The Deadly Secrets of Plum Island

Michael Carroll, author of the best-selling book, “Lab 257: The Disturbing Story of the Government’s Secret Plum Island Germ Laboratory,” was back on the East Coast, vacationing with his family, and amazed over recent developments concerning Plum Island.

Carroll, an attorney from Long Island who worked seven years on “Lab 257” which became a best-seller after its 2004 publication, has since moved to California where he and his wife, a California native, established a law practice.

Back on Long Island, where he is a native, Carroll finds as astonishing Representative Tim Bishop’s fight against the plan of the federal government to shut down its Plum Island Animal Disease Center and shift its operations to a new National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility it would build in Manhattan Kansas. Bishop, of Southampton, is mainly concerned about the loss of 200 federal jobs at the center which is in his eastern Long Island Congressional district.

“It is utter foolishness to try to save 200 jobs at the price of protecting the entire region from this island and the threat it represents,” said Carroll in a recent interview. An outbreak of disease agents worked with on Plum Island­notably those affecting both animals and people­in the heavily populated area off which the island sits could be “devastating.” Plum Island is just off and midway between the New York-Boston megalopolis and its millions of people, Carroll pointed out. The 843-acre island is a mile-and-a-half off Orient Point in Southold Town on the North Fork of Long Island. Connecticut is less than 10 miles to the north.

A spokesperson for Bishop, Oliver Longwell, responded that Bishop’s “position on the island is indistinguishable from every other elected official who represents Southold Town at all levels of government.”

As to the call by a grouping of Long Island environmentalists for preservation of the island as opposed to the federal government’s consideration of having housing developed on it,  Carroll said that making the island a preserve is all that could be done with Plum Island­but, he emphasized, it will need to be a preserve closed to people. “You can’t let anybody on it,” he said.

“The island is an environmental disaster,” said Carroll. “Every effort to decontaminate Lab 257, the1950s-era germ warfare building on it, has failed,” said Carroll. “They can’t get that building clean.” (Subsequently, a new laboratory building was constructed after the U.S. Department of Agriculture Department took control of the island from the U.S. Army.)

“There is contamination all over the island,” said Carroll. He noted that up until recent years, nothing was ever removed from the island­everything was disposed on it, much of it buried. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) have brought charges through the years in connection with the Plum Island waste, cases cited in his book, he went on. “If this was a private business, it immediately would have been shut down,” said Carroll. But only “nominal” fines were meted out.

As to a shift of Plum Island operations to Kansas, that’s “going out of the frying pan into the fire,” said Carroll. “Is there is no better place to study foreign animal diseases than in the middle of America’s farm belt?”

“What research that needs to be conducted should be done nowhere near a human population center or a food production center,” said Carroll.

As for Plum Island, “There’s no way that island can be made fit for human habitation,” declared Carroll.” The island needs to be “forsaken. It’s very sad.”

The federal government, however, believes Plum Island can be habitable as evidenced by it contemplating housing on it with the center’s closing. And real estate mogul Donald Trump has jumped into the situation by saying he would like to buy the island and, he said last month, develop a “really beautiful, world-class golf course” on it.

Meanwhile, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has written to the General Services Administration, which would manage the planned sale, and the Department of Homeland Security, which after the 9/11 attack took over the island from the Department of Agriculture, calling for a “comprehensive investigation” of Plum Island by the state DEC, and a clean-up plan. This would include “the need to properly close Building 257.” Discussing his letter at a recent appearance at Orient Beach State Park, Cuomo called Plum Island “the island of secrets.”

The Cuomo family is very familiar with Plum Island. Andrew’s father, former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, with whom Carroll worked as a lawyer in New York City, is quoted on the jacket of “Lab 257” as calling the book a “carefully researched, chilling expose of a potential catastrophe.”

Carroll’s “Lab 257” also documents a Nazi connection to the original establishment of a U.S. laboratory on Plum Island. According to the book, Erich Traub, a scientist who worked for the Third Reich doing biological warfare, was the force behind its founding.

During World War II,  “as lab chief of Insel Riems­a secret Nazi biological warfare laboratory on a crescent-shaped island in the Baltic Sea­Traub worked for Adolph Hitler’s second-in-charge, SS Reichsfuhrer Heinrich Himmler, on live germ trials,” states “Lab 257.

