Every once in a while, a scare hits the media about the dangers of Wi-Fi use. Whether they are talking about cell phones or wireless routers, the scaremongering remains the same. Cancer. We are all going to die from cancer that develops as we fry our brains.
Except we aren’t. It is a case of looking at health issues backwards. Most cancer rates are decreasing. They are looking at a cause that has no effect. Cancers that are increasing such as lung cancer in women and colorectal cancer have causes that are well known and have nothing to do with wi-fi. Lung cancers in women are catching up to the rates in men as the incidence of female smokers increased in the 1970s and beyond. Genetics and lifestyle choices (high fat diets and sedentary living) are behind the majority of colorectal cancers. Since the proliferation of cell phones, the incidence of brain tumors has decreased. So why are so many people afraid of cell phones and wi-fi.
Most people who are against technology, whether wi-fi, or modern farming methods using genetically modified products cite the, Precautionary Principle which states:
if an action or policy has a suspected risk of causing harm to the public or to the environment, in the absence of scientific consensus that the action or policy is harmful, the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking the action.
However, they are actually a victim of the Paralyzing Precautionary Principle:
Because if they were as worried as …. is, they’d be paralyzed. They wouldn’t drive a car, get on a bus, eat a meal at a restaurant, or turn on any electrical device. They wouldn’t stand near a granite mountain because it might give off cancer-causing electromagnetic radiation. They wouldn’t go swimming in the ocean for fear of being eaten by a shark or killed by a jellyfish. They wouldn’t even read his memo out of fear that their computer monitors might be poisoning them with radiation. They wouldn’t open their mail for fear of being killed by anthrax or a mail bomb.
The most dangerous thing we all do in our lives is drive a vehicle. The second is to live a sedentary lifestyle and eat an unhealthy diet. Even there, we are making progress. So, fire up your laptop and chat on your cell phone, just remember to put them down once in a while.