FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
San Francisco could become the first city in the country to require radiation labels for cell phones.
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Mayor Gavin Newsom is backing a proposal that would require stores to post the radiation levels next to each cell phone - in a size at least as large as the price. They would also have to tell customers what the radiation levels mean.
So far - scientists don't agree whether cell phones pose a health hazard, and the Federal Communications Commission insists that all phones legally sold in the U.S. are safe.
Not surprisingly - a cell phone industry group disputes the idea that cell phone radiation is dangerous. They point to research from groups like the American Cancer Society that cell phones are "unlikely" to cause cancer... and from the World Health Organization that cell phones aren't a public health risk.
But not everyone is so sure. One advocacy group says only recently have studies taken a look at radiation effects of people using cell phones for more than 10 years. They point to research in other countries that shows increased rates of brain and salivary gland tumors - especially on the side of the head where people use their cell phones.
In any case - there are 270 million cell phone subscribers in the U.S... and, if this becomes law in San Francisco - California often times leads the rest of the country when it comes to this stuff.
Here’s my question to you: Should cell phone stores have to post radiation levels?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Michael from Fort Hood, Texas writes:
I think not only should there be a warning about cell phone radiation, but a warning that cell phone usage leads to IQ deficiency. As a soldier, I am more concerned about being killed by an idiot texting going 75 mph or trying to drive with his toes, than any threat an IED could ever pose.
Kenny from California writes:
Jack, The cell phone has become an economic giant; he who tells the truth about radiation so close to one’s brain over an extended period will be rendered a severe smiting by the colossus of wireless communications. Most knowing scientists would rather hang up on this subject.
Kevin from Washington writes:
As an electrical engineer, I would call the entire scare over cell phone radiation pure nonsense. The microwaves put out by cell phones are less than a quarter millionth of the wavelength of ultraviolet radiation, the lowest frequency of electromagnet energy that can ionize cells, corrupting their DNA. I wish people crying wolf about cell phones would simply take Physics 101.
Jordana from Amherst, Massachusetts writes:
Yes, I am an elementary school principal and children's usage of cell phones needs to be considered. If we do not start by notifying the public of some potential risks, we will have a generation that has not been protected.
Tom from Texas writes:
California again leads the nation in nuttiness. The carcinogenic plasticizers in the cell phone case are likely to be more dangerous.
Monte from Boston writes:
My old roommate represented a cell phone company in a lawsuit alleging a link between phone use and cancer, and while she never divulged any privileged information, she did start using an earphone device pretty soon after. That was enough for me.
Matthew from Orange, California writes:
Yes they should. I'm an idiot and should be informed of things that are obvious to people of intelligence. Please, hold my hand!
That is a good idea – Samsung has the lowest levels. We Americans should go back to living like humans and not fill out lives w/radiation and tech that is causing us to become robots.
No because you can use head sets or they make things to put on cell phones that help with the radiation. and they do work . IN THIS DAY & AGE WHY WOULD PEOPLE PUT THE CELL PHONE UP TO YOUR EARS–GOTTEN BE DONE
tampa, fl why not just have people sign a waiver or have a sign on each package telling the health risks like tobacco? people are still stupid enough to smoke, and you can bet they won't give up cell phones either. why not have the cell phone people offer to sell you a health coverage for this, congress ain't going to ever get around to it.
Absolutely, and CT scans, too. The National Cancer Institure estimates 29,000 Americans will develop cancers caused by the radiation from CT scans done in 2007. Radiation causes cancer and we should know much we're being exposed to.
Sure, just like cigarette packages have to post the cancer warning. This won't stop a lot of people from talking on them non-stop – but will stop lawsuits for the future. They were warned, and still chose to inanely talk on them 24/7.
Heck no Jack, Let the people that live on these things and put the rest of at risk because of their driving get cancer and then they or their family can sue the cell phone companies in 10 years because they didn't get warned. The winners are "lawyers" again.
Nothing as ever been as important as cell phones....not gasoline...not water....not clean air....not good health....not even facsimile machines. Cell phones to include blackberries and everything that fits into that cell phone pigeonhole. If everyone knew that he would have cancer in some part of his head within 5 years if he/she continues using a cell phone, he would choose cancer. I don't know what the meaning of POST RADIATION LEVELS is – however, it really doesn't matter to 99 and 44/100% of people today.
