CHICAGO, Ill. — On Saturday, at 1 pm, dozens of concerned citizens joined the public health group THONG outside of the Eddie Bauer flagship store on Michigan Avenue to protest the company’s use of untested “nano-fibers” in their “nanotex” clothing line which also boasts the “Teflon” label and are “wrinkle free”. THONG is a local Chicago public-interest group that uses nudity to educate people on detrimental threats to human health and the environment.
“We’re out here naked so people can SEE THE PROBLEM, nanotech is such a radical and unpredictable new technology, like biotech, that it takes something highly visible, like a naked body, to get people to focus on the need to stop corporations from using humans as guinea pigs for new, untested, and unstable new technologies!” said Kiki Walters of THONG.
“The Royal Society in the UK has issued their own report, recommending regulation to control exposure to nanotechnologies. We believe they have a point to make. We just wanted to make it even more obvious to people.”
Eddie Bauer’s line of water and stain resistant clothing utilizes nanotechnology, a radically new and untested technology that involves the manipulation of matter at the scale of the nanometer (nm), which is one-billionth of a meter. At this scale, materials behave differently than their larger counterparts, and can possibly be more reactive and toxic, posing unknown risks to human health and the environment. Though nanoparticles are not regulated by any government in the world, many products containing them are already on the market, including food, clothing, cosmetics and sunscreens, without proper safety testing for toxicity, posing risks to the health of consumers and retail workers. Nano-Tex™ clothing contains nano-fibers coated with Teflon particles. Nanoparticles have been found to penetrate the blood brain barrier. Inhalation of many types of nanoparticles have been proven to be toxic to animals in lab tests.
“Even the largest re-insurance company in the world, Swiss RE, has stated that they will not insure nanotech at this time. At least this major financial player has openly admitted the potential toxicity of nanoproducts, and that these products present what they call long latent unforeseen claims.” said Natalie Eggs, another THONG member.
Update: For those who prefer video over stills, a previous THONG protest is included in this Quicktime movie.
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