Lead in school drinking water
Get the lead out of school water
Lead exposure, even in minute quantities in school drinking water, causes diminished intellectual and academic abilities in children, and higher rates of neurobehavioral disorders such as ADHD. In recognition of this, the Centers for Disease Control, the EPA and the World Health Organization have all stated that there is no safe lead exposure.
It is no surprise that Hillsborough’s schools have lead problems. We had nearly a similar scenario in Tallahassee (Leon County), and we suspect that there are lead issues in drinking water in many of Florida’s public schools.
The solution is simple, quick and relatively inexpensive — certainly far less expensive than tearing down school walls and removing old lead-containing plumbing. That solution is filtration for cafeteria water taps and lead-free drinking water fountains with in-line filters. Other states are already doing this. A bill sponsored by Florida State Sen. Lauren Book would help prevent this lead exposure tragedy from recurring.
It is the duty of public officials to protect our children’s brains. Parents need to demand lead-free drinking water in schools. Ask yourself, “When it comes to my kids, how many IQ points am I comfortable with them losing from exposure to toxic lead?” If the answer is zero IQ points, start demanding legislation to protect your kids. Get the Lead Out! — a grassroots organization of concerned doctors, scientists, environmental activists and parents — has a monthly meeting to push for protective legislation.
Drs. Ron Saff and Lynn Ringenberg
Saff is a member of the Florida chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility and of Get the Lead Out! Ringenberg, a professor emeritus at USF Health, is past president of PSR Florida.
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Bordering on scare tactic
Sending troops to the border is a scare tactic. Asylum laws are in place, and when the caravan reaches our border. people will have to turn themselves in to border agents. They will be detained. They will have to state their cases for asylum on the basis of credible fear or reasonable fear. The process of interview, examination and evaluation can take a long time. Asylum seekers then have a right to a hearing before a judge. Criminals, militants and those who can’t prove their case would be sent back.
Jane Thomas, St. Petersburg
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Where is Honest Abe?
Lying seems to be the way to go in this day and age. There once was a time when Honest Abraham Lincoln and George Washington were looked up to because of their honesty. As children, we were taught to tell the truth. But lost are the days when one would tell the truth and suffer the consequences while keeping in mind it would be even worse if you told a lie. Leaders today would have us believe that there is no such thing as truth. But I have faith in the American people. This will soon pass, I hope?
Donald Lozon, Port Richey