Friday, January 10, 2014
Reader View: U.S. wireless standards declared inadequate
This last August, the American Academy of Pediatrics, representing 60,000 pediatricians, pediatric medical and surgical specialists, wrote an official letter of public comment to the Federal Communications Commission stating that “Current FCC standards [for wireless devices] do not account for the unique vulnerability and use patterns specific to pregnant women and children.” The FCC itself has noted that it does not provide consumers with sufficient information about the radio frequency “exposure profile of individual phones to allow consumers to make informed purchasing decisions.”
The academy further notes that, “The current metric of RF exposure available to consumers, the Specific Absorption Rate, is not an accurate predictor of actual exposure. FCC regulations should reflect how people are using their phones today.” The Specific Absorption Rate does not address: 1) the long-term biological effect of radio frequencies penetrating brain cell tissue; 2) the repeated penetration of the brain with numerous calls per day; 3) the deeper penetration of a child’s smaller brain with a thinner skull membrane, more fluid and developing neurotransmitters; and 4) the increased radiation exposure of 4G networks via iPads required to transport increased loads of information. New, small-print warnings by iPad manufacturers are also alarming: “Discontinue use of iPad and consult a physician if you experience headaches, blackouts, seizures, convulsion, eye or muscle twitching, loss of awareness, involuntary movement, or disorientation.”
The pediatricians’ letter also points out that the prevalence of wireless phones and other devices has increased almost sevenfold in one generation, from approximately 44 million in 1996 to more than 300 million now, and that human exposure to electromagnetic radiation also has been drastically increased by the ever-growing “number of mobile phone calls per day, the length of each call, and the amount of time people use mobile phones. Many children, adolescents, and young adults now use cellphones as their only phone line and … at much younger ages. Pregnant women may carry their phones … in a pocket … close to their uterus.”
Underground shielded wire fiber optics is the wave of the future, not slow, insecure and dangerous Wi-Fi. Kansas City, Mo., and Chattanooga, Tenn., already are embarking on citywide installation, including Internet that is three to five times as fast, the best television selection and landline clarity ever known, as well as all utilities, consolidated to one cable entering every building. Recent policy declarations by the European Parliamentary Assembly, French National Assembly, and the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health give preference to wired Internet connections in schools and classrooms, and in alliance with the United Kingdom Department of Health, to “strictly regulate the use of mobile phones by schoolchildren on school premises.”
Children born today will already experience a longer duration of exposure to more radiofrequency fields than any generation in history. Children born during the past few years are already exhibiting symptoms of overexposure such as insomnia, hyperactivity, anxiety, lack of focus and aggressive behavior, as identified by the American Academy of Environmental Medicine at www.aaem.org.
Please join us in choosing a precautionary approach, advocating for the installation of underground shielded wire fiber optics citywide, which will also attract new businesses to Santa Fe, turning off the Wi-Fi in schools districtwide, opting for wired connections in our homes or at least shutting off Wi-Fi modems except when in use, as well as using landlines whenever possible. Please also join us in directing our children to once again enjoy “real life” — hugging, talking face to face, reading books, playing, painting, exploring, gardening, cooking, dancing and singing instead of using electronic devices to occupy their preciously limited time for emotional, physical and intellectual development.
John McPhee of Santa Fe is affiliated with DOCTORS Wireless and Radiation Network (WARN) and the Santa Fe Alliance for Public Health and Safety.