We need science, not fearmongering
In a response to my letter to the editor on the lack of evidence of potential health risks of cell phones, Devra Davis repeats her alarmist statements. I urge Chronicle readers who are concerned to check out her sources. For example, Davis refers to a Federal Communications Commission notice of inquiry, but the FCC webpage includes the following statement: “There is no scientific evidence that proves that wireless phone usage can lead to cancer or a variety of other problems, including headaches, dizziness or memory loss.” There are simply no credible data and studies for scientists and public health officials to draw upon.
Responsible media are not reporting on the issue of health dangers of cell phone use for good reason. To quote Gertrude Stein, “There is no there there.” Despite Davis’ lengthy missive, when it comes to science, cell phone use is simply not like asbestos, DDT, or lead.
Stephen E. Fienberg
(The author is Maurice Falk University Professor of Statistics and Social Science at Carnegie Mellon University and is a Chronicle board member.)
Help for stutterers
As a life-long stutterer, I read with interest the June 13 letter from Adam Lichter about the help for children who stutter through the Federal Special Education Law (“Free help available”).
Mr. Lichter also mentions various websites specifically aimed at Jewish stutterers — one in Israel and one geared for the ultra-Orthodox. Neither is within the immediate reach of people in our area.
I wish to bring to your attention a nonprofit, no-fee, stuttering support group that meets in Pittsburgh, twice a month: The National Stuttering Association (NSA); I have been a member for over 20 years. The Pittsburgh chapter of the NSA meets the second and fourth Thursday of every month at 7 p.m. at the Hillman Room of The Children’s Institute at Shady Avenue. and Northumberland Street in Squirrel Hill. The website is westutter.org and our local Pittsburgh chapter can be reached via Darren Wilson at 412-478-6025 or email@example.com. There is also a NSA teen group (TWIST) that meets in the Fox Chapel area.
Alan A. Reznik, Ph.D.
BDS broken down
To me, (B)oycott sounds very familiar. This was one of the first acts of the Nazis in Germany and the anti-Semites in Poland: Boycott Jewish business; (D)on’t do any business with Jews; (S) reminds me of the sound of broken glass of Jewish businesses and broken bones of Jews in the universities and the streets of the above countries.
The word Boycott also reminds of Arab League resolution to boycott Israel and is still in force.
To boycott Israel and casting it in the same light as South Africa is offensive and hypocritical. In South Africa a minority ruled a majority, where in Israel the Arab minority if presented in the Knesset (Parliament), has a free press, etc.
When you are boycotting Israel you are aligning yourself indirectly with those whose aim is destroying Israel.
If you are not reading and listening to what the press and other media are writing about Israel you are (B)lind, (D)eaf and (S)ilent to where the major tragedies of the world are occurring: The killing of civilians, pilgrims, trafficking of women, enslaving children, etc. This is where your energies should be directed and not against a country that accepted millions of persecuted people, a country where refugees from Africa are fleeing for refuge, a country that provides the world with the most advanced technologies, medical, agricultural achievements benefiting the whole world. Wake up!