The Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides (Children’s Health Defense) (Paperback)
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“We are being poisoned, and this book is sounding a well-informed alarm. Read it. Get educated and then join the thousands rising up against those who care more for profit than the health of our bodies and our earth.”–Eve Ensler, New York Times bestselling author
Chemical poisons have infiltrated all facets of our lives—housing, agriculture, work places, sidewalks, subways, schools, parks, even the air we breathe. More than half a century since Rachel Carson issued Silent Spring—her call-to-arms against the poisoning of our drinking water, food, animals, air, and the natural environment—The Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup takes a fresh look at the politics underlying the mass use of pesticides and the challenges people around the world are making against the purveyors of poison and the governments that enable them.
The scientists and activists contributing to The Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup, edited by long-time Green activist Mitchel Cohen, explore not only the dangers of glyphosate—better known as “Roundup”—but the campaign resulting in glyphosate being declared as a probable cancer-causing agent. In an age where banned pesticides are simply replaced with newer and more deadly ones, and where corporations such as Monsanto, Bayer, Dow and DuPont scuttle attempts to regulate the products they manufacture, what is the effective, practical, and philosophical framework for banning glyphosate and other pesticides?
The Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides takes lessons from activists who have come before and offers a radical approach that is essential for defending life on this planet and creating for our kids, and for ourselves, a future worth living in. This paperback edition is updated with a new preface and introduction by Mitchel Cohen.
About the Author
Mitchel Cohen is an author, poet, and political activist who coordinates the No Spray Coalition against pesticides in New York City, which successfully sued the City government over its indiscriminate spraying to kill mosquitoes said to be transmitting West Nile Virus. He chaired the listener-sponsored WBAI radio Local Board, and participated in actions with NY State Against Genetic Engineering, Occupy Wall Street, Radical Philosophy Association, and the Center for Global Justice in Mexico; and helped to organize the Network of Alternative Student Press. He currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.
"This may be one of the most important books you read this year. We are being poisoned, and this book is sounding a well-informed alarm. Read it. Get educated and then join the thousands rising up against those who care more for profit than the health of our bodies and our earth."
—Eve EnslerNew York Times bestselling author of I Am an Emotional Creature: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World, The Vagina Monologues, and In the Body of the World
"Activism and science need one another to stay grounded in reality. Few environmental activists have done more than the poet and science writer Mitchel Cohen to connect with scholars across a multitude of disciplines in his tireless campaign to keep the natural world from turning into a toxic hell. This book, with its remarkably varied group of expert contributors, is both a monument to Cohen’s ongoing efforts and a resource for those who will be inspired by it to join forces with him."
—Stuart Newman, Ph.D., Professor of Cell Biology and Anatomy, New York Medical College
"This book delivers the goods. Mitchel Cohen and his coauthors have thoroughly and effectively indicted Monsanto, Syngenta, and other Big Food corporations for poisoning our soil, our water, and our genomes."
—Clifford D. Conner, author of A People’s History of Science, and the forthcoming Tragedy of American Science: From Truman to Trump
"The Global Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup is an absolutely vital book for so many who have been diagnosed with diseases their doctors say were caused by vague 'environmental factors.' Mitchel Cohen explains precisely what are these 'environmental factors.' Read it as if your life depended on it, because it does."
—George Caffentzis, author of No Blood for Oil: Essays on Energy, Class Struggle and War 1998-2016
"Few battles are as important today across the planet as that to free the earth, the seas, and woods from the poisons that companies like Monsanto are pouring in them. The Fight Against Monsanto's Round up: The Politics of Pesticides is a great resource in that struggle. Read it and give it to all your friends and comrades."
—Silvia Federici, author of Caliban and the Witch
“Evidence of cataclysmic climate change and environmental collapse are all around us, wherever you look: the raging fires and recurring storms, poisoned water and filthy air, droughts and floods of Biblical proportion, climbing rates of extinction, stressed-out birds and fading bees, frazzled fish and misshapen frogs. It takes some bizarre combination of self-interest, privilege, cynicism, ideology, corruption, dogma, or chutzpah for supine politicians to lie passively on their backs denying the facts in favor of cloud-cuckoo-land fantasies and the interests of the filthy extractors and the billionaire barbarians from ExxonMobile, Monsanto, and Chevron. Seriously engaging the environmental catastrophe, which this important collection edited by Mitchel Cohen does brilliantly, and taking the necessary steps to solve it, will mean—I'll spit it out—overthrowing capitalism. This is the real choice in front of us: the end of capitalism or the end of the habitable earth, saving the system of corporate finance capital or saving the system that gives us life. Which will it be?”
