Letters: Not that smart; praise for a senator

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Other information on ‘smart meters'

In response to "No votes won't stop roll-out of smart meters," March 8.

I am disturbed at the fact that the power company is disregarding the votes of Bennington County residents at four town meetings where we opposed wireless smart meters. CVPS says they will go ahead and install them anyway against the town meeting votes.

Steve Costello said, "They are no more dangerous then a baby monitor."

This statement is not true. In fact, baby monitors emit only about one 13th as much radiation as smart meters (three microwatts/square cm.compared to 50) and operate at a higher frequency which is less dangerous (2.4 gigahertz compared to 900 Mega hertz). Baby monitors and portable phones are DECT (digital enhanced communication technology) devices and have been proven dangerous in many scientific studies around the world.

The Dutch Electro-sensitivity foundation has found that DECT phones increase brain tumor risk and cause other problems, including headache, fatigue, heart palpitations, concentration and sleep problems.

Lenart Hardell, an Orebro Sweden cancer researcher "consistently found an association with DECT phones and brain tumors."

In the interest of our health and our children's, please Google Dr. Magda Havas, Dr. Jeff Marrongelle "Do DECT phones affect the heart." There is a short video about this American study from Colorado. The majority of subjects had very elevated heart rates when exposed to the DECT phone. This study is proving that these devices essentially put us in fight or flight response mode.

Mr. Costello said "people are spreading misinformation and scaring people." I am spreading scientifically proven information, the information is scary but it allows us to protect ourselves and our children. This knowledge lessens the fear like knowing how to drive lessens our fear of car accidents.

BEN MITHOEFER

Dorset Praise for Senator Sears

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Bennington County Senator Dick Sears deserves praise for his role in stopping legislation that would have legalized assisted suicide in Vermont.

At last week's hearings in the Senate Judiciary Committee he chairs, Sears heard the Medical Director of Central Vermont Hospital say that he routinely sees patients who would view assisted suicide, if legal, as absolutely their only option. That is not the choice the proponents of assisted suicide tell us they think it would bring.

The mother of a young man who committed suicide begged the Senate not to send a signal that suicide is an acceptable solution to any problem, and several doctors presented statistics about the suicide rate in Oregon, which began to rise in 2000, three years after assisted suicide was legalized there.

Sears told Vermont Public Radio last week that he was concerned about the potential for unintended side-effects, such as pressures or outright coercion from insurance companies for people to commit assisted suicide rather than undergo expensive life prolonging treatments or end of life care.

Mindful of these concerns, and more, Sears acted out of conscience, not political expediency. He resisted pressure from the governor, whom he describes as a good friend as well, to discard the ordinary procedure by which a bill becomes law and send the legislation to the full Senate with an adverse recommendation.

By the way, that would have been the recommendation whether the three opposing senators had voted or whether there was a tie vote due to the injury that put Senator Alice Nitka, D-Windsor, an announced "no" vote, in the hospital. The third "no" vote on the five-member committee was Senator Ann Cummings, D-Washington.

Sears chose not to have a vote that would have been a mere formality. After the emotional and jam-packed hearing, he and Senate Pro Tem John Campbell, D-Windsor, decided not to subject the Senate and the citizens of Vermont to more of the same when there is still much work to be done and only six weeks left in the session.

We thank Senator Sears, Senator Campbell, Senator Nitka, and Senator Cummings for beating back the eighth attempt to legalize assisted-suicide in Vermont. We wish it would be the last attempt, but we, and many other Vermont citizens, stand prepared to fight this if it rears its ugly head again.

CAROLYN

and GERALD McMURRAY

Arlington


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