Yes they should Jack. Although nothing has been totaly proven. In the long run it would be better for the companies and the public. That way when someone buys a phone they can make the right choice.
Why should they? Its just a cell phone and people are overreacting to nothing. And Jack, you aren't helping matters by feeding the hysteria.
Does Chiken Little live in San Francisco?
If these are known, certainly. Whent that happens, invest in the guys who make the earphones on a wire.
Should cell phone stores have to post radiation levels?
Slap a warning label on these too! We have a right to know what levels are put out by each model.
Well not to be a jerk or anthing, but...I NEVER GO IN THOSE STORES! And why wouldn't other electronic stores like Best Buy or stores like TARGET that also sell that stuff not have to post radiation levels? Seems sort of not fair – no?
Come on Jack, don't you think you're pushing the ridiculous barrier. A better warning would be don't use your phone while driving, it can kill you. We live in a dangerous world and somehow we have to learn that if we post a warning for everything that was dangerous or potentially dangerous, it would result in us living like hermits except that would be hazardous to our health. Anyone who is not aware of the dangers of cell phone use is probably a hermit, just plain stupid or doesn't really care, your choice.
Yes. There is no safe level of radiation. All radiation adds to cancer risk. There are reasons that people should expose themselves to radiation such as a mammogram after age 50, dental x-rays, emergency room x-rays, a CT scan when necessary, but there is no need to add cell phone radiation to all the unavoidable exposure.
People don't even read no food and drink in the store so you think they would read this one? Fat Chance
Sure why not? We have warning labels on everything from cigarettes to hot coffee all in an effort to protect us from our own stupidity. We can just as easily ignore them at the cell phones stores and sue them when we get cancer. California will lead the charge and I'm sure it will end up costing the consumer more money.
Why not? I do not wish to glow in the dark.
Most Americans can't name the countries in North America and they are going to know or care about radiation levels? Get real Jack.
Leave it to San Fransisco to passs laws without any kind of substantive evidence that there is even a problem.
Yes, Jack I think they should. With all the modern equipment we have giving off radiation today, it would be nice to have an idea of just how much radiation we are being exposed to. It was just recently revealed that CT scans are giving a lot more radiation than first claimed. People have cell phones in their pockets today just like they had a pack of cigarettes in their pocket. How many lives would have been saved if we knew the truth about cigarettes? I think we needed know what the real truth is about cell phones. And the truth should not be allowed to come out in dribbles, like with cigarettes, taking years for the truth to be fully known.
The fight over Cell phones causing cancer will end up being like cigarettes, they will put big warnings on them and we will ignore the warnings and sue when we get cancer. If they are that deadly, they should be pulled off the shelves.
I am so tired of these politicians who think we are all so stupid that we need to be protected from ourselves.
Yes, wqhy would not want to do this? It would keep them out of future trouble. Manufacture pressure must be a factor.
We can't have people worried about radiation! That would cut into profits! What is more important, public health or economic growth? Ahem, our society needs to die so a healthier one can take it's place.
Yes,put radiation warnings on cell phones. They have them for everything else. I doubt whether it will cut usage but atleast give people a fair warning. Let them develop new phones with no or less radiation.
No the cell phones are dead in the water until activated and if these phones are dangerous maybe they need to be treated like cigarett smoke and be band from public places .
It is probably a good idea since long term exposure could prove to be bad news. Just list it as another feature of a particular phone. Caveat emptor
Hey Jack. Good stuff. If McDonald's has to post their nutrition information, then yes the cell phone stores should have to post information about radiation!
The cigarette companies have to post warnings on packages of cigarettes. And yes, I smoke. But didn't cigarette companies hide for years that cigarettes are dangerous? Now it is the same for the cell phone companies.
Anything in the name of the almighty buck! these large companies say and so what if someone gets hurt?
Yes, and while we're in this "nanny-state" of mind....let's put a warning label on bananas that tells us that we might slip and fall on that yellow peeling?
