Wouldn’t it be ironic if, after spending billions of dollars on prisons, police, and the war on drugs, the real answer to reducing crime was as simple as getting rid of lead in our environment?
That’s the conclusion of new research that strongly indicates that the hidden villain behind violent crime, lowered intelligence, and even attention deficit disorder is the use of lead in fuels (and to a lesser extent, in paint).
What? You think we already stopped using lead? Not really. We still use it in aviation fuel, spewing lead into the atmosphere. And for no good reason.
But the real irony is why this research isn’t getting more attention. Could it be that the prison industry doesn’t want you to know that our prison-building frenzy wasn’t really necessary? Or that vastly expanding the number of police and creating paramilitary swat teams didn’t actually do all that much to reduce crime? Or that the war on drugs was a complete waste of money?
And just because we banned lead in automobile gasoline doesn’t mean it isn’t still around, saturating the soil in American cities where car traffic was the most dense during the time that all gasoline was leaded. And every time the wind kicks up some dust, we are breathing it again. We have the technology to remove this lead and potentially bring down crime rates significantly, but we do nothing.
We should be screaming about this. We are poisoning our children. And the cost of the clean-up is small compared to the cost of doing nothing, paid in lower IQs, increased crime, and health problems.