- Right to Sleep
- Catch of the Day
- Sexual Predator
- Vehicular Assault
- Debs on War
- Marco Responds
- Titanic Recovery
- Liquidation Logging
- Bomb Confronter
- Mendo/Kansas Sentencing
- Muslim Lives Matter
- Avoiding Cancer
THE BOONVILLE FROST FANS were being tested the other morning at the south end of Boonville, seemingly just to see if they were working. Our neighbors at the south end of Boonville didn't crank them up full decibel-blast, but they were on loud enough to prompt a visitor to exclaim, “Mother of God! What's that? It’s flying too low!”
AS SOME of you know, we're suing Mendocino County to compel the County to enforce its own noise ordnance. The County, wine supine from the Superior Court on down through the Supervisors, the jive-o County Counsel's office and our Better Living Through Chemicals Ag Department, has already made it known that its stance will be Right To Farm. This is a wholly irrational stance but not surprising given the serf-like devotion of local government to anything, including dope, that calls itself agriculture.
THE RIGHT TO FARM ordnance was originally intended to protect ag enterprise from newcomer-neighbors who complain about traditional barnyard din and odors, not racket the equivalent of combat helicopters on your roof between the hours of midnight and 8am. Real farms might get going with some low-intensity noise at daybreak — roosters, say, or tractors — but they never, ever emit the equivalent of a Huey perpetually landing on your roof for eight straight hours.
LOOK AT the Right To Farm ordnance this way: Let's say Farmer Jones suddenly introduced milking machines accompanied by fire sirens set at 90 decibels timed to go off when the temp gets down to freeze level. When the nabes complained about the sirens, the farmer argued that his cows produced better at ear-shattering levels. But as Anderson Valley wine magnate Ted Bennett, with a positively regal insouciance put it at a community meeting last year, “My grapes are more important than your sleep.” That remark also tacitly assumes that his majesty concedes that frost fans are a major neighborhood nuisance.
NO WAY can Right To Farm embrace a huge NEW mechanical nuisance timed to go off from midnight to daylight. Right To Farm was clearly enacted to protect existing and traditional ag enterprise from the complaints of new people who move into areas that happen to lie adjacent to or in the immediate vicinity of an existing farm or even a vineyard, almost all of the latter introduced to the Anderson Valley over the past thirty years.
WE GOT this unholy din on twenty nights last spring. No sleep midnight to daybreak. One or two mornings, maybe we could all live with it, but we think the sleep of as many as a thousand residents of The Valley, including at least one man dying of cancer, was destroyed for TWENTY nights. That kind of prolonged nuisance is intolerable.
WE'RE SURPRISED that local property owners, unrelated to the wine and grape industry, don't seem as angry about the frost fans as we are. These things seriously knock down property values. Property owners will have to explain to potential buyers who ask about the clearly visible monstrosities nearby, “Well, I guess I should tell you that every spring you'll suddenly sit bolt upright in your rural bower and stay in the upright position from midnight until 8am. You'll learn to live with them from the end of March through April.”
CATCH OF THE DAY, Feb 18, 2015
JESSICA BENTEL, Laytonville. DUI, vandalism.
BALDOMERO BERNABE, Ukiah. Petty theft, probation revocation.
KENNETH ELLER, McKinleyville/Ukiah. DUI with injury.
HEATHER FRANCO, Willits. Failure to appear.
JUAN GONZALEZ, Covelo. Possession of meth.
RAMIRO GONZALEZ, Hopland. Criminal threats of death or great bodily injury.
SCOTT HEIDINGER, Hopland. Drunk in public. (Frequent flyer.)
ROBERT JAMES, Ukiah. Probation revocation.
JOHN KOSKINEN, Fort Bragg. Possession of meth, possession of drug paraphernalia, receipt of stolen property, probation revocation.
ERIC KOTILA, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.
ERIC LINCOLN, Covelo. Drunk in public, probation revocation.
TYRONE OGDEN, Covelo. Failure to appear, probation revocation.
ARLEEN WILLIAMS, Ukiah. Drunk in public, probation revocation.