—Bill Ayers, author of Demand the Impossible!
“Pesticides not only wreak havoc with our health, they accelerate global warming by destroying carbon-fixing soil ecosystems. They are the linchpin of the chemicalized capitalist agriculture that must be pulled out if we are to make the transition to organic agroecologies that draw carbon out of the atmosphere and into the biosphere in restored soil ecosystems. Read this collection to arm yourself with knowledge for the fight to ban pesticides and build a sustainable and climate-friendly agriculture.”
—Howie Hawkins, three-time Green Party candidate for Governor of New York
“In this age of corporate greed and its effects on the environment, this book provides a valuable critique of corporate environmental destruction as well as suggestions for a way out of this global destruction.”
—Irene Javors, author of Culture Notes: Essays on Sane Living and advocate for optimal living, www.ijavorsoptimalliving.com
“This book reveals the triumph of the collective scholarship, humanity, and humor over the hubris of the mammoth pesticide-chemical industry aligned with insensitive bureaucrats.”
—Joel R Kupferman, Esq., New York Environmental Law & Justice Project; co-chair, National Lawyers Guild Environmental Justice Committee; and co-counsel to the No Spray Coalition in its victorious lawsuit against New York City’s spraying of toxic pesticides
“Our poor planet is being attacked on so many sides by so many issues that it has become increasingly difficult to give any one of them the attention they deserve. This is especially true of the spread of pesticides, to which most of its victims are blind . . . until it's too late. Mitchel Cohen has brought together a collection of powerful essays on this subject—including several excellent ones by him—that has just the right combination of the most important facts, scholarly analysis, outrage (not to be neglected), and other solutions to the problems that pesticides are supposed to address . . . The Fight Against Monsanto's Round up: The Politics of Pesticides makes a major breakthrough in this life and death discussion. Highly Recommended!”
—Professor Bertell Ollman, Department of Politics, New York University, author of Alienation: Marx's Concept of Man in Capitalist Society, Dialectical Investigations, and Dance of the Dialectic
“If you care about the planet, what you eat, your health and our whole, fragile ecosystem, then this book is for you. It's jam-packed with up-to-date information about pesticides, politics, protest. and the monster known as Monsanto. All of the contributors write with style, savvy, and with a sense of humor, too. Each author carves out his or her own part of the big picture. Together they've created a book that's greater than its individual parts, and that will help organizers and activists who want a planet that's free of poisons and lies.”
—Jonah Raskin is the author of sixteen books, including The Mythology of Imperialism, plus biographies of Jack London, Allen Ginsberg, and Abbie Hoffman
“This is a superb collection of essays on pesticides by a superb collection of independent experts. Importantly, they’re not only highly knowledgeable about how pesticides kill but fully understand the politics and economics of the pesticide push over the many years. They are fully aware, too, of the safe, green alternatives—in harmony with nature—to these deadly poisons. Moreover, the work is edited and many of the essays written by a brilliant Green and social activist, Mitchel Cohen. I have known Mitch for more than fifty years—starting with my covering him as a reporter when at Stony Brook University he led student protests against the Vietnam War and other outrages. Carefully done and comprehensive, this book is in the great tradition of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. It is an essential learning and teaching tool.”
—Karl Grossman is a full professor of journalism at the State University of New York/College at Old Westbury. A longtime journalist, he has received many awards for his journalism especially for his specialty of doing investigative reporting on energy and environmental issues. He is the author of The Poison Conspiracy and host for nearly thirty years of the nationally aired TV program Enviro Close-Up with Karl Grossman
“I’ve known Mitchel Cohen, the editor of this remarkable volume, for over thirty years. Mitchel is brilliant, a dedicated activist, and deeply involved in opposing the mass use of pesticides since 1999 and the politics that promote it at the expense of human health and the environment. In The Fight Against Monsanto’s Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides, Mitchel informs and guides us.”
