Tonight Intelligence Squared (or IQ2) hosted a debate about GMOs that was very well received!
The prompts for the debate centered on GMO safety, food security, the environment, and whether we’re better off with or without using the technology. Standing for biotechnology was Alison Van Eenennaam, Genomics and Biotechnology Researcher at UC Davis, and Robert Fraley, Executive VP and Chief Technology Officer at Monsanto. Arguing against GMOs were Charles Benbrook, a research professor at Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Margaret Mellon, a Science Policy Consultant and former Senior Scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
The awesome thing about the debate were the results at the end. Viewers of the debate had the opportunity to vote for “the motion” (meaning in favor of genetically modified crops), against the motion, or undecided. As you can see from the following screenshot, once folks listened to the debate and became (at least a little) more informed, there was a dramatic swing to being favorable to GMOs.
UPDATE: Here’s the full video (Thanks to Andy on Facebook for finding this!!):
I was hanging on every word. It was well done, Amanda. I'm so glad that Robb pointed out our common ground – we all want a safe, healthy food supply. This dialogue, out in the open, not behind facebook pages, twitter handles or instagram memes needs to happen and started last night!