I was hoping for this to be an example of radiation quackery (like Radithor), then realized the 1950s was entirely the wrong era for that. Now I think it was probably to make fun of the scientifically illiterate "lol oh no radiation" comments on youtube? It's not exactly like they dunked her head in aqueous plutonium, guys.
Actually, let me explain my reaction to this video.
I really didn't see anything there that was all that shocking: the original writers of this ad probably wanted to impress their audience with some sort of scientific-sounding measurements and chose radiation. Since you don't need that much radiation for it to register on geiger counters, it's pretty unlikely that it would have adversely affected their models' health. Now, I think a scientifically literate audience should probably understand that, or at least take a second and read up on it before going "lol oh no radiation."
I realize that the phrase "scientifically illiterate" came across poorly. Sorry about that! But whatever phrase you choose to use, it's applicable also to some other groups this site makes fun of, like proponents of Intelligent Design or climate change denialists. I'm not here to tell you that if you ridicule ID or climate change denial, you should also ridicule ignorance of physics; just explaining my point of view.
You'd probably tell me that ID and climate change denial are part of a larger anti-intellectual religious movement that is having a real effect on people, and that's why it's important to make fun of those beliefs. Couldn't agree more. But the same is true of unreasonable fear of nuclear power. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to live in a world without nuclear power, but I'd prefer to live in a world where less of our power comes from burning fossil fuels before that, and, especially after Fukushima, that's not where we seem to be heading: Germany, for example, is phasing out nuclear plants because of "lol oh no radiation." I don't feel strongly enough to be all activist about it, but I do wish people would be a bit more educated about the matter, in the same way that you probably feel they could be a bit more educated about evolution.
By the way, the Radithor thing was not meant as some sort of intellectual browbeating; I only knew about it through Fallout 3, which is a mundane enough way to learn about things.
Despite the fuck ups, I believe in the use of Nuclear Power. I just thought this was a good/funny video.
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