Ontario Parents Suspect Wi-Fi Making Kids Sick

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Ontario Parents Suspect Wi-Fi Making Kids Sick

Ontario Parents Suspect Wi-Fi Making Kids Sick

http://www.cbc.ca/health/story/2010/08/15/ontario-wifi.html

WiFi unhealthy? Yes or no?

Fidel

Quote:
Professor Magda Havas of Trent University in Peterborough, Ont., who does research on the health effects of electromagnetic radiation, issued an open letter to parents and boards saying she is "increasingly concerned" about Wi-Fi and cellphone use at schools.

Claims by Health Canada that Wi-Fi is safe provided exposures to radiation are below federal guidelines are "outdated and incorrect," based on the growing number of scientific publications reporting adverse health and biological effects, Havas wrote.

"It is irresponsible to introduce Wi-Fi microwave radiation into a school environment where young children and school employees spend hours each day."

Why don't they just switch back to the wired setup? Stupid bastards.

Sineed

The trouble is, their case is based entirely on the presence of symptoms when they are at school, and the absence of these same symptoms when they are at home.  Couple of points: could be something else at the school, and also, how many of these kids have wifi at home?  Lots of them, I'd wagar.

The way to test this is to turn off the wifi without telling anybody (ie, wiring up the computers on a wkend, assuming they aren't using laptops that they roam around with), and see if it makes a difference to the kids' symptoms.  If it doesn't, they'll have to look at something else.  Food in the cafeteria?  The presence of toxic mould?  It needs to be investigated in a systematic way rather than catering to people's fears through speculation.

Unionist

Yes, but, but, but, Sineed, but, but, what will Prof. Magda Havas do if it turns out that it's not wi-fi making these kids sick??

Would that cut into her [url=http://www.magdahavas.com/category/magda-havas-speaking-engagemetns/]spe... engagements[/url]?

Will she get fewer media interview requests via her [url=http://www.magdahavas.com/contact-magda-havas/]handy online fill-out form[/url]?

Let's just take the wi-fi hypothesis as "proven" and move ahead with the cure!

 

remind remind's picture

Personally, I think minimalizing the possibility through ridicule and defamation of a woman speaking out about it being possible, is ridiculous, at best, but I concur with sineed, toxicity samples should be taken for moulds and asbestos to rule them out.

Caissa

personally, I think the reported symptoms sound like a normal reaction to school.

 

The symptoms, which also include memory loss, trouble concentrating, skin rashes, hyperactivity, night sweats and insomnia,

ETA: I'm expecting our oldest son to begin exhibiting many of these symptoms as the onset of school in September draws closer.

Fidel

What about asbestos? We mine it here in Canada for use all over the capitalist thirdworld. Or lead in paint? It only took 70 years or so before that was declared dangerous to human health. Nothing was done about tobacco for 50 years due to a lack of scientific connection to cancer and other health problems. [url=http://www.i-sis.org.uk/sapp.php]Precautionary principle[/url] Why not err on the side of human health instead of corporate profit for a change?

remind remind's picture

ya fidel nothing like trivializing is there?!

Unionist

remind wrote:

Personally, I think minimalizing the possibility through ridicule and defamation of a woman speaking out about it being possible, is ridiculous, at best,

I think it's important to debunk panic-mongers of all kinds and demand scientific study and proof. Do you realize you can't walk down the street of an urban area without being bombarded by microwaves? Should we "play it safe", as per Fidel, by eliminating technology until there's a 100-year test that proves it's "safe"? What about the electromagnetic fields surrounding hard-wired ethernet cables? "SAFE"? My eye.

But remind, I didn't defame this professional full-time wi-fi opponent. I did ridicule her. If you have a problem with that, spell it out. But I did find it amusing that kids in Barrie are supposedly getting sick because of wi-fi, but nowhere else in the developed world. Or are Barrie parents just endowed with more legendary vigilance than others?

Unionist

Jumping to dubious and sexy-sounding conclusions about why a group of kids are getting sick is what I call "trivializing". Someone should find out what's really going on there and leave Dr. Havas to her university duties.

Sven Sven's picture

Unionist wrote:

I think it's important to debunk panic-mongers of all kinds and demand scientific study and proof.