JURY TRIAL RESULT (Feb. 17, 2015): After hearing evidence for two weeks on a petition filed by the District Attorney to keep a convicted child molester in custody as a sexually violent predator, a jury returned from deliberations this afternoon with its verdict that the prosecution had sustained its burden. Deputy DA Shannon Cox had marshaled the People's evidence and argued to the jury last week that Scott Daniel Flint, 56, of Willits, has prior violent sexual felonies on his record and has a mental defect that makes it likely he will re-offend if released. Flint was separately convicted in 1988, 1992, and 1997 of lewd and lascivious acts with children under the age of 14, convictions that involved four separate victims. When a jury finds a defendant to be a Sexually Violent Predator, the person is committed to Atascadero State Hospital for sex offender treatment for an indeterminate term.
(DA Press Release)
ON THURSDAY, February 12, 2015 at approximately 9:07 PM, Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to the 400 block of Ocean View Drive in Point Arena regarding an assault with a vehicle. Sheriff’s Deputies arrived at the location and contacted an adult 37 year old female who advised that she and her 10-year-old daughter were walking home when the adult female engaged in an argument with Patrease Fields, 25, of Point Arena about an outstanding debt. The argument escalated and the adult female and Fields began to physically fight. During the fight, Fields slapped the 10-year-old daughter in the face when she attempted to break up the fight. The adult female and her daughter left the scene walking toward their residence. As the adult female and her daughter were walking across their yard, Fields reportedly drove a pickup truck across the lawn toward them. The adult female pushed her daughter out of the way of the oncoming vehicle and was then struck by the front of the vehicle. The vehicle drove over the adult female’s right leg, causing a possible moderate injury, and then continued across the neighboring residence’s lawn. Sheriff’s Deputies contacted Fields and she was subsequently placed under arrest for Assault with a Deadly Weapon, Child Endangermen, and for a misdemeanor warrant for her arrest. Fields was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where she was to be held in lieu of $32,500 bail.
MARCO McCLEAN WRITES:
[KZYX Loyalist] Tim Gregory wrote: “…cutting off the head, to save the body is not good prognosis to me. … the ‘starve-the-budget' tactic is very Republican to me. sandbagging, sabotage…whatever you want to call it, it's neither loving nor helpful.”
Marco here. Tim, how many times do I have to say this?: It's the managers who have been starving the budget since the beginning.
What part of — "In 2014 KZYX's managers were paid over $180,000. That's 3,600 $50 yearly memberships, when you only have 2,300 members. It's as if the managers are taking the money out of all the pledge envelopes and stuffing it in their own pockets, and then some..." — do you not grasp? Maybe I confused you when I wrote in an earlier post of the importance of cutting the fat at the top; maybe I should have said removing a parasite from the middle, a parasite that's consuming two-thirds of the station's ingested nutrients... No, no, then you'd hear cutting out the heart to spite the ankles.
And I'm not 'monkeywrenching' by saying these things. I'm shining a light in a dark, um, intestine. KZYX's managers are failing the station by not maintaining crucial equipment - what they, or rather a competent engineer, should be there for in the first place - and they're failing the station by big spending on nonessential things, like the new gazillion-dollar computerized mixing board to show off to non-tech-savvy visitors and investors, things that don't improve the signal nor make anyone's show better but just squat there like a giant toad and go beep.
Microphones, mixer, STL, transmitter and antenna equals radio station. You have to cover what's important first.
Most of all they're failing the station by eating the store. You and others write about John Sakowitz as though he has unconscionably wrecked the station's finances by costing it $800 (that's right, eight hundred dollars) in paperwork by bringing up the license issue. $800 is less than 1% of what just John Coate and Mary Aigner are paid. Here: $100,000 divided by 240 work days a year means John Coate and Mary Aigner just breathing office air and playing Windows solitaire suck $800 out of the station every two days.
In other news, next month I'll be setting up the Helen Schoeni Theater to be able to do live radio on KNYO from the stage, for when they do readings and locally produced work, in between regular season offerings. Staged radio drama and concerts are also possible. I just talked with Felicia about it yesterday, and that's happening. I asked Bob Young about it last month; he said, "Great! Go for it!" That's what real managers do when you bring a good idea. They say, "Great!" and they make the resources available, and you do it, and then you think of something else to try and you try that, and you go forward and things get better and better. And if the owners and/or managers are getting paid, you should be getting paid; otherwise you're hurting all workers everywhere. If the owners and/or managers are getting paid to have a nice life and save up for retirement and the workers are all "volunteering", there are several historical words for that kind of system. I'm sure you can think of some.
