More From Hollywood
So what are we to think of someone who irresponsibly rings a false alarm about breast cancer — simply to serve his own agenda? Imagine someone telling people that they are living in an area where the chances of developing breast cancer are shockingly high; picture the alarm and worry. Then imagine if that same person had made up the story — yet was getting cheers from Hollywood stars for telling it.
Stop imagining: Filmmaker Josh Fox has done just that.
Fox uses his films, which he calls documentaries, to crusade against fracking — which is a well-tested way of getting oil and natural gas from deep beneath the ground that’s nonetheless become a target for environmental hysteria.
He was heavily criticized for inaccuracies in “Gasland” — such as telling viewers that fracking makes water flammable. (He recently admitted that he knew that parts of America have had flammable water for decades before fracking, but decided not to include this information because it was “not relevant.”) The film also painted Dimock, Pa., as the ground zero for polluted water caused by fracking. Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency joined every other major US regulatory agency to say that Dimock’s water is safe to drink.
But Fox’s latest film, “The Sky Is Pink,” sets a new low. It tells viewers theven as US cancer rates are falling, breast cancer is rising in the Barnett area of Texas because of pollution caused by fracking.
An Associated Press investigation found that Fox has absolutely no scientific evidence for this claim. AP spoke to David Risser, an epidemiologist with the Texas Cancer Registry. He found no breast-cancer spike in Barnett. Simon Craddock Lee, a professor of medical anthropology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, also dismissed Fox’s claims.
Even Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the famous cancer-advocacy group, said it had seen no spike in breast cancer cases.
Confronted with these facts, Fox cited a press release from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that doesn’t support his claim, and a newspaper story that, Risser told AP, was “not based on a careful statistical analysis of the data.”
Frightening the public with a bogus breast-cancer scare is despicable. It may scare some families into moving away, or divert medical resources from areas with real problems. Faced with cancer experts telling him he’s wrong, it would be ethical to issue an apology and correction. But Fox has continued to make the claims, regardless of the science.
A corporation behaving like this would be out of business, with its executives looking at prison. But Josh Fox is being rewarded for his lies. HBO has a sequel to “Gasland.” And the Hollywood and environmental elites — Mark Ruffalo, Yoko Ono, Debra Winger, Robert Redford, Bill McKibben and Robert Kennedy — are supporting him. All are silent about Josh Fox’s despicable lie about breast cancer.
The campaign site is both a breast cancer awareness message and a tribute to Chrissy’s legacy – a snapshot of her place in history and a message to inspire women to self-examine and catch the disease early. Designed around the centrepiece of the campaign, the music video, the site puts content first with a minimalist interface and a single highlight colour, sampled from the original I Touch Myself music video.
Melissa Etheridge comes to Syracuse this week, but first she’s lobbying Albany to legalize medical marijuana.
The 53-year-old singer-songwriter tells the New York Daily News that medical marijuana helped her with her stage 2 breast cancer, relieving nausea and pain.
“As a cancer survivor, I know the ravages of a serious illness, and patients who are suffering deserve access to a medication that can provide them relief,” she said in a statement. “It’s time for leaders in Albany to listen to the people of New York and to show some compassion to those who are suffering needlessly; it’s time for them to pass the Compassionate Care Act.”
According to the newspaper, Etheridge asked fans to sign a petition in favor of the cause at her concert in Albany Saturday. She also told fans she now has an apartment in New York City and considers the state her “second home.”
State lawmakers are currently in negotiations about pot for medicinal use, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo has yet to say if he supports the Compassionate Care Act.
“I support the concept of medical marijuana,” Cuomo said. However, he reportedlystill has concerns with the legislation, such as penalties for those who fraudulently seek or prescribe the drug and trimming down the list of health conditions in the bill that would qualify for weed.
New York State Sen. John DeFrancisco, R-Syracuse, said last week he would not take up the legislation in the Senate Finance Committee, but Cuomo insisted Friday the bill is “not dead” yet. Talks are continuing, but the current session is scheduled to end Thursday.
Etheridge, who married “Nurse Jackie” co-creator Linda Wallem earlier this month, has four children. Her new solo album is due in stores this September.