LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Some people would say that I am a member of that blind and loud anti-spraying group who are against the use of pesticides for cosmetic purposes; however that does not make me an anti-landscaper.
What I am is a person who would like to be able to go outside and walk around St. John's, Mount Pearl or any other community in our province without having to worry about inhaling any so-called "plant health product."
As of now, I can't even be guaranteed of that, since spraying can take place about two doors down from me.
So much for Canada or our province having a strenuous regulatory system. I don't remember giving permission to be used in an experiment where these pesticides are used.
Forgive me if I don't feel safe because Health Canada supposedly regulates those products.
Could our provincial and federal governments be influenced by the fact that the ornamental horticulture industry in our province is worth over $90 million? That makes a rich, large lobbying group which is able to shout loudly behind the scenes and bend the ear of governments.
After all, isn't it the legal right of rich organizations to contribute money to political parties in Canada to ensure political success?
At the opposite end there are politicians of the people, like St. John's city councillor Sheilagh O'Leary, who was recently elected and listened to independent citizens and independent professional groups like the Canadian Association of Physicians for the environment.
Recently, Gideon Forman, executive director of that association gave this professional opinion: "Recent scientific studies have show that people exposed to pesticides are at a greater risk for very serious medical conditions..." In addition, Dr. David Saltman, chair of oncology at Memorial University stated on June 16 in this newspaper, "We are all at risk from the toxicities of pesticide use. Young children may be more vulnerable..."
But don't take their word as gospel: be sure to call the offices of any lawn (but not human) care company and get the results from their "unbiased" scientific research.
They were supported by Coun. Wally Collins at a recent St. John's city council meeting who stated that some pesticides were made from plant roots "and you can eat that, right?"
Send in the clowns.