Regarding Anders Larson's letter to the editor ("Mailbox," April 21): The risk is not zero. I'm able to assess the exposure risks from Fukushima because I have been trained in radiation protection as a medical worker. Without the training, I believe it would be very difficult to assess the risks involved based on reports from the news media and TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Co.). Also, I'm surprised when people here repeat what the EPA is saying about the risk of exposure on the West Coast as Anders Larson did. The EPA has a terrible historic track record in which it fell well short of protecting the public, and in all these cases the effects were the most severe on the vulnerable and children. My question for Larson and others who insist on referring to the EPA, or FDA for that matter, is this: What voice are you echoing that is being endlessly repeated?
Is it the voice of the Obama Democrats and their glorious nuclear renaissance? Is it the voice of the stalwart Republicans who for years have doubted the effectiveness of or even the need for the EPA or other regulator agencies? Or is it the magnificent voice of the Libertarians who talk a big talk about dumping all regulatory oversight - EPA, FDA, Clean Air Act - and would cast us all into the maw of capitalism?
I propose that the echo is serving all of the above (good examples of our failed leadership) and is really the voice of the ruling class with its own tone, which goes something like this: "Shut up, go back to sleep. Or better yet, get back to work. There's no story here." And to that I say, the risk is NOT zero.
Tom Voorhees, McKinleyville
Regarding Anders Larson's letter of reassurance: Please be advised that all organizations Larson has mentioned are run by the government or by a combination of governmental agencies. The Japanese people know, from experience, not to trust their government. How long will it take us to realize that it is not in the interest of the governors of our country to tell us facts. The letter from Carol Binder hits the truth, dead on! If you want to know the radiation around you, check with the scientists in your area who are not owned by our government.
It is not in the interest of the Obama government, which has not shown itself environmentally correct, to tell us anything that would hinder its plans to build more nuclear reactors.
Please, folks, wake up! Get a Geiger counter and check counts for yourself!
Ginni Hassrick, Bayside