Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Daily Briefing For Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Adventures In Solar Bread Baking

When Kendel and Delaney are out of town, the lack of supervision in the house encourages me to do things I might not otherwise do. 

And so when they were out of town recently, I made up another batch of solar oven bread.  I'd hoped to grind my own wheat using some organic wheat my parents gave me at Christmas.  I scooped up a batch and took it outside to put in the grinder.  Imagine my surprise when I took the lid off the container only to find hundreds of small black bugs crawling around in the wheat.

Turns out that organic wheat isn't always cleaned before it's sold. This wheat came directly from the farm where it was raised, so it hadn't been processed in any way since harvest.  I told my mom about the bugs; she told me I should have frozen the wheat to kill any critters (or their eggs, in this case) that might have been in the wheat.

This is a good lesson for all of us to remember.  Some preppers, in order to save money, will buy unprocessed staple foods for their storage plan - which is fine, but you need to know what you're buying and how to treat the food prior to storage. 

And Is The Food GMO Free?

There's much discussion in the prepper community, as well as the wellness community, about the advisability of consuming genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.  There's a tremendous amount of debate on how healthy foods containing GMOs really are.

True story: I was watching a news story on PBS back in 1993 about GMO tomatoes with a friend of mine's father, who happened to be a minister.  We quietly watched the news piece, and at the conclusion, he asked me what I thought about the story.  I told him it sounded like there were some benefits to GMO foods.  "Yeah," he agreed, "but I'd hate to be the guy whose dick fell off and have the doctor say to me 'Looks like you've been eating those GMO tomatoes.'" 

I still laugh at that story.

This article is but one of many defending GMOs, and the arguments are certainly compelling.  But what troubles me more than the actual allegations regarding the harm caused by GMO is the acrimony between the pro-GMO groups and anti-GMO groups.  For a layperson, like myself, trying to separate the wheat from the chaff on this issue is rather daunting.  People with Ph.D. after their names on each side of this debate, claiming the other side practices bad science or outright lies about their cause, does little to help those of us who just want to know the truth.

What is the truth?  The truth is we're eating GMOs now, whether we want to or not.  They have already permeated our food supply.  I'm not sure it's even possible to eat a GMO free diet without dramatic lifestyle changes. 

Right or wrong, let's take a couple of lessons from the GMO debate.  First, a healthy amount of skepticism is a key ingredient of good citizenship.  Question everything.  Find out where the biases are.  Only then do we find the truth.

And second, when advocating preparedness to others, let's not be like many of those in the GMO debate (or vaccine debate, or global warming debate, or fluoridated water debate, for that matter).  We won't encourage people to prepare by telling them those who are on the fence about doing so that those who don't prepare are morons.

Advocate for whatever motivates you.  Do so in a civil fashion.

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