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Radioactive substances actively disintegrate, throwing off zillions of tiny particles which are sub-microscopic bullets. A high dose of these bullets kills living cells. A low dose doesn't kill cells, it damages them. The damage is observable.
A Geiger Counter measures radioactivity. Reality, according to nuclear promoters, is that low doses are safe. They might even be good for your health. An explanation of how that bizarre claim came about is discussed later on. If you can believe that being riddled with tiny bullets is good for you, I'd like to sell you the Brooklyn Bridge.
Braving the catcalls of her colleagues, Dr. Alice Stewart proved a long time ago that there is no such thing as a safe dose.
We are constantly bombarded with natural low dose radioactivity. Some of it comes from the earth, and some is from outer space. This induced cancers and birth defects throughout the ages. Doses added to that by the nuclear industry have contributed heavily to the sharp increase in cancer over the past fifty years.
"Nonsense," say the nuclear folks. The sharp cancer increase is only anecdotal evidence.
That's what they told the Mormon population, whose people were dying like flies from the low dose fallout of atmospheric nuclear weapons testing. Cancer caused forty-eight of sixty-three deaths in the Escalante Valley. Fallout was not limited to the southern part of Utah. Affidavits filed in court documented widespread abnormal rates of cancer.
When congressional hearings were held, it came out that President Dwight Eisenhower issued a secret document ordering the Atomic Energy Commission to confuse the public about fission and fusion. In other words deliberate deceit was Eisenhower's order of the day. If you can't trust the government, who else can you trust? You can't trust the government.
Towns like St. George reaped a grim harvest from the fallout of nuclear poison. Thousands of sheep sickened and died abruptly.
In community after community, people died of diseases rarely seen before: leukemia, lymphoma, acute thyroid damage and many forms of cancer. These were mostly Mormons, who devoutly obeyed their Church's instructions not to smoke tobacco or drink alcohol. They lived far from industrial areas which might have sent pollution their way.
For thirty years the government denied that nuclear poison had produced this plague of misery. As early as 1959, a study disclosed excessive levels of strontium 90 in children. The study was suppressed. In 1965, another study was suppressed. This one was by U.S. Public Health Researcher Dr. Edward Weiss. He correlated radioactive fallout with the high rate of leukemia deaths in southwestern Utah. At a joint Atomic Energy Commission-White House meeting, that year, the report was knocked down by the AEC. At that time, the AEC was gearing up the nuclear power program based on the premise that the levels of radioactivity permitted were harmless. The Weiss report was shelved. This did not shelve the grotesque death rate.
In 1979, the University of Utah epidemiology director Dr. Joseph L Lyon, independently confirmed the validity of the Weiss Report. He published his findings in the New England Journal of Medicine.
In 1979, about a thousand plaintiffs accused the government of failing to inform area residents that fallout could cause cancer. The government denied this accusation. The plaintiffs produced numerous written proclamations which had been distributed by the federal government assuring harmlessness.
One widely posted statement, dated January, 1951, signed by the AEC project manager Ralph P. Johnson said, "Health and safety authorities have determined that no danger from or as a result of AEC activities may be expected. ... All necessary precautions, including radiological surveys and patrolling of the surrounding territory, will be undertaken to insure that safety conditions are maintained."
The U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations issued a report in 1980. The report concluded, "The government's program for monitoring the health effects of atomic tests was inadequate and, more disturbingly, all evidence suggesting that radiation was having harmful effects, be it on sheep or the people was not only disregarded but actually suppressed."