Cell Phones in Schools – The Great Debate

With today’s technological advances making cell phones pervasive into nearly every aspect of people’s lives, it comes as no surprise that cell phones in schools have become a hotly debated topic. There are advocates on both sides: some claim that cell phones are an inappropriate distraction during school hours, others embrace students’ familiarity with them and utilize them in class. While the jury is still out, both sides do have some intriguing points.

Mobile phone advocates claim many benefits to using the devices in educational settings; some of these advantages include:

  • Parental Involvement. Students can use cellular phones equipped with cameras to take pictures of projects they complete in class, such as group projects that utilize only class time. Generally, in these situations, students do not conduct any research or assembly of such projects at home, so parents do not get to see the result of their child’s efforts in the classroom. Allowing students to use cell phones in this capacity encourages parental involvement in their child’s life, as well as supporting their educational development.
  • Missing Assignments. Teachers can enact a buddy system in which students email or text each other with the details of assignments their buddy missed due to an absence. This will save teachers valuable time they would have otherwise spent assembling makeup packets, and will instill a sense of responsibility among students for themselves and each other.
  • Note-Taking. Students that have problems keeping up in class when taking notes can utilize the camera feature of their mobile phone to snap photos of the notes and save them for later studying and showing parents or tutors, as well as classmates who may have missed part of them. Teachers can also incorporate taking photos of notes into their buddy system for missing assignments, and allow students to forward missed information during class time to absent classmates, and likewise allow them to receive such information if they are absent.
  • Real-World Tools. Cell phones usually have features such as calculators, which most high school math classes require. Using the calculator function of their cell phone can teach students the real-world skill of utilizing what they have on hand to calculate mathematical problems in their everyday lives.
  • Improving Focus. Students with cell phones that feature music capabilities and ear buds can use them during homework periods or times of otherwise independent study. Many students find listening to music a relaxing study habit and studies of learning styles indicate that some students learn best while listening to music while working problems or reading. Students who are comfortable while studying are more likely to study longer, more often, and produce more positive results than those who do not listen to music.

On the other hand, many believe that cell phones will only contribute to already existing problems in schools, such as cheating, disrespecting teachers and staff, and instigating trouble amongst other students; some even cite the possibility of utilizing cell phones for illegal activities during school.

  • Cheating. Using a cell phone, regardless of the age of the user or the location from which they use the phone, comes with responsibility. Some advocates of banning cell phones in schools state that utilizing the camera function of a cell phone enables students to cheat on tests by snapping photos of answer keys, test contents, or the answers on a neighbor’s paper.
  • Disrespect. Students could use their phones for all sorts of mischief in class, including using the audio recording function of them to record teachers or other staff during lectures or other conversations without them being aware of the recording. Students could then use those recordings to take the speaker’s words out of context and present them in a manipulative light.
  • Instigating Trouble. Students can use their cell phones during school to cause problems amongst students and bully others. School-related violence and cases of bullying are on the rise, and officials already have their hands full dealing with problematic students and keeping order in their institutions; allowing students to use devices such as cell phones during school hours will make such problems easier to perpetrate and harder to control.
  • Illegal Activities. Students can use cell phones during school to carry out illicit activities such as placing or taking orders for drug deals, provoking students to fight each other, take and place bets on sporting events or other forms of gambling, or planning events such as bomb threats and other security breaches.
  • Distraction. Almost all of those in favor of banning cell phones from schools say that allowing their use in class will distract students from their studies. Features such as internet access and video gaming capabilities are the most frequently cited as the biggest distractions. While the internet can provide legitimate researching capabilities, playing video games provides no educational benefit at all.

