I swear, due to the prolonged presence of never-ending rain, Vancouverites are practically amphibious creatures! Pouring rain this past Saturday did not stop hundreds (maybe even thousands?) of Vancouverites from joining cities around the world in the May 25 March Against Monsanto.
People came out to protest Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and the dangerous food monopoly of Monsanto, the company that has created dangerous chemicals and foods such as DDT, Roundup, Agent Orange, and GMO corn and soy.
And I'm super proud to say I was right in the midst of things, umbrella in hand. So today I'm sharing some coverage and a few photos of the lovely (albeit slightly soaked) folks of my hometown, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada!
|Me and my partner in rainy protest, Brianna :)|
Her brother is also off to the right
Things started off a little slow as they often do in Van - Vancouverites are almost always fashionably late... Just before 11 am we were worried there wouldn't be much of a showing....
|A slow start to the protest|
Shortly after 11am a young child took to the stage and rallied the troops with a megaphone, calling everyone to "SAY NO TO GMOs!"
And shortly thereafter, the rain slowed, and suddenly I looked behind me to find that there were about 2 city blocks worth of people :) Hundreds (again, maybe thousands??) marched for about an hour through downtown Vancouver.
|Many many rainy day marchers|
I have to give a huge thanks to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) for their careful road blocks that enabled us to march safely through downtown. Many special thanks to the officers who waved at us and showed support, and the downtown drivers who honked and waved rather than complaining and swearing about the driving delay!
And many thanks, of course, to the organizers in Vancouver for creating a peaceful atmosphere and bringing in speakers. Alas, the megaphones were quiet and it was hard to hear them, but the general gist of it was passed along.
Spirits were high and, as you can see, despite the gloomy weather many people had a smile on their face.
And just as many Vancouverites were fashionably late, others came fashionably dressed ;)
And unlike in some other places I've heard of, the Vancouver news channels did provide some good coverage of the protests across BC (i.e. CTV devoted several minutes to it within the first 10 minutes of their evening news).
So there you have it, I think the Vancouver March Against Monsanto was an all around successful event and I hope it leads to bigger and better things, such as more awareness and the eventual labelling (or even banning!) or GMOs.
If you're looking for more info about GMOs in British Columbia, you might want to check out GE Free BC, a coalition of groups across BC and the Yukon advocating for local and community based agriculture.