MyNews24 is a user-generated section of The stories here come from users.

Totally Disillusioned
Comments: 20
Article views: 1291
Latest Badges:

View all Totally Disillusioned's badges.

The obsession with skin colour.....

31 January 2013, 07:52

The obsession with skin colour exhibited by government, activists and “cyber family” who submit articles, is obscuring more important matters, such as pollution. In fact, the effects of pollution are already manifest, some not yet and some will only do so later. If we love ourselves and our children, we need to start questioning the right of a dysfunctional government to impose a real health hazard on its citizens.

A recent mynews24 article wanted us to believe that the average IQ of a South African (105) is higher than the USA, UK, Norway or Australia. The 3 top Google sites visited indicated South Africa as 72 or not listed, but data certainly shows a rating lower than 97. This leads one to ponder the impact of environmental cleanliness on the mental acuity of a country’s citizens.

This morning I read a news24 article about the high levels of manganese which have been detected in water in areas in Pretoria. Spokesperson Nomasonto Ndlovu said: “Manganese and iron at high concentration affects the aesthetic appearance of the water and does not pose a health risk”.

Wasserman and Bouchard wish to differ and indicated that a high concentration of manganese in tap water was significantly associated with lower IQ. It should be noted that arsenic was also present, albeit in lower concentrations.

The following 5 paragraphs as per my friend:

Heavy or toxic metals are trace metals with a density at least five times that of water. They are bio-accumulative (passed up the food chain to humans). These include: mercury, nickel, lead, arsenic, cadmium, aluminium, platinum, and copper (the metallic form versus the ionic form required by the body). Heavy metals have no function in the body and can be highly toxic.

The term heavy metal refers to any metallic chemical element that has a relatively high density and is toxic or poisonous at low concentrations. Chronic exposure to these metals can have serious health consequences. Humans are exposed to heavy metals through inhalation of air pollutants, consumption of contaminated drinking water, exposure to contaminated soils or industrial waste, or consumption of contaminated food. Food sources such as vegetables, grains, fruits, fish and shellfish can become contaminated by accumulating metals from surrounding soil and water. Heavy metal exposure causes serious health effects, including reduced growth and development, cancer, organ damage, nervous system damage, and in extreme cases, death. Exposure to some metals, such as mercury and lead, may also cause development of autoimmunity, in which a person's immune system attacks its own cells. This can lead to joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, and diseases of the kidneys, circulatory system and nervous system. 

Metals are particularly toxic to the sensitive, rapidly developing systems of foetuses, infants and young children. Some metals, such as lead and mercury, easily cross the placenta and damage the foetal brain. Childhood exposure to some metals can result in learning difficulties, memory impairment, damage to the nervous system, and behavioural problems such as aggressiveness and hyperactivity. At higher doses, heavy metals can cause irreversible brain damage. Children may receive higher doses of metals from food than adults, since they consume more food for their body weight than adults.

Mine water impacts negatively on the water environment by increasing the levels of suspended solids, leading to mobilization of elements such as iron, aluminium, cadmium, cobalt, manganese and zinc and also decreasing pH of the receiving water.

Industrial activity results in releases of millions of pounds of mercury into the environment each year, primarily in the form of air emissions from coal-fired power plants. Mercury also is released into the environment by municipal and medical waste incineration, mining and smelting.

There are obviously much more data available for the more inquisitive.

None of the articles touched on the effects of burning tyres (for heat or cooking), or burning stolen wire and batteries to retrieve copper and lead. The impact of constant intake of E. Coli from polluted streams and the multiplicative effects that lead combined with fluoride have on children, I have not touched upon.

The constant (over and under) use of pesticides and polluted irrigation water on our fruit, veggie and grain crops, are ghosts lurking in the wings of the South African unfunny Water Comedy. Nor are the mining water licenses or the Blesbokspruit and Wonderfonteinspruit pollution outrages detailed here. The lack by any authority to test and impose fines, (and more), on polluting vehicles is another day’s story.

There are 86% less engineers in municipalities today, compared to 18 years ago. Only 97 of the 250 civil engineering posts at the Department of Water Affairs are filled. Since 2008, R 4.2 billion has been spent on consultants.

Should we still argue about exactly what colour someone is when we are all using the same water? The same water that pollute our bodies and make our children sick? We are all exposed to pollution. Should we thus not be asking what political, socio-economic and global competitive disadvantages we are creating for ourselves?

Just because the effects of the above are not as dramatic as Marikana, De Doorns or Zamdela, they might not attract as much attention, nor provide as much material for political posturing or opportunities to be in the lime light. It might not be as comment provoking as Christians vs. Atheists.

But they are as important. And far more deadly........

Rapport –Sunday, 27 January 2013.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Bizaboy Shongwe
Selfless leadership

Are politicians addressing the needs of the masses?

0 comments 38 views
The Cosatu conference decisions.....

The Cosatu 12th National Congress ended today in Midrand and two contentious matters that everyone thought may not be discussed actually found their way onto the agenda. Read more...

0 comments 132 views
Submitted by
Michael Ernest Meder
OUTA on EToll Debr

I really believe Outa is "smoking something" - they are now calling EToll laws unjust and irrational, a far cry from their initial stance of lack of public involvement. Read more...

0 comments 809 views
Submitted by
Medical Aid for pets versus medic...

I think Malema's statement that people are more willing to take out medical aid for their pets than for their employees is grossly exaggerated.  Read more...

0 comments 492 views
Submitted by
John Stoltz
Madiba versus Malema,....or is it...

Dear Mr Malema, how can you ever make a derogatory remark about our beloved Madiba? Read more...

0 comments 342 views
Submitted by
Thulane Che Trosky637
21 Years later of absolutely noth...

South Africans before 1992 was lead to believe that Nelson Mandela deserved to be serving a life sentence apparently because of his ‘high treason’ case and the apparent acts that he committed before being sentence in the 60’s. Read more...

0 comments 191 views


E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on Android Get the latest from News24 on your Android device.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

TV Get us in your home, on your television.

Interactive Advertising Bureau
© 2015 All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.