Today there are schools making use of both policies. Pasco County’s Wiregrass Ranch High School utilizes mobile phones in many of its classes, including English, math, and social studies. Teachers allow students to use their phones to research literature and authors, calculate math problems, and take pictures for class projects, among other tactics. Students in this district say that they feel more respected and trust than students in districts who do not have such a privilege, and acknowledge that the devices can help them learn more about their world, both past and present. Regarding the area of behavior management, teachers in the school no longer must battle students on a daily basis to put their phones away or to pay attention during class. Instead, they are integrating cell phone usage into their lesson plans and students are participating during class more and benefiting. Students can take care of their personal business on their cell phones before and after school as well as during lunch and passing periods, so personal distractions really are a non-issue. Administrators acknowledge that some students will and do abuse the privilege. Rules, such as use restrictions and removal of other non-cell phone related privileges, are in place to discourage would-be goof-offers.

Most schools throughout the country instate some type of cell phone ban in their districts, mostly due to their connections to illegal activity and their disruptions during class. Some cite security issues, stating that ready student access to cell phones while on campus does not make them safer in the event of a violent event, even going so far as to state that they can complicate the jobs of emergency responders in such an instance. These schools also say that ready access to cell phones during the school day only inflames rumors and worsens bullying situations among students. As such, many of them enforce a “we see it, we take it” policy, and notify students as well as parents of the strict nature of such policies.

Some schools have begun to relax their mobile phone policies while others continue to uphold their bans, even tightening up their rules prohibiting the presence and usage of cell phones while on campus. Both sides have their own clear reasons for keeping their courses of action, and only time will tell as to which theory is more successful in educating students.

The Cell Phone Addict: America’s Number 1 Problem

Perhaps several decades into the future, something will be written about this period of time indicating Cellular Phones were the start of the Great Society Revolution. It probably all started a few years back when Ross Perot was running for President and many of our fellow Americans felt he might actually be a good president. Cellular Phones were the cause of this.

You see, it is my belief those people who voted for Ross Perot in fact were also heavy users of Cellular Phones. They would hold the phone to the right ear near the part of the brain that is responsible for rational thinking, destroying some of the brain cells involved in the process. This rendered these people helplessly and hopelessly without rationality. It is with this in mind, I can actually declare Cellular Phones as the #1 problem with our society and it has become America’s #1 Addiction problem. What has happened to us? Cell phones are now apart of our life and many of us can’t live without it. We are cell phone junkies. If you have ever lost your cell phone, you know what I mean. You are lost. The phone however is OK.

Cellular phones: A Social Disease

I was in a restaurant last week, and a cell phone started to ring. All of a sudden like timed robots everyone’s hands went for their purse, pocket or belt and immediately raised their cell phone to answer the call. Others searched in a panic as they found out the number one communicating device might be missing. Even more remarkable, most decided to answer their phone anyway even though it was not ringing. It was like a bad lotto, where only one person won the prize. Most were disappointed to find the call wasn’t theirs. One person did get the call, and all of the people in the restaurant applauded. “Congratulations they said, all shouting with glee, maybe next time…it will be me! “

Cell phones have different rings. Some cell phones allow the user to choose from 150 different opera sonatas written by the great composers of our time, like Beethoven or Bach. Ask those users to name one of them. They can’t. As a matter of fact, when they select one of these classic pieces as the ‘Ring’ sound, it is always something they heard at one of the Bugs Bunny cartoons. Maybe that classic from the “Rabbit of Seville”.

Some even are practicing for the game show “Name that Tune”. You know, that’s where the contestants say they can name a tune in 6 notes and they play the six notes. If the contestant guesses the name of the melody, we have a winner! So there you go, flipping through all of the 150 tunes, never hearing the entire song. It’s like listening to a band tune up. With so many tunes to choose from why is it most people end up having the same tune? That’s why they all answer the phone at the same time when the are in a restaurant. Well, not exactly. Some answer their phone because they forgot which one they used as their ringing sound. So they pick up their phone just to be sure.

Some cell phones come equipped with games. People actually play them…by themselves. There is nothing spectacular about them as they are reinvented ‘Pong’ games of the late 70’s, early 80’s. So that’s where all of those Atari programmers went to! What is ridiculous is while you are playing these dimwit games, your battery is wearing down. Then, as you finally won the level 6 Guess the 3 Letter Word’ game, your cell phone rings. You answer it and as the person on the other line tells you that you have won a trip for two to Tahiti and $100,000, and you have ten seconds to answer the question: “What day of the week begins with the letter M “, your phone goes dead. Well at least you got to level 6 on the dimwitted Guess the 3 Letter Word game….