Posting warning labels on cell phones will have a much effect as warning labels on cigarettes. Cell phones are such hot items any warnings will be ignored.
Since most people can't go to sleep without a damn phone in their ear, yes they should have to post the levels, if not we'll have a population of people one of these days with heads like a horned toad.
Yes they should let the public decide. Remember when smoking was'nt linked to lung cancer!!!!!!
I think the funniest line in this article was "tumors on the side of the head they use their cell phones". I think someone doesn't know how cell phones work.
This is like the old "electric lines give you cancer' scare. People are afraid of what they don't know.
Doesn't wearing a tin foil cap protect you from cell phone radiation?
Why not have this information since consumers have the right to know details of their products!
The cell phone industry is a multi-billion dollar business; and they will not tolerate any "issues" regarding the safety of their products. Their lobby alone is dictating the rules of engagement to the lawmakers.
The staus quo would do the planet a big favor by getting rid of the SUV Soccer Moms.
Yes, radiation levels should be posted along side the acceptable rates of exposure now supported by the government. Buyers should be informed and if they choose not to educate themselves, makers of cellphones have a minimum duty to tell us we are endangering our brain by cell phone use. Buyer beware!
Anyone selling anything to the public should make any controversy concerning their product known, period.
Yes Jack, it's wording like, (cell phone are unlikely to cause cancer) boy doesn't that make ya feel safe. Maybe they should use that kind of wording when it comes to gun safety, gun is unlikely to splatter your brains all over your living room if you hold it to your head and pull the trigger, were not sure, but it is unlikely! You would think the industry would have figured this out before the produced more than a trillion phones and released them to the public.
Dave from peterborough, NH.
If the levels can be measured, of course they should be available to buyers. And I agree with you. California almost always leads the way, it being the most progressive state in the union.
People ought to know the radiation level from a phone before they buy it. Duh.
Hell YeS! If something might fry my brain, I want to know about it.
Jack, Ive been using my cell phone for years and no, "draim bramage" so far.
Jack we need to ban cell phones. I have a sign that says Help send police and have had it for 40 years. I have a gun in case of an emergency.
Absolutely, this gives the consumer a choice to use it or not use. The other information necessary is what each level means so an educated decision can be made.
The term radiation is misleading it is not "ionizing " radiation like from a nuclear reactor. It is radio frequency. If we are going to go down that path there is no where we do not encounter some form of radiation. Microwave ovens cell phones power line wireless access point all produce EMI & RFI . Studies are on going but the radiated power is less than a watt which is very low power being held to your ear .Most studies are inconclusive. IT is not like in the past when power levels were at 5 watts. . Even so most headset usually radiate less than that.
Yeah, and those machines that look at your feet and tell you if you need some special kind of 'orthotic' (whatever that is) should have the warning too.
Also, we need to know how much radiation is emitted into our fast food (and other food, because you know a lot of it is just nuked!)
Oh yeah, and maybe we need to rethink the ban on lead paint. Isn't lead what blocks radiation? Maybe we need to just paint everyone in a nice lead gray!
Yes, but will they? After all, profit is more important than health as we can see with the impedence of health care reform.
The amount of magnetic microwave radiation emitted from cell phones greatly differ from each different manufacturer. I fully support forcing cell phone manufacturers to list the amount of magnetic microwave radiation their device emits in a specific standard test so that consumers could decide if that brand meets their needs.
In a short time after being forced to disclose their brands magnetic microwave radiation, you could bet they would work much harder to lower their radiation signature as much as possible making the consumers the clear winners in the long run.
With the CAT scan news, I think microwaves, computers, TVs, and dentists and radiologists should post them too. Who needs nuclear bombs? We're radiating ourselves without them.
San Francisco is a beautiful city with many beautiful people but it's politicians are another breed. I suppose that their concept of "Left is right and Right is wrong" is okay but these people have to learn that they can't save the world.
I think we should not make them post anything about their phones. Perhaps we could somehow manipulate the glow coming from our ears as a way to identify each individual, of coarse then we could eliminate personal I.D.'s., the department of licensing,social security cards, thus making smaller government. Why not?
