Is the White House Letting Your Kids Get Sick?

Dr. Robyn Silverman

Dr. Robyn Silverman

Perhaps you’re searching your mind—wondering how the American Government is failing it’s people—and you just can’t come up with a thing….so here you go!

Are you drinking contaminated tap water? Probably.

Water with a twist of pechlorate

Water with a twist of perchlorate?

We’ve all heard that doctors take the oath, “First Do No Harm.” The government should be asked to take the same oath. That is, unless you like high levels of perchlorate, a component of rocket fuel that has been linked to thyroid problems in pregnant women, newborns, and young children, in your drinking water.

The Environmental Protection Agency has been under great pressure from the White House and the Pentagon to refrain from setting a drinking-water safety standard for perchlorate. In fact, the document they originally put out by the EPA was heavily edited by government officials who oppose it.

Here’s the truth: “The document estimates that up to 16.6 million Americans are exposed to perchlorate at a level many scientists consider unsafe; independent researchers, using federal and state data, put the number at 20 million to 40 million.” —Washington Post (oh goodie, I always loved a little rocket fuel with my tea and honey—the missing ingredient in my cold remedy ?)

Here’s how it happens: Some perchlorate occurs naturally. However, perchlorate contamination in U.S. drinking water isn’t a result of that—it’s a result of poor disposal by rocket test sites, military bases and chemical plants. Unfortunately, it’s also in breast milk and veggies (Can anyone say Erin Brockovitch? We need you!)

Here’s the “problem:” No, not that lots of innocent children, babies, and pregnant women can have lifelong health issues, silly! No, no, no—the problem is that a nationwide clean-up WOULD TAKE MONEY—lots of money! It could cost millions, or BILLIONS, and it’s been rumored that several defense contractors have threatened to sue the defense department to help pay if we need such a clean-up  . (Perhaps you’ve noticed, but the U.S. is already in debt up to our eyeballs and things are getting worse—we need to bail out the thieves on Wall Street–so a little perchlorate is definitely not making the priority list.)

Here’s the REAL problem: The scientific studies suggest that even a small reduction in thyroid function is infants can result in a LOSS OF IQ and increase in BEHAVIORAL and PERCEPTION PROBLEMS. (That’s right—a great way to deal with keeping up with the Chinese– lower American IQ and decrease our ability to focus)

What the experts are saying:

“They have distorted the science to such an extent that they can justify not regulating the chemical…Infants and children will continue to be damaged, and that damage is significant.” “It’s absolutely irreversible,” he said. “Even small changes in thyroid functions early on have impacts on functioning through high school and even into people’s 20s.” –Robert Zoeller, a University of Massachusetts professor, expert in thyroid hormone and brain development. He has a copy of the EPA proposal and has read it thoroughly.

Why it’s really a problem:

The newest EPA proposal suggests that the maximum allowable contamination level is 15X what the EPA suggested in 2002 (very fishy already) was actually heavily edited by…the White House Office of Management and Budget (no doubt serious science experts who have only the health of Americans in mind). “Surprisingly,” they eliminated several KEY PASSAGES and asked the EPA to use a new computer modeling approach to calculate the chemical risks. They also erased references to studies which highlight the danger of the chemical for our children and pregnant women.

This is only the latest example of the Bush Administration EPA being accused of bowing to political and economic concerns, as opposed to taking the advice of its own scientists, when it comes to decisions about environmental — or in this case, human — health. Dan Shapley, The Daily Green

The EPA says: “Science, not the politics of fear in an election year, will drive our final decision.” –Benjamin H. Grumbles, EPA’s assistant administrator for water

(However, people expect the EPA to shirk responsibility due to governmental pressure.)

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee says: “Perchlorate has been a serious, persistent and widespread problem which threatens the health of our families, especially our children. For the Bush EPA to walk away from this problem and shrug off this danger is, in my view, unforgivable and immoral.” –Barbara Boxer

My take: The health of Americans– especially our children (future leaders) needs to be made a top priority. Children’s health shouldn’t be factored into a budget like the Wall Street disaster. This is an issue of health and respect for the wellbeing of the American people. Going to the White House Office of Management and Budget for public health advice is as useful as asking a bunch of kindergartners to redecorate your kitchen. Anything that’s done simply causes a bigger mess and a higher cost to fix it.

WHAT DO YOU SAY? Disgusted? Frustrated? Horrified?  Spill it.

7 Responses

  1. […] Is the White House Making Your Children Sick? Science Says Yes […]

  2. I absolutely agree with you Dr. Robyn! There is no excuse for the Government to hide it’s head in the sand when it comes to protecting the physical and mental health of our children.

    Maybe we can’t do anything about the Government’s spin on important issues like this and get them to face up to the scientific truth, but we can certainly empower ourselves to take matters into our own hands.

    I urge everyone who is concerned about the potential of perchlorate in their drinking water to have their water tested for its presence. Don’t just order a home testing kit…have your water tested by a professional lab that uses EPA-approved methods.

    If you find you have a problem with the level of perchlorate in your drinking water, then you can invest in a remedy. Just be aware that normal carbon filters many homeowners use in their kitchen will not filter out perchlorate.

    Thanks for bringing this important issue to your readers.

  3. […] Also, here’s a link to a blog posting on this from an leading child development expert, Dr. Robyn Silverman that you have to read, especially if you have children or grand children: Is the White House Letting Your Kids Get Sick? « Dr. Robyn Silverman’s Blog […]

  4. Thank you, Mr. Beek-

    It’s certainly alarming what’s going on with our drinking water– something that we simply figure is clean and good for us as soon as we turn on the tap. Thank you for letting us know that our Brita filters don’t filter out pechlorate– we need to get our water tested!

    Dr. Robyn

  5. I it is true then I’m horrified. If not then we still have a lot of things still contaminating our water…like unused medicine that gets flushed and dumped but doesn’t get filtered. There’s many more chemicals than just the one in this article to be concerned about.

  6. Dr. Robyn, more on this over at Eco Child’s Play where this extensively linked post speaks to ‘notsosahm’ above…

    Govt. has not been putting kids’ health and well-being at the forefront for QUITE some time…as evidenced by a variety of the chem cuisine that passes for food, the childhood obesity/HFCS fandango, imported toxic toys, USDA/FDA/FTC and FCC blunders, and even the FISCAL crisis that will land on kids’ heads with the current economic bailout mess…Sooooooooooo um…it’s beyond just one item…sigh.

    Thanks for the insightful article though…I’ll drop a link into the ECP site to point readers there over here to read this one! Great job…

    p.s. Trying again for the ‘tips’ article this weekend…sigh. –Amy

  7. Hi Amy and Vicki!

    Amy–Thanks for the heads-up. Thank you for letting them know about my article. I appreciate it!

    Amy and Vicki–I think if I knew all the chemicals that are in my food and water I’d rarely eat or drink anything at all. I do try to steer clear of as many chemicals as possible– but then again, when you can’t trust the water, an ingredient that in just about everything, how well are even the most careful people doing? Grrr.

    Looking forward to your article, as usual!

    Dr. Robyn

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