A friend of mine has a wireless telephone and he is in the scrap metal business. Everywhere he goes, he carries this cell phone and keeps it on. Who’s going to call him at 11:45 p.m. Saturday night? Some guy with a dozen aluminum cans to meltdown? I could understand if he was a brain surgeon or maybe a doctor on call, but a scrap metal dealer? He keeps his cell phone on because he is a Cell Phone Addict just like you and me.

Cell Phone Addicts Are Rude

It is amazing to see just how rude people are when it comes to cell phones. I remember the days when you would meet with someone and he would pick up a regular phone and say to his secretary “Hold all of my calls. I’m in a meeting”. It was only polite. Now, no one thinks twice about answering their cell phone in the middle of the conversation they are having with you. Obviously the person you were meeting with felt you weren’t as important as the other person on the line. In this Cell Phone world we live in, you get stopped in the middle of a sentence as the other person picks up the cell phone in one swooping motion and says ” Jack! Yea, nice game last month….Oh, I am not doing anything special at the moment…..sure I got a couple of hours to talk “…and you wait and wait and wait…..

I am tired of participating in other fellow cell phone addicts conversations. I was at Starbucks one morning ( I am also a coffee addict) when a lady came into the store still talking on her cell phone. In between her “Really. and you don’t say…”, she lifted the phone away from her mouth and ordered the Cafe Latt Grand Breve, Decaf. She proceeded to talk about her daughter and the troubles she is having adjusting to kindergarten. The people in the store actively participated in the conversation by saying things to her like ‘ get a life, will ya’ and ‘can you keep it down, I am trying to finish my conversation on my phone with the President of the United States!!!’. Even though we were all strangers, this person on the cell phone decided to share very personal information about her family and children. She was talking as if she was in her house. The next call was to her husband to make sure he takes out the garbage when he gets home, and the bank called saying they were late on their mortgage payments.

What about cell phones in movie theatres? They should be banned! Restaurants? They should be outlawed. At funerals? you should be ashamed of yourself! Do yourself a favor and turn that blasted cell phone off! You can live without it…just for a little while at least…

The Hazards of Cellular Telephone Usage

Cell phones are definitely a health hazard. This can be proven by simply placing your cell phone when it is transmitting near a TV screen, or the speakers at your computer. Even your radio in your car can pickup the microwave energy as it passes through the electrical wires. Birrrrrrrrrrrrrritatatatatatatatat. It’s the same sound that comes from your microwave oven. The cellular phone companies won’t admit the possibility that cell phones can damage your brain cells because to do so would put them out of business and in line for a tremendous amount of lawsuits. They even tried to change the name of the cell phone to ‘Wireless Telephones’ so you wouldn’t think of ‘Cell’ as in ‘Brain Cells’. You see they had learnt the lesson from the cigarette companies: You don’t admit anything!

Scientists tell you to use an ear piece and move the phone to your belt clip. This protects you from damaging any brain cells. The belt clip is located at hip level right where other organs are, such as the liver, stomach, kidneys, pancreas, spleen, intestines to name a few. As a matter of fact, they are not worried about frying these parts. They believe like many, cellular phones are the only true method of long-term Birth Control, given it’s proximity on the belt clip ( If you didn’t understand this one, your cell phone is too close to your right ear).

