I guess everyone using Twitter has their favourite accounts; those who use their 280 characters in a particularly inspired and precise way to sell a message or agenda. For me the top award would have to go to the inspirational @Botanygeek whose common-sense straightforward messages have attracted an understandably large following. I have also been drawn to those from the medical profession working to defend their trade from growing naturopathic illusions. In particular I would have to highlight @HislopMD and @DocBastard for their excellent efforts to set the world straight.
The Agricultural Industry and medical profession actually have a great deal in common. Both have been fantastically successful in their own fields to enable modern civilisation to succeed. Agriculture has overcome the warnings of Thomas Malthus to feed the majority of the 7.5 billion people alive today with a health, complete diet in a way he would never have believed possible. Modern medicine continues to develop stunning techniques and has pushed life expectancy above an incredible 79 years. Both areas have also recently suffered increased public mistrust with ideas such as ‘Big-Pharma’ and ‘Big-Ag’ being used to damage our image and provenance. Alarmingly both sectors are also in the frontline of the new ‘Information War’ being waged by Russia. It has been highlighted that Russia is actively attempting to sow concerns about both vaccinations and GM technology in the minds of Western populations to spread discord and division:
Anyone shadowing these subjects and champions on Twitter will have witnessed Russian trolls in action pushing this agenda; it is really unsettling and worrying mostly because it is working.
The bluntly named @DocBastard account pulls no punches. The pinned tweet says it all: “It has taken medical science 200 years to advance humans to the point where people are so healthy and living so long that they can deny that science and medicine is what got us here”. Admittedly under the shadow of anonymity the account holder goes after naturopaths and savages their snake-oil wares; pretty much ordering them to delete their account. But this comes from the wisdom, authority and life-experience of a trauma surgeon and I love the conviction and determination of this individual to put the world straight. Do spare a look at the ‘trauma lesson of the day’ thread too; your day is going much better than some other luckless individual in @DocBastard’s operating theatre.
To get to the point of this blog; these two giant stalwarts of modern times need to give each other urgent cross-support. The problem is that doctors promoting medicines and farmers pushing crop technologies both run the risk of being accused of ‘feathering their own nest’ and serving their own interests. Medical professionals can give invaluable support on the necessity for healthy, balanced diets with components sourced from all food groups including meat and dairy. Nutritionists can come forward with stories and warnings of dietary deficiencies resulting from all-plant diets and give people the unbiased information they need to make safe choices for their family and friends indirectly giving farmers a boost. What can farmers do in return? Fight the spread of anti-vaccine propaganda with a fully justified pro-science retort. Call out natural remedy and homeopathic treatments for what they are; false! If anyone has any doubts at all about doing remember this:
Resurgent diseases once contained by vaccination are again causing misery and death across the Western World. So to all the twitter farmers out there struggling to explain their vital needs for modern technology to a suspicious public (and also those concerned about the anti-meat agenda) let your medic friends know you have their back, share their frustration and perhaps together we can assist each other to make the world a more stable happy place. Agriculture also urgently needs a few @Docbastards to put myths straight so any volunteers get cracking!