At KZYX it goes rather like this: you prostrate yourself before the managers and submit your idea or project or show and they dick you around for years and treat you like a bug. And then they appoint someone naive and controllable to produce a half-assed version of your idea, or they buy a safe dull product — with other people's money — that looks similar to them, that's produced elsewhere, and if it works they claim credit and if it doesn't they say they gamely tried it but it's a lousy idea and it won't work and nobody's ever gonna do that again. The same thing with the program advisory committee which has been required by the board for, what, eight years now? And Mary [Aigner] and John [Coate] are still petulantly stonewalling it after sabotaging it, so that's no good. How is any of that loving or helpful? But you've got your somnambulistic gig, Tim, so of course the status quo's fine with you.
All I said was, wait to pledge until you see the change you want. Members and the general public have no other way to influence the board; they have no other input. And when new boardmembers are voted in they'll have a little more incentive to be responsive in future and not to backslide. And if better boardmembers aren't voted in, the station will fail, because the CPB grant is a lot less money this year, and the managers will not accept a cut in pay, because they feel entitled to what they're used to, and so the organism will become even greater than two-thirds parasitical dysfunctional oppressive management by weight and, I dunno; is there anything in nature or artifice that can operate on those terms and thrive?
Oh, p.s. I recovered the file in the backup recorder that was running when candidate for a seat on KZYX's board Doug McKenty was on my show two weeks ago (2015-02-06). We talked for about 20 minutes and then the power to the entire coast, including our broadcast booth and our transmitter and the internet link between them, shut off because of the storm. We had just begun to get rolling, too; I expected we would talk for an hour or more. (The sound at the end of the recording is a pop or two and then a fading rising squeeeee of oscillation like when Doctor Memory overloads at the end of We're All Bozos On This Bus by Firesign Theater. That's the diminishing plus and minus power rails of the mixing board squeezing the last pulse down to zero, like when you hold a ruler down on the edge of a table and twang it, but for electricity and much faster.)
Anyway I put the recording on my MediaFire page for you to hear if you want to. Forgive my intermittent coughing. It's taking awhile to shake that.
Here's the link:
COAST TIMBER WATCHER SUE MILLER sent the following comment concerning Mendocino Redwood Company’s Railroad Gulch timber harvest plan to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection:
(Intro: “I feel this forestry problem is heating up. There were 60 public comments not only pointing out all the problems with the Railroad Gulch plan but they apply directly to all of MRCs plans in Mendocino County. MRC proposes to log a whopping 9219 acres in 2015.”
* * *
To: Leslie Markham Cal Fire
February 17, 2015
From: Susan Miller, Mendocino
Dear Ms. Markham,
Please add the attached comments for THP 1-14-080 MEN to the previous comments I submitted for this THP. Please deny approval to this THP and the other MRC THPs in Mendocino County. MRC and you (by approving these plans) are out of compliance with State and Federal Laws and Regulations. This is proven and documented by Mr. Thomas Lippe in his comments to this THP. Your agency and you have the fiduciary duty to uphold forestry laws and regulations, not just to approve THPs without ascertaining if they do indeed comply with the laws. You are just taking MRC's word that they are complying with laws and stewarding the environment without adequate oversight on your part. Your agency is a THP approval mill. Because of your failure to recognize or admit MRC is not complying with State and Federal Laws, you are also breaking the law as Mr. Thomas Lippe has so well pointed out and documented.
Because of your lack of oversight, MRC has free rein to liquidate as much as they want as fast as they want. And they are doing exactly that. In the last 2 years MRC has been issuing more THPS per year that are bigger in size and call for more liquidation of trees that ever. In 2014, over 9200 acres are set to be liquidated in 13 THPs in Mendocino County. Most of these acres are in the same triangular shaped area between Albion, Comptche, Navarro, and west of Ukiah. This is too much adverse impact to these ecologically sensitive watersheds and ecosystems.
MRC is certified by the FSC thereby stating they are stewards of the forest. Among the management requirements for FSC certification is that MRC comply certain principals. The number 1 principal is that MRC comply with all applicable State and Federal laws. Mr. Lippe has documented that MRC is not compliant with the law so their certification should be removed. The number 6 principal is that MRC must maintain the integrity of the forest ecosystem and not create adverse environmental impacts in it, and the number 9 principal is that MRC must maintain a high conservation value of the forest. Sadly, MRC is creating adverse cumulative environmental impacts, cutting 65% of tree volume, destroying the mix of species and moving to even age management of a thin crop of young redwood trees and starts.
