Whether fully spelled out or just thrust your way via the media-friendly acronyms they notoriously become, there’s something a brewin’—and more often than not, it has been brewin’ for seventy-plus years already.
Slow Death by Rubber Duck: The Secret Danger of Everyday Things by Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie, two environmentalists, is their attempt to persuade you beyond the typical whisperings that buy your politicians those powerful chairs in which they sit. Imagine if we lived in a world where house fires were not deemed worthy of escape and that this “don’t escape” mentality, although leading to an upswing in burnt flesh and whoopee cushions for lungs, was being touted as the safest known practice. Safest—even though both common sense and the numbers say otherwise—because nobody wants to stop the money machine and because too many have become absolute in their trust.
And because of this—Rick and Bruce enter that house. Gasoline in hand. Cellular genocide in mind. Bumping right into you—me—us.
“These guys are the new tobacco lobby. The same people. The same politics.”
We laugh at Sara Palin, yet here we are, many years later—stirring up that same dust. Dan Aykroyd sells hypothetical bags o’glass at a price of laughter, but this same scheme is used to…
“Schetler says that as far as he knows, phthalates are not taken up by vegetables, but because they are fat soluble, they’ll get into meat, dairy and processed foods.”
This is good news for fellow veggie killers, but this article is still very young.
“Schetler mentioned a study from Japan, showing that phthalates in vinyl gloves worn by people handling and packaging food was one source of exposure for consumers.”
“…phthalates in milk products can also be traced back to the flexible vinyl tubing used in dairy barns to drain milk from milking machines into collection vessels.”
“The American Academy of Pediatrics has confirmed that ingestion of phthalates can occur when children mouth, suck or chew on phthalate-containng toys or other objects.”
“Phthalates are almost never listed as an ingredient on products that contain them.”
Look for the lovely ‘fragrance’ or ‘parfum’ instead.
“I have to admit that I find the role of toy companies in exposing kids to toxins very surprising.”
What irritates a giggle out of me, is that the laws or safety regulations placed on these toys our toddlers mouth, bite, and snuggle to bits, are no different than the ‘no whole milk before nine months’ rule. Toxic before, but poison-less after?
“Non-stick frying pans, toaster ovens, cookie sheets and pizza pans have all been implicated in pet bird deaths.”
Teflon Toxicosis, also caused by irons, space heaters, carpet glues, and new sofas.
And how does Dupont respond to such accusations? Like Dan Aykroyd—how else?
“Sadly, bird fatalities can result when both birds and cooking pots or pans are left unattended in the kitchen—even for just a few minutes. Cooking fumes from any type of unattended or overheated cookware, not just non-stick, can damage a bird’s lungs with alarming speed. This is why you should always move your birds out of the kitchen before cooking (my emphasis).”
You. Yes, you. You stay in the kitchen. Just move the bird. Thank god we humans don’t have lungs—right?
PCBs, PBDEs, & FLAME RETARDANTS
“It turns out that PBDEs leach out of the products they are put into: the squishy foam in a sofa, the padding in a mattress and the back of a TV set. They waft into the air in our houses and offices and cars and sailboats and settle to the ground as dust.”
Crawl children. CRAWL.
Walk humans. And then put your feet—
“After seven meals/snacks in three days, I had managed to more than double the mercury levels in my blood.”
TRICLOSAN & ANTIBACTERIAL
“It tends to build up in animal and human fat tissues and has been detected in umbilical cord blood as well.”
Besides 1200 brands of cosmetics, the environmental working group has found this chemical in:
- Liquid hand soap
- Shower curtains
- Cutting boards
- Children’s toys
- 140 items!
In 1879, Listerine was used solely as a surgical antiseptic. I know, as a nurse, that nurses cringe when they think about the current antiseptics used today. So how does it feel to know that your children will be gurglin’ away these very same chemicals? Like seriously, how does that taste?
2, 4-D & DDT
“It seems incredible that DDT was used widely in North America for only three decades but can still be causing cancer nearly 40 years after it was banned.”
“What in God’s name were they thinking when they started making household plastics out of a chemical that has been known for over 70 years to screw up the human body’s hormone system.”
“In that study we demonstrated that a dose of BPA twenty-five thousand times lower than had ever been tested also stimulated prostate development exactly like low doses of estradiol. This had been missed in the high-dose [BPA] studies.”
“With that one exposure,” Hunt explained, “we’re actually affecting three generations simultaneously.”
Let this next dialogue sink in.
“Now tell me how many individual molecules of BPA would be in that water drop.”
“Not even close. Try 132 billion. And each one of these molecules is able to turn cell receptors on and off just like hormones do.”
And for those that wear pink for breast cancer.
“The ones at 25 part per trillion showed double the amount of milk duct growth as compared to mice that hadn’t been exposed to BPA.”
THE BAD SCIENTIST IN ME FORGOT TO MENTION
Rick and Bruce went about their exposures to these chemicals in a way that mimicked modern-day life. They didn’t bathe in DDT or eat an entire sofa. They did the same things we do consistently on a daily basis. If the environmentally aware and proactive avoiders can have their contamination levels skyrocket after only 48 hours—imagine the possibilities.