The mission was to develop biological warfare to be directed against animals in the Soviet Union. This included infecting cattle and reindeer with foot-and-mouth disease.

“Ironically, Traub spent the prewar period of his scientific career on a fellowship at the Rockefeller Institute in Princeton, New Jersey, perfecting his skills in viruses and bacteria under the tutelage of American experts before returning to Nazi Germany on the eve of war,” says “Lab 257.”  While in the U.S. in the 1930s, too, relates the book, Traub was a member of the Amerika-Deutscher Volksbund which was involved in pro-Nazi rallies held weekly in Yaphank on Long Island.

With the end of the war, Traub came back to the United States under Project Paperclip, a U.S. program under which Nazi scientists, such as Wernher von Braun, were brought to America.

“Traub’s detailed explanation of the secret operation on Insel Riems” given to officials at Fort Detrick in Maryland, the Army’s biological warfare headquarters, and to the CIA, “laid the groundwater for Fort Detrick’s offshore germ warfare animal disease lab on Plum Island,” says “Lab 257.” “Traub was a founding father.” And Plum Island’s purpose, says the book, became what Insel Riems had been: to develop biological warfare to be directed against animals in the Soviet Union­now that the Cold War and conflict between the U.S. and the Soviet Union had begun.

The Long Island daily newspaper Newsday earlier documented this biological warfare mission of Plum Island. In a lead story on November 21, 1993, Newsday investigative reporter John McDonald wrote: “A 1950s military plan to cripple the Soviet economy by killing horses, cattle and swine called for making biological warfare weapons out of exotic animal diseases at a Plum Island laboratory, now-declassified Army records reveal.” A facsimile of one of the records, dated 1951, covered the front page of that issue of Newsday.

The article went on: “Documents and interviews disclose for the first time what officials have denied for years: that the mysterious and closely guarded animal lab off the East End of Long Island was originally designed to conduct top-secret research into replicating dangerous viruses that could be used to destroy enemy livestock.”

“Lab 257” has many pages about this based on documents including many that Carroll found in the National Archives.

The book also tells of why suddenly the Army transferred Plum Island to the Department of Agriculture in 1954­the U.S. military became concerned about having to feed millions of people in the Soviet Union if it destroyed their food animals.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff “found that a war with the U.S.S.R. would best be fought with conventional and nuclear means, and biological warfare against humans­not against food animals,” says “Lab 257.” “Destroying the food supply meant having to feed millions of starving Russians after winning a war”

Still, “Lab 257” questions whether there ever was a clean break.

Officials at the Plum Island Animal Disease Center have, however, insisted over the years that the center’s function is to conduct research into foreign animal diseases not found in the U.S.­especially foot-and-mouth disease­and the only biological warfare research done is of a “defensive” kind.

“Lab 257” also maintains that there is a link between the Plum Island center and the emergence of Lyme disease. It “suddenly surfaced” 10 miles from Plum Island “in Old Lyme, Connecticut in 1975.” Carroll cites years of experimentation with ticks on Plum Island and the possibility of an accidental or purposeful release.

“The tick is the perfect germ vector,” says “Lab 257,” “which is why it has long been fancied as a germ weapon by early biowarriors from Nazi Germany and the Empire of Japan to the Soviet Union and the United States.”

“A source who worked on Plum Island in the 1950s,” the book states, “recalls that animal handlers and a scientist released ticks outdoors on the island. ‘They called him the Nazi scientist, when they came in, in 1951 ­they were inoculating these ticks.” “Lab 257” goes on: “Dr. Traub’s World War II handiwork consisted of aerial virus sprays developed on Insel Riems and tested over occupied Russia, and of field work for Heinrich Himmler in Turkey. Indeed, his colleagues conducted bug trials by dropping live beetles from planes. An outdoor tick trial would have been de riguer for Erich Traub.”

Karl Grossman, professor of journalism at the State University of New York/College of New York, is the author of the book, The Wrong Stuff: The Space’s Program’s Nuclear Threat to Our Planet. Grossman is an associate of the media watch group Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR). He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion.

