Tag Archives: biotechnology

“UNC Dildo-Boy” accosts homophobic preacher, releases anti-technology declaration

1 Mar

Protestor heckles Pit Preacher

 

 

By Danny Nett
Protester's self publicized picture on Facebook account.

Protester’s self publicized picture on Facebook account.

 

An unidentified man who went head-to-head with the controversial Pit Preacher Gary Birdsong faced a warning from the Department of Public Safety’s penal system Tuesday.

 

The shirtless individual – whose student status could not be confirmed — had a homosexual slur painted on his chest and a dildo sticking out of his pants. He approached Birdsong and simulated masturbation while waving the sex toy at the preacher.

 

When someone reported the incident to the Student Union, the demonstrator was taken into the Union. Student employees stood with him until DPS arrived to trespass him from campus.

 

“I think normally we would say, ‘Okay, you’re both going to exercise your right to free speech,’ until such time that somebody seems to think something is out of control,” said Joe Singer, senior associate director of events management at the Student Union.

 

“Our office is supposed to be content-neutral. Our role is to provide the space to speak.”

 

Posting on Facebook under the name “Unc DildoBoy,” the demonstrator stated his actions were not made as an attack on Birdsong or anti-gay sentiments, but on a technologically driven, post-industrial civilization. The individual did not give a real name to be interviewed.

 

While he refused to speak on the record, he posted a letter explaining his actions on the Facebook page.

 

“Because of the total penetration of mass media, humans on YouTube or Facebook, or people who are TV stars or politicians are put in a situation we humans are simply incapable of dealing with,” he wrote.

 

DPS spokesman Randy Young said if a person on campus is engaged in a situation or activity that could be considered provocative, results in harm to anyone or interferes with operations of the University or another person’s free speech, DPS may get involved. It is then at the discretion of the responding officers whether the disruptive individual is removed from a specific area like the Pit or from campus entirely, he said.

 

Cathy Packer, a professor who specializes in media law, said legally the Pit falls under what is considered a dedicated or limited forum. That means UNC, as a public university, can limit the forum for certain topics or speakers as long as it does not favor one viewpoint over another.

 

Packer said although she wholeheartedly disagrees with what the demonstrator did, she supports his First Amendment rights. She said his actions would not fall under a judicial definition of obscenity, but that it is irrelevant if he was removed for trespassing.

 

“My view about all of that is that the reason people come to Carolina is to see and hear things they didn’t hear at home,” Packer said.

 

“You go to Carolina and see some of what the rest of the world looks like and all the opinions other people have that your parents didn’t have.”

 

university@dailytarheel.com

Explanations of the Actions of Dildo Boy

Spark of Wildness Website

Facebook Account

Advertisements

Indigenous Hawaiian’s Take on Monsanto and GMOs

15 Apr

A’ole GMO: Defending Hawaii from the world’s largest biotech chemical corporations

Monsanto2

Young residents of Molokai, Hawaii, protest GMOs as part of a month-long series of actions against biotech chemical companies. (WNV/Imani Altemus-Williams)

by Imani Altemus-Williams / Intercontinental Cry

At 9 am on an overcast morning in paradise, hundreds of protesters gathered in traditional Hawaiian chant and prayer. Upon hearing the sound of the conch shell, known here as , the protesters followed a group of women towards Monsanto’s grounds. Continue reading

The Octypus-like Monsters in the Guts of Termites

8 Apr
“That is not dead which can eternal lie,
And with strange aeons even death may die.”
— H.P. Lovecraft from The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories
Cthulhu-469x616

by Russ McSpadden / Earth First! Newswire

[The text of this work is free to share and distribute under the following Creative Commons License CC-BY-ND 3.0]

Ok, microorganisms aren’t really monsters, at least no more than your average humanoid politician, but they sure do look creepy (also applicable to politicians).

A pair of newly discovered microbes that lurk the awkward black halls of termite intestines have been duly named by researchers after two fictional monsters from a rather twisted tale of horror by the legendary novelist H.P. Lovecraft.

The single-cell and octypus-like protists, Cthulhu macrofasciculumque and Cthylla microfasciculumque aid the digestion of wood in termites.