The Mystery of Cellular Telephone Communication

It is interesting how little knowledge people have when it comes to cell phones. My company ( a cell phone signal enhancement and jamming company:) ) gets calls from someone wanting to use his cell phone when the nearest tower is more than 100 miles away. Did you know you can only broadcast a short distance? That’s why they have cell towers set up all over the place. That is also why you only have a puny cell phone with puny batteries putting out only 3/5 of a watt. What?In order for your phone to broadcast 100 miles you need to have your cell phone connected to a diesel generator cranking away while all the animals around you get fried from the 100,000 watts of energy that you need to deliver your voice to the caller at the other end. “Can you hear me now?” you say as the cellular company drops your call again…. ( Note: Contrary to the claim by a popular cellular provide, I actually coined the phrase ” Can you hear me now?” when I first wrote an article in 2001)

To put it in proper perspective, the light at the end of a flashlight uses 10 times more energy (7 watts) then your cell phone. The average household light bulb use 60 watts which is 100 times more energy than your cell phone. The Microwave oven, which also uses microwaves just like the cellular telephone consumes 1000 watts which is 1670 times more energy than your little itty bitty wireless telephone.

So why would anyone think that their cell phone with the puny.6 watts of output could reach more than 100 miles, when for the most part they lose the signal? It’s the destroyed brain cells doing this, the Ross Perot syndrome.

Cellular Phone Manufacturers: Sub-Total Quality Management

Cell phone manufacturers do have a sense of humor. Take a look at that antenna they give you on most phones. It’s a piece of plastic similar to the fake cell phone that your 2 year old kid has. Come to think of it is exactly like the cell phone that your 2 year old kid has. The antenna does nothing. I know it’s a shocker, but the little piece of plastic lifted a few inches out of the plastic phone is useless. As a matter of fact, some companies have a series of phones with no plastic antenna to stick out. Now there is nothing to bite on when the cell phone company drops your call.

The people that manufacture cell phones all got our number right. What they do is produce a new model every two months that doesn’t even take the previous model’s batteries or accessories. What’s the deal here? It’s bad enough that cell phones can’t use “triple A”, “double A” batteries but the same company can’t even standardize them so that we don’t have to dip into our pockets every time some other feature comes out. Come to think of it, if my CD Player uses the same batteries as my Penlight flashlight, why can’t cellular manufactures use these batteries as well?

These wireless telephones are being produced in all kinds of sizes and varieties. Some are large some small and some are so small that I am afraid of swallowing it as I scream a the person at the other end of the call asking them “Can you hear me now!!!!?” The best are those ‘Flip Phones’ or as I like to refer them, Broken Flip Phones. Motorola invented them and just look at how bad that company is doing. They got the idea from Star Trek. You know…the communicator. But on Star Trek, the communicator also doubled as a Phaser. It’s tough enough to get your cell phone to work as a communicator. As an addict we demand better Cell Phones!

Cellular Phone Lack of Communication Companies

Cell phone companies are allowed to drive you crazy. I think it is part of the FCC licensing requirements. Cellular communication companies all allow you to dial a call, and then, while you are in the middle of a conversation, they disconnect. But the aggravating part is that it just doesn’t disconnect. Instead the signal moves in an out back and forth and makes you sound like your are in a toilet some of the time. (oh ya, cell phones should be banned from toilets also, it’s quite scary hearing a person talking to themselves in the stall beside you). This all happens while you keep repeating the magic Make My Phone Work Please phrase: ” Hello? Can you hear me now? “. Then to make things even worse you start walking around like a chicken pecking at corn kernels looking for that one spot where the signal will be stronger. I am sure you could swear that your cell phone works better at one particular spot in your house than in another. The question is: Why are you using your cell phone in your house? Use the land line phone. At least there is a copper wire connected and it doesn’t cost you money like a taxi in traffic!

Another nightmare is trying to figure out which cell phone company is offering the best possible plan. It is confusing and they do it on purpose! They offer you 600 prime time minutes and 600 nighttime minutes. Then, as a bonus for believing their spiel, they throw in 200 anytime minutes, and a calling card that you can’t use on Tuesdays. You can’t use the prime time minutes at night and the nighttime minutes during the day. Then they hit you with weekend minutes. Hey. Wait a Minute! All they are doing is finding a way to confuse you so they can rip off your precious time and money! How about those dropped call minutes or those “I can’t hear you… can you hear me ” minutes that you are paying for. Can we get credit for them and turn them into anytime minutes that you can use on weekends? I wonder if I can just have the last 10 minutes of any hour. What would they charge me for that? At least with the land line phone I knew where I stood. I want one of those companies to be honest enough to tell you that they can offer the cheapest plan for the same lousy service as anyone else. Just when you think you got the best plan, you get your first bill. The $40 a month plan is now costing you $70 and the $90 a month plan is costing you $120. How is this possible? Government. They take out a piece of you hide every chance they get. As much as 30% gets added to your bill as hidden franchise fees, county and state taxes. The disgusting thing about this is that Government is taxing your personal conversations. The more you talk the more they get..and some of us talk a lot. We are addicts!