You have just approved THP 1-14-114 MEN Tom Bell Flats and Albion River 710 acres with a 65% removal of all trees over 16” diameter. This is not legal either as you may note in the legal issues outlined by Mr. Lippe. Sixty-five percent tree removal makes it impossible to comply with State Law, Forest Practices Act, and the Interim NCCP Agreement with DFW.
Railroad Gulch Albion River THP of 758 acres calls for percentage of tree removal of 50%. This is untenable. The cumulative impacts of the past, including legacy damage from the turn of the century to the 1950s and 60s with caterpillar logging to the 70s and 80s to the 90s, and none of that counts because MRC is only considering cumulative environmental impacts for the last 10 years - since 2005! And they are not even doing that. I think everyone would agree cumulative impacts due to logging go back way more than 10 years. Where is the cumulative environmental impact report? What are the existing conditions of the whole watershed?
There is non compliance with the Forest Practices Act Sec 916.8 and 916.4 as the act requires that conditions of the waterways shall be properly described as they are now. But there is little to no information presented on the condition of the waterways. In addition, the NCCP Agreement with DFW and MRC calls for MRC to conduct their logging operations in such a way such that there is no significant damage to the environment, including damage to the waterways, aquatic wildlife, and terrestrial wildlife. This is impossible with 50 and 65 percent tree removal. There is supposed to be no new siltation introduced due to logging activities into the waterways. This plan cannot be done in these steep unstable conditions without introduction of silt into the streams and rivers.
MRC is required by the NCCP to return to uneven age management with diversity of species. These plans are the opposite of what is required by the NCCP. The logging operations are required to leave a sustainable forest ecosystem but the plan states it will take 130 years to grow back what was taken. MRC has no right to rob the future like that. MRC may own the land with the trees on it but it does not have the right to adversely impact the resources it does not own: the public commons. That's what the laws are for.
No one is checking if MRC is complying with the NCCP Agreement or what condition MRC is leaving the forest ecosystem after conducting their THPs. These large THPS (just in 2014 with 1393 acres Elk Creek, 1419 acres Navarro River, 979 acres Navarro River, 835 acres Navarro River, 763 acres Navarro River plus the 710 and 758 acres in Albion River) with devastating percentages of tree removal in steep and unstable conditions where there has already been adverse cumulative impacts for the last 100 years.
Have all the Native American sites been properly identified and surveyed? Have the local Native Americans in Albion and Mendocino County been consulted regarding preservation of historical sites as well as sustaining the ecosystem for future use and preservation of the culture of Native Americans?
MRC's rapid full bore pace of issuing huge THPs in the last 2 years and continuing through today is in response to orders from the corporate management to liquidate everything possible as soon as possible before anyone stops them. This rush to liquidate strains the State system's ability to inspect and permit, and enforce current laws. The State agencies responsible for review of THPs do not have enough staff or time to review them or do adequate field work. DFW told me they don't have time to properly conduct reviews because there are too many THPs being submitted.
There needs to be a moratorium on all MRC industrial logging in Mendocino County until AB1492 is fully implemented and all State and Federal Laws and regulations are fully complied with. A cumulative environmental impact assessment needs to be done before any further logging. These huge plans are taking practically all the merchantable trees, and will cause siltation into the waterways which now still support or could support Coho salmon runs.
MRC's public relations men say everything is fine and they are good stewards of their land and the ecosystem and they are not causing adverse environmental impacts to the ecosystem or climate or air quality or water quality or wildlife habitat or aquatic species habitat. Because they say it does not make it true. It is not true. This “hurry up and liquidate everything right now” industrial logging in sensitive ecosystems with the long history of legacy damage is the exact opposite action of what real forest stewards would do.
There is no cumulative impact assessment. Every topic of discussion in the THP is considered as a separate and discreet category unrelated to the other separate subjects and not as a part of the whole ecosystem. And then, MRC just says there will be no significant impact in each category. But the categories left out are:
1.) Cumulative impacts from legacy damage starting 100 years ago and continuing up to the present, not just starting 10 years ago.
