DDT or PC, which kills more?Written by Tim Higgins | | email@example.com
I was doing some reading recently and came across some interesting information on Dichloro-Diphenyl-Trichloroethane. For those of you who never completed your degree in Chemistry, this compound is more popularly known as DDT. First synthesized in 1874, its insecticidal properties were not discovered until 1939. In WWII it was extensively and successfully used to kill mosquitoes spreading malaria and lice transmitting typhus. DDT was finally banned for use in the US in 1972 however, and in the world not much later for side effects related to its use. This banning effort is largely credited to the birth of the environmental movement, and perhaps the beginning also, of a more politically correct society.
The threat of Malaria is still very much present in the world today however, as reported each year by the CDC. In equatorial South America, Africa, and in southern Asia there are reported cases of from 350-500 million cases per year. Of these cases, over one million in fact die each year of the disease, and most of those are young children. While bed nets and anti-malarial drugs that a more politically correct effort provide for relief from the disease, these alternatives do not provide nearly the effectiveness that a judicial use of DDT might.
You see, it was later discovered that it was not DDT itself that was the problem, but the high concentrations of the chemical being used as well as the massive spraying going on at that time that was the actual culprit in producing those adverse side effects. A more diluted use of the chemical could have continued to be effective and safe. The damage had been done however by then. DDT had been demonized by those who “knew better”, and any attempts to bring back a more safe and judicial use of the chemical was and is staunchly opposed by that politically correct environmental movement. As a result of these high motives, many lives that could otherwise be spared are lost.
In other words, the very birth of political correctness was made on faulty and incomplete data. The movement which sought only correct behavior for the betterment of Mankind may in fact have achieved the exact opposite result.
How many other examples of this can we find in the world today? How many times does an attempt to do the correct, the inoffensive, or the fair-minded prevent us from doing what is in fact truly right or fair?
- How many other chemicals have been pulled off of the market as dangerous only to find later that no such danger existed, and how much damage has been done as a result?
- What long term effects will appear in rising food prices and adverse long term economic damage will come from the subsidies used for the creation of grain-based ethanol?
- What real impact have all of the politically correct campaign finance reform laws had on the influence of money in politics, and what freedom of speech has been lost as a consequence?
- How much danger has been caused in the world by calling a terrorist a militant or freedom fighter?
- How often does the truth get overlooked or ignored because it does not fit the preconceived notions of such correctness?
- In the failure to call evil by its true name when we see it, how much pain has been allowed to occur?
I can understand and appreciate the high motives of those attempting to seek a fairer world through political correctness, but I have question their results. The Fairness that they seek seems intended to mean an equality of outcomes, when it should mean an equality of opportunity. Fairness cannot and must not be judge by motives, but must instead be judged on results it achieves.
In seeking the power to control the lives of their fellow men (for their own good, of course) those taking the Politically Correct path may often in fact, be doing more harm than good. As the example of DDT shows us, mankind’s often limited understanding of his world can cause such attempts to do more harm than good
Tim Higgins blogs at Just Blowing Smoke.