March 6, 2008

In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb

SB 3170 - A Bill For An Act ; roll camera

Scene 1
Waimea Canyon Middle School on the island of Kauai. March winds blow. Students are at different locations on campus. Randomly they begin to feel the effects of a poison in the air. Individuals are effected to different degrees. Some with asthma will need the assistance of a ventilator to breathe. Many are dizzy, light headed, nauseous, with headache and later diarrhea. It is an incident of acute pesticide exposure.

Scene 2
UH Manoa - conference call

PATRICIA --- (talking into the phone) I read your testimony. My concern is "sanitation" and "infestation" (1).
BARRY --- (listening as he looks out his window on a sunny Oahu day) Unbiased and seemingly random, people's reactions are a lesson in our endocrine system. Unlike a broken bone or cut that you can see, the effects of pesticides on the human body are still being determined. "The buffer zone if approved would severely affect parks, golf courses and agricultural production..." (2)
PETER --- (walking through Manoa campus speaking on his cell) The poison in pesticide is insipid in it's effect in that it wear's you down over time. Many of the pesticide's being used today have only been synthesised within the past 5 years. Risk Assessment studies completed included only adults. MSDS do not cover the possible "cocktail effect" when mixing pesticide with other agents. "It would be far more reasonable to apply the buffer zone restriction to certain classes of pesticides, such as organophosphates with known long-term effects on children (2)."
PATRICIA --- "By establishing a pesticide free buffer-zone... routine facility maintenance such as disinfecting our restroom facilities during cleaning would be affected." (reaching for a Starbucks mocha latte being passed to her by her personal assistant) "Over time the sanitation of our schools would be severely impacted (1)."

RICHARD H. CONRAD, Ph.D. biochemistry--- (walking a few steps behind Peter, unable to not over hear the conversation feels compelled to interject) ) “There is no balance or other side to this story, period, except for junk science sponsored by industry. Anyone supporting a position that pesticides are nothing to worry about or control is either ignorant or highly unethical. There is every good reason to pass this bill, and no good reason to oppose it (3).”
(Hawaii’s mana interrupts and all three loose the connection. Peter quickens his pace without comment.)

* Comments in italics are quotes taken from SB 3170 testimony and attributed to the author(s) identified on the posted document.

1. Excerpts from Patricia Hamamoto, Superintendent of Education testimony against SB 3170
2. Excerpts from Barry Brennan, Plant and Environmental Sciences and Peter Rappa, Environmental Center @ UH Manoa testimony against SB 3170
3. Excerpt from Richard H. Conrad, Ph.D. - testimony in support of SB 3170

4. Bill SB 3170 before and after amendments
Before -
5. Image: Theatrical Masks:cc0237

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