources of the area were degraded."
One comment in last week's listener segment drew a lot of strong reactions. A Tennessee farmer compared genetically-engineered food to specially-bred racehorses, and argued that Europe's refusal to import these foods is nothing but a trade barrier set up against American farm products. But as James Hildreth, who listens to us on New Hampshire Public Radio, pointed out:
HILDRETH: There is a great difference between selective breeding and genetically engineering. The ongoing attempts to merge a flounder gene with a tomato is a far cry from selectively breeding tomatoes for size, color, or flavor.
CURWOOD: Eric Rector, who hears us on Maine Public Broadcasting, wrote, "I believe that rather than being a trade barrier, this case sounds like an attempt by the U.S. government to open markets for campaign contributors and large corporations, despite popular sentiment against genetically-engineered food. After all, shouldn't every society, every person, choose what we put into our mouths?"
That sentiment was echoed by KROU listener and Norman, Oklahoma, resident, John Frazier.
FRAZIER: I don't mind riding a genetically-engineered horse, but I sure don't want to put him inside my system.
CURWOOD: Your questions and comments are always welcome. Call our listener line any time at 800-218-9988. That's 800-218-9988. Our e-mail address is LOE@NPR.ORG.
Living on Earth wants to hear from you!
P.O. Box 990007
Boston, MA, USA 02199
Donate to Living on Earth!
Living on Earth is an independent media program and relies entirely on contributions from listeners and institutions supporting public service. Please donate now to preserve an independent environmental voice.
Sailors For The Sea: Be the change you want to sea.
Innovating to make the world a better, more sustainable place to live. Listen to the race to 9 billion
The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment: Committed to protecting and improving the health of the global environment.
Energy Foundation: Serving the public interest by helping to build a strong, clean energy economy.
Contribute to Living on Earth and receive, as our gift to you, an archival print of one of Mark Seth Lender's extraordinary hummingbird photographs. Follow the link to see Mark's current collection of photographs.