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Since "Since Silent Spring"

Authors
Journal
Proceedings of the Hawaiian Entomological Society
0073-134X
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Biodiversity Heritage Library
Publication Date
Disciplines
  • Ecology
  • Geography

Abstract

Vol. XXI, No. I, August, 1971 97 Since "Since Silent Spring" Austin Morrill, Jr. HONOLULU, HAWAII Last year President LaPlante addressed us on the subject of the ne cessity for concern for the environment in the use of pesticides and he gave us a very complete and definitive summary of the situation and of its dangers. This year I should like to carry this onward to discuss with you the situation as it now exists, and, since many members have ex pressed an interest, to describe to you our military insect control program and how it is oriented to the environmental problems of today. There has recently, been published a book entitled, "Since Silent Spring" by a person named Graham, who has also written articles in the same vein in a number of magazines. His thesis is that there is even more cause for alarm now than when "Silent Spring" was written. I am sure that neither the title of his book nor the emotional magazine articles have detracted from his royalties. Unfortunately, his statements are too unfounded to go unchallenged but too numerous to counteract with anything less than another book. His opening statement is that events have amply vindicated the author of the original "Silent Spring" and have proven the validity of the implied facts that many persons read into that book. The facts are, of course, somewhat different. What events have vindicated is Miss Carson's alarm at the indifference toward environmental contamination by pesticides which until very recently was so widespread, notably among farmers and householders lulled by soothing ads and unimpressed by the fine print on the labels. Since "Since Silent Spring" appeared there has also been a rash of alarmed articles in magazines and papers, all quoting the same dubious "facts" and calling for a cessation of all pesticide use as a hazard to the environment. Even the august Smithsonian Magazine has joined this chorus...and been taken to task for it by a number of also august—and annoyed=scientists. They have not, however, reforme

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