Prescription For Action.pdf by tongxiamy

VIEWS: 6 PAGES: 8

									Prescription For Action
“ Prevent what we cannot cure”
Inside: Dr. Gregg Bloche - Is it Torture?, page 2 • The Cost of Making War, page 3 • Coming Clean - A Toxic Free Future, page 4
Eliminating Childhood Lead Poisoning, page 5

       Spring 2007 • Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles • Volume 26 No. 1

Gala Dinner • June 7

HONORING
COURAGE
Joseph Wilson and
Valerie Plame Wilson                                                                Above: Scene from "Law and Order, Special Victims
                                                                                    Unit" on the Bush Administration program that scandal-
to be honored                                                                       ously encouraged pesticide testing on children.


P   SR-LA is delighted to announce that
    Joseph Wilson and Valerie Plame
Wilson will be honored at our Annual           of service to Physicians for Social
                                                                                    Left: Valerie Plame Wilson and Ambassador Joseph Wilson.

                                                                                                 Law and Order, Special Victims Unit
Gala Dinner on Thursday, June 7, 2007 at       Responsibility and her many efforts            will receive the Socially Responsible
the Beverly Hilton Hotel.                      toward human rights, civil liberties, immi-    Media Award for taking on the most chal-
    The Wilsons will receive the Peacemaker    grantsʼ rights, and womenʼs rights.            lenging social issues of our times, includ-
Award for their courageous efforts to pro-         Kaiser Permanenteʼs Environmental          ing the recent episode, “Loophole,” which
tect Americans from weapons of mass            Stewardship program will receive the           powerfully addresses the toxic effects of
destruction and their steadfast commitment     Socially Responsible Medicine Award for        pesticides. Executive Producer Neal Baer
to the truth in the face of great adversity.   its efforts to provide health care services    M.D. and Emmy-award winning actress
    Shirley Magidson will receive the          in a manner that protects the environment      Mariska Hargitay will accept the award.
Healing the Planet Award for her decades       and public health.
                                                                                                                    Continued on Page 4


                                                               Nuclear Power Returns
                                                               to California?
                                                                T   he nuclear industry is busily promoting nuclear reactors as the
                                                                    cool carbon-free environmental alternative.
                                                                    Thankfully, California’s legislators are not biting. On April 16, the
                                                                Assembly Natural Resources Committee voted down a controversial
                                                                bill that would have allowed the construction of nuclear power plants
                                                                to resume in California.
                                                                   AB 719 (Devore) would have gutted California’s prescient 1976
                                                                Nuclear Safeguards Act, which enforces a moratorium on building
                                                                nuclear power plants until a permanent storage site for high-level
                                                                radioactive waste is developed.
                                                                   Thirty-one years later, the discredited Yucca Mountain remains
                                                                                                                    Continued on Page 7
Interview with Gregg Bloche

