Genetically modified food. Microwave ovens. Cell phones.

What do these technologies have in common?

Many people are terrified of these technologies, due to the myths & legends surrounding them, the sketchy ways they were conceived, and/or their own ignorance of how they work.

Let's start with genetically modified food.
Genetic modification is scary stuff, at least to the average Joe. There are many instances in popular culture where something, a monster, for instance, that is the product of a GM experiment gone horribly wrong. In real life, the scariest thing that seems plausible would be highly viral and deadly pathogens created for the sole purpose of killing people. Something less scary, but still plausible, would be a rapidly-reproducing crop that devastates ecosystems. Scary, but unlikely, and no reason to stop eating the damn stuff.
Non-GM food grown by humans is not, per se, designed for humans. Although many crops have been bred by humans to make for a more desirable, more nutritious meal, GM food allows much more power on the human side.
Finally, if the world switched entirely to non-GM food, there would only be enough food to feed around 4 billion people. Think about that for a second, or a minute.

Next, microwave ovens (and cell phones).
Microwave ovens (or microwaves, as most people call them), work very differently from a conventional oven (convection oven). In a convection oven an electric current passes through a metal, which heats up. This heats up the rest oven the oven, enabling the creation of crispy fries and meat that won't give you e. coli.
In a microwave oven, however, there is a magnetron, which gives off electromagnetic radiation in the microwave range (~2.5 Ghz) to shake up water molecules. Oh no, it uses RADIATION! It must cause cancer! Well, hate to break it to you, but so does your desk lamp. Or the monitor that you're staring into. Or that radio tower that transmits music and other delightful stuff to your car radio. Or your cell phone!
The thing is, the radiation that microwave ovens (and cell phones) give off is way too big to get inside of the nuclei of your cells to mess things up, and, potentially, give you cancer.
Think about it this way: if your microwave oven/cell phone/et cetera is actively giving you cancer at this very minute, then that great big ball of hydrogen in the sky will make you start vomiting blood and put you in a coma if you go outside. The rays given of by the sun are much more powerful (and much smaller!) than the ones given off by your food-warming device. Sun rays can actually give you cancer, for real!

That's it for now, and I apologize for not updating my blog very much.

Views: 3

Tags: cell, genetically, gm, microwaves, modified, phones, progress, skepticism, spiderman, technology

Comment by Misty: Baytheist Living! on August 24, 2009 at 12:09pm
Thanks for clearing that up.
I learned all that information on www.snopes.com and Bill Nye.
Awesome!
Comment by Dave G on August 24, 2009 at 4:14pm
Humanity has a pretty powerful Frankenstein complex, boosted by plenty of harping on about 'tampering with God's domain'.
Comment by Reggie on August 24, 2009 at 9:34pm
My microwave constantly burns my popcorn and YOU tell me it isn't evil. Whatever, man, just whatever.
Comment by Reggie on August 24, 2009 at 9:34pm
BTW, enjoyed the post!

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