Who could argue against that with a straight face?  Too many claims like this are simply asserted as being true.

Snert Snert's picture

In lieu of all this "mansplaining", can somebody just call Jenny McCarthy?

Fidel

Sineed wrote:
The way to test this is to turn off the wifi without telling anybody (ie, wiring up the computers on a wkend, assuming they aren't using laptops that they roam around with), and see if it makes a difference to the kids' symptoms.

Would that be like moving 200 people into a new building that's riddled with lead paint and asbestos throughout? And then after a few weeks when it's evident that no one dies or reports so much as a headache, build 50 more just like them for good measure?

Sven Sven's picture

Fidel wrote:

Sineed wrote:
The way to test this is to turn off the wifi without telling anybody (ie, wiring up the computers on a wkend, assuming they aren't using laptops that they roam around with), and see if it makes a difference to the kids' symptoms.

Would that be like moving 200 people into a new building that's riddled with lead paint and asbestos throughout? And then after a few weeks when it's evident that no one dies or reports so much as a headache, build 50 more just like them for good measure?

Fidel, you correctly point out why the particular testing methodology suggested by Sneed is inadequate.  That said, the claim needs to be subjected to scientific analysis before it can be legitimately considered a credible claim.

Fidel

Unionist wrote:
What about the electromagnetic fields surrounding hard-wired ethernet cables? "SAFE"? My eye.

There is [url=http://www.infinitecables.com/pr_p5ebl-stp.html]shielded CAT5 cable[/url] Some equipment is capable of utilizing the shielded cable's ground connection while other devices are not capable. I'm not saying EMF from ethernet cable is dangerous by itself - it's not. Some people do desire though to reduce their overall daily exposure to EM fields. We are basically lab rats in modern times. Scientists say that people are now exposed to EM field effects and radiowaves at levels one-hundred million times higher than our grandparents were.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Just for fun, some information on non-ionizing radiation (the kind cel phones and wi fi use).

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/?p=3073#more-3073

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

remind wrote:

Personally, I think minimalizing the possibility through ridicule and defamation of a woman speaking out about it being possible, is ridiculous, at best, ...

Not if she's a fear-mongering, opportunistic idiot.  I've observed that they come in both sexes.

Fidel

[url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/panorama/6674675.stm]Wi-Fi: A warning signal[/url] BBC 2007

[url=http://www.magdahavas.com/2010/05/20/lessons-from-the-interphone-study/]... from the Interphone study on cell phone use[/url] Magda Havas

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Oh dear god, not again.

Fidel, it's bullshit.  Steaming piles of bullshit.  For chrissakes, knock it off!

Unionist

Hey, TB, if you don't believe Dr. Havas, just reach for your (land) phone and dial 9/11.

 

Fidel

Timebandit wrote:

Oh dear god, not again.

Fidel, it's bullshit.  Steaming piles of bullshit.  For chrissakes, knock it off!

What is this?  I don't curse and swear at you, so why should you do it with me? Knock it off yourself.

Where's the study that says wifi and cell phones are safe? There isn't one, because the technology is relatively new. We don't always develop lung cancer from smoking or exposure to asbestos inside the same time span that second generation cell phones and wifi cane into widespread use. So why should we conclude that cell phones and wifi are safe for people since just the mid 1990s or so? And people talk on cell phones for longer now than half an hour each day, which is the threshold for heavy cell phone usage in the Interphone study. They actually admit in the appendix of that study to there being an increased risk for gliomas, the deadliest type of brain tumor.

Read the scientific concerns about wifi, and the valid concerns about the recent Interphone study and its design flaws. In the mean time, try to limit cell phone use as much as possible, and consider using ear buds with your cell phone.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Fidel, that's simply not true.  We've been over this in previous threads, so I'm not going to do the whole schmeer over again.  This is lunatic fringe nonsense.  I don't know why you seem to need to believe that the world is out to get you in such far-out ways - seriously, aren't the credible ones bad enough for you?

Fidel

Timebandit wrote:

Fidel, that's simply not true.

What's not true? Please provide evidence to support this claim.