Is It Torture?                                                                                Physicians
                                                                                                                 LA
                                                                                              for Social Responsibility
                                                                                              —Los Angeles
Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles, American Friends Service Committee
and the Program for Torture Victims are working to hold California licensees account-         617 South Olive St, Suite 810
able to the Geneva Conventions – to not engage in torture. To further the campaign, on        Los Angeles, CA 90014-1629
April 1 PSR-LA spoke with Gregg Bloche M.D., PhD. He is visiting Professor of Law at
                                                                                              Phone: (213) 689-9170
UCLA, and he also serves as Professor of Law at Georgetown University, Adjunct Pro-
fessor at Johns Hopkins Universityʼs Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Visiting          Facsimile: (213) 689-9199
Fellow at The Brookings Institution and the Harvard Program on Ethics and Health.
                                                                                              Email: lainfo@psrla.org
                                                                                              Website: www.psrla.org
PSR-LA: Dr. Steven Miles (author of             ety of physical and a psychological torture
Oath Betrayed) reviewed US interrogation        techniques and concluded that psychologi-
techniques employed at Guantánamo, Abu          cal techniques are every bit as agonal.
Ghraib and other military prisons. These            The authors interviewed victims of all    Executive Director
include plunging a manʼs head underwa-          manner of abuses from the recent Balkan       Jonathan Parfrey x107
ter for minutes at a time, prodding a man       wars, both physical and mental abuse.
to keep awake for eleven days straight,         They categorized the different kinds of       Health and Environment Programs
sexually humiliating prisoners and more.        abuse. They used a variety of methods to      Director
The military doesnʼt call these acts torture.   assess the intensity of the suffering, in-    Martha Dina Arguello x101
Could you help me understand internation-       cluding measurement of PTSD syndromes
                                                                                              Director of Development
al standards of torture and the nomencla-       as well as subjective descriptions of how
                                                                                              Denise Duffield x102
ture currently used by the U.S. military?       much suffering they experienced. The va-
                                                riety of physical and psychological abuses
Greg Bloche: Letʼs cut to the core. A rule                                                    Healthy Homes Collaborative
                                                they received – including sleep depriva-
of law that says that a doctor shall not par-                                                 Linda Kite x106
                                                tion and isolation – reached the same level
ticipate in torture is only as strong as the
                                                of suffering as that of physical torture.
definition of torture. The people who have
                                                    Empirically, you can say the kinds of
participated in these interrogations do not
                                                methods – sleep deprivation, prolonged        PSR-LA Board of Directors:
view their actions as participating in or be-
                                                standing, exposure to temperature ex-
ing complicit in torture.
                                                tremes, waterboarding etc. – that the US      Donald Broder M.D., Co-President
    What has happened is that torture has
                                                and others have used since 9/11 have at
been defined downward both in the initial                                                      Jimmy Hara M.D., Co-President
                                                times met the criteria of torture.
memos and opinion that the Bush Admin-
                                                                                              Curren Warf M.D., Vice President
istration developed in the first few years       PSR-LA: How did the U.S. come to use
after 9/11.                                     these particular forms of torture?            Jose Quiroga M.D., Treasurer
    Although the infamous August 2002
                                                Bloche: The US developed these meth-          William E. Perkins M.D., Secretary
torture memo was rescinded, (written by
                                                ods in a strange way. For years our coun-
John Yoo, then-deputy assistant attorney                                                      Felix Aguilar M.D., M.P.H.
                                                try has trained some of our military folks
general to then-White House counselor
Alberto Gonzalez), the administration           to withstand torture, especially the kind     Neal Baer M.D.
continues to behave as if international         from North Vietnamese and North Korean
                                                                                              Judith Broder M.D.
standards on torture do not apply.              and Soviet era. It was a training program
    There is ample documentation that           known as the survival, evasion, escape and    Robert Dodge M.D.
mental suffering that comes about from          resistance program (SEER). We then took
                                                                                              Nancy Gibbs M.D.
stressors such as prolonged sleep depri-        those methods and applied them to develop
vation is every bit as intense, as agonal,      our own interrogation strategies. Thereʼs a   Jeanne Londe
as physical abuse that everyone agrees is       pretty openly documentable trail. Some of
                                                                                              Shirley Magidson
torture. A recent study (“Torture vs Other      the leadership at Guantánamo has admitted
Cruel, Inhuman, and Degrading Treat-            coming to the psychologist at the SEER        Richard Saxon M.D.
ment; Is the Distinction Real or Appar-         program to get advice. Their methods are
                                                the ones Secretary Rumsfeld approved.         Margaret Wacker M.D.
ent? By Metin Basoglu, MD, PhD; Maria
Livanou, PhD; Cvetana Crnobaric, MD in             Here is the mistake. Those methods
the March 2007 edition of the Archives of       were originally developed by the North
General Psychiatry) measured a wide vari-       Vietnamese and the North Koreans not to