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What’s behind the deadly Gaza protests

TEL AVIV, Israel — Ongoing protests at the border between Gaza and Israel, now in their sixth week, are growing increasingly violent, as Palestinian demonstrators have reportedly begun using firebombs, burning tires and wire cutters to breach the barbed-wire border fence. Protesters who breached the barricade on April 27 attempted to cross into Israel, only to be repelled by Israeli soldiers, who fired at them with rubber bullets and live ammunition, killing three and injuring many others.

Holding Hamas accountable for breaching the fence, Israel’s Air Force struck on Friday evening several targets inside Gaza associated with Hamas, the Islamist-fundamentalist organization that governs the Gaza Strip.

The protests have been the most violent since the Israel-Gaza conflict in 2014. Since they began on March 30, more than 40 demonstrators have been killed and more than 5,500 have been injured, according to the United Nations. International organizations have criticized Israel for using live ammunition against the demonstrators. Several high-profile incidents have sparked international outrage, including the deaths of two journalists and a 15-year-old last Friday. Israel has said that its response has been proportionate and that it has a right to defend its borders from infiltrators.

Slideshow: Gaza’s bloody uprising by Fabio Bucciarelli for Yahoo News >>>

Additional protests are scheduled in upcoming weeks, and organizers have promised to continue the escalation. The protests began and will end on days that memorialize formative events in the history of Palestinian nationalism. They started on March 30, a day known as Land Day, which commemorates the anniversary of Palestinian demonstrations against an Israeli plan to confiscate land in northern Israel in 1976. And they will end on May 15, which is the start of Ramadan and the date Palestinians call Nakba Day. Nakba, an Arabic word meaning catastrophe, is the name Palestinians have given to the events of 1948, when the State of Israel was created and hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were expelled from or fled from it.

That the protests — which have been dubbed the “Great Return March” — will end on Nakba Day is especially symbolic: The Great Return March takes its name from the “right of return,” the right Palestinians claim for refugees and their descendants to resettle in Israel. The protests have been billed as a way for Palestinians to assert the right of refugees to return to Israel by breaching the security barrier that encloses Gaza. Whether Palestinians have a “right of return” is one of the central issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and one of the most fraught. While Palestinians demand that all Palestinian refugees have a right to return to Israel, Israel argues that mass immigration of Palestinians into Israel would upset Israel’s Jewish demographic majority and erase its claim to being a Jewish state.

The protests have arisen against the background of a massive humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip. Since 2007, Gaza has been under an economic blockade by Israel and Egypt, and conditions in the coastal enclave have become so desperate that the United Nations has predicted that Gaza will be uninhabitable by 2020. Unemployment is at more than 40 percent, infrastructure destroyed during the 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict still has not been rebuilt, water supplies have been polluted with waste, electricity is limited to several hours a day and the movement of goods and people is severely restricted.

One complication is the rivalry between Hamas and Fatah, the Palestinian political party that controls the Palestinian National Authority in the West Bank. Hamas came to power in Gaza in 2007, after it drove Fatah out in a civil war. While there have been various attempts at a Fatah-Hamas reconciliation over the years, all have failed, including Egyptian-led talks in October 2017. In the past year, Fatah has tried to gain leverage over Hamas by taking actions that have further exacerbated living conditions in Gaza, such as cutting the supply of electricity to Gaza and withholding salaries to civil servants in Gaza.

U.S. policy also plays a role. This year, May 15 will coincide not only with the 70th anniversary of the Nakba, but also with the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem. Ismail Haniyeh, a leader of Hamas, has said: “The Palestinian people will demonstrate throughout Ramadan to deal with the many challenges facing us, and first of all the peace plan promoted by U.S. President Donald Trump, called the ‘Deal of the Century.’” And another leader, Yahya Sinwar, has promised that Palestinians would “breach the borders and pray at Al-Aqsa,” a site in Jerusalem that is one of the holiest in Islam. If the protests intensify, the breach of the security fence in April may presage even greater violence ahead.


Ben Manson is a freelance journalist based in Tel Aviv.


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Photo: Watch this killer caterpillar flaunt its cute deadly tufts

Our photo of the day includes a video of this lethal larvae in the Amazon rainforest.

