Some of my readers have emailed expressing dismay at my Global Warming piece, calling it a “right wing rant”. Based on my complaints about Ms. Carson and her book Silent Spring that lead to the ban of DDT and the resulting death of millions in the poorer countries of the world, some readers have decided that I am both uncaring about the environment and “stuck in the 50s in my opinion of women”. About this latter charge I confess utter mystification.
I assure the few people who may actually read this blog, that I care very much about the environment, like nearly all my fellow hunters and fishers. This will be evident in an upcoming piece. I do find fault with anti-capitalist, radical environmentalists who blindly follow dogma and are not swayed by accepted science or common sense.
About the stuck in the 50s charge…. Probably true. I admired and respected women then and still do.
Ms. Carson remains an icon of the environmental community and is often credited with being the founder of that movement. Fair enough. But, why the reluctance to admit she might have been wrong about DDT? One of my readers helpfully referred me to a website to defend RC. One of the references in that article (A National Geographic piece entitled “Bedlam in the Blood” (about malaria) contained a quote from Dr. Robert Gwadz of the National Institute of Health. He said, “Banning DDT may have killed 20 million people.”
This is from a reference supposedly defending Ms. Carson! Another piece from the same site by John Tierney of the NY Times carries the title “Fateful Voice of a Generation Still Drowns Out Science”. You can guess what that says about ol’ Rach.
We hear what we want to hear and find whatever confirms our prejudices, either on the Internet or in print. A friend of mine years ago was a professor of marine biology at U of Miami Marine Laboratory. He said our personal battle against our own prejudices was a constant process. Once you get rid of one prejudice you adopt another. I am no different than anyone else in this regard.
But, pointing out Carson’s error of half a century ago is not the same thing as walking into a Wisconsin tavern and loudly proclaiming that Brett Favre was a lousy quarterback and should have retired years ago. On second thought, maybe it is.