Cellular Phone Addicts: A Road Hazard

Laws are being passed requiring any one that drives a car to use a hands free system so that their complete attention is focused on driving the car. The government is doing this because they have a sense of humor. They know just how stupid you look when you have this thing sticking out of your ear and your are talking while someone who just pulled up beside you at a light is looking your way. They see you talking to yourself. What is even funnier is that you actually go through the hand motions and head jerks just as if the person was sitting right beside you. You are still preoccupied with the telephone conversation and your hands free is just that. One hand on the wheel and the other making gestures. It probably would be better if the other hand was holding the phone…this way you wouldn’t look like such an idiot.

What really is ridiculous is that our government is talking about passing a law stopping people from using wireless phones in a car while they are driving. Why the sudden concern? It is because Cell Phones are popular and this is a fresh issue, making easy for politicians to deflect our attention from the real problem in South Florida: Bad Drivers. We still have people in this state with driver licenses that can’t see or can’t even drive. At our post office a person, with a valid Florida State drivers license, pressed the wrong pedal and accelerated their car over the sidewalk and into the glass store front injuring several people. It happens all the time. You don’t have to worry about people like this having a cell phone taking their attention away. What you need the government to do is pass a law that requires testing of everyone and taking those people that don’t know how to drive or, can’t see, off the road. In fact, give them each a cell phone. That way they can call a taxi, and our roads will be a safer place. After that happens, then tackle the ‘cell phone used by the driver’ problem.

So that’s what I feel about the cell phones and cell phone industry. It has developed all of us into dimwitted addicts that are part of the rude manner-less society fully controlled by cell phone batteries. I thought someday I would invent Cellular Tele-Pa-thetic Communication that might cure us of this addiction so that we can all go back to not talking to each other… face to face. We need to be cured! ” Do you hear me now?”

Killer Cell Phones: Why Honeybees Are Dying Worldwide

Have you heard the news? In just the last ten years or so, the world’s honeybee population has taken a huge dive-and nobody seems to know why. I found this out myself recently by reading an article called “Bees Feel the Sting: The buzz on the worldwide decline in honeybee populations,” which appeared as the lead story in the September/October 2011 issue of Science Illustrated. According to this article, a group of French biologists is attaching tiny microchips to honeybees to track their daily behavior patterns in an effort to learn what’s killing them. Suspected causes of the unprecedented global honeybee dieoff include pests, predators, disease, pesticide sprays, climate change, and mobile phones. One single factor can be enough to do the bees in, as researcher Cedric Alaux of the Laboratoire Biologie et Protection de l’abeille admitted to Science Illustrated: “We cannot rule out that there is one single factor behind it all that influences the bees in a negative way.”

To identify that factor, the key question we should ask is: What on earth has changed so drastically in the last ten years that would cause billions of honeybees to perish? There has been no drastic change in nature or the global environment that can adequately explain this occurrence. Honeybee pests and predators have been around for centuries, and although their numbers have fluctuated, their populations have not exploded recently as far as I know. Diseases have similarly come and gone. Our climate has been changing recently, but not so drastically or in such a short time period as to explain the mass disappearance of a single insect species.

Thus we can reasonably rule out any natural causes for the world’s honeybee population plunge, and it makes sense to look for the culprit among possible artificial (i.e. manmade) causes. Although pesticide sprays have been in use for decades, their worldwide use has not increased dramatically in recent years; if anything, it has declined as the popularity of organic farming continues to grow.