Morphology of Cthulhu macrofasciculumque by differential interference contrast light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

Morphology of Cthulhu macrofasciculumque by differential interference contrast light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

“When we first saw them under the microscope they had this unique motion, it looked almost like an octopus swimming,” says UBC researcher Erick James in his research published in the online journal PLoS ONE.

Their images reminded James of Cthulhu and Cthylla, which are both depicted by Lovecraft as giant octopus-like monsters that can also fly. James then baptized the newly discovered critters in honor of the fictional entities of doom.

And while biotechnology companies are busy manipulating microbes for fantastically profitable and often dubious ends what can we do but hope that these two protists named after cosmic evil never find their way into the hands of mad scientists with corporate backing.

Robotic Bees to Pollinate Monsanto Crops

8 Apr

by Russ McSpadden / Earth First! Newswire

Traducción español aquí. Traduzione italiana qui.

Screenshot_1

Pollinators participate in the sexual-reproduction of plants. When you eat an almond, beet, watermelon or sip on coffee, you’re partaking of an ancient relationship between pollinators and flowers. But since the 1990s, worldwide bee health has been in decline and most evidence points to toxic pesticides created by Shell and Bayer and the loss of genetic biodiversity due to the proliferation of GMO monocrops created in laboratories by biotech companies like Monsanto.

But never worry, those real life pollinators—the birds and the bees, as they say—may soon be irrelevant to the food needs of civilization. Harvard roboticists are developing a solution to the crisis: swarms of tiny robot bees made of titanium and plastic that can pollinate those vast dystopian fields of GMO cash crops. Continue reading

GMObama and the Monsanto Protection Act

28 Mar

GMObama640x330

by Lindsey Boerma / CBS News

There’s no love lost between Washington and the American public, it seems, five days after Congress for the first time in years managed to handle a budget-related issue without reaching the brink of crisis.

Protesters have descended on Pennsylvania Avenue outside the White House this week, enraged at a potentially health-hazardous provision they allege lawmakers inserted surreptitiously into a continuing resolution (CR) that will fund the government through the remainder of the fiscal year. The bill sailed through the Capitol on Friday; President Obama signed it into law on Tuesday.

Opponents have termed the language in question the “Monsanto Protection Act,” a nod to the major agricultural biotech corporation and other like firms geared at producing genetically modified organisms (GMO) and genetically engineered (GE) seeds and crops. The provision protects genetically modified seeds from litigation suits over health risks posed by the crops’ consumption. Continue reading

GM Seeds and the Militarization of Food: An Interview with Vandana Shiva

22 Mar

By Jon Letman /Truthout

Vandana Shiva in Hawaii. (Photo: Kai Markell)

Vandana Shiva in Hawaii. (Photo: Kai Markell)

 

Indian physicist and philosopher, activist and ecofeminist pioneer Vandana Shiva talks with Truthout in Hawaii about GMO, the militarization of agriculture, the politics of occupation and the primacy of biodiversity.

Foot soldiers in the battle against corporate globalization and the privatization of commons like land and water have long been aware of Indian physicist and philosopher Dr. Vandana Shiva. An ecofeminist pioneer, today she is best known as an outspoken opponent of the GMOs (genetically modified organisms) being developed by transnational biotechnology and chemical corporations like Monsanto and Dow.

Shiva disputes the notion that patenting genes and controlling the world’s seeds, and thus much of its food supply, will better serve humanity. Biotech companies claim their genetically engineered (GE) crops are able to withstand threats from insects, disease, and man-made pesticides and herbicides while making a serious contribution to feeding an increasingly hungry world. Continue reading

Genetically Engineered Trees for Bioenergy Pose Major Threat to Southern Forests

19 Mar

by Anne Petermann / Global Justice Ecology Project

The bio-forest of the future?

The bio-forest of the future?

In response to industry plans to develop eucalyptus plantations across the US South[1], environmental groups[2] are raising serious concerns about the impacts of eucalyptus plantations on forests, rural communities, wildlife and the climate – especially if those trees are genetically engineered.

EcoGen, LLC recently announced plans to develop eucalyptus plantations in southern Florida to feed biomass facilities.  Additionally, South Carolina-based ArborGen has requested USDA permission to sell billions of genetically engineered cold tolerant eucalyptus trees for plantations in South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas.  The USDA is expected to respond to this request in the coming months. Continue reading