In a referendum on November 29th, the Swiss citizens, but not the majority of the cantons (regions), voted to accept the Responsible Business Initiative. However, a constitutional amendment must have both majorities: in that case, companies with headquarters in Switzerland could have been more easily held accountable for human rights violations and environmental offences. Now an only moderately binding counter-proposal comes into force. This decision is nonetheless a modest contribution to strengthening the campaign to include ecocide in the international legal system. There will nevertheless be lawsuits against the chemical companies Bayer and Syngenta in the future. Keep in mind that Syngenta manufactures and sells the very toxic pesticide paraquat, banned in the EU but still widely used in the world.
In October 2020, the French Supreme Court rejected Monsanto’s last appeal and decided that the company is liable for health damage to French farmer Paul François, who was a witness in the International Monsanto Tribunal. This is the final decision in a long legal battle of almost 14 years. The farmer had sued Monsanto for intoxication and illness related to the lack of labelling of Lasso herbicide. He won at the first instance, then on appeal and finally at the Court of Cassation. Now the Lyon Court of Justice will decide on the amount of damage to be paid. You can find the verdict on the website of Justice Pesticides, an organisation that collects all court cases and jurisprudences on pesticides in the world as information to help victims of pesticides. The organisation is closely connected to the Monsanto Tribunal and offers a tool in English and French for information and cooperation of victims, thanks to a database of legal cases that will help them to act themselves.
Today we decided to do something a bit different. The virus is out of controll in the USA. Here’s a website we think will help you navigate the disease.
But before you click on the link, why the title of this piece? Our leadership everywhere has dropped the ball from not wearing ,masks from making incredibly stupid statements. When you click on the link, scroll down and you will meet more enemies of the people.
Hear our winds whistling in your ears, uttering words of the storm coming— it is here, blowing away the leaves of our daughters, yet you do not thunder.
Hear us now! Haunting your steps as you walk in a rain of tears. Where is your sister? Where is your little girl, the barely grown woman whose smile just vanished in a lightning flash? Why do you not rage?
I am buried deep in the cornfield, she is hidden shallow in the woods, we are bound and screaming breathless with the girl in the hayloft just west of the reservation, innocence lost to the man who zips up and ponders where he will toss her away, now that she is useless to him.
You ask the neighbors, you check under a rock, you look back to where she used to sit and shrug your shoulders, perhaps wondering through the years
as the leaves continue to blow, gathering in a distant ditch, and our voices only come together in the storms as they brew— collect your hat and pull your overcoat closed around your face as we rage— your sister’s, your daughter’s screams unheard, their tears falling with the rain.
Plowing through the fields of life we lived the last of our best days at war’s end, and though I realize you have always been my brother I never thought of you as my friend,
. . .amidst today.
So I will take these instances of regret and etch them like a eulogy in a gravestone, my dying heart, it hurts to depart from this life we fought in together, and to never repeat itself, we shall die in poetic infamy.
strike moment, I spark. Catch, flame, fly. Consuming my surroundings, I sputter, cough, choke on the repercussions of my success. Flicker, fall out. Puff, I slink away in one last breath of smoked regret.
Thousands of miles away, a companion strikes a cigarette outside Dow Chemical headquarters, watches clouds lightly streak pristine sky, stands gloriously ignorant, oblivious to the disastrous havoc I, his billion-dollar brainchild, have ravaged across innocent lands.