QUIG WAS RIGHT: OPEN LETTER TO BLUES DJ, DENTIST
AND WHO HELMET INITIATIVE FACILITATOR
PHILIP L. GRAITCER
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Philip L. Graitcer, MPH, DMD a.k.a. "Doctor G"
Blues DJ (Email 1:
Dentist (Email 2:
WHO Helmet Initiative Facilitator (Email 3:
To "Doctor G":
American bikers' rights advocates like Rudy Avizius, Mike Greenwald and Lynn Wesley have been after me for some time
to look into what the World Health Organization's WHO Helmet Initiative is all about. In so doing,
I came across your Headlines Newsletter's Fall 2008 Editorial entitled "How to be a Genius"...
...the crux of which was:
"Data from Pennsylvania and Louisiana underline the conclusion that helmets do make a difference. Pennsylvania
repealed its mandatory law in 2001, making helmets compulsory only for those under the age 21 years old or for
inexperienced operators. Although there were more motorcycles in use, controlling for the increased motorcycle
registrations showed an increase in head injury deaths and hospitalizations for head injuries that was greater
than that for non-head injury hospitalizations. In Louisiana, the mandatory law was repealed and then passed
again. Fatal and serious injury crashes increased and then declined proportional to other crashes as the law
was repealed and then passed again."
Well, "Doctor G", it didn't take much genius to show that both the Pennsylvania and Louisiana "studies" you cite
did not qualify as scientific research, and were in fact spun statistics. I guess you missed all the rebuttals in
the motorcycle safety literature, including these two from me:
OPEN LETTER TO KRISTEN MERTZ & HAROLD WEISS [PA]:
AP Floods Media with Flawed Statistics from Pittsburgh Professors
Concerned Responsible Motorcyclists to Confused Emergency Doctors [LA]:
Your Crash Survival Focus Obscures Crash Prevention Potentials
But in all fairness to you, it didn't take much genius to see how that might happen. After all, according to your
...you're a very busy man...
"Philip L. Graitcer, MPH, DMD is an adjunct professor for Emory University Department of Environmental and Occupational
Health and Hubert Department of Global Health. Dr. Graitcer has an international reputation for his research and
publications in the area of bicycle and motorcycle helmets. Graitcer is the creator and facilitator of the World
Health Organization's Helmet Initiative, and he has written and edited Headlines, WHO's official publication on
helmets since 1993. Prior to joining Emory, Graitcer spent 18 years at the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention as a medical epidemiologist, the last 8 years as a member of CDC's injury prevention program. Graitcer
is also an independent radio producer, creating and writing features on health, science, and culture for
public radio programs in Atlanta as well as for NPR, Marketplace and the BBC."
But what you're mostly busy with is NOT motorcycle safety, is it, "Doctor G"? I mean come on, after you stop
spinning blues on your morning radio gig at WRFG...
...then teach a few classes, and maybe pull a few teeth...
...just how much time could you possibly have left to research the REAL causes of motorcycle injuries and deaths--like
right-of-way violations by distracted drivers--and the BEST ways to mitigate their incidence and impact?
Long ago, Richard Quigley declared you have neither the credentials nor the right to be broadcasting
motorcycle safety policy from your dental chair:
And I say QUIG WAS RIGHT.
Speaking strictly for myself and no other individuals or organizations,
Author and Publisher, LdrLongDistanceRider.com
Co-Moderator, Bruce-n-RC's Biker Forum
Mile Eater Gold Member, Iron Butt Association (IBA)
Sustaining Member, Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF)
2007 Chairman's Circle, American Motorcyclist Association (AMA)
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