2
Torture (con't.)
get at the truth but to get captives to say
what they wanted. Thatʼs what those meth-
ods all are good at. If you want your pris-
oners to confess to all manner of crimes,
real and imagined, these methods have a
good chance of working.
   Because they werenʼt designed to get at
truth, it shouldnʼt be a surprise that people
will say anything to end the torture. Which
is not to say that todayʼs prisoners didnʼt
do the things they claim they did, but we
can say the confessions as unreliable.
PSR-LA: Are you aware of long-term ef-          Donald Broder speaks to American Friends Service Committee on the Medical Consequences of the Iraq
fects of torture on the torturers?              War. Your hospital, school or organization may wish to hear this important presentation. Please contact
                                                PSR-LA to have a presentation in your community.
Bloche: On some level, the torturer knows
that the torture is an awful thing and there-
fore wants to believe that he or she is not     Doing the Math
doing a terrible thing. He wants to believe
his act is somehow yielding crucial infor-         What $161 billion could buy.
mation that could not be obtained by any             $12 billion       Universal primary education
other means. The torturer can think of                $4 billion       Eradication of adult illiteracy
themselves as a hero, not a bad guy. With
                                                      $6 billion       School lunch programs for 44 poorest countries
these presumptions in mind, it becomes
much easier to believe the wild things the            $4 billion       Assistance to preschool children and pregnant women in
torture victim is saying. •                                              44 poorest countries
                                                      $7 billion       Reproductive health and family planning
                                                     $33 billion       Universal basic health care
                                                      $2 billion       Closing the condom gap

    PSR-LA needs
                                                      $6 billion       Reforesting the earth
                                                     $24 billion       Protecting topsoil on cropland
                                                      $9 billion       Restoring rangelands
      a digital                                      $13 billion
                                                     $31 billion
                                                                       Restoring fisheries
                                                                       Protecting biological diversity

     projector.                                      $10 billion
                                                   $161 billion
                                                                       Stabilizing water tables
                                                                       Total

                                                   What $975 billion currently buys.
                                                   (Military Budgets by Country)
   Our Medical Consequences                        $492 billion        United States (does not include funding for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan)
      of Iraq War speaking                          $65 billion        Russia
   engagements have become                          $56 billion        China
                                                    $49 billion        United Kingdom
     so popular we need a
                                                    $45 billion        Japan
   special donation of a digital                    $40 billion        France
             projector.                             $30 billion        Germany
                                                    $19 billion        Saudi Arabia
             Please help.                           $19 billion        India
                                                    $18 billion        Italy
     Call (213) 689-9170                           $142 billion        all other
                                                   $975 billion        world military expenditure
                                                   – Lester R. Brown, Earth Policy Institute

                                                                                                                                                  3
Gala (con't.)
   Our special                                                                                                            Americaʼs ills.
guest will be the                                                                                                            Please join
witty and wry                                                                                                             us on June 7th
Academy award-                                                                                                            for this exciting
winning musician                                                                                                          event. For more
Randy Newman!                                                                                                             information,
   This year ʼs                                                                                                           please contact
gala promises to                                                                                                          Denise Duffield
be magnificent ...                                                                                                        at 213-689-9170
and will be even                                                                                                          ext. 102 or go to
more wonderful                                                                                                            www.psrla.org. •
with your partici-
pation. By becom-
ing a sponsor of
the dinner, you
will directly enable Physicians for Social
Responsibility to continue our impor-                                                   From far left: Honoree Shirley Magidson and special
tant work addressing the root causes of                                                 guests Randy Newman and Mariska Hargitay.




