Whatever the case may be, none of this is to suggest that people should take it for granted that GMOs are totally benign, that scientists shouldn’t scrutinize their impact on human health and the environment, or that they are a panacea for problems like world hunger and malnutrition. And Kloor has his fair share of detractors, to be sure. But there are rational ways to cover the concerns about GMOs, and irrational ways, and the latter have been far too common.

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Curtis Brainard is the editor of The Observatory, CJR's online critique of science and environment reporting. Follow him on Twitter @cbrainard.