How do we view poison?  Our first reaction is understandably negative, but it is important to recognize that all poisons are not the same. According to dictionaries, poison is a substance that is capable of causing the illness or death of a living organism when introduced or absorbed.  Salt is poison to slugs, yet its mindful use can enable protecting a strawberry patch from ruin without causing harm to the environment or to threatened species.

The world has gone mad for poisons

As with most issues, lack of environmental impact research and comprehensive planning has resulted in the use of poisons that were later proven to be extremely detrimental to humans, directly and indirectly though damage to natural resources.  A prime example is the use of DDT as a pesticide until banned in 1972 by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  DDT was found to be highly toxic to aquatic species.  DDT is probably best known for the damage caused by one of its break down products (DDE3) to multiple species of birds due to causing the shells of their eggs to become too thin to protect the delicate contents inside.  Learn more about DDT…

DDT “persists in the environment, accumulates in fatty tissues, and can cause adverse health
effects on wildlife.”  Studies continue to test the levels of DDT found in human mothers’ milk, for example.  Learn more from NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information)

Facts vs. ‘Alt-Facts’

As with all research, we must search for established facts and then use those facts within the reasonable confines of their relevance. Simply put, ‘alt-facts’ are lies. Putting a ‘spin’ on facts to make them appear more sensational or frightening than they are is propaganda. There is quite enough current activity on our planet worthy of our concern without creating illusions of monsters hiding under the bed!

On that note, as food for thought, what do you think about this 1979 Monsanto advertisement found in National Geographic?  Are facts used? Is spin involved? Is there any feeling (positive or negative) that this ad generates for you?  Paws would love to know what you think – Contact Paws.

1979 Monsanto Ad in National Geographic

1979 Monsanto Ad in National Geographic, published with permission from Rising Storm

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