Archives for the day of: January 18, 2011

From VBS TV:

We decided to make a documentary about Williamsburg because our office is here and many of us have been lurking these parts for upwards of a decade. What had once been a bargain neighborhood close to Manhattan, albeit with some dangerous amenities, has now flourished into quite the sophisticated outpost. The first wave of kids that came along put up curtains and dusted off the rubble, but soon the ambience chasers had migrated in en masse and totally remade the place. This sprucing made us happy. It also made property owners happy. People who were sitting on abandoned warehouses and old factories reaching all the way into Greenpoint realized their shit had turned to gold. But what we here at Vice didn’t realize was that under all of this snazzy development was a subterranean environment heavily damaged by decades of industrial activity. And it wasn’t just us–an ever younger and expanding population was tripping on in blissfully unaware of the residual toxicity harbored in a place increasingly known for art galleries, great bars, and restaurants.

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Unnatural Causes – Episode 1

UNNATURAL CAUSES criss-crosses the country investigating the stories and findings that are shaking up conventional notions about what makes us healthy or sick. It turns out there’s much more to our well-being than genes, behaviors and medical care. The social, economic, and physical environments in which we are born, live and work profoundly affect our longevity and health – as much as smoking, diet and exercise.

The series sheds light on mounting evidence of how lack of access to power and resources can get under the skin and disrupt human biology as surely as germs and viruses. It also reveals a health gradient tied to wealth: those at the top of the class pyramid average longer, healthier lives, while those at the bottom are the most disempowered, get sicker more often and die sooner. Most of us fall somewhere in between.

What’s more, at every level, many communities of color are worse off than their white counterparts. Researchers believe that chronic stress over the life course may create an additional health burden for people of color.

From St. Petersburg Times:

It seemed as if everyone had a story about illness or death. They filled the room.

Men and women with breast cancer. Prostate cancer. Bladder cancer. Disorders of the nervous system. The parents of babies who died days after birth. Husbands and wives who recalled the agony of a loved one.

The one thing they shared other than illness brought them to Tampa Saturday:

They had all lived at Camp Lejeune, a Marine Corps base in North Carolina.

Up to 250 people, mostly Tampa Bay residents, gathered at the Tampa Marriott Westshore for an informational meeting about what scientists think is one of the worst incidents of drinking water contamination in the nation’s history.

The meeting was organized by a law firm seeking clients.

But it was two of the leading advocates for the alleged victims of that tainted water who presented the case that the corps ignored stark warnings about pollution and waited four years to close those wells.

The advocates said they suffered, too. Former Marine drill instructor Jerry Ensminger’s daughter was conceived at Lejeune and died of leukemia at age 9. Mike Partain, an officer’s son, was born at the base in 1968 and is one of 67 men who lived at Lejeune and were later diagnosed with rare breast cancer.

Both men told the crowd to urge Florida’s congressional delegation to get involved to help Lejeune’s ill and dying.

“These are the people who lost a loved one to cancer or who had cancer or are dealing with cancer,” Partain said after the meeting. “These are the people who loved and trusted the corps and now feel a sense of betrayal.”

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