Recently I have been reflecting deeply about my previous work experience many years ago for the giant corporation called Monsanto. In 1994, a personal time of underemployment and high risk taking by myself, I found a way to be paid for making an educational and promotional documentary in the mountains of central Mindanao island in the Philippines. For me, at that time, this was a good thing and I was happy it was happening. My job was to produce a documentary about the herbicide, Roundup, as it was being used in a commercial reforestation project in Bukidnon province in the southern Philippines. I availed of scholarly and scientific research they gave me at the time (1994) to develop a creative short video for the sales and promotion purposes of Monsanto’s offices in Singapore.
Fast forward to now–Now that the current lawsuit is happening against Monsanto and I am able to see other perspectives and information, I am deeply concerned about the weakened ethics of my previous professional work for that company. I can’t undo the past but I can reflect upon its meaning so that I can learn, reflect and change. I don’t know right now what is the right answer or most wise response, but I am questioning what happened and what I did at the time, albeit unknowingly..
I was convinced in 1994 that it was OK to use Roundup in commercial forestry and other agro–businesses, so I wrote and produced a good video for them at a bargain rate because I believed in the product and its purpose, plus I wanted to work on location in Mindanao. No other video producer in their right mind would venture into Bukidnon as I did at the time. I took my gear and gladly ventured there. Monsanto paid me to live my dreams.
I worked on the Monsanto project in 1994. I never imagined Roundup in a retail or household setting and to this day I remain convinced that glyphosate, when used in moderation, is basically OK for its primary purposes in the killing of weeds. I don’t believe it causes an unreasonable risk beyond what any other chemical poison would pose. I wouldn’t drink or inhale the stuff but there were rumors that it would be safe to do so. Regardless of rumors, it is a weed killer and not a beverage. There is a gap in my understanding of the current case against Monsanto.and how that 289 million dollar amount was arrived, but I understand the threshold was to prove that Roundup was a contributing factor. They guy describes it blowing in his face as part of his job–his employer should be crucified!.
In the current case it sounds like a typical example of labor exploitation by government and corporate entities, where employers subject workers to unsafe or uncontrolled risks.
I need to post this article for my future reference