Yes, we’ve heard it before: cell phones, they say, give us cancer. But this time, the message is from a noted medical researcher and this time it’s a message that is supported by a number of governments including Finland, Israel, France and even Canada. Dr. Devra Davis is the author of Disconnect: the Truth about Cell Phone Radiation, What the Industry Has Done to Hide It, and How to Protect Your Family, a new book which suggests that there is indeed an all-too-intimate connection between our cell phones and our bodies.
“Practice safe phone,” Dr. Davis told me when she came into the San Francisco TechCrunchTV studio to talk about Disconnect. The truth about cell phone radiation, she explained, is that the closer we keep the phone to our bodies, the more dangerous they become. Thus keeping our phone in our trouser pocket or, god forbid, sleeping with it, is a recipe for disaster, Dr. Davis says – particularly for children who, she warns, are much more vulnerable to the long-term consequences of cell phone radiation than grown-ups.
So is Dr. Davis crazy? If she is, then so are the governments of Finland, Israel, France and Canada who are all now trying to protect their citizens from cell phone radiation. And even the Americans are beginning to wake up to the threat, with enlightened city governments in Berkeley and San Francisco now encouraging their residents to practice safe phone.
Designated a National Book Award Finalist for When Smoke Ran Like Water (2002, Basic Books), Devra Davis founded Environmental Health Trust in 2007 in Teton County, Wyoming to provide basic research and education about environmental health hazards and promote constructive policies locally, nationally and internationally. Dr. Davis lectures at Georgetown, Harvard, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and other universities, and was Founding Director, Center for Environmental Oncology, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, and Professor of Epidemiology...