GMO: Are You For or Against?
基因改造食品:你贊成還是反對?

語音播放

So what’s the deal with genetically modified organisms (GMOs)? Are they benefiting humankind, or to be avoided? Before answering this question, we have to talk about what exactly a GMO is.
什麼是基因改造食品?對人類有益嗎?或我們應該避免嗎?在你回答這個問題之前,我們必須談談基因改造食品造到底是什麼?

A GMO is any living organism (usually found in medicine or food) that has been genetically engineered in some way. The first GM animal was a mouse, to which scientists introduced foreign DNA in 1974, and the first GM plant was tobacco, to which they introduced genes resistant to antibiotics in 1983.

基因改造食品是任何生物有機體(通常可在藥品或食物中找到)被基因工程改造。第一隻基改動物是老鼠,1974年時科學家將外來的DNA注入老鼠體內,而第一種基改植物則是菸草,1983年時科學家則將可抵抗抗生素的基因植入。

語音播放

Proponents of GMO argue that humans have actually been modifying plants for thousands of years through selective breeding. This means that farmers purposely selected plants with desirable features (for example, larger cobs of corn) to breed new ones. Thanks to GMO, we can make our foods bigger, grow faster, resistant to insects or diseases, and more nutrient-rich. As the world population continues to grow, these methods will help us to keep feeding the planet.

提倡基改食品的人們主張,人類其實透過淘汰品種來改造植物已經好幾千年了。這表示農夫故意選擇有吸引人的特徵的植物(譬如,穗軸較大的玉米)來培育新品種。由於基改食品,食物的體積更大,長得更快,能抵抗昆蟲啃咬以及疾病,營養份也更高。世界人口數量持續增加,這些方法有助人們繼續餵養地球人口。

語音播放

Opponents of GMO argue that not enough research has been done on the potential negative effects of GMO foods on our health and the environment. A lot of protests have focused on getting governments to force companies to label GMO foods so that consumers can decide whether they want to eat them or not.
反對基改食品的人主張很少有人研究這項食品對健康及環境可能造成甚麼負面影響。許多抗議人士主張政府要強迫公司貼上基改食品的標籤,以便顧客可以決定他們要買還是不要買。

Vocabulary 好字精選

1. gene (n) a unit of heredity which is transferred from a parent to offspring and is held to determine some characteristic of the offspring  基因
Both Nick and his father are so handsome. They must have good genes!
Nick和他父親都很英俊。他們一定是基因優良!

2. resistant (adj) able to resist something  抵抗的,抗…的
Cameron loves his new water-resistant watch.    
Cameron熱愛他的新防水手錶。

3. antibiotic (n) a medicine that stops the growth of certain organisms  抗生素
The doctor prescribed the patient antibiotics for her infection. 
醫生開抗生素給病人治療她的發炎情況。

4. proponent (n) a person who supports something  提議人,擁護者
Proponents of equal marriage rights marched in the street yesterday.   
擁護婚姻平權的人們昨天到街上遊行。

5. selective (adj) only choosing the best  有選擇性的,淘汰的
Kate is very selective when it comes to which books to read.
提到選擇閱讀書籍,Kate很挑剔。

6. breeding (n) producing offspring (of animals or plants)  品種
The cross-breeding of the pineapple and the custard apple has produced the pineapple custard apple. 
鳳梨與釋迦的雜交育種生出鳳梨釋迦。

7. cob (n) a cob of corn  玉米穗軸
I love eating corn-on-the-cob!   
我最愛吃玉米穗!

8. opponent (n) a person who is against something  反對者,敵手
He is a vocal opponent of the death penalty. 
他公開表示反對死刑。

9. label (v) to apply a label to something  標籤
Many of Kendra’s classmates labeled her as a computer geek, but they didn’t even know whether she liked computers.
Kendra許多同學將她貼上電腦迷的標籤,但他們甚至都不知道她是否喜歡電腦。

Phrases and Sentence Patterns 句型解析

1. what’s the deal with + N? (sentence pattern) what’s up with N? what’s the matter with N? what is N about?   是怎麼了
What’s the deal with everybody in my class today? They all look sad.  
今天班上每個人是怎麼了?他們看起來都很難過。

2. …N, + prep + which (sentence pattern) 介係詞+關係代名詞=關係副詞
This is my company address, to which you can send your reply.
這是我的公司住址,你可以回信到這裡。

3. whether…(or not) (sentence pattern)  不論(是否)… I don’t know whether (or not) I will enjoy this movie.
我不知道我是否會喜歡這部電影。

Exercise 課後練習題

1. The ______________ that determines our eye color has been discovered.
決定我們眼睛顏色的基因已經被發現。
2. These flowers aren’t very ____________ to wind and rain. They all died in the storm.
這些花朵無法抗強風及大雨。它們都在暴風中夭折了。
3. Are you taking any _______________ for your illness?
你有吃抗生素治療你的疾病嗎?
4. James is a ______________ of the death penalty. He thinks that those who commit serious crimes don’t deserve to live.
James贊成死刑。他覺得那些犯下重罪的人不值得活著。
5. He’s very ______________ when it comes to food. He only likes certain cuisines.
他很挑嘴。他只喜歡某些特定的菜餚。
6. These farmers are ______________ a new larger horse.
這些農夫在培育較大型的新馬。
7. There are still some kernels of corn left on your _______________. Are you going to eat them?
你的玉米穗上面還剩了一些玉米粒。你要吃嗎?
8. _____________ of the new policy think that it will harm many young workers.
反對的人認為新政策會傷害許多年輕勞工。
9. These jars of jam need to be ______________ before they can be sold.
這些果醬罐在販售前需要貼上標籤。
10. _______________ with teens these days? They are always looking at their smartphones.
現代的青少年是怎麼回事?他們一直在看他們的智慧型手機。
11. Make sure you pick up a big cake, _______________ we can add 100 candles.
務必要買個大蛋糕,這樣我們才可以在上面插100根蠟燭。
12. I don’t care _______________ you buy that expensive bicycle or not.
我不在乎你是否會買那台昂貴的腳踏車。

解答:
1.gene
2.resistant
3.antibiotics
4.proponent
5.selective
6.breeding
7.cob
8.Opponents
9.labeled
10.What’s the deal
11.to which
12.whether

Comprehension Questions 閱讀理解

1. Which argument is NOT mentioned for GMOs?        
a. They can make foods tastier.
b. They can help prevent pests from eating crops.   
c. They can help to increase the quantity of food.  
d. They can make foods healthier.

2. What are those who have concerns about GMO mainly aiming for?
a. They want all GMOs banned.  
b. They want it to be clear which foods contain GMOs.
c. They want the government to closely monitor the development of GMOs.
d. They want companies to stop relying on GMOs.

解答:
1.  以下有關基改食品的主張何者未被提及?
a. 他們可以讓食物嚐起來更美味。
b. 他們有助於防止害蟲啃食榖物。
c. 他們有助於增加食物產量。
d. 他們可以讓食物更健康。

2. 那些憂心基改食品的反對人士的主要考量為何?
a. 他們想要禁止所有的基改食品。
b. 他們想要清楚知道那些食物含有基改食品。
c. 他們想要政府更清楚監控基改食品的發展。
d. 他們想要公司別再依賴基改食品。

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