We are unknowing guinea pigs who are being poisoned by lead and plastics and formaldehyde and asbestos and Bisphenol A and … hundreds of other potentially noxious substances as well as many that are proved to be toxic. These chemicals and compounds are not only in the air we breathe, the food we eat, the potions we apply to our bodies, the clothes we wear, they are in our bones, muscles, blood and fat. We don’t know the long-term effect of some of these compounds, or how they interact, but we do know that many are dangerous. And we have ingested them unknowingly or even confidently, believing the claims of the corporations that manufacture these dangerous substances that they are innocuous and indispensable. I wrote previously about this issue here and here.
Now David Rosner and Gerald Markowitz have written about what they call the “hidden epidemic,” a disturbing catalogue of the chemicals we all now have in our bodies, their pernicious effects and how the public was persuaded to bring them into their homes.
As Joe Camel would be for tobacco, so the little Dutch Boy of the National Lead Company became an iconic marketing tool for Dutch Boy Lead Paint, priming Americans to invite a dangerous product into their children’s playrooms, nurseries, and lives. The company also launched a huge advertising campaign that linked lead to health, rather than danger. It even produced coloring books for children, encouraging them to paint their rooms and furniture using lead-based paint.
Continue reading this fascinating and horrifying account.