It’s kind of funny that caterpillars are so cute and charming; images of them adorn baby clothes and star in children’s books … yet some of them are downright deadly!

Exhibit A (above): Lonomia obliqua AKA the giant silkworm moth.

In this photo taken by Andreas Kay in the Amazon rainforest of Ecuador, we see a classic example of this spiny creature, a species of Saturniid moth from South America. Kay explains that the moth is most famous for its larval form because of the caterpillar’s defense mechanism: Articulating bristles that inject a potentially deadly venom.

Apparently, the venom really does kill people. Yikes. Kay adds, “Exposure to the caterpillar’s fur-like spines will lead to an immediate skin irritation characterized by a grid-like hemorrhagic papular eruption with severe radiating pain. The caterpillar is one bad insect you don’t want to mess with!”

And you can see it in action below. (Now … what’s the word for fear of caterpillars?)

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The UN Is Behind the Deadly 5G Rollout In America

From Tumors to Tyrann. 5G technology is beneficial but not when it involves the vulnerable brain and that is what the social planners are moving towards. Brain cancer rates are going to skyrocket. Here is the story.

Sometimes we seem to live in a universe of sychronicity. On the very day, when I interviewed Virginia Farver, on The Common Sense Show, Natural News published a report about a large Italian study which conclusively proves the line between cell towers and cell phone usage and brain cancer. Before I report on the stunning revelations made by Virginia Farver, let’s explore the revelations of this landmark Italian study as reported on Natural News:

The world’s biggest animal study of cell tower radiation, which was carried out by the Ramazzini Institute in Italy, has revealed the dangers of exposure to environmental levels of cell tower radiation. In the study, researchers exposed 2,448 rats to 1.8 GHz GSM radiofrequency radiation in amounts that mimicked those that cell tower antennas give off for 19 hours a day. They found that the female rats had a higher chance of developing malignant brain tumors, while all rats had a higher chance of precancerous conditions and Schwann cell hyperplasia.

This study went the extra mile, allowing the rats to live until their natural death. Four fifths of human cancers occur after people have turned 60, so following the animals over an extended period enabled them to catch late-developing tumors.

The researchers say that their findings are enough to call on the International Agency for Research on Cancer to take another look at the carcinogenicity of radiofrequency radiation on humans.

For decades, the corporate-influenced media has characterized any links between cell towers and cancer as being a “conspiracy theory.”

Until  I met activist Virginia Farver, I thought the dangers of  cell phone use was an accidental overreach motivated by corporate profits. I no longer think that. This is deadly and deliberate.

Farver became involved in this field after her son died from cell phone use, and yes one of the doctors treating Farvers’ son made that very diagnosis. Farver learned that where her son was attending graduate school on the campus San Diego State University, the univerity had an unusual spike in a cancer cluster located on the campus after the university had entered into a devil’s deal by installing  the brain cancer causing First Net. First Net, as its called is predicated on the implementation of 5G. Farver’ attempts to bring this to the attention of the main stream media has largely fallen on deaf ears.

 FirstNet and AT&T released a plan for the proposed deployment of the nationwide public-safety broadband network (NPSBN) in all states, triggering multiple timelines associated with governors’ decisions whether to accept the plan or pursue the “opt-out” alternative, which requires the state to build the LTE radio access network (RAN) within its borders.

Virginia Farver was able to attract the attention of the Colorado State Attorney General, Cynthia Coffman and actually had a face-to-face meetingwith the AG. Amazingly, the person charged with the responsibility of protecting Colorado’s citizens from life-threatening overreach by the corporations, was asleep at the wheel as she told Farver that she had no idea what 5G and First Net were all about. This stunning ignorance, which should have constituted a malfeasance of duty allegation, took a dramatic turn for the worse. The gross ignorance of this public official turned into complicity as Coffman is now an advocate for this system and the safety of the citizens be damned.

Meet the public official, Cynthia Coffman,  who would bring you and your children life-threatening 5G and First Net. Your tax dollars at work.

Telecom executives such as the Qualcomm family can longer claim ignorant bliss and neither can Verizon and AT&T with regard to the deadly health effects.

The tech website Axios reported that it had obtained documents revealing that national security officials has convinced the Trump administration about building and operating a national 5G wireless network. This will include building cellphone towers every 1,000 feet. We will be bathed in radiation and combined with the now omnipresent smart meters, there is nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.