2.) Adverse cumulative impacts caused by THP operations on adjoining tracts to the land in question and cumulative impacts from each THP on the whole area and to the public commons of water quality, air quality, climate quality, carbon sequestration, and terrestrial and aquatic habitat for wildlife species.
3.) Watershed condition assessments of each watershed in each plan and the relation of each plan to the whole watershed.
MRC says that 65% and 60% and 50% tree removal doesn't cause significant adverse impacts to the environment. This cannot be true and is not true. MRC may own the trees and the tracts of land but it can't do everything it wants because it adversely affects the commons, which it does not own, like clean water, clean air, stable climate, high quality terrestrial and aquatic habitat for wildlife, and the connectivity of wildlife movement. And MRC cannot possibly remove that high volume of trees and not damage the ecosystem and environment, which they do not own, but will adversely impact now and far into the future.
MENDO POT SUPPLIERS GET UP TO 18 MONTHS IN KANSAS CASE
by Linda Williams,
All but one of the seven Mendocino County marijuana suppliers caught up in a Kansas-based federal drug distribution case have been sentenced. Details about what information and assistance each defendant provided in exchange for a lesser sentence remains confidential. The sentences for the six defendants varied from time served to 18 months in prison.
All seven defendants pleaded guilty to one count each of conspiracy to manufacture, to possess with intent to distribute marijuana, a controlled substance. Each faced a 10 years-to-life sentence. All other charges were dropped.
The guilty pleas were in exchange for cooperation and testimony. In exchange for their complete cooperation the federal prosecutor agreed to drop all other charges and make a sentencing recommendation to the judge based on the perceived value of their testimony.
The drug distribution network began unraveling at the Kansas end with targeted surveillance of the alleged kingpins in Kansas beginning in January 2012. This led federal agents to drug suppliers in California and eventually to Mendocino County over a period of several months. Federal agents intercepted phone calls and drugs. They seized a host of documentation, including a full set of books describing much of the California operation.
Once people in the drug network began pleading guilty, the noose around the remaining participants tightened.
James and Sara Soderling of Fort Bragg were the first from Mendocino County arrested in the Kansas drug trafficking case and the first of the Mendocino area connection to plead guilty. James Soderling was indicted in the first batch of 34 mostly Kansas defendants in July 2012. He was the only person on the original indictment with a Mendocino County connection.
James Soderling was sentenced on Feb. 2 to serve 12 months and one day in prison and two years of supervised release. Sara Soderling was sentenced on Jan. 27 to time served and five years of supervised release.
The federal investigators’ wiretaps and surveillance captured several meetings between the Soderlings and other conspirators. From federal investigations into the Soderlings “through proffer interviews, business records and drug ledgers, investigators identified Henry McCusker, Richard Smith Jr., Jeffrey Wall, John Paul McMillan and Erin Keller as sources of supply of high grade marijuana in California,” according to court records. These defendants were in the last group indicted. Eventually 43 defendants were charged from Missouri to California.
Of the 43 defendants, only three chose to face a trial. Their trial lasted months and the main conspirators were found guilty of multiple felony counts. They are in prison awaiting sentencing.
All Mendocino County defendants pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy prior to the trial.
Wall, 44, of Mendocino, was sentenced in December 2014 to time served and five years of supervised probation. Wall said his role was limited to being a middle man, “contacting growers he knew and aided in the exchange of marijuana for currency.” For this Wall claims he “probably profited $3,000 to $4,000 total.”
McCusker was involved in the Kansas conspiracy since 2009. “McCusker is a grower of high grade marijuana, which he personally supplied to co-defendants. Since 2009, McCusker supplied co-defendants hundreds of pounds of high grade marijuana,” according to court documents. McCusker was sentenced on Jan. 30 to 18 months in prison and 10 years of supervised release including 6 months of house arrest. McCusker was the only Mendocino County defendant who was not initially released on bail and served more than a year in prison prior to pleading guilty.
McMillan and Keller joined the conspiracy in late 2010, according to court documents. “Keller and McMillan had a small marijuana grow in Mendocino, California; however, they were able to acquire large amounts of processed marijuana from sources in California. McMillan transported approximately 40 pounds of high grade marijuana (a street value of $160,000) to Lawrence, Kansas in December 2010,” say court documents.
