Toxic Ignorance is Not Bliss

Richard Denison, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist.

I’m excited to point you to a column, “Toxic Ignorance is Not Bliss,” just posted on our website.  The column is written by Dominique Browning, formerly the longtime editor-in-chief of House & Garden, who is partnering with EDF via a monthly column.

The subtitle of the column is “Why I’m Outraged About BPA and Other Chemicals, and What We Can Do.”  Here’s a sample to get you to read more:

We should be worried about what amounts to a huge, uncontrolled human testing experiment. Without agreeing to it, without understanding it, without even knowing it, we have become the chemical industry’s guinea pigs.

Click here to keep reading.

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  1. Charlotte Feck
    Posted December 10, 2009 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    I have lived in this environment for 57 years. I started suffering long ago from an affliction that I did not understand. I never truly understood until I started going to college and did a research paper on chemicals. Then I started realizing that somewhere down the line one or more chemicals was responsible for my health issues. At first I just thought I suffered from allergies and could not understand why two doctors prescribed medications did not work. These just seemed to make it worse as I suffered from side effects from the medication while the allergies did not even start to go away. I started noticing first cheap perfumes would send me into coughing fits? Household cleaners would do the same thing especially when they were antibacterial. These antibacterial ones made me feel like I was a germ and I suffered from coughing, stuffiness and much more. When I started doing my research for my college paper I came upon an answer to my problems in two parts. One that there were many untested chemicals in factories and in our homes back in the 70’s and 80s. First I worked in a factory that used a lot of dangerous chemicals and I soldered on that job as well. Then for years my home was sprayed with the current govenment approved bug spray. At that time it was most likely Dursban. In my research I came upon the answer to my dilemna as well as I found out there was a term for my health issues it is called chemical sensitivity. Of course many money makers out there accuse those of us who suffer from this as being people who do not like progress and who are anti-technological. Funny I liked all this progress and had no idea it was the cause of my problems. They say we suffer from bad anger well try telling someone what is happening to you and have them say you are more or less hyprochondriacs? I am one who has always been very active and determined to do better in my life. When I started college I was going into technology and the field was computers. I have had to give this up as most of my classes were in the Science building and it is hard to do algebra through headaches and your eyes getting so gooey you cannot see your paper as well as other problems. I did not learn about my problems till I had to do an essay and I chose at first household chemicals and lead soldering. This took me down a path that I would have never believed that our people would have been subjected too. Yes, we are the lab animals. However, I think the bottom line is money and of course this is more important than our health to them. The sad thing is when we try to do something about it there is all this red tape. Our green scientist have to go through so much and it takes so much time to get something taken off the market. Chemical Companies make the chemicals and you should see the court recordeds of people trying to sue them. Oh by the way they complain about smokers smoking as there are so many problems from this? Well now they have added a fire retardant to these? Lets see the chemicals in the cigarettes are making people sick so we add another one? What are they thinking? I could write a book on all this so I will stop now.

  2. Richard Denison
    Posted December 11, 2009 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    Charlotte: Thanks for sharing your story. I very much hope we can achieve fundamental change in the way our country deals with chemicals and make life at least a little easier for you and others who suffer from similar effects.