"You have to work hard to offend Christians. By nature, Christians are the most forgiving, understanding, and thoughtful group of people I've ever dealt with. They never assume the worst. They appreciate the importance of having different perspectives. They're slow to anger, quick to forgive, and almost never make rash judgments or act in anything less than a spirit of total love . . . No, wait--I'm thinking of Labrador retrievers!" David Learn, 1998

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

"A few more carcinogens won't hurt you"


     For "radiation," think "carcinogens." Seriously. That's what it is. Can you imagine an oncologist telling a major newspaper--or a patient--" a few more carcinogens won't hurt you"?
     From Sunday's LA Times a wise editorial: "As delighted as we would be if nuclear power were the clean, safe answer to this country's need for oil independence and a stable energy supply, our position is that the dangers outweigh the benefits. The nation's future lies in sustainable energy sources, not in nuclear."
     In the same edition of the same paper, a stupid quote from a professor of radiation oncology at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, William McBride: "We live in a world that is radioactive." He cites natural radiation--from radon and cosmic rays, for instance--that surrounds us on a daily basis."There's not enough [coming from Japan] to worry about." 
     This same argument is coming from those who claim more radiation is okay because we get it from flying in airplanes, from bricks, (). The fact that we are exposed to radiation from so many other sources should show us that the less additional radiation we get the better. Even the definition I found for "background radiation" on the net adds,
"The deleterious effects of background radiation, estimated as causing 1-6% of spontaneous genetic mutation, rise with dose."     
     My brother Ted, whose youngest daughter Laria is 12, and whose son Vyron is 8, may have listened to an interview with this same naive spokesman when he emailed me: "When I see them bringing in 'experts' to give the public evasions and reassurances that we've know for decades are lies, I want to cry.  Want to?  I do cry.
     The California doctor I just saw aired assured us that the radioactive iodine in the milk in our refrigerator will decrease to half in 8 days.  (How many people keep milk 8 days before drinking it?)  He never mentioned the other elements, like caesium and strontium, which get into the bones and radiate from there for the rest of one's life.  He pushed the exploded idea that there is a level beneath which radiation is not harmful.  Etc blah blah etc.  And then said 'Don't worry.  I gave my kids milk this morning!'
     I cried.



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