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Our Children's Toxic Legacy: How Science and Law Fail to Protect Us from Pesticides Paperback – April 20, 1998

ISBN-13: 978-0300074468 ISBN-10: 0300074468 Edition: 2nd

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 402 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; 2 edition (April 20, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300074468
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300074468
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,072,343 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By chris o on December 22, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I haven't read the book yet but I imagine it's good. The book was in great quality for being used. I am very happy to add it to my collection.
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3 of 11 people found the following review helpful By F. R Anscombe on May 9, 2006
Format: Paperback
Toxic Legacy is ably written, a great virtue. Clear writing helps navigate an arcane topic in which the author is well-versed. The book provides an interesting assortment of photographs of DDT uses during World War II and in the home. DDT's inventor received a Nobel prize for its enormous public-health contributions.

Wargo focuses on legal issues in the U.S. regarding pesticides. This sidesteps some broader scientific matters. As Wargo notes (p. 127), Bruce Ames and Lois Gold have made a case that the chemical ingredients that naturally make up our foods provide risks that dwarf those from residues of synthetic pesticides. The Ames/Gold argument meets common sense expectations, because foods are consumed in high doses for sustenance. Wargo dodges, because an implication is the triviality of risks posed by pesticide residues (the topic of his book): "it hardly seems prudent to avoid regulating synthetic toxins simply because we are commonly exposed to natural ones." Why overlook 99 percent of the risk (presented by natural ingredients in foods) and only pay attention to pesticide residues? Maybe because it is more popularly appealing to stigmatize synthetic chemicals that protect foods supplies. Perhaps like many, the author favors "natural" molecules, yet fears those of human synthesis. This is a dividing line without merit within pharmacology and biochemistry.

All living things constitute systems of interacting chemicals. Our choices in foods, drink, and pharmaceuticals very much influence health and development. Plants (fruits and vegetables) naturally contain chemical ingredients to ward off predators.
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