Individuals living in states affected by the EPA caused toxic waste flow of lead, arsenic and other heavy metals from a gold mine in Colorado risk the same fate that befell people living in the Intermountain West during the federal governments above ground nuclear testing programs in the 1950s.
At that time the federal government knowingly released toxic clouds of radioactive dust into the atmosphere. Those releases were timed to ensure that the toxic clouds drifted over what was referred to by federal government officials as a “low-use segment of the population” rather than over those living along the West Coast of the United States.
Over the years, federal officials consistently lied to these “downwinders” about the dangers they faced and suppressed medical studies showing the link between radiation exposure and illnesses. The result was that entire communities of the federally designated low-use segment of the population suffered terrible cancers and excruciating deaths as federal officials continued to deny any responsibility for decades.
Now the people in Colorado, New Mexico and Utah risk the same fate from an EPA caused toxic spill that can cause an array of health problems—cancer, kidney disease and developmental problems in children. If their feet are not held to the fire, federal officials and elites throughout the nation will write off this new, largely rural, low-use segment of the population.
The EPA was slow to acknowledge the spill, significantly understated its size, downplayed the dangers associated with it and the White House has refused to even comment on it. Had the spill not been a bright mustard color and easy to see, it is entirely possible that the EPA would have swept the entire event under the rug just as the government had previously done with the largely unseen radioactive fallout.
In spite of the visibility of this toxic spill, unlike the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico where President Obama immediately promised to take strong action against a privately owned company and the Interior Secretary personally intervened to ensure that the spill was cleaned up and that those responsible for it were held fully accountable, the government is already downplaying the health threats.
According to CNN, “Based on the data we have seen so far, (the EPA doesn’t) anticipate adverse health effects from exposure to the metals detected in the river water samples from skin contact or incidental (unintentional) ingestion,” the agency said. “Similarly, the risk of adverse effects to livestock that may have been exposed to metals detected in river water samples from ingestion or skin contact is low.”
Had the spill occurred in what those in power consider to be a high-value population area, the outcry would have been deafening and the response by both the EPA and the White House would have been off the charts. But it wasn’t. So,unless there is continuing media coverage, ongoing attention by state officials and direct intervention by someone who commands media attention, such as Donald Trump, on behalf of those impacted by the spill, the federal government will ensure that the damage it has done is quickly forgotten, will suppress future medical studies that show an increased incident of disease associated with the spill and will promote the government officials responsible for the spill.
After all, for the elites at the EPA and White House, there is no urgency to help a low-use segment of the population.
Editors Note. The author of this article is a downwinder.