There have been major accidents at these plants. Workers have been explosed
to radiation. Radioactive water has been poured into public sewer systems.
Dale's idea of consumer choice is infantile. It's like somebody saying,
"Waahh! I want to go to the moon, so you have to build me a rocket ship,
and a whole space program, to take me there." At whose expense? And what
dangers, to the public, are intrinsic to what you are asking for? There are
other questions and concerns involved besides your own whims.
If you don't like the prospect of eating infected meat, which is the
principle reason given for supporting Irradiation, then DON'T EAT IT. The
human body was not designed to eat meat, even organic, free-range animal
meats. And the crap they are using to feed animals these days--including
sewage sludge--makes the problem much that worse, and would not be addressed
by irradiation. Besides that, cattle farming is one of the greatest sources
of global warming, both in terms of clear cut rainforests and the gases they
Date: Tue, 24 Aug 1999 19:14:44 -0400
From: Cass Peterson <email@example.com>
Subject: RE: Food irradiation and motorcycle helmets
Dale Wilson wrote:
>Many see irradiation, at least in the
>meat context, as a public health issue. Public policy often circumvents
>free choice in the interest of personal safety. An example is helmet laws
>for motorcyclists. A lot of people prefer to ride without a helmet.
>that be illegal?
I don't see these as analogous issues. There is no question about what
happens when an unprotected skull hits the pavement at 60 miles per hour.
There are still legitimate questions about what happens when irradiated
foodstuffs are consumed as part of a long-term diet. It is not yet clear,
to me and many others, that the connection between public policy and
personal safety has been made for irradiated foods.
Food safety is a public issue, of course, but irradiation is being promoted
as a cure-all measure for food-borne disease problems that might better be
solved by other means.
If you keep banging yourself upside the head with a hammer, and as a result
get a headache, should you take a high-strength pain reliever or should you
stop banging yourself upside the head with a hammer? Before we start
nuking everything we eat, perhaps we should look at how the food is grown,
what's being fed to it, and how it is handled and processed on its way to
the consumer. Maybe the problems could be solved there.
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