2012.03.21 William Steinem: Guatamalan exports hurt its residents

Posted in Letters

Guatemala may not have enough tillable land to avoid starvation. It would have had almost enough land if its pre-1954 government had been allowed to restrict the growth of the banana industry and the cane sugar industry so more land would have been available to grow corn and beans to feed local people and not bananas and sugar for export.

But President Eisenhower freed these industries from holding back their plans for expansion of this export business and he also put control of the government of Guatemala in the hands of the Guatemalan army to prevent the communists from taking over the government. All this meant that these industries could take over Guatemala’s scarce land that would have been planted to corn and beans for domestic consumption instead of sugar and bananas for export.

The Guatemalan government is in effect allowing us to steal its citizens’ food by using the land that could have grown corn and beans to raise bananas and sugar for export instead.

We should stop eating bananas and try to get more sugar beets from the Great Lakes produced into sugar.

– William Steinem

Main St., Fayette

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