Regardless of whether the highest levels emitted today are dangerous, posting the levels will drive people away from the highest emitting phones thus driving manufacturers to find ways to lower levels to improve sales. Dangerous or not... by default, this move should weed out the worst ones.
First we saw the banking and financial institutions we'd just bailed out handing out huge bonuses on our dime and the cry was, "They just don't get it." Now we see leaders from all over flying to Copenhagen in private jets, in the process generating more carbon emissions than Switzerland does in a year. I guess "they don't get it either." What's more, that top 2% never will, so let's stop kidding ourselves and go back to just trying to survive another year. Anything good on TV tonight?
do we really need cell phones. I do not own one I had one back in 1996 hated it. I couldn't have peace and quite on my days off everyone could find me anywhere and anytime. Sick I am much happier without one and at no change for cancer. I stay away from them to old for that all that texting and ringtones and other stuff is just a waste of my time. I have better thing to do like answer your questions. works for me
Yes! i want to know if I am being exposed to high levels of radiation. Who among you want to microwave their own head with every use? We have been ignorant for far too long! What are they afraid of, that we will not chose to commit cell phone suicide, and chose another manufacture our telecommunications pleasure.
Jack, Exactly when was it that California was ahead of who in what? Is this the same mayor who said there were no street gangs in his town? The one who pushes for cuts in the city's fire department because they haven't had a "major" fire in a while? Maybe the mayor can simply have his head fitted for a lead football helmet. Yea, that's the ticket!! Layne A. Antioch, Il.
Yes they should. I'm an idiot and I should be informed of things that are obvious to people of intelligence. Please, hold my hand!
Jack, I say increase the radiation! Let's level the species! By increasing the radiation we can, by natural selection, cull the herd of self-important, self-centered, self-gratifying, impolite, rude, dangerous driving, dangerous walking cretons.
Humans didn't have them for eons, and suddenly now you can't go outside without one. Talk about the peak of marketing! Develope a product and then create an absolute need. Then make it a touch screen so that you're apping and really not paying attention to everything around them. Frankly if I see someone walking in front of a moving train, with a cell phone pressed to their ear, I'll just let them. They can call for help themselves.
Yes they should. I'm an idiot and I need to be informed of what is obvious to anyone of intelligence. Please, hold my hand!
The cell phone has become an economic giant, he who tells the truth about radiation so close to ones brain over an extended period will be rendered a severe smiting by the colossus of wireless communications.
Most knowing scientist rather hang up on the subject.
Yep, the same day McDonalds is required to post nutrition facts on individual products. The information is already available; if you're really that worried about it, do some research!
In order to fix the eyesight of people who have been damaged by these cell phones, then heck yes!
I think not only should there be a warning about cellphone radiation, but a warning that cellphone usage leads to IQ deficiency. As a soldier I am more concerned about being killed by an idiot texting going 75 mph,or trying to drive with his toes, than any threat an IED could ever pose.
Yes, radiation levels should be posted, BUT since the medical, scientific, and government communities haven't been able to reach a consensus as to what levels, over what period of time, and how the devices are employed present a danger, the buyer could only go by the criteria that less radiation is better. The wise buyer could seek out other sources for information to determine what level of radiation he would accept. I, for one, wouldn't place much credence in the vendor of the devices to advise me on what the radiation levels mean. Caveat emptor.
Yes Jack and there should be a 3' by 4' sign attached to each phone that reads, "USE OF THIS PHONE COULD BE HAZARDOUS TO YOUR HEALTH".
I think the best solution is to not spend so much time on the telephone.
Silence is golden!
Anything that actually benefits regular people won't happen. And if it takes a law to enact, don’t hold your breath. The cell phone industry groups will just dig in their vast “donations to opponents” war chests to kill it.
Sure, brain cancer is as bad as lung cancer from smoking those death sticks.
It won't happen, they have too much money to fight it.
Look how long the cigerette companies got by without putting warnings on their labels.
There are so many kids been exposed for many years from the cell phones.
As for the cells and cigerettes, we have a friend involved in both.
He had a kidney removed 2 years ago, then the cancer went to the prostate and now in the lung. He has 2 months to live.
Kids listen up on both cases.
My father died 45 years ago, never used a cell phone or smoked cigarettes but it was determined the cause of death was lung cancer and I still don't know where to post a danger sign.
