"I guess I'd characterize Silent Spring as an overstated response to real risks in the use, particularly, of certain insecticides."
     Question: "Over stated because?"
     "Well, I'm inclined to be suspicious of anybody who's going to have the world end next week, as it were. I'm more inclined to think in terms of cost-benefit ratios. When I was in the Philippines, they were going around village-to-village spraying DDT to kill malaria's mosquitoes. And they virtually wiped out malaria before the mosquitoes developed a resistance or tolerance to DDT.
     "So the problem is real as the Silent Spring problem of these chemicals that are eventually resistance or tolerance develops and the side effects, the effects, the cumulative effects of insects eaten by birds and those stories. But I'm more inclined to think of these as tools that can be used with due cautions. But to weigh benefits and risks rather than say we ought to somehow try to be pure in avoiding these things."
     Question: "Did malaria come back after the resistant strains developed?"
     "Yeah, malaria came back. And they're well along. They now have malaria confined to a few small areas in Africa with a different family of insecticides."

Don Reeves – Silent Spring


Other Excerpts from Don Reeves’ Interview:

Conscientious Objection
Off Farm Income
Raising Kids for Export
Overusing Fertilizer
Green Rev. Legacy
Organic Farming
Farming for the Gov't
Food for Peace
Lobbying for Farmers