The only other suspected manmade cause of the honeybees’ death is mobile phones (i.e. cell phones)-or, more precisely, the radio waves emitted by cell phones. Here we’re on to something, because in the last ten years the world’s use of cellular telephones has exploded dramatically, and an ever-growing global network of transmitter towers established to meet this demand now continuously fills much of the Earth’s air with a thick invisible web of electromagnetic radiation. Moreover, the negative effects of this artificial radiation on living organisms are already well known and documented by scientists. (Take, for example, the well-established link between increased cell phone use and increased rates of human brain cancer.) Furthermore, the steepest declines in honeybee populations have been observed in the United States and Europe-where use of mobile phones is greater than anywhere else in the world.

Nothing matches the worldwide decline in honeybee population like the worldwide increase in cellular telephone transmissions during the same time frame. Thus, it is reasonable to draw a link between the two and theorize that the former is the main cause of the latter.

But, some might say, the basis for this supposed theory is rather circumstantial. Is there any real, convincing evidence for it? Yes, there is. In a study conducted last year, researchers at Panjab University in Chandigarh, India fitted cell phones to a beehive and activated them twice a day for 15 minutes each. Within three months, honey production had ceased, the queen laid half as many eggs, and the hive population had fallen significantly.

But the effect of mobile phone towers on bees is even more drastic than that of individual phones. Barbara Hughes, a columnist for the Catholic Virginian who has been visiting the Franciscan monastery at Mission San Luis Rey in California, recently visited a Benedictine abbey near the mission. She related the following in the August 22, 2011 edition of the paper:

One of the monks, who has been a bee keeper at the Abbey for 40 years, explained how until numerous cell phone towers were constructed on the back of their property, he had been collecting 100 gallons of honey a week.

But as the use of cell phones expanded, all of his bees died within a few weeks until he discovered a small area near the base of the hill where he could not get cell phone service. Once he moved his hives to that particular area, the bees once again began to thrive and reproduce.

This anecdote is a graphic example of the danger that mobile phone radiation poses to honeybees. The radiation may be interfering with the bees’ built-in navigational systems, disorienting them and preventing them from finding their way back to their hives, as many researchers think. Or it may be killing them in a more direct fashion. However it works, it’s clear that radio waves from cell phones are lethal to bees. Additional future studies will continue to confirm and bear this out.

The typical cell phone transmitter tower is a veritable beehive of electromagnetic activity. At any given moment it can be sending and receiving the radio transmissions of 10 to 25 different phone calls. A whole row of transmitter towers can process thousands of calls simultaneously. Try to imagine what all the radio waves from all the towers just in your local area would look like, filling the air all around you. If we had the capability to see radio waves, we would be blown away. Thus cell phone towers pose a much more serious threat to living organisms than individual phones because they emit much more concentrated doses of radiation. When we consider that the radiation of a single mobile phone can cause brain cancer in a human being at an early age, it’s not difficult to imagine the deadly effect that thousands of times that radiation would have on a much smaller living creature.

In fact, the gradual, slight decline in world honeybee populations observed over the course of the twentieth century (which preceded the current precipitous decline) was probably due to the gradual establishment of radio stations and transmitters all over the world. Moreover, it is possible that radio waves crisscrossing our atmosphere from Earth-orbiting communications satellites as well as from more recently developed GPS satellites, satellite radio systems, and especially wireless Internet systems, all play minor contributing roles in the current honeybee population crisis. The lesson to be learned from this is that radio waves kill bees–and the world’s more than five billion mobile telephones combined generate more artificial radio emissions by far than all other currently operating high-tech inventions on Earth put together. See “List of countries by number of cell phones in use,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_mobile_phones_in_use

The typical modern handheld cell phone is a staple of globalized twenty-first century life-and it’s not hard to understand why. It’s a technological wonder, a marvel of electronic miniaturization and digital engineering, and a powerful tool of communication and entertainment whose convenience can’t be beat. With it we can not only send and receive calls but also text messages and emails; we can take pictures, make audio recordings, store textual information, listen to music, access the Internet (and all that that entails), watch videos, read e-books, play games-the capabilities are endless. Cell phones allow us to stay connected like nothing else. Who ever thought this nifty little multi-purpose gadget would pose a threat to the environment?

