An open invitation to U.S. District Court Judge Charles E. Breyer of San Francisco:
Judge, you need to get out more. Get away from dreary and unexciting San Francisco. See the world. Take a cruise.
I hear the canals of Venice are beautiful and relaxing. However, that may be too far. Being a busy judge and all, you may not have the time for an overseas trip. May we suggest a non-touristy alternative to Venice, Italy; California’s Imperial Valley. The All-American Canal and the canals and laterals of the Imperial Irrigation District are great for cruising. Imperial Valley in August and September is so lovely. Besides, the City by the Bay can be so cold and foggy in the summer.
It could be an educational cruise, as well. Stop at the ports of call of Brawley, El Centro, Holtville and Westmoreland. There you can get a first-hand look at the impact of your ruling to ban Roundup Ready alfalfa seed sales and the regulations you ordered for the harvesting and handling of RR alfalfa that had already been planted before your ruling.
You can spend time talking with workers tagging thousands of Roundup Ready hay bales in 110-degree heat. Go with them as they climb hay stacks to attach tags to each bale. Notice the distance to the ground, if one of the workers happens to slip.
And, don’t forget, there are 19,999,999 more tags to apply after the first one goes on.
Experience the culture of workers cleaning balers, swathers, harrow beds, and hay rakes used to harvest that toxic RR alfalfa. It should be a balmy Southern California summer afternoon. Wash down a trailer used to haul RR alfalfa if you need to take a dip.
I’m sure USDA-APHIS employees will be thrilled to be tour guides. They are the ones who have to follow your orders. They’ll be glad to take you to a feedyard or dairy to see what happens when a bovine chomps down on a prototype of one of your court-ordered bale tags. Very educational.
Talk to some of the local alfalfa hay producers who have gained bald spots from scratching their heads in bewilderment over your ruling in May banning the sale of Roundup Ready alfalfa. Alfalfa? They keep scratching. Keep them from going completely bald by explaining to them why you made alfalfa-growing akin to robbery and mayhem.
World agriculture is dominated by biotechnology and mankind is benefiting, and you have said herbicide-resistant alfalfa is somehow toxic? Like I said, Judge, you need to get out more. Get away from that stuffy old courtroom and see the world — the world in which you have had great impact.
Take heart on your Imperial Valley cruise, you are protecting everyone from the dastardly dangers of Roundup Ready alfalfa.
Don’t worry about the cost. Imperial Valley Farm Bureau, Imperial Visitors Bureau and every farmer in the valley will be happy to cover the bill. There may even be some money at USDA-APHIS to fund a meal or two.
Imperial Valley alfalfa hay growers are nice folks, before and still now after you made them criminals. The Mexican food down south is superb. Hope you enjoy your visit.