Do beepers have the potential to cause cancer via radiation, because I might result to the use of that technology.
Yes and cell phones should be band from public places so people dont have breath in other peoples radiation.
Posting the levels will not make a difference in one to purchase or not to purchase a cell phone. Probably the more radiation, the better the cell phone. Its kinda like putting tags on our pollitions, "Effective or "Non-Effective"....(maybe that is a good idea!!!)
Rock Hill, NY
Why does it matter? People will use them still, it will just waste more money printing the labels out, but I guess it would be smart of them to do that, Do I hear a lawsuit coming?
Absolutely, we the consumers have the right to information, especially when it could impact our health.
California again leads the nation in nuttiness. The carcinogenic plasticizers in the cell phone case are likely to be more dangerous.
I will text you in a few years to let you know if I am brain damaged.
Yes and cell phones should be band from public places so people dont have to breath in other peoples radiation.
1 word for you: YES. I am an elementary school principal and children's usage of cell phones needs to be considered. If we do not start by notifying public of some potential risks, we will have a generation that has not been protected.
Let me see.....there are 270 million cell phone users and 300 million people in this country. I would say to little to late but it does explaine so many idiots in our country.
ABSOLUTELY! Consumers cannot trust corporations to properly inform them about the risks involved with their products.
YES!!!! I wonder how much Ted Kennedy used his Cell Phone:(
I don't see the harm in it.I couldn't care less myself,but it might be very beneficial for those who would want that info.
As an Electrical Engineer, I would call the entire scare over cell phone radiation pure nonsense. The microwaves put out by cell phones are less than a quarter millionth of the wavelength of ultraviolet radiation, the lowest frequency of electromagnet energy that can ionize cells, corrupting their DNA. I wish people crying wolf about cell phones would simply take Physics 101.
-Kevin, Washington DC
Where does the radiation derive from within the cell? How is it possible? Why has this not been explained? Jack the question is not fair due to facts that have not been made public, or have not been explored.
My old roommate represented a cell phone company in suit alleging a link between phone use and cancer, and while she never divulged any privileged information, she did start using an earphone device pretty soon after. That was enough for me.
Yes. And the posting needs to be written in understandable terms that should be on a comparative scale (for instance, ATT has _____of radiation/minute. The Federal standard for safe radiation is _______/ minute)
Yes! There has been considerable evidence of harm from cell phone use for many years – always denied and ignored. Maybe it will lead to more truth coming out about this.
If cell phone radiation levels are necessary what about microwave ovens. I mean I should be aware how much radiation I'm being hit with when watching my popcorn pop to make sure its not getting burned, right. Let's go one step further how about the sun? Seriously, if we follow this premise then the government should mandate NASA in conjunction with all U.S. news media to report on the amount of daily radiation that will be hitting the earth on a daily basis because the sun is the greatest source of radiation in our solar system; although, filtered by our atmosphere. Nonetheless, a source of radiation so where is my daily radiation level reports besides temperature and humidity? Just a thought.
re: cellphone radiation question:
I certainly think radiation levels should be posted. I lost one of my best friends to brain cancer last year. This is an issue we all need to be more aware of and concerned about.
P.S.: Jack, you are the best part of the Situation Room!!
ABSOLUTELY. The public deserves as much information as possible when one's health could be impacted.
No, it shouldn't be required. This is just another example of people not using common sense. Cell phones put off radiation. Roads are slippery when wet. Same concepts. As Bill Engvall would say, "Here's your sign." Get with it America.
Absolutely. I have given ear wires to my granddaughters who use their cells, thank goodness most of the time to text. And BlueTooth kinds of attachments pose the same risk because the signal is next to the head. A neurological radiologist I know never uses a cell phone next to his head!
Absolutely yes but only if in fact different models produce very different levels or types of radiation. If that's not the case then it's a waste of time and effort.
No, cell phone manufacturers should not be required to print something that the vast majority of Americans will not understand. Radiation does not mean radioactive. Heat is radiation. Visible light is radiation. Radio, TV, and microwaves all operate via radiation. The argument over cell phones is fueled by the same thing that had people asking about the Large Hadron Collider: ignorance. It's a dangerous thing.
