PFOA 2005
August 29, 2005. Ignore rumors; Teflon proven to be safe.
By Henry I. Miller. Chicago Sun-Times.

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Chicago Sun-Times

August 29, 2005

Ignore rumors; Teflon proven to be safe



... Like many product-safety scares these days, the concerns that have been voiced about Teflon are bogus. Charges by the radical Environmental Working Group and their friends at the plaintiffs' bar that the billions of meals worldwide prepared every day on Teflon cookware are being contaminated with "Teflon toxins" are baseless.

... According to Dr. Elizabeth Whelan, a toxicologist and president of the American Council on Science and Health, "Teflon, probably more than any industrial product, is the poster child of modern technology, one that has made our lives easier and more enjoyable," and it is precisely the product's "stellar success story [that] makes it a very ripe target for those who spew chemical-phobia in their crusade to eliminate the tools modern industrial chemistry has given us -- pesticides, pharmaceuticals, food additives, and more."

Never distracted by the facts, the strategy of many self-styled public health advocacy organizations like the Environmental Working Group, Greenpeace, Center for Science in the Public Interest, and the Union of Concerned Scientists realize that their charges need not be true but merely plausible. The media -- whose motto is "if it bleeds, it leads" -- does the rest:

... Distortion and manipulation of science by PR-savvy consumer groups in pursuit of political agendas erodes our society's capacity to innovate and prosper. In the absence of persuasive evidence vetted by experts, don't buy the attacks on vaccines, pesticides and other beleaguered consumer products. They just won't stick.

Henry I. Miller, a physician and fellow at the Hoover Institution, was an FDA official from 1979-1994. Barron's selected his most recent book, The Frankenfood Myth, as one of the 25 Best Books of 2004.

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Note from FAN: Henry I. Miller is on the Board of Directors of the American Council on Science and Health. See
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