|Vol. 3, No. 3, 1997 Page 2|
"The opinion of this mischievous effect from lead is at least above sixty years old; and you will observe with concern how long a useful truth may be known and exist, before it is generally receiv'd and practis'd on."
Benjamin Franklin, in a letter
"on the bad effects of lead taken
inwardly," July 1786
"The general finding from studies of twins and adopted children is that genetic causes exert a very strong pull in the direction of prosocial behavior... [H]owever, it would be quite wrong to regard this as evidence for a view that 'crime is destiny.' Th
he predisposition to criminal conduct is inborn, but depending on environmental circumstances this predisposition can also lead to quite other types of conduct.... Genetic factors should be understood for what they are and not accepted as an immovable bar
rrier to social progress."
Hans J. Eysenck and
Gisli H. Gudjonsson,
The Causes and Cures of Criminality, Plenum Press, 1989
"Violence in America batters the senses. Even those who have had the good fortune to avoid a personal encounter are subject to a constant vicarious assault through the media.... Given the magnitude of the problem and the failure of the courts to deter vio
olent crime, one might guess that research on the subject should be a high priority.... [However,] the amount the federal government spends on research into violent crime, compared with other causes of death, is minuscule. According to the study 'Understa
anding and Preventing Violence,' published last year by the National Research Council, in 1989 only $31 was spent on violence-related studies per year of potential life lost to violence in 1989. The equivalent calculations for cancer and AIDS yielded figu
ures of $794 and $697, respectively."
Scientific American, July 1994
"Over the last decade, evidence has accumulated that individuals who have absorbed neurotoxic metals like lead and manganese are at risk for both educational deficits and criminal behavior. The mechanism of these effects is well known, since absorption of
toxic metals damages neurons and disturbs neurotransmitters... Our own work has confirmed the role of toxicity as one of the many 'risk factors' in crime by showing that counties with environmental pollution with lead and manganese have two to three times
s higher rates of violent crime than those without pollution; alcoholism increases these effects."
Professor Roger Masters