What Is The Pesticide Epidemic In Rachel Carson's Silent Spring

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Silent Spring, written by Rachel Carson, is a masterful work that provides insight into Carson’s view of the pesticide epidemic. I chose to read this book based on the numerous reviews that highly praised the premise of the work and the eloquent use of facts to further her point. In addition to this, this book proved to be of utility to me as I am also using the book for an Advanced Placement English project. Though the utility may have had a little more impact on my decision, I still whole-heartedly believe that this work is a masterpiece. Carson drives home her point that pesticides may help for a short while, but in the end all they do is cause sickness and even death to those who use them. Carson begins her scientific novel in a rather…show more content…
She terms it "Needless Havoc" and describes the ineffectiveness of the massive spraying operations at killing the target insects, and the horrific record of massive “accidental” killing of non-targeted animals. As an example, in the Midwest massive spraying occurred, killing huge numbers of wildlife. She also notes that there is very little funding for natural control of insects. Carson then devotes her attention to the fact that birds are killed with any spray operation since a staple in their diet are insects. She references the fight against Dutch Elm Disease (DED) with DDT. Birds were killed in massive numbers and didn’t stop DED for any significant time. Alternative, safer, solutions would have been both simpler and cheaper. She then focuses on the mass killing of salmon when officials wanted to kill the spruce budworm. As a result, all river life was affected. Even the few salmon that weren’t killed were affected since their food supply was shortened. Alternative measures would have controlled the spruce budworm in a safer way. Natural parasites or diseases of the insect could have been introduced. The campaign against the gypsy moth with “crop dusting” of insecticides is yet another sad example of human prowess. They even dusted cities, even though the insect is a forest dweller. People were sprayed as they went about their lives ignorant of what was being done to them. Also, dairy and vegetable farms

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