—Elizabeth Liberty is a poet, feminist writer, and former Executive Director of the European branch of International P.E.N.
“In an era when Monsanto seeks to poison the earth with its pesticide Roundup, Mitchel Cohen has done his own round up, assembling an amazing array of scientists, journalists, and activists to strategically fight back with the truth. There's no better place to learn about and join that fight than with The Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides.
The movement against the routinized use of poisons in agriculture has taken on global proportions. This book examines how activists around the world are now fighting back against Monsanto, the manufacturer of the best-selling, cancer-causing pesticide glyphosate, better known as ‘Roundup.’ The new book, edited by longtime Green activist Mitchel Cohen, explores not only the scientific dangers of glyphosate, but the nitty-gritty of the grassroots movements organizing to ban it.
The book’s contributing scientists and activists detail how corporations such as Monsanto, Bayer, Dow and DuPont scuttle attempts to regulate the pesticides they manufacture. Moreover, in an age where banned pesticides are simply replaced with newer and more deadly ones, the book also explores the best strategy to win the struggle for healthy foods and a clean environment.”
—Jack Shalom has been an educator in the New York City public school system for over 25 years and has worked with Brooklynites Against Apartheid, Brooklyn for Peace, and the New Sanctuary Coalition. He also produces segments for WBAI radio in New York City
“Mitchel Cohen, author, poet and activist is a force of nature. For decades he has tilted against the purveyors of poison who profit from the conversion of our complex, diverse, and interdependent biosphere into sterile, unsustainable monoculture. In his new book, Cohen, and the dozen or so other authors who round out this anthology, share insights as to how we got into the mess we’re in, and wise guidance as to how we might challenge the poison-laden paradigm Monsanto and company are foisting upon us.”
—Mark Haim is director of Mid-Missouri Peaceworks and has been active around peace, justice, sustainability and climate concerns for many decades
“The catchphrase is disaster capitalism, but we all know capitalism IS the disaster! No one makes this point more eloquently than Mitchel Cohen. No topic exposes this truth more clearly than the destruction of the environment. Ninety-nine percent of human history has been spent without this toxic system. We can't allow the 1 percent to control a minute more of our future.”
—Margaret Stevens, Antiwar veteran of US Army Nat’l Guard, teacher in Newark, NJ, and author of Red International, Black Caribbean: Communist Organizations in New York, Mexico and the West Indies, 1919 to 1939
“This volume is a ‘must read’ for anyone who cares about life on this planet. It is a remarkable collection, providing both breadth and depth of understanding of not only the current state of the environment and protecting it but also the cast of characters who seem bent on destroying it to serve their drive for greater profits. You won’t be able to put it down.”
—Marilyn Vogt-Downey is a journalist and Russian translator, who translated the Writings of Leon Trotsky series and Notebooks for the Grandchildren
“The Fight Against Monsanto’s Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides examines Monsanto's history and misuse of science, as well as our relationship to nature. It picks up from where Rachel Carson left off in her deep concern about the devastating effects of chemical pollution for all of us.”
—Marilyn Berkon is a retired NYC high school English teacher, whose major interest is in Greek classical literature
“Mitchel Cohen is one of the most dedicated, brilliant activists that I have ever had the pleasure and honor to work with over the years, and The Fight Against Monsanto's Roundup: The Politics of Pesticides is a passionate and highly informative treatise for protecting public health and the environment.”
—Aton Edwards, executive director of the International Preparedness Network, winner of the Grio 2012 100 history maker award, Today Show, MSNBC contributor, author, environmental & social activist
“With levity, poetry, art, and a solid lineup of informed and dedicated contributors, Mitchel Cohen brings to our attention the uncomfortable reality of today's silent spring: the invisible persistent killer pesticide, Glyphosate. Read, learn, and enjoy Cohen's creative efforts to tell us what we need to know. An informed citizen is our best defence against the chemical vultures of our time.”
—Linda Zises, cofounder and president of Women in City Government United