Investigators documented seven other trips to Kansas by the duo to pick up their cash proceeds. McMillan was sentenced on Jan. 12 to 18 months in prison and 60 months of supervised release. Keller was sentenced to 15 months in prison and 36 months of supervised release.
The last Mendocino County defendant to be sentenced is Richard W. Smith Jr. Smith has objected to his presentence investigation report. He has a sentencing hearing on April 15.
IT MATTERS: STEPH CURRY HONORS VICTIM OF CHAPEL HILL MURDERS
by Dave Zirin
“I’m going to send them the shoes I wore yesterday. And hopefully they know that I’ve been thinking about them.” —Steph Curry
It can seem like such a small thing, but in the wake of an unspeakable tragedy, Golden State Warriors guard Steph Curry made the most important statement of the NBA’s All-Star Weekend. As the smooth-shooting Curry proceeded to win Saturday’s heavily branded, hyper-commercialized Three-Point Contest in dynamic fashion, he chose to do so while having written on his shoes. Both were in reference to Deah Barakat, the young dental student murdered along with his wife, Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, and her younger sister, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, last week in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. All three were beautiful people who took part in numerous community charities and activities. Deah was someone who traveled to the Middle East to do free dental work for 200 Palestinian refugee children in 2013. He was also a hoops fanatic, who would wear jerseys with Curry’s number 30 on them and described himself on social media as an “aspiring Splash Brother,” a reference to Curry and his backcourt mate Klay Thompson.
For Curry to even know that there was this extraordinary person who admired his play and lost his life happened because of the efforts of those trying to make sure that Deah, Yusor and Razan are not forgotten. The killings, which one can believe was either an anti-Islamic hate crime or “a parking dispute,” have sparked widespread mourning and outrage. Chris Hayes, host of MSNBC’s All In, said, “It feels to me, as someone observing this admittedly from the outside, like a galvanizing moment for Muslim Americans — a Trayvon Martin moment, a Michael Brown moment — for Muslim America.” Their funeral drew thousands. Demonstrations against anti-Islamic bigotry have taken place in several US cities. Vigils have been organized as well, one of which I attended in DC, where freezing evening weather did not stop hundreds from gathering. Their killings also sparked the much debated but very effective Twitter hashtag #muslimlivesmatter, which played a critical role in pushing the story from being largely unreported in the mainstream media to the subject of widespread discussion. All of this — the demonstrations, the hashtags, the vigils — has been an effort to fight the invisibility of actual real life Arabs and Muslims in the United States, beyond scapegoating and beyond the Fox News/Bill Maher caricatures.
And then there is Steph Curry, a leading candidate for NBA MVP as well as a leading candidate to be the new face of the league, saying after the Three-Point Shootout, “Once I got to know who Deah was as a person and the stories that everybody was telling about him, it only seemed right to honor him and his family and let them know people were thinking about them, they’re not alone and hopefully to give them some kind of peace and comfort. He was a special guy. I just did my little part to shed that light toward him.”
This matters. I spoke to Ramah Kudaimi who has been active organizing remembrances in DC. She is also a serious sports fan. Ramah said to me, "In the past few days the media has gone from ignoring the murders of Deah, Yusor, and Razan to trying to pass it off as a parking dispute issue in an attempt to not discuss anti-Muslim bigoty in this country due in part to US policies like the war on terror. Steph bringing attention to these three wonderful people and their families sends a message that everyone should know what happened and their story needs to be told. It was a beautiful gesture and hopefully will bring some solace to their families knowing people do care about the lives of their children.”
Deah’s family has said that the 23-year-old loved “basketball and anything Stephen Curry.” For one night, basketball and Steph Curry loved him back. As Curry said, “Even though we never met, I think it will hopefully mean a lot to his family and friends that knew what kind of a basketball fan he was to have some kind of peace knowing that people are thinking about him and they’re not alone.”
(Dave Zirin is the author of Brazil’s Dance with the Devil. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org)
HEALTHY HABITS LOWER YOUR CANCER RISK
Mendocino Cancer Resource Center
We all are aware of the fact that life style choices impact our overall health and that many types of cancer are directly associated with unhealthy habits.
Tobacco and Cancer
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States for both men and women and the most preventable form of cancer death in the world.