According to sources close to the Qualcomm family, their house is sheathed in radiation protective material to ward off the effects of 5G. Are you protected in the same manner?

John Stolz is a major player in this endeavor. I want to introduce you to his background, and you will begin to see why I appear to be so paranoid with regard to the UN’s bad intentions for the United States. There are two aspects of Stolz’ that needs to be exposed. First is his corporate biography which now has been expunged from the Internet, but Virginia Farver saved it and shared it with me. And second, Stolz wrote a piece for the United Nations that constitutes a smoking gun that the UN is ultimately behind 5G and all the bad things that come with it.

As the reader will see, Stolz is a major player in the new First Net and the accompanying deadly 5G network. However, the following makes is clear the UN is behind this lethal threat.

Excerpts From Stolz Corporate Biography

Robert Stolz founded Stolz Telecom in 2006 and has over 19 years of industry experience.  Prior to founding Stolz Telecom he held positions as Electronics Technician for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Oklahoma City Division; Communication Systems Technician for the City of Norman, Oklahoma; Team Lead Technician (Oklahoma/Arkansas/North Texas) for PageNet/Arch Wireless; and Network Administrator for the United Nations Command/Combined Forces Command/US Forces Korea (UNC/CFC/USFK) Defense Red Switch Network (DRSN), South Korea.

Mr. Stolz earned his Associates in Applied Science in General Engineering Technology from Oklahoma State University.  He also has specialized training from the US Army, National Security Agency (NSA), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).  He is also certified Emergency Number Professional (ENP) by the National Emergency Number Association (NENA).

Mr. Stolz previously served as the Federal Representative on the Oklahoma Statewide Communications Interoperability Plan (SCIP) Technical Committee, and the Central Oklahoma Urban Area Security Initiative (COUASI) Technical Subcommittee.

Mr. Stolz is a member of the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International and the National Emergency Number Association.  He is currently the Corporate Committee Advisory Member (CCAM) for hte Oklahoma Chapter of APCO International.

The APCO International association is very telling.

From APCO:

APCO International is the world’s oldest and largest organization of public safety communications professionals and supports the largest U.S. membership base of any public safety association. It serves the needs of public safety communications practitioners worldwide – and the welfare of the general public as a whole – by providing complete expertise, professional development, technical assistance, advocacy and outreach.

You have just met the command and control of the new and deadly 5G Network. Combine this with the document that Virginia Farver sent to me which is authored by John Stoltz, implicates the UN and spells out a dark future for the United States.

United Nations Directive 001, The Start of The New World Order,

In our Calendar Year of 4 July, 2025.



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‘Whole world turned red’: Groom recalls deadly Saudi airstrike on Yemeni wedding

Yahya Jaafar said that he was with young guests at his wedding when “the missile came and targeted the room and the rest of the house.” He recalled that he “got thrown out of the building by the power of the explosion,” while “the whole world turned red.”

The man survived the blast, saying: “Thank God, I’m alright. But I don’t hear well because of that.” But most of his guests weren’t that lucky, as “many young people got killed and many wounded,” becoming crippled for life.

“There were some victims who were torn in half,” while splinters injured many others “in belly, head, neck, hands or legs,” the groom recalled. The airstrike caused a complete destruction of the building where the wedding took place, he added.

The Saudi-led airstrike on April 22 left between 20 and 50 people killed, according to various reports, with many women and children among the victims. “My cousin has died and other relatives got injured. I can’t even count how many friends of mine are wounded,” Jaafar said, adding that there was no justification for a missile strike on a peaceful ceremony.

“This was without reason and there was no meeting of the Houthis and this was an indiscriminate bombing,” the groom said. The actions of the Saudi-led coalition were “an act of barbaric aggression,” he added.

Ruptly also visited the wounded in hospital, with one of them saying that it was a horrific site after the bombardment, as the people “were torn to pieces. There were corpses without heads or hands – or even cut in half.”

After the attack, there were some who had to gather body parts scattered around and match them to the corpses placed on blankets, he added. The man said that “the majority of the guests died of their wounds lying on the ground,” while they were waiting for medical assistance.