Timebandit wrote:
We've been over this in previous threads, so I'm not going to do the whole schmeer over again. This is lunatic fringe nonsense. I don't know why you seem to need to believe that the world is out to get you in such far-out ways - seriously, aren't the credible ones bad enough for you?

 So you're saying there's no need to curse and swear and refer to me in derogatory manner in a lame attempt to bully anyone who opposes your hasty conclusions and to shore up your weak argument at the same time. I see...

Doug

There's no mechanism provided to explain why wi-fi would cause a health problem. To do that it would have to do something to molecules at the power that's used and it doesn't. 

My Cat Knows Better My Cat Knows Better's picture

Why leap onto this bandwagon when there is no proof? On the other hand, it has been proven that a lot of children get sick when exposed to mold, and it is a known fact that portable classrooms are rife with mold. However, mold is not sexy, or high tech, and the cure is expensive. Furthermore, you are unlikely to make any money in a class action law-suit on the mold issue. Singling out on potential issue that fits with one person's agenda and going to war over it is, quite frankly, stupid. There have been innumerable studies in the potential negative effects of electromagnetic waves of the course of ten years and more. All negative. Remember the computer video flap of the nineties. Why are you people still sitting at your computers is this is a real issue?

Fidel

Doug wrote:

There's no mechanism provided to explain why wi-fi would cause a health problem. To do that it would have to do something to molecules at the power that's used and it doesn't.

BBC News wrote:
At Washington state university, Professor Henry Lai, a biologist respected by both sides of the argument says he has found health effects at similar levels of radiation to Wi-Fi.

He estimates that of the two to three thousand studies carried out over the last 30 years, there is a 50-50 split - half finding an effect with the other half finding no effect at all.

Apparently there are two sides to this argument. And you're on one side of it, Doug.

I wonder what percentage of studies were partially funded by private enterprise or special interest groups with financial interests in the cellular and wifi industries? I think it's true that corporate sponsored science has slightly different goals compared to publicly funded research. Why are there monetary awards given to victims claiming damages after ingesting accutane and phen-phen and other drugs where clinical data was fudged and proper scientific studies just not done?

Sineed

Fidel wrote:
Why are there monetary awards given to victims claiming damages after ingesting accutane and phen-phen and other drugs where clinical data was fudged and proper scientific studies just not done?

Victory in a lawsuit is no proof whatsoever that something occurred, or that there is any validity to the allegations made.  For instance, the family of the US medic killed in that grenade explosion the US military attributes to Omar Khadr has won a massive lawsuit against the Khadr family, even though the allegations have not been proven in court and there is evidence of Omar's innocence.

There are also families who have won lawsuits against the Eli Lily company on the basis of birth defects "caused" by a drug called Bendectin.  Although there is overwhelming evidence that this drug is safe in pregnancy, and it has been used safely in Canada for decades (it's called "Diclectin" up here and it consists of a B vitamin and a mild antihistamine), the drug company refuses to market it in the US because of all the legal harrassment.  As a consequence, American women are more frequently hospitalized, compared with Canadian women, for a problem called hyperemesis gravidum, a severe form of morning sickness that can actually bring on a miscarriage (kinda ironic considering how the pro-lifers have so much more clout down there).

Basically, the results of lawsuits prove how the legal system works and nothing more.  And the legal system has only a tangential relationship to reality, at best.

Sven Sven's picture

I have heard that the dangers of wi-fi can be foiled, as it were, by wearing certain aluminized headgear.

Unionist

Fidel wrote:
In the mean time, try to limit cell phone use as much as possible, and consider using ear buds with your cell phone.

Abrasion, infection - really bad idea. At best, ear buds will lead to painful swelling - at worst, 50% of studies show they may or may not lead to sterility and stupidity. Unless you have some evidence to support the safe use of ear buds, bud, I'd back right off if I were you before the statements of claim start flooding in. Just some friendly ad-vice.

Fidel

I wonder how those [url=http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,517805,00.html]Nigerian families[/url] are doing with claims against Pfizer. [url=http://www.theepochtimes.com/n2/content/view/39692/]Is Pfizer the BP of Drug Companies?[/url]

Sven Sven's picture

In other news, parents should also be warned about the dangers of [url=dihydrogen">http://www.dhmo.org/facts.html][u]dihydrogen monoxide[/url].

