- As many of you know, the Central America Free Trade Agreement
(CAFTA) contains sections related to something called CODEX ALIMENTARIUS
-- which is legislation that seeks to remove our dietary supplements and
herbal alternative therapies. If this passes the U.S. House of Representatives,
we will have to get a doctor's prescription to buy over-the-counter Vitamin
C, and many other vitamins and minerals that are part of our daily lives.
- I wrote a letter to my Congressman Brian Higgins (27th
District NY) and was surprised at the reply that he sent.
- I received this reply on July 18, 2005:
- July 13, 2005
- Mr. ---- ---------
- Buffalo, New York
- Dear Mr. ---------:
- Thank you for contacting me in opposition to the Central
American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA). I appreciate hearing your views
on this important issue, and share your concerns about the impact that
such a treaty would have on jobs, labor rights, and the environment. I
do not support CAFTA in its' present form, and hope you will accept my
apologies for the delay in my response.
- President Bush signed the United States-Dominican Republic-Central
America Free Trade agreement on August 5, 2004. This measure, which is
now pending ratification before Congress, promotes trade liberalization
among the United States, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, El Salvador,
Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. CAFTA is an inequitable agreement that
will hurt families and workers not only in our country, but across Central
- This treaty is an expansion of broken trade policy that
would affect developed and developing countries alike. While the agreement
would lower barriers among ratifying nations, it would not adequately raise
labor-management or environmental standards in order to level the playing
field and make free trade among these nations truly fair.
- Since the North American Free Trade Act (NAFTA) was ratified
in 1993, our nation has lost over 500,000 jobs to exploited Mexican workers
who work in poor conditions and do not receive sufficient wages for their
effort. Like NAFTA, CAFTA fails to comply with international labor standards
and fails to enforce fair labor practices. In fact, the agreement only
requires participating nations to comply with their own domestic labor
laws, many of which are extremely inadequate within Central America.
- In addition, Central America is a region that is rich
in biodiversity. Unfortunately, CAFTA does little to address the urban
pollution, costal contamination and deforestation that would threaten this
unique environment without proper development policies. Any industrial
development spurred by CAFTA would take place without sufficient environmental
- I am proud to come from a family that boasts a rich history
of organized labor. I believe that workers in all nations have the right
to earn an honest wage for their honest work. I do not support CAFTA because
through it, our country would turn its back on its tradition of win-win
growth through strong employee-management relations. CAFTA would cause
lose-lose economics where workers' voices would be silenced, natural environments
would be destroyed, and American jobs would be threatened.
- Thank you again for contacting me on this important issue.
Please rest assured that I will keep your thoughts in mind. I hope you
will not hesitate to contact me again in the future, if I may be of further
assistance on this or any other matter.
- Brian Higgins
- Member of Congress
- New York 27
- Here is the original letter that I sent to Congressman
- July 8, 2005
- Honorable Brian Higgins
- United States House of Representatives
- Larkin Building Suite 601
- 726 Exchange Street
- Buffalo, New York 14210-1485
- Re: Say "No!" to CAFTA and Codex Alimentarius!
- Honorable Representative Higgins:
- I am writing to you today about an attack to my own private
choice as it relates to the selection and use of vitamins and herbal supplements
-- in the form of something called Codex Alimentarius. This heinous idea,
which has been inserted into the CAFTA legislation, is predicated on the
idea that I am too ignorant and stupid to choose my own health care options.
- You must oppose the CAFTA free trade agreement, so long
as it contains the Codex Alimentarius provisions. If you do vote for this
heinous legislation, you will no longer receive any support from myself,
as well as my entire family and friends. Your support of this legislation
will also seriously harm any chance you might have for reelection, as the
entire alternative health industry will lobby heavily against you.
- In closing, allow me to quote our great third President
- "If people let government decide what foods they
eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry
a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny."
- Thank you for your consideration to this extremely urgent
- Respectfully Yours,
- © 2005 The Kentroversy Papers