PSR-LA hosts the Annual                                                                       What Conference
                                                                                              Would Be Complete
Coming Clean Conference                                                                       Without a Spontaneous
                                                                                              Action Item?
P   SR-LA is a member-organization of
    Coming Clean, a six year old collabor-
                                               tice principles of the Louisville Charter,
                                               championed the importance of not forget-
ative of more than 100 local, state, nation-
al and international organizations working
towards a toxic free future via chemical
                                               ting the immediate needs of communities
                                               suffering from chemical contamination
                                               while pursuing strategies of long-term
                                                                                              L   ittle did the Coming Clean conference
                                                                                                  attendees (including PSR-LAʼs Martha
                                                                                              Arguello and Emily Snider) know when
industry reform.                               policy reform.                                 they left by bus for their “L.A. toxic tour”
    From March 16-19, PSR-LA hosted the           The weekend was at once invigorating        on Saturday that they would return to find
2007 Annual Coming Clean Conference at         in terms of the networking and relation-       a picket of 75 hotel workers blocking the
the Wilshire Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles.       ship building and daunting because of the      driveway.
The over 60 conference goers represented       incredible scope of change sought by the          Being forced to cross a union picket
a wide array of organizations and cam-         collaborative. The question of how to feel     line does not bode well with a passionate
paigns throughout the United States in-        effective in our progress towards a toxic-     group of progressive environmental justice
cluding NRDC, Californians for Pesticide       free future set the foundation for a Sun-      advocates and activists—particularly since
Reform, the Safe Cosmetics Campaign, the       day afternoon introduction to Democracy        the group had contracted with the hotel un-
National Black Church Initiative, Friends      School—an approach to organizing devel-        der the condition of its union status. After
of the Earth and communities such as Port      oped by the Community Environmental            the initial shock of this unexpected event
Arthur, Texas, Mossville, Louisiana, Dick-     Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) that “teach-        wore off, it became quickly apparent that
son County, Tennessee, and Midway Vil-         es citizens and activists how to reframe       the critical mass of our group—and our
lage in Daly City, California.                 exhausting and often discouraging single       position as guests of the hotel offered a
    Over the course of the weekend, con-       issue work (such as opposing toxic dumps,      powerful opportunity to support the hotel
ference attendees reviewed the current         quarries, factory farms, etc.) in a way that   workers by taking action both in the lobby
state of the chemicals industry, discussed     we can confront control on a powerful sin-     and on the street. Current management at
the efficacy and impact of the 2006 En-         gle front: peopleʼs constitutional rights.”    the hotel is seeking to break the union by
vironmental Justice for All Tour (www.         (http://www.celdf.org)                         cutting their wages as much as in half and
ej4all.org), and tried to identify ways of        The collaborativeʼs plans for the com-      eliminating health care benefits entirely.
moving beyond the rhetoric of racial jus-      ing year include engaging physicians more         In addition to negotiating with the Man-
tice to build a more truly inclusive chemi-    deeply in the work of chemical policy re-      ager and General Manager, Coming Clean
cal policy reform movement. Members            form and publishing a report highlighting      conference goers called the press, released
of the Fenceline Working group, which          how lack of enforcement of environmental       statements, displayed signs and buttons
seeks to ensure all of Coming Cleanʼs          regulations has negatively impacted the        and added volume to the union chant:
work is guided by the environmental jus-       health of communities around the world. •                               Continued on Page 8
4
Eliminating Childhood Lead Poisoning by 2010:
PSR-LA and the Healthy Homes Collaborative Ensuring Primary Prevention

A    s anyone who has had to baby-proof
     a home knows, keeping toddlers safe
from harm is a massive undertaking. Par-
                                                 when a child was poisoned, government
                                                 agencies would investigate the source of
                                                 the poison and order lead abatement. This
                                                                                                  spection Program, and the Los Angeles
                                                                                                  County Childhood Lead Poisoning Pre-
                                                                                                  vention Program to educate tenants and
ents secure cabinets and move dangerous          is akin to using children as lead detectors.     landlords about lead-safe work practices
objects out of reach, but few realize that           In response, new laws and regulations        and enforcement. As a result, property
invisible lead dust is a potential health        have been championed to create lead-safe         owners in the City of Los Angeles have
threat to many children.                         environments. California Senate Bill 460         made more than $2 billion in lead-safe
    In Los Angeles, 80% of the housing           (SB 460), passed in 2003, requires keep-         repairs to rental units.
stock was built before 1978, the year lead-      ing painted surfaces intact and using lead-         Building on the success of SB 460,
based paint was banned for residential use.      safe work practices to repair or repaint         the HHC helped pass Assembly Bill
Currently, two in five housing units in Los       them. More specifically, SB 460 requires          2861 (AB 2861), which was signed by
Angeles County still have lead hazards. As       all property owners to use lead-safe work        the Governor in September 2006. AB
long as paint remains intact, it isnʼt a haz-    practices when painting or renovating pre-       2861 increases penalties for a person
ard, but when homes fall into disrepair or       1979 buildings and makes lead hazards a          who fails to abate a lead hazard after
when old paint is dry sanded or scraped,         violation of health and housing codes. If        receiving an order from the Department
lead-contaminated dust and debris can            property owners fail to use safe work prac-      of Health Services or a local enforce-
poison children and pregnant women. Due          tices, both health and housing agencies          ment agency. The bill makes the second
to their developing brain and nervous sys-       can order them to clean up and use safe          or subsequent violation a misdemeanor
tems and increased hand-to-mouth activ-          work practices. If they donʼt comply, they       punishable by a fine of up to $5,000
ity, children under the age of six are at the    are subject to a $1,000 fine.                     per day or by imprisonment for up to 6
highest risk of lead poisoning.                      SB 460 was the result of years of ad-        months. With the threat of jail and stiffer
    Lead is a neuro-toxin. Even at very low      vocacy by the community-based Healthy            penalties, this new legislation (authored
levels, lead causes permanent, irreversible      Homes Collaborative (HHC) of which               by Mark Ridley-Thomas and co-spon-
neurological damage resulting in life-long       PSR-LA is a member and the fiscal                 sored by HHC, PSR-LA and the L.A.
learning and behavior problems. There is         sponsor. This effort led to a remarkable         City Attorney) gives us stronger tools to
no cure once a child is poisoned. Therefore      partnership between the HHC, the City            prevent harm to public health through
prevention is the best medicine. In the past,    of Los Angeles Systematic Code In-               code enforcement. •