What is dihydrogen monoxide?

Quote:

Dihydrogen Monoxide (DHMO) is a colorless and odorless chemical compound, also referred to by some as Dihydrogen Oxide, Hydrogen Hydroxide, Hydronium Hydroxide, or simply Hydric acid. Its basis is the highly reactive hydroxyl radical, a species shown to mutate DNA, denature proteins, disrupt cell membranes, and chemically alter critical neurotransmitters. The atomic components of DHMO are found in a number of caustic, explosive and poisonous compounds such as Sulfuric Acid, Nitroglycerine and Ethyl Alcohol.

Fidel

Unionist wrote:
Unless you have some evidence to support the safe use of ear buds, bud, I'd back right off if I were you before the statements of claim start flooding in. Just some friendly ad-vice.

On the contrary, anyone claiming long term exposure to WiFi and cellular devices is safe for children should probably not be in charge of child safety. I think they should volunteer to duct tape the things to their heads and get back to us in 30 years.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Hehe Fidel.  :)

Fidel

And I don't think U is siding with either argument so much as providing comedic relief as usual. Thanks Unionist. I was merely using his post as a srpingboard to make a general statement. I don't claim to know either way myself and think the precautionary principle should be used. The human body is a very complex thing. Scientists will someday look back on these times as being the dark ages of scientific understanding of human biology, or perhaps we are at the foothills of climbing the mountain, or something.

Sineed

Sven wrote:

In other news, parents should also be warned about the dangers of [url=dihydrogen">http://www.dhmo.org/facts.html][u]dihydrogen monoxide[/url].

Thanks for that, Sven!  I'm sending it to a couple of other nerds.

Fidel

[url=http://www.brain-surgery.us/khuranaSurgNeurol.pdf?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6... phones and brain tumors: a review including the
long-term epidemiologic data[/url](pdf) 2009

Cell phone users should at least read the abstract and conclusions.

Bookish Agrarian

I don't know enough about this issue to say which is the kooky opinion - perfectly safe, or dangerous.  However, why anyone with a thinking brain would just assume something is safe because industry says so is beyond me.

 

Here's a story from today about formerly perfectly safe products that we now realize aren't at all. 

http://www.healthzone.ca/health/newsfeatures/article/848280--study-finds-widespread-bisphenol-a-exposure?bn=1

 

You could find thousands and thousands of products, practices, chemicals, drugs and so on that we were told were perfectly safe that weren't. Amazing that lay people on a board on the internet can tell the difference without any background. Gotta love the expertise of all of us.

My Cat Knows Better My Cat Knows Better's picture

 

Exposure to the modern television culture will cause brain damage.

Fidel

[url=http://www.cbc.ca/marketplace/pre-2007/files/health/iarc/pageone.html]Ge... Carlo[/url] used to be a hired gun for the cell phone industry.

polly bee

Bookish Agrarian wrote:

I don't know enough about this issue to say which is the kooky opinion - perfectly safe, or dangerous.  However, why anyone with a thinking brain would just assume something is safe because industry says so is beyond me.

 

What BA said. :)

Unionist

No one said microwaves were "perfectly safe". Some fast talker convinced a group of parents that their kids' symptoms were connected with wi-fi at school. That's dangerous, not only because ignorance is bad for you, but because it prevents looking seriously at possible causes. One way of dealing with obsessive people who preach non-scientific views is ridicule.

 

Cueball Cueball's picture

Smoking causes cancer... asbestos too... DDT... yes the history of wack job science is long indeed.

Bookish Agrarian

Good thing you were around to ridicule those crazy people who suggested that taking mercury to cure many illnesses might not be the best idea- after all they were clearly whackjobs going against the prevailing scientific knowledge of the time.  Wink

Researcher44

The school board is correct. It isn't the Wi-Fi. It only allowed students to use their computers anywhere. That in turn let some of them create a problem discovered to cause mental breaks for office workers forty years ago. The cubicle was designed to deal with the vision startle reflex to stop the problem by 1968.

Subliminal Distraction exposure happens when your brain is tricked into attempting but failing to trigger the vision startle reflex many times in a compact time frame.