Yes! The threat from global warming is nothing compared to the threat from a hot-wired planet. Dr. George Carlo, hired by the telecommunications industry to prove there is no danger, after spending 25 million dollars has written extensively on the risks. Get him on your show for some perspective. Thanks for bring up this topic. Hope you will follow through on this and not let your sponsors muzzle you.
CT scans are X-rays (ionizing radiation). Microwaves from cell phones are non-ionizing. The damage is not the same. It's comparing apples to Kiwi fruit.
A very good friend of mine had a tumor removed from his brain just inside his ear after using a cell phone on that side for years. He was given the choice of losing the hearing in that ear, or having a nerve cut that controls his facial muscles on that side as a result of the surgery- he chose partial deafness. His surgeons were sure the main contributory factor was the cell phone. Everyone in our circle of friends now uses a bluetooth earpiece- we've seen first-hand the results of those radiation emissions.
In answer to your question, YES, of course post radiation levels on consumer phone packaging, web sites, etc.
"That Which is Measured is Treasured" and you may quote me. It presents yet another criteria for consumers to use in choosing a phone to purchase, and it stands to reason that people will choose the phone with the least emissions, other factors being equal. This will have the direct result of manufacturers racing to develop low-emissive technologies and phones, which will benefit everyone. Competition, an American value.
That which is measured, is treasured.
You'll hear whining from the idiot right wing about "nanny states", "big government" and other such nonsense. Those people are morons, feel free to ignore them.
Absolutely yes! Cellphones SHOULD show warnings of possible brain cancer etc. People (especially kids who live onn these things() shouldn't have to say "oops!" in 10 or 20 years when they develop fatal complications.
Just as the computer is sold without warnings.....(ie, risk of carpal tunnelsyndrome, stiff necks, eye strain, headaches), so should the phones. Moderation and modifications are key here, don't you think.....?
I think constant texting on the phones would pose a greater risk than talking on the phones.
Yes Jack, the radiation warning should be posted. The things we don't know or ignore are the things that hurt us the most. Things like the government...think about it.
This sounds like another couple hundred pages for the health care bill.
Won't the Republicans love that.
Jack – Cell phones are dangerous, but not from emitted radiation. This will be evident when you see some moron weaving down the road while texting and driving, putting everyone at risk because they are too compulsively addicted to their toy. Hopefully they will not be playing with the CNN app.
D. Bednarik, Ph.D.
I almost forgot, cancer is no longer a threat to our society. The people who believe in evolution just cracked the Cancer Gene, so very soon Cancer will be treated with a simple flu shot. Thanks. Religulous freaks, eat your hearts out.
Cell phones emit radio waves. These are non-ionizing radiation. It us basic physics, the waves don't carry enough energy to cause cancer mutations.
It is physics people.
And Wolf Blitzer – your statement of "it is a good idea" should be kept to yourself at least until you do some basic reading on the subject!
@Kevin. A quarter millionth multiplied by 270 million is still pretty scary!
Not in favour of post radiation levels until supported by scientific proof in terms of WHO, FDA and so on.
And why not???? If it is NOT a health problem or ANY problem then everyone has the data and can either believe or ignore. Personal choice but then most people these days do not like to do much for themselves, do they.
So every one agrees that cell phones are a public health hazard now do like you did with cigeretts.
The amount of radiated energy from the cell phone antenna is directly proportional to the range of the transmitter and receiver on the phone.
Buy a phone with less radiation and you get less range of service.
Radiation levels on cell phones should definitely be posted! That's just common sense... What is more important, a company's ability to protect itself from potential litigation for producing/selling harmful products or my right to choose which product is safest.
There have been so many cases of harmful products getting the rubber stamp from our government due to all of the PACs in Washington spreading their influence. It would be great to know the truth for once...
Jeff in Yukon,OK
Wow. The cheaper the phone the more radiation. Isnt it supposed to be the other way around. In this world the cheapest is always the most damaging.
Not really, it is all hog wash as nothing has been conclusiveley proved so far.
oops. the cheaper the phone, less radiation. more expensive phones have better reception, hence more radiation.