By Bernard L. Cohen (auth.)
I was once now not invited to put in writing a foreword for this publication. Dr. Cohen, figuring out my busy time table, may have thought of this kind of request to be an imposition. I volunteered to take action partly to recognize my gratitude to him for having been a continuing resource of reference fabrics as i've got grew to become my recognition more and more to informing either lay and clinical audiences about the biologic results of low-level ionizing radiation. My fundamental cause of vol unteering, even if, is to indicate to the significance of the sort of booklet for public schooling at a time whilst the media, in collaboration with a number of activist teams, have built one of the humans a nearly phobic worry of radiation at any point. I take factor with the phrases of one other Nobel laureate, George Wald, who states usually "Every dose is an overdose. '" This philosophy has re sulted in ladies refusing mammography for the detection of breast melanoma even supposing this technique is the main delicate for detection of such cancers within the early, curable level, or even even though, at this time, breast melanoma is the best explanation for melanoma deaths between girls. It has led a Westchester County, ny legislator to kingdom proudly within the ny occasions that he v vi I FOREWORD had brought laws that will bar all radioactivity from the county's roads.
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The most widely publicized evidence for the opposite position, represented by curve B, bending downward in Fig. S. Government's Hanford Laboratory in central Washington state. In comparing deaths among the workers with higher radiation exposures (typically 20,000 mrem) with those who had little or no exposure, they found that the former group died more frequently from cancer, especially of certain types, than the latter group. ~ 4 c /Plutonium _\ \ \ ~ Fig. 8. Survival time for beagle dogs who developed bone cancer from injections of plutonium and radium versus dose received by their bone up to one year before death.
Main plot shows higher dose data used to obtain straight line, and inset compares this straight line with the low dose data. From Ref. 57. HOW DANGEROUS IS RADIATION? I 37 cancer found predominantly among the miners is very rare among nonsmokers so only a small fraction of cases among nonsmokers can be due to radon. Thus the low-dose risk from radon is far below that given by the straight line, indicating a behavior like line A in Fig. 1. 9. There is abundant evidence that the time delay between exposure to radiation and the consequent development of cancer increases as the dose decreases.
They want to decide what to transmit, which requires media people to make judgments on scientific issues. How they do this clearly depends heavily on their own education on these issues, which is derived almost exclusively from other media sources. Thus the media fraternity dealing with science seems to form a closed loop, educating one another, and choosing input from scientists only when it suits their own prejudices. When I complain about this to media people, they always say that the scientific community is split on the issue.