Judge Rejects Monsanto’s Bid To Overturn Landmark Cancer Verdict, But Slashes Award

By Arjun Walia, Collective Evolution

In Brief

  • The Facts: School groundskeeper Dewyane Johnson was awarded $289 after a jury found Bayer (Monsanto) to be guilty of causing/contributing to his terminal cancer. Monsanto requested a new trial, and a lower amount has been requested by the corporation.
  • Reflect On: How are these companies allowed to put these products on the market still? At the end of the day, it’s me, you and your neighbour who are buying them. We are the solution to stop this crisis. It’s time to wake up.

Glyphosate is the new DDT. DDT was a similar sprayed chemical as an agricultural and household pesticide. Decades later it’s been ban, despite that it was used for years, it had tremendous environmental and health consequences. The sad thing is that the manufacturers of these products are well aware of it, and through their control over government policy, these products are approved and only banned after many years of litigation, red-tape, and the overall collective awareness of what’s actually going on.

Once we become aware of it, despite the fact that the manufacturers’ were already aware, it can no longer be used. Awareness kicks off the process of these substances being phased out of existence, despite the fact that it may take decades, without awareness there are no initiatives.

We are seeing the same thing with Glyphosate right now, the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide. Now, it’s important to mention that the pharmaceutical industry completely dominates medical literature, that’s where all the modern day medical literature that’s deemed ‘significant’ has its roots in. Do you think it would be easy to have a product manufactured by the pharmaceutical company to be deemed hazardous in the medical literature when that same pharmaceutical company controls medical literature?

“The medical profession is being bought by the pharmaceutical industry, not only in terms of the practice of medicine, but also in terms of teaching and research. The academic institutions of this country are allowing themselves to be the paid agents of the pharmaceutical industry. I think it’s disgraceful.”  Arnold Seymour Relman (1923-2014), Harvard Professor of Medicine and Former Editor-in-Chief of the New England Medical Journal (source)(source)

Judge Affirms Initial Verdict

This is why when a U.S. judge on Monday affirmed a verdict against Bayer AG (owner of Monsanto) that found glyphosate-based weed-killers are responsible for a man’s terminal cancer illness, it was great news. It’s also vital to mention that there are thousands upon thousands of cancer cases against this product.

Originally, the case of school groundskeeper Dewyane Johnson was the first lawsuit alleging glyphosate causes cancer to go to trial. Any Jury on the planet would probably come to the same conclusion. It’s nearly impossible not to after going through all of the corporate corruption, scientific fraud, and science showing glyphosate is indeed wreaking havoc on human health.

Dwayne Johnson was awarded $289 million for damages. It’s likely Monsanto put forth the motion to have the case overturned as it’s a dangerous precedent to have set against Monsanto. This will mean many more millions in damages down the road and they will have to take responsibility for their actions. Monsanto also asked the judge to through-out her original verdict with regards to the punitive damages portion.

Now what’s happening? Judge Suzanne Bolanos said she would cut the damages to $39 million. Bayer said that the decision to reduce the damages was a step in the right decision, as they continue to claim that decades of science shows that it’s safe for us. This science strongly contradicts an overwhelming amount of science and fraud that says otherwise…

“It is commonly believed that Roundup is among the safest pesticides… Despite its reputation, Roundup was by far the most toxic among the herbicides and insecticides tested. This inconsistency between scientific fact and industrial claim may be attributed to huge economic interests, which have been found to falsify health risk assessments and delay health policy decisions.” – R. Mesnage et al., Biomed Research International, Volume 2014 (2014) article ID 179691

Lawyers for Johnson in a statement on Monday said they were still reviewing whether to accept the reduced award or retry the punitive damages portion.

If Johnson accepts the reduced damages, the final verdict would order Monsanto to pay a total of $78 million, split equally between compensatory and punitive damages.

Keep in mind that the use of glyphosate rose 1500% from 1995 to 2005, and that 100 million pounds of glyphosate is used every year on more than a billion acres. (Cherry, B., “GM crops increase herbicide use in the United States,” Science in Society 45, 44-46, 2010) (source)

Johnson and his team are currently deciding whether or not to accept this proposal from the company.

The Takeaway

Science has illustrated that Glyphosate is clearly not good for humans or the environment. What will it take for its use to be completely banned? There are thousands of lawsuits, thousands of scientists and researchers and papers all pointing to the same thing, yet the industry continues to ignore it and claims otherwise.

On top of this, we have numerous examples of corporate corruption. Corporations like Bayer have amassed so much power in finance and politics that they can literally pay and lie their way through the system. How regulatory agencies approve these products is a complete mystery but becomes less of a mystery when you realize these government regulatory agencies are completely controlled by the company. For something that’s becoming as clear as this, the solution is easy, don’t use these products, and refuse to use these products. That’s the only solution here.

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