Saudi jets reportedly kept flying over the site of the bombing for some time to prevent ambulances from accessing those in need. A young boy, who was also affected by the blast, said that he “was looking at people dancing” when the missile hit and he was injured.

“Everything was in smoke and fire. I tried to get up several times, but I couldn’t walk. I just stayed lying until medics came and took me to an emergency car,” he recalled. Another injured guest said: “I’ve lost my foot – the same for my brother. My other brother died because of the bombing.”

He also insisted that there was no need for the coalition to target the wedding, saying: “We didn‘t have anything there. No weapons. Nothing.”

The Saudi Arabian military said that they took reports of an airstrike on the wedding “very seriously” and promised to investigate the incident. However, there has been no news on the promised probe from Riyadh since the statement was made.

Saudi Arabia and its allies intervened in Yemen in March 2015 in order to fight the Houthi rebels and help re-instate ousted President Mansour Hadi to power. Since then more than 5,500 civilians have been killed and over 9,000 injured as of the end of 2017, according to the UN.

The majority of civilian casualties came from airstrikes, with the Saudi-led coalition being blamed by international human rights groups for indiscriminate bombings in Yemen. An airstrike on a Yemeni wedding ceremony claimed 130 lives in September 2015, one of the deadliest single attacks in the conflict so far.

Over a hundred people were killed last year as a funeral came under fire, with market places and other civilian infrastructure also targeted by Saudi-led coalition warplanes. After three years of fighting, Yemen is facing a massive humanitarian crisis. More than 22.2 million people in the country are in need of assistance, with 60 percent of the population lacking food and more than half of Yemeni’s left without basic medical services, according to the UN.

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95% of All People Are Breathing Poisonous Deadly Air- How Long Can You Hold Your Breath?

Recent studies tell us that 95% of the world is breathing poisonous deadly air. Is this by design? Is this a depopulation event, or just bad planning. How does this impact you? Here is what you need to know.


For more stories like these, visit The Common Sense Show

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Passengers On Deadly Southwest Flight Receive $5,000 Checks

At least some passengers aboard a deadly Southwest Airlines flight have received $5,000 checks with “sincere apologies” from the carrier.

The airline issued the payments after a Tuesday flight from New York City to Dallas was rocked by an engine explosion in midair, killing one passenger. The crippled jet made an emergency landing in Philadelphia. 

In a letter accompanying the checks, Southwest said the payment was a goodwill gesture for the ordeal, CNN reported.

“We value you as our customer and hope you will allow us another opportunity to restore your confidence in Southwest as the airline you can count on for your travel needs,” the letter said, according to recipient Kamau Siwatu. “In this spirit, we are sending you a check in the amount of $5,000 to cover any of your immediate financial needs.”

Siwatu was among three aboard the flight to confirm receiving the letter. They also got a $1,000 voucher for travel on Southwest.

The company verified the report, telling HuffPost in an email on Friday: “Ours is a company and culture built on relationships. Many of the Customers on that flight have flown with us before. We can confirm the communication and gesture are authentic and heartfelt.” The airline declined further comment.

Aviation attorneys told USA Today on Thursday that passengers could likely collect millions of dollars in legal damages from Southwest.

Metal fatigue on a fan blade that snapped in the engine is suspected to be the culprit. Broken parts smashed into the fuselage, breaking a window, and a passenger who was partially sucked through the opening died from blunt impact.

Southwest had previously balked at the engine manufacturer’s recommendation for quicker inspections of the fan blades, The Associated Press reported.

This article has been updated to include comment from Southwest.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

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Being Single Is More Deadly Than Obesity, Says Study

By  Amanda Froelich Truth Theory

It might feel good to spend time alone, or it may not. What is clear is that long periods of social isolation is bad for one’s health, and is even more likely to kill them than obesity.

According to a new review of 218 studies that looked into the effects of loneliness and social isolation, those with bad social connections are 50 percent more likely to die prematurely than those with good social connections. Obesity, on the other hand, increases a person’s risk of death by just 30 percent

Said Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, lead author and professor at Brigham Young University: “Being connected to others socially is widely considered a fundamental human need, crucial to both well-being and survival.”