                  California Currents                                                             Disability Prevention Program, only 1 in 5
                                                                                                  of these children have been tested for lead
                  Senate Bill 775: Childhood Lead                                                 poisoning at age-appropriate intervals.
                  Poisoning Prevention Act                                                        With no safe threshold, blood lead testing
                  Author–Senator Mark Ridley-Thomas (D-26)                                        is the only effective way to detect lead poi-
                                                                                                  soning before severe and often irreversible

  L   ead poisoning is one of the most com-          To address this public health crisis, PSR-   damage occurs.
      mon environmental health hazards for       LA has joined with the National Health Law           Additionally, although blood lead tests
  children in the United States today, with      Program and the Women’s Policy Institute         for children are covered by private health
  more than 640,000 children at high-risk for    in drafting Senate Bill 775, which proposes      care providers, a vast majority of insured
  exposure in California alone. As a neuro-      to increase screening of California children     children are not screened for lead poisoning.
  toxin, the health impacts of even low-level    under age six for risk of lead poisoning         As a result, many children with potentially
  exposure include development of learning       through the use of the immunization registry.    elevated blood lead levels are not identified
  disabilities, damage to the kidneys and        This bill, authored by Senator Mark Ridley-      and therefore do not receive appropriate
  central nervous system, underdevelop-          Thomas, intends to increase the number of        treatment.
  ment, and at very high levels, seizures,       blood lead tests performed on children who           Following a handful of states—Michigan,
  coma and death. “A growing body of             are at risk of lead poisoning as determined      Rhode Island, New Jersey, Ohio and
  research has shown that there are mea-         by the screening process and enable children     Wisconsin, all of which have universal
  surable adverse neurological effects in        with elevated blood lead levels to receive       screening, the passage of SB 775 would
  children at blood lead concentrations as       appropriate treatment and environmental          increase both screening and awareness
  low as 1 microg/dL. [The CDC] and EPA          intervention.                                    about lead poisoning and would curb the
  believe that effects may occur at blood            Despite longstanding, federally funded       irreversible effects of lead exposure in
  lead levels so low that there is essentially   requirements for blood lead tests for children   California’s children.
  no “safe” level of lead.”                      enrolled in Medi-Cal and the Child Health and                          Continued on Page 7