It’s unfortunate, but true: Within just the last ten years, the increasingly widespread and heavy global use of these handy devices has placed the world’s honeybee population at risk. We are literally buzzing the bees out of existence. Meanwhile, the global pace of construction of new mobile phone towers continues unabated, and worldwide cell phone transmissions continue increasing by the day, filling the Earth’s atmosphere with more and more artificial radio waves. If this trend continues into the next few years, we can expect further drastic reductions in the global honeybee population.

What would happen if honeybees became extinct? We would lose a lot more than just good-tasting natural honey. Honeybees play a critical role in the world’s food chain: they pollinate 75 percent of all the crops consumed by humans, many of which are also consumed by animals. Thus the extinction of honeybees would precipitate a global food crisis of almost unthinkable proportions. I don’t think any of us want to see that happen! Human survival is dependent on the survival of honeybees.

Given the enormity of the stakes involved, it is imperative that we take decisive measures soon to protect the endangered honeybees. This is not like trying to save the Pyrenean Ibex, the Golden Toad, the Javan Tiger, or the Alaotra Grebe (a bird of Madagascar that was officially declared extinct last year). All of these animal species have become extinct since the conservation movement began, but due to their isolated habitats and limited distribution, their extinction had little if any impact on the overall global food chain. The extinction of the honeybee would be an entirely different matter. Because of its worldwide distribution and the key role this little insect plays in crop growth, its demise would be catastrophic for a large percentage of life on earth.

So what can we do to save the honeybees? Here are a few ideas:

1) Spread the word. Tell everyone you know about what you’ve learned in this article. The more people who know about it, the better.

2) Use your cell phone less. Keep it turned off most of the time if you can. Note that you don’t have to make a call to send destructive radiation through the air-just turning the unit on will do that.

3) Buy land phones, which don’t emit harmful radio waves, for your home and office, and use your mobile phone for calls only when away from those places. A cordless land phone offers the best of both worlds-it allows more mobility than a traditional corded land telephone but emits less harmful radiation than a cell phone.

4) At the local level, cities, counties and states could pass ordinances and laws preventing the construction of additional cell phone towers in certain areas (as long as this does not conflict with federal law).

5) Since honeybees continue to flourish in areas without mobile phone service, it would make common sense for the governments of individual countries (especially in the United States and Europe) to review their existing communications policies and enact stricter nationwide regulations for cell phone transmissions.

6) Since more than 9 in 10 Americans now own mobile phones See “List of countries by number of cell phones in use,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_mobile_phones_in_use, a permanent nationwide moratorium on the construction of new cell phone towers should be seriously considered.

7) Our federal government could build on the model of the National Radio Quiet Zone, a 13,000-square-mile area straddling the Virginia-West Virginia border that was set aside in 1958 to protect the National Radio Astronomy Observatory from unwanted manmade radio interference. Within this zone, artificial radio transmissions, including cell phone services, are limited but not entirely eliminated. Similar protected zones could be established in America’s sprawling, thinly-populated agricultural regions (such as in the middle states and parts of California) where cell phone services are less in demand and where honeybees are especially needed to pollinate the crops that feed much of the world.

Such efforts to curtail cellular phone transmissions, for the good of honeybees and for our own good, will likely be met with powerful opposition from the big mobile phone companies like AT&T and Verizon. These huge businesses make a killing on cell phones, netting hundreds of billions of dollars annually, so their multibillionaire kings will not take kindly the least threat to the continued expansion of their global empire. They don’t really care what happens to the bees (or to us) as long as they can keep their annual profits swelling. Thus they’ll conveniently deny any connection between cell phone use and declining bee rates (just as they denied that there was any connection between cell phone use and brain cancer). But such opposition shouldn’t discourage us–because denying an inconvenient truth doesn’t make it go away.