Cellphone tower — are we asking the right questions? | TheUnion.com

Cellphone tower — are we asking the right questions?

Other Voices
David Moyer

Please stifle that yawn and read on. The Union's article was not very clear as to who is alleging what in the cellphone tower controversy near Lake Wildwood.

Was the family denied a permit to build their home? Do they want to build their house next to the tower? Does the county want to take part or all of their land?

I think it is clear that Peter Lockyer and his wife do not want the cell tower built. But whatever the issues are, over time they will be irrelevant to those living near the tower. We aren't asking the right questions.

At one time I canvassed some homes near the tower location. I shared some material on the health risks associated with such a tower and got a collective yawn from those who will be bathed in its electromagnetic radiation.

Congress and the telecommunications industry passed a law to specifically prevent legitimate health concerns from being a factor in the placement of cellphone towers.

Not having the tower is a "documented public safety risk?" Whatever happened to the ordinary telephone? What about the safety risk of having the tower?

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In my recently-published books, "Beyond Mental Illness" and "10 Ways to Keep your Brain from Screaming 'Ouch,'" I address the effects of electromagnetic fields (EMF) to overall health, including mental health.

For starters EMF is genotoxic, at least as much as benzene. It increases risk of cancer.

Congress and the telecommunications industry passed a law to specifically prevent legitimate health concerns from being a factor in the placement of cellphone towers. Why would they do that?

Santini administered a questionnaire to 530 men and women. Half lived within 300 meters of a cellphone tower and half were outside that boundary.

Those living within the boundary reported significantly higher levels of tiredness, headaches, sleep disturbance, irritability, depression, memory loss, dizziness and decreased sex drive (within 100 meters) compared to those outside the boundary.

Women reported greater levels of headache, nausea, sleep disturbance, appetite loss and depression than the men.

In Schwarzenburg, Switzerland, Cherry assessed humans and animals before and after a nearby cellphone tower was turned off for three days.

Cows had significantly higher levels of melatonin and humans reported significantly improved sleep.

After a lifetime of research, he concluded that EMF from different sources are risk factors for cancers, sleep disturbance, learning difficulties, senility, depression, suicide, cardiac arrhythmia and heart attacks.

A 2007 study showed that pregnant women who "moderately" used their cellphones during their pregnancy had a 54 percent increased risk of their offspring having ADHD.

A German study found that children exposed to the top one quarter of EMF levels were more than twice as likely to have behavior problems over time.

The EMF exposure was well below established guidelines. According to Johansson, EMF in rats, at the level of a Bluetooth device, impairs short-term memory and ability to navigate a maze.

The declining mental health in the culture is but one measure of a developing ecological catastrophe that, like the proverbial frog in the pan of cold water on the stove, we silently endure, even as the temperature slowly rises.

Meanwhile, the county, a family and the courts address legal issues irrespective of the real health threats caused by these towers.

Our congressional representatives with the help of the K Street Lobby and the powerful resources of mass media have assured that such a discussion will remain moot.

David Moyer, LCSW (AK), Lt. Col USAF, ret., lives in Lake Wildwood.

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