                                                                                                                                                  5
National Student
Conference                                                                            PSR-LA Loses a
                                                                                      Friend
D   uring the weekend of February 23 -25,
    the national conference of Student PSR
was held at Stanford University in Palo                                              D
                                                                                     r. Samuel I. Roth, a founder and long-time
                                                                                     board member of PSR-LA passed away on
Alto. Its theme was the “Medical Conse-                                          February 25. In Pauline Saxonʼs words, “Sam
quences of War.” This exciting conference                                        was a real mover within the organization.” A
provided an opportunity for students from                                        great volunteer on the board, Sam organized our
around the country to meet and strategize.                                       speakersʼ bureau and inspired PSR-LAʼs diplo-
Speakers included Les Roberts PhD (co-                                           matic trips to Russia and China in the 1980ʼs.
author of the Lancet paper document-                                             He also prompted PSR-LAʼs mammoth envi-
ing over 600,000 excess deaths since the                                         ronmental symposium in 1989 – which forever
U.S. invasion), Catherine Thomassan MD                                           changed the organization. An Assistant Clinical
(President, PSR), Evan Kanter MD on the           Dr. Samuel Roth at the PSR-LA/ Professor of Medicine at UCLA, Sam organized
effects of combat and post traumatic stress       IPPNW gala dinner in 1985.     the medical schoolʼs support of our efforts.
disorder on returning American soldiers.
Robert Gould MD from Bay Area PSR
spoke on the nuclear threat. Curren Warf
MD, from PSR-LA , spoke on integrating
political values in professional life. Medi-
cal students Tova Fuller (UCLA) and Kar-
                                                PSR-LA Reading Circle
en A. Abrashkin (University of Michigan)
were principal organizers of this remark-
able event. •
                                                                                              P   hysicians for Social Responsibil-
                                                                                                  ity-Los Angeles announces our new
                                                                                              Reading Circle program. Four times
                                                                                              a year, PSR members will meet to dis-
                                                                                              cuss a book of peace or environmental
The Society for                                                                               concern. The first volume will be Bomb
                                                                                              Scare: The History and Future of Nucle-
Adolescent Medicine                                                                           ar Weapons by Joseph Cirincione, (Co-
Conference                                                                                    lumbia University Press, 2007).
                                                                                                 Joe has been a leading speaker at PSR-
                                                                                              LA meetings. A recent New York Review
T   wo PSR physicians made a power-
    ful presentation at the March 2007
national conference of the Society for
                                                                                              of Books hails Bomb Scare as “Invalu-
                                                                                              able ... it ought to be read by everyone as
Adolescent Medicine in Denver. The                                                            a matter of life and death.”
talk, entitled When Our Children Re-
turn From War, was presented by Evan                                                          Here’s how to participate:
Kanter MD, psychiatrist at the VA in                                                          • Tell us youʼre joining the reading circle.
Washington State, and Curren Warf MD,                                                         • Order Bomb Scare from your local
a pediatrician and adolescent medicine          Joseph Cirincione is Vice President for
                                                                                                 bookseller.
specialist in Los Angeles. This was the         National Security of the Center for Ameri-
                                                                                              • Read the book and take notes along
first time that consequences of the war in       can Progress. A prolific writer on defense
                                                and non-proliferations issues, the National
                                                                                                 the way.
Iraq were addressed at the societyʼs na-                                                      • Share your ideas at our July 15 meeting.
                                                Journal listed Mr. Cirincione as one of the
tional conference.
                                                100 people whose ideas will shape the pol-    Our inaugural Reading Circle meeting
   Over 1.3 million Americans have
                                                icies of the next administration, and The     will be Sunday, July 15, 6:00 - 8:00 PM,
thus far served in Afghanistan and Iraq.
                                                World Affairs Councils of America named       at the Silver Lake home of Curren Warf
Younger soldiers, more likely to be
                                                him one of 500 people whose views have        MD. A light meal will be offered. Please
placed in combat situations, are most
                                                the most influence in shaping American         call to RSVP at (213) 689-9170 x107 or
vulnerable to developing post-traumatic
                                                foreign policy.                               write parfrey@psr.org. •
stress disorder. The Defense Department
estimates that 400,000 of these veter-
ans will have PTSD, the leading cause          nificant part of the estimated $2 trillion      cial Interest Group to continue to bring
of disability among veterans. Medical          cost of the Iraq war.                           the issue of wars effects on youth to the
and disability benefits for Americaʼs             Following this successful workshop,          national conference, and develop poli-
two wars will cost an estimated $400 to        members of the Society for Adolescent           cy statements relative to peace for the
$600 billion dollars, making up a sig-         Medicine formed a standing Peace Spe-           organization. •