Besides lung cancer, tobacco use also increases the risk for cancers of the mouth, lips, nose and sinuses, larynx (voice box), pharynx (throat), esophagus (swallowing tube), stomach, pancreas, kidney, bladder, uterus, cervix, colon/rectum, ovary (mucinous), and acute myeloid leukemia.
Cigars contain many of the same carcinogens (cancer-causing agents) found in cigarettes.
Smokeless tobacco products are a major source of cancer-causing nitrosamines and a known cause of human cancer. They increase the risk of developing cancer of the mouth and throat, esophagus (swallowing tube), and pancreas.
Each year, about 3,400 non-smoking adults die of lung cancer as a result of breathing secondhand smoke. Each year secondhand smoke also causes about 42,000 deaths from heart disease in people who are not current smokers.
(source: American Cancer Society, Cancer Facts & Figures 2014)
What you can do:
As anyone who has tried to quit smoking will tell you, tobacco cravings can wear you down. Getting help, rather than taking on the challenge of quitting alone, can support you in reaching your goal.
Talk with your doctor about establishing a plan for quitting tobacco.
Smokefree.gov (http://smokefree.gov/about-smokefree) is a website sponsored by the National Cancer Institute that provides online support, telephone hotlines and maps out personal plans to help quit smoking.
The Mayo Clinic’s website offers several suggestions to help quit smoking, including relaxation techniques and physical exercise. (http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/quit-smoking/in-depth/nicotine-craving/art-20045454)
Sun Exposure and Skin Cancers
Sunlight helps our bodies produce necessary vitamins that contribute to our overall health. However, incautious exposure can be harmful.
Skin cancer is the most common of all cancer types. More than 3.5 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer are diagnosed each year in the United States.
About 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.
What you can do:
Seek the shade, especially between 10 AM and 4 PM.
Do not burn.
Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths.
Cover up with clothing, including a broad-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses.
Use a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher every day. For extended outdoor activity, use a water-resistant, broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.
Apply 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of sunscreen to your entire body 30 minutes before going outside. Reapply every two hours or immediately after swimming or excessive sweating.
Keep newborns out of the sun. Sunscreens should be used on babies over the age of six months.
See your physician every year for a professional skin exam.
Be aware of changes to your skin. Contact your doctor if you notice new and irregular growths or texture changes. The Skin Cancer Foundation provides information about what to look for when doing a skin self-exam. http://www.skincancer.org/skin-cancer-information/early-detection/if-you-can-spot-it-you-can-stop-it
Weight and Cancer
Being overweight or obese accounts for 20% of all cancer deaths among women and 14% among men. Losing excess pounds reduces the body’s production of female hormones, which are linked to breast cancer, endometrial cancer, and ovarian cancer. Even if you’re not technically overweight, gaining just 10 pounds after the age of 30 increases your risk of developing breast, pancreatic, cervical, and other cancers. According to ACS, there is still much to learn about the link between weight and cancer risk. (http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/dietandphysicalactivity/bodyweightandcancerrisk/body-weight-and-cancer-risk-effects)
What you can do:
Calculate your body mass index. You are overweight if your body mass index is between 25 and 29.9.
Talk with your doctor about a weight loss plan. Ask about recommendations for a nutritious diet and a maintainable exercise regimen. With the help of your doctor, set realistic goals. Remember, weight loss is most effective and most likely to be permanent when it involves life style changes and occurs steadily over a planned period of time.
Work with a weight loss buddy. Losing weight with a buddy can increase your weight loss success. Choose someone who shares your goal and who you can count on to encourage you with your plan. In choosing a buddy, define what type of encouragement works best for you. “For some people, it means hearing kind and supportive words; for others, it means having someone come by and literally drag them out of the house and to the gym. As long as both buddies know what the other needs and expects, then they can be there for each other." (http://www.webmd.com/diet/choosing-weight-loss-buddy?page=1)
Eat a healthy diet. A diet high in whole-grain fiber, lean proteins and colorful fruits and vegetables and low in saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, sodium and added sugars can greatly improve health in general.
To learn more, please contact the Cancer Resource Centers of Mendocino County.
2015 Cancer Awareness and Prevention Campaign
Sponsored by the Cancer Resource Centers of Mendocino County in collaboration with the Mendocino County Health and Human Services Agency (www.co.mendocino.ca.us/hhsa/)