Corporate Media Shills For Radiation Firing Body Scanners
Wednesday, Nov 24th, 2010
Worried about harmful x-ray firing airport body scanners? Don’t be, everything is just fine. In fact, hugging your partner in bed exposes you to more radiation, according to the corporate media.
In an article consisting of a series of slideshow pictures, CBS News today defends the scanners by suggesting that virtually any activity is more dangerous to your health.
“Some buildings are made with stone known to emit tiny amounts of radiation.” the piece suggests.
“Case in point: New York’s landmark train station, Grand Central Terminal. Wait for your train for an hour there, and you might be exposed to about 0.06 millirem, at least six times more than an airport scanner.” the article laughably claims.
It gets more bizarre as it goes along:
“Believe it or not, the human body emits radiation. That’s because it metabolizes potassium, and the potassium found in bananas and other foods and water contains radioactive as well as non-radioactive atoms.”
“One year of bedding down with someone else might expose you to 2 millirems, at least 200 times the dose from an airport scanner.” the piece suggests.
It is blatantly ludicrous to suggest that lying down next to your partner in bed is more dangerous to your health than firing x-ray radiation directly at your body tissue, yet the corporate media expects the American people to simply swallow this claim without question.
CBS even suggests that simply walking around minding your own business is potentially more of a risk than the directed bursts of radiation now being fired at air passengers.
“No matter where you live, you’re exposed to low levels of background radiation – from air, soil, water, and cosmic radiation that bombards the earth from outer space.” the article states.
Furthermore, by titling the piece “TSA Airport Scanners: Radiation Truths and Lies”, CBS is programming readers to believe that any suggestion that the scanners may be unsafe are outright lies.
The propaganda piece, which has been preceded by many others like it, does not even attempt to present a balanced debate by detailing the scores of scientists who have gone public with concerns over the devices.
Dr Michael Love, who runs an X-ray lab at the department of biophysics and biophysical chemistry at the Johns Hopkins school of medicine recently told AFP that “statistically someone is going to get skin cancer from these X-rays”.
“…we have a situation at the airports where people are so eager to fly that they will risk their lives in this manner,” he added.
John Sedat, a University of California at San Francisco professor of biochemistry and biophysics and member of the National Academy of Sciences tells CNet that the machines have “mutagenic effects” and will increase the risk of cancer. Sedat previously sent a letter to the White House science Czar John P. Holdren, identifying the specific risk the machines pose to children and the elderly.
The letter stated:
“it appears that real independent safety data do not exist… There has not been sufficient review of the intermediate and long-term effects of radiation exposure associated with airport scanners. There is good reason to believe that these scanners will increase the risk of cancer to children and other vulnerable populations.”
The TSA has repeatedly stated that going through the machines is equal to the radiation encountered during just two minutes of a flight. However, this does not take into account that the scanning machines specifically target only the skin and the muscle tissue immediately beneath.
The scanners are similar to C-Scans and fire ionizing radiation at those inside which penetrates a few centimeters into the flesh and reflects off the skin to form a naked body image.
The firing of ionizing radiation at the body effectively “unzips” DNA, according to scientific research by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The research shows that even very low doses of X-ray can delay or prevent cellular repair of damaged DNA, yet pregnant women and children will be subjected to the process as new guidelines including scanners are adopted.
The Inter-Agency Committee on Radiation Safety concluded in their report on the matter that governments must justify the use of the scanners and that a more accurate assessment of the health risks is needed.
Pregnant women and children should not be subject to scanning, according to the report, adding that governments should consider “other techniques to achieve the same end without the use of ionizing radiation.”
“The Committee cited the IAEA’s 1996 Basic Safety Standards agreement, drafted over three decades, that protects people from radiation. Frequent exposure to low doses of radiation can lead to cancer and birth defects, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,” reported Bloomberg.
Scientists at Columbia University also entered the debate recently, warning that the dose emitted by the naked x-ray devices could be up to 20 times higher than originally estimated, likely contributing to an increase in a common type of skin cancer called basal cell carcinoma which affects the head and neck.
“If all 800 million people who use airports every year were screened with X-rays then the very small individual risk multiplied by the large number of screened people might imply a potential public health or societal risk. The population risk has the potential to be significant,” said Dr David Brenner, head of Columbia University’s centre for radiological research.
Despite all these warnings, The Department of Homeland Security claims that the scanners are completely safe, pointing to “independent” verification from the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, both federal government bodies.
Steve Watson is the London based writer and editor at Alex Jones’ Infowars.net, and regular contributor to Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham in England.
This article was posted: Wednesday, November 24, 2010 at 10:46 am