6
 Physician Profile: Margaret Wacker M.D., Ph.D



     M
             argaret Wacker joined the board of directors of             Drew sees three thousand trauma incidents per year, half of
             Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles in         which are penetrating wounds resulting from knives and gun-
             2006, but her interest in peacemaking has deep roots.       shots.
     During the second world war, Margaret’s parents were among          “Every single day of those seven years at King-Drew I treated
     the leading scientists in Washington DC. Margaret’s chemist         gunshot victims,” Margaret recounts.
     mother led the government’s effort to create synthetic rub-
     ber. Margaret’s father, a theoretical physicist, worked on the      In the mid-1990s, she recalls how the news media rushed
     Manhattan Project and later helped develop military radar.          down to King-Drew when a small child had been shot in
     Her father, retired at 92 years of age, living in Redlands, still   his car-seat while the family was driving on the freeway. “I
     prizes a letter from War Secretary Stimson acknowledging his        answered the reporters’ questions,” Margaret said, “but they
     service to the nation. Her parents were politically progressive,    were so naive. They asked if this was the youngest person
     subscribing to such publications as the Bulletin of the Atomic      ever that was shot. Of course, it wasn’t. And it bothered me
     Scientists and participating in Democratic politics in Colorado,    that they failed to ask about the other nine other people who
     where Margaret grew-up.                                             had been shot that day.”

     Margaret attended the University of Colorado as an under-           In the 1990’s Margaret worked with the Los Angeles County
     graduate where she studied economics and Russian. Her               Violence Prevention Coalition, Handgun Control and
     parents, however, persuaded her to pursue a career in the           Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles. She spoke
     sciences. In the 1970’s, she relocated to Seattle, attending        at press conferences and testified before city councils in an
     the University of Washington where she received advanced            effort to curb gun violence in Los Angeles.
     degrees in physics and bioengineering, and later a medical
     degree. From 1982-1989, Margaret performed her residency            Dr. Wacker is currently a surgeon at Kaiser-Permanente in
     in brain surgery at Loma Linda University, and, later, a fel-       Fontana. She regularly travels into Los Angeles to participate
     lowship in neuro-oncology at the University of California, San      in PSR programs.
     Francisco.
                                                                         “Physicians for Social Responsibility is an amazing organiza-
     With a desire to serve the poor, Margaret elected to work,          tion,” she said, “they take on the war in Iraq, all the current
     from 1993 to 2000, at King-Drew Medical Center. It was there        craziness and lies. I need PSR because the issues keep
     she witnessed the unabated horror of gun violence. King-            changing, and PSR offers the support I need to stay current.”




Nuclear Power to                                  Commission asserts that the most
California? (con't.)                              significant reductions in CO2 emis-            Poisoning Prevention (con't.)
                                                  sions from electricity generation can
                                                  be achieved through energy efficiency             As part of the efforts of raising aware-
undeveloped. Approximately 75,000                 programs and integrating renewable             ness about this health issue, SB 775
tons of radioactive byproducts of nucle-          energy resources – solar, wind, thermal,       would also ensure that health care pro-
ar power generation have accumulated              biomass and hydropower – into electric-        viders give informational materials about
adjacent to nuclear plants.                       ity supplies.                                  lead hazards, lead poisoning prevention
   The Resources Committee’s analyst                 Physicians for Social Responsibility-       and lead-safe work practices to families
wrote of the Devore bill, “the fed-               Los Angeles is a member of the Alliance        and pregnant women.
eral waste disposal program has been              for Nuclear Responsibility, a statewide           PSR-LA believes that physicians can
plagued with technical and legal chal-            coalition dedicated to protecting public       and must play a key role in meeting the
lenges, managerial problems, licensing            health through promoting clean, renew-         U.S. Surgeon General’s goal of eliminat-
delays, persistent weaknesses in quality          able and economic energy sources that          ing childhood lead poisoning by 2010.
assurance for the program, and increas-           will create jobs and provide energy            Passage of SB 775 bill requires broad-
ing costs.”                                       independence.                                  based support from doctors and health
   Contrary to the nuclear industry’s                For more information, please call           professionals who can attest to the urgen-
claim that reactors reduce carbon diox-           (213) 689-9170 x107, or write:                 cy of this public health crisis. •
ide emissions, the California Energy              parfrey@psr.org. •