“Extreme examples show infants in custodial care who lack human contact fail to thrive and often die, and indeed, social isolation or solitary confinement has been used as a form of punishment,” she continued. “Yet an increasing portion of the US population now experiences isolation regularly.”

As a result of these findings, experts are warning that loneliness should be considered a public health risk. They add that we, as a society, are experiencing a “loneliness” epidemic.”

This isn’t the first data suggesting social isolation can adversely affect one’s health. A survey by Granset, the over-50s social networking site, concluded that nearly 75 percent of the elderly in the UK are lonely. Furthermore, most have never spoken to someone about their feelings.

Said Holt-Lunstad: “There is robust evidence that social isolation and loneliness significantly increase risk for premature mortality, and the magnitude of the risk exceeds that of many leading health indicators.”

“With an increasing aging population, the effect on public health is only anticipated to increase,” added Holt-Lunstad. “Indeed, many nations around the world now suggest we are facing a ‘loneliness epidemic.’ The challenge we face now is what can be done about it.”

The professor urges greater priority to be placed on research and developing resources to tackle loneliness. For example, children should be taught social skills to combat loneliness or voice their emotions in schools.

What are your thoughts? Please comment below and share this news!

Source: The New York Post

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WATCH: Cops Forget Tasers, Use Deadly Force Instead, Shoot Mentally Ill Student Holding a Pipe


Chicago, IL — Dramatic body camera footage was released late Wednesday night of an officer-involved shooting of University of Chicago student. The student was in an apparent diminished mental state and was holding a metal pipe when the University Police Officer opened fire.

According to authorities, police were responding to a disturbance call of the 21-year-old college student, identified as Charles Thomas, breaking windows with the pipe.

As the Chicago Tribune reports, three U. of C. police officers responding to a call of a burglary in the 5300 block of South Kimbark Avenue encountered a man — later identified as Thomas — breaking car and apartment windows with a long metal pipe, university officials said in an email to students.

According to police Thomas lives in the neighborhood in which he was shot.

When police arrived on the scene, Thomas began walking toward the officer with the pipe in his hand, university President Robert Zimmer and Provost Daniel Diermeier explained in an email.

“Sir, I’m going to need you to drop that weapon. Drop that weapon,” the officer is heard saying on a police video supplied by the university. “Don’t come at me! Don’t come at me!”


However, Thomas — clearly out of his mind at the time — continued to advance toward the officer. As the body camera shows, the officer is employing what is known as a “tactical retreat” which is a practice designed to put space between the officer and the suspect in order to give the suspect time to respond to commands.

As the officer backed up, however, Thomas sped up and that’s with a single shot was fired — severely wounding the student.

Although the University is not commenting on Thomas’ mental state at the time of the shooting, it is clear from the video that he was not in his right mind. The responding officers agreed.

In the video, an officer can be heard saying, “Twenty-one, mental. He’s a mental.”

According to police, this officer was trained in crisis intervention and carried out his training exactly how he was supposed to.

As the Tribune pointed out, the university also confirmed the officer, who has been on the force for two years, fired once, which is consistent with his training to shoot to end the threat. The officer involved has had 40 hours of crisis intervention training and eight hours of mental health first aid training.

“This is a difficult incident for our community, and our concern is with all of the individuals involved and their families,” Zimmer and Diermeier said in the email issued by the university. “Maintaining our community’s safety, security and well-being is of paramount importance. Support services and resources for students will be provided by the college and Campus and Student Life.”

According to university spokeswoman Marielle Sainvilus, this is the first shooting involving a U. of C. police officer in the agency’s entire four-decade history.

After he was shot, Thomas was rushed to a nearby hospital in critical condition. He is now facing criminal charges in connection with the shooting, including felony aggravated assault of a peace officer and two counts of felony criminal damage to property, according to Chicago police. He also faces multiple misdemeanor counts of property damage.

Although the university is claiming that the officers did everything by the book, the video shows that police likely had other options.

Three officers had Thomas surrounded, why didn’t any of them attempt to take him out from behind using non-lethal force? Thomas walked right past two officers before the third fired his gun, why didn’t either of them deploy a taser, or pepper spray, or a baton?

What do you think, was the officer justified in shooting the 21-year-old student? Let us know in the comments below.

Body camera:

Dash camera:

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