GO ORGANIC Mindanao, a movement of individuals, organizations, and institutions that promote, support and implement organic agriculture in Mindanao, has launched a book that exposes and mainstreams Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in formal education.
Written by Dr. Rex T. Linao, et.al and titled EXPOSED AND MAINSTREAMED: THE CASE OF GMOS IN FORMAL EDUCATION, part of the book features Learning Modules on GMOs developed by Ph.D. students of the Graduate School of the University of the Immaculate Conception where Dr. Linao currrently teaches.
“This book is an attempt at exposing and mainstreaming in formal education previously unheard of before and/or intentionally excluded topic because it does not fit with pre-conceived notion that all products of high technology are intrinsically good and have high contribution to the advance of humanity: GMOs.”, he writes in the book’s preface.
As Chair of Go Organic Mindanao and Executive Director of the Foundation for the Development of Agusanon, Inc., Linao spent a decade of purely community-based advocacies before returning to the academe.
“I teach learners taking up Ph.D. studies in Educational Leadership, individuals who are expected to bring students out of ignorance, out of darkness. And the topic of GMOs is one of those issues which are often left inside the closet,” he said.
Through the book, Linao hopes to equip the readers with the analytical lens to realize that GMOs are not the solution to the problems it offers to solve. “In fact, GMOs are very part of the problems even as it is bound to create more problems in the society,” he said.
The book project began as a class activity wherein Linao’s students agreed to embark on incorporating GMO discussions in the curricula in elementary, secondary and tertiary levels.
“My students are taking up Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, a degree that is expected to mold individuals to think out-of-the-box, to disturb the status quo and to take the extra mile to bring learners out from the ignorant, from darkness. This book hopes to do that.”
The book is divided into five parts. Part 1 shows the readers that GMOs are not the solution to the problems it offers to solve. Part 2 presents the learning modules developed by Linao’s students. Part 3 highlights the problems and issues in biosafety in both the international and local scene. Part 4 debunks the justifications for GMO put forward by their proponents by presenting the experience of organic agriculture practitioner Don Bosco Foundation for Sustainable Development. Lastly, Part 5 reveals the anti-GMO campaign of Go Organic Mindanao, whose vigilance has helped small organic farmers in Mindanao continually resist GMO contamination.
“It is my earnest hope that in developing the Learning Modules, important seeds were sown, seeds that would sprout, grow and bear much fruit as evidenced on how the developers of these Learning Modules become agents of empowerment – agents of education that educates.” he said.
The book is produced by the Go Organic Mindanao (GOM), the Foundation for the Development of Agusanons, Inc. (FDAI), the Third World Network (TWN) and the Graduate School of the University of the Immaculate Conception (UIC).
The book launching was preceded by a forum titled GMOs: Situations and Prospects, featuring speakers from the UN Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM)-10 Member Group, the Third World Network and the Don Bosco Foundation for Sustainable Development. The event was held at the AVR1, University of the Immaculate Conception, Bonifacio Campus, 1:00 P.M. – 5:00 P.M. on Aug. 27. (MINDANAO TIMES)