                                                                                                                                           7
Action Item          (con't.)
“Se ve, se siente la union esta presente!!”
                                                     Calendar of Events: Spring 2007
(translation: See us! Feel us! The union is
here.) As the picket wrapped up, Martha              Saturday, May 19, 3:00 - 5:00 PM.              6th and 7th Streets). For more informa-
Arguello was handed the megaphone to ad-             All therapists are invited to hear Judith      tion call (213) 689-9170 x107 or email
dress the crowd in both Spanish and English          Broder MD speak at the inaugural meeting       Jonathan Parfrey.
with a message of solidarity. Hotel workers          of Therapists for Social Responsibility at
responded enthusiastically “Si se puede!”                                                           Thursday, June 7, 2007
                                                     the home of Ken Levy, 4850 Ray Court,
    Follow-up action is being taken by                                                              PSR-LA’s 2007 Annual Gala Dinner will
                                                     in the Eagle Rock neighborhood of Los
PSR-LA and other Coming Clean member                                                                be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in
organizations to support UNITE HERE
                                                     Angeles. For more information, please call
                                                     Ken at (323) 258-1945.                         Beverly Hills. We are proud to announce
Local 11 by sending letters and boycot-
                                                                                                    the following honorees: Ambassador
ting the hotel until a union contract is             Sunday, May 20, 5:00 - 7:00 PM.
negotiated. The April 18 Integrated Pest
                                                                                                    Joseph Wilson and Valerie Plame Wilson,
Management workshop that PSR-LA                      Peace and Security Committee will              Law and Order, Special Victims Unit
scheduled to take place on at the Wilshire           meet. Please join in organizing PSR-LA’s       (Executive Producer Neal Baer M.D. and
Plaza was moved to an alternate union-               activities addressing the war in Iraq, new     Emmy-award winning actress Mariska
approved venue. •                                    nuclear weapons and physician participa-       Hargitay will attend), Kaiser Permanente,
                                                     tion in torture. Meeting will be held at the   and Shirley Magidson. Special musical
                                                     home of Curren Warf MD, Silver Lake            guest will be Randy Newman. For more

Join PSR-LA’s
                                                     neighborhood of Los Angeles. For more          information, call Denise Duffield at 213-
                                                     information call (213) 689-9170 x107 or        689-9170.
                                                     write parfrey@psr.org
Action                                               Monday, May 21, 2007 - 7:00 PM.
                                                                                                    Tuesday, June 12, 7:00 - 9:00 PM.
                                                                                                    Special panel on the proposed Reliable

Aler t                                               “Empire and the Bomb: How the
                                                     United States Uses Nuclear Weapons to
                                                                                                    Replacement Warhead. Co-sponsored
                                                                                                    by PSR-LA, Peace Action West and the

Network!
                                                     Dominate the World” PSR-LA & AFSC-             Center for Defense Information. For more
                                                     Los Angeles will be sponsoring a book talk     information call (213) 689-9170 x107 or
                                                     with Dr. Joseph Gerson, author of “Empire      write parfrey@psr.org
Make your voice heard. Sign-up to PSR-LA's           and the Bomb: How the United States
ACTION NETWORK. Go to the web-site:                  Uses Nuclear Weapons to Dominate the           Sunday, July 15, 6:00 - 8:00 PM.
http://actionnetwork.org/psr_la/home.html or         World.” Event is FREE. Refreshments            You are invited to join PSR-LA’s reading
call the PSR-LA office for more information:         will be served. Where: AFSC Pacific            circle at the Silver Lake home of Curren
                                                     Southwest Regional Office, 634 South           Warf MD. We will discuss Joe Cirincione’s
           (213) 689-9170                            Spring St in downtown Los Angeles,             “Bomb Scare: The History and Future of
                                                     (between Broadway and Main Street &            Nuclear Weapons.”


Physicians for Social Responsibility – Los Angeles
                                                                                                                           Non-Profit Org.
617 South Olive St, Suite 810
                                                                                                                           U.S. POSTAGE
Los Angeles, CA 90014-1629
                                                                                                                                PAID
                                                                                                                           Los Angeles, CA
                                                                                                                            Permit No. 55
www.psrla.org




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