The subliminal apprecaition of threat that should have made you startle then colors thought and reason. It can cause fear, paranoia, panic attacks, depression, thoughts of suicde, strange skin sensations, memory loss, and psychosomatic medical complaints.

I have personal experience with it causing panic attacks. They stopped when I bought a new laptop computer and moved to a reclining chair in the corner of the room. The converging room walls provided Cubicle Level Protection.

My wife had the full mental break thirty days after the University of Alabama changed her office eliminating Cubicle Level Protection.

 

There is a video on CBC showing computer labs where students are packed close together with no protection.

 

Everyone that uses a computer in homes, dorm rooms, or small business offices should have the information on my site.

Google Subliminal Distraction. My site will be the first two returns.

VisionAndPsychosis.Net

Unionist

[url=http://www.bostonphoenix.com/archive/features/99/04/01/EM.html]Get ready for the environmental battle of the next decade: the fight against electromagnetic fields. Cell phones and broadcast antennas are only part of a problem that could threaten us all.[/url]

Quote:
The thing is, we're going to find out about this one way or the other in the not-too-distant future. With 60 million wireless-phone users out there, it won't be too many years before we learn definitively whether a disproportionate number of them get brain tumors, Alzheimer's disease, or just plain confused.

If nothing happens, then we can probably assume the antennas are safe as well.

But if millions get sick, we're all going to wonder why we were subjected to such a grotesque, irresponsible experiment.

From the Boston Phoenix, April 1-8, 1999.

Oh, read the whole article. Anti-EMF activist Susan Clarke is featured there. The same Ms. Clarke was hired by Mr. Palmer, of the Barrie parents' committee, eleven years later, to come and and plead for the health of the children.

Fidel

Unionist wrote:

No one said microwaves were "perfectly safe". Some fast talker convinced a group of parents that their kids' symptoms were connected with wi-fi at school. That's dangerous, not only because ignorance is bad for you, but because it prevents looking seriously at possible causes. One way of dealing with obsessive people who preach non-scientific views is ridicule.

But I thought you said in post#3 in buttressing Sineed's comment,  that if it's not known within a few weeks that WiFi is dangerous to human health, then that's all the proof you need that WiFi is compatible with children's health. You seem to already know ahead of everyone else that it's the lead paint in the school, or the mold in the air ducts, or possibly that the kids have conspired to get out of school for no good reason. Apparently the kids zeroed in on this controversial subject because they have some sort of anti-corporate agenda in addition to being lazy louts, or something.

 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

I had this weird wacky teacher when I was a kid.  Learned not to read everything I believe.

Bacchus

Remember that Paris suburb that had a cell antenna put up and people started complaining of sickness consistent with previous claims of types of illness associated with cell antennas.

 

Until of course, it was revealed that the antenna had never in fact been turned on

 

Fidel

That's 1999. It's only 11 years later. Most people exposed to asbestos and other carcinogens take decades to develop cancerous tumors. 2nd gen. cell phones have only been in widespread use since the mid 1990s. Wifi internet and phones have been around for the same or less time. Hint: they haven't done the long term studies, and it's because the long term doesn't exist yet.

What if it was publicly funded doctors wanting to strap some new electronic devices to the heads of twin children in a government lab somewhere in Poland? Would anyone object then?

Unionist

Fidel, I still think you're being unduly complacent about those ethernet cables, not to mention the EMF fields around electrical cords in general. Personally, I haven't seen one single study - not one - conducted over a sufficiently lengthy period of time, with a large enough sample population, that concludes that these EMF fields are harmless.

Which brings me to electrical appliances. Do you have any idea how many people have been burned by toasters over the decades... and yet, they're still in fairly common use in many kitchens? People are just too trusting. And who benefits? Right - the big toaster monopolies.

I think these Barrie parents are on to something. I'm not sure why their kids are the first in the world to show the signs of Wi-Fi poisoning on a mass basis. But maybe, just maybe, we should be proud that for a change, it's rural Ontario which is leading the way in alerting the world to this hazard.

 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

So Unionist, you're ignoring the history of the tobacco doesn't cause cancer lobby, drinking and driving prevention doesn't save lives lobby, H1N1 is a scam lobby?

 

Glad you folks are batting 1.000 and have no reasons to ask questions.

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