Via America’s Lawyer: Democratic senators urge TV providers to “re-think” their decision to broadcast right-wing news networks like Fox, OAN, and NewsMax. Mike Papantonio & Farron Cousins discuss more. Plus, major chemical companies 3M and DuPont have allowed PFAS chemicals to seep into everyday products and waterways. Attorney Madeline Pendley joins Mike Papantonio to explain the history of this dangerous carcinogen, which has become increasingly prevalent across fire departments and airports.

Click here to learn more about PFAS chemicals.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Mike Papantonio:             Democrats want cable carriers to drop right wing media outlets. Really? I mean, have these folks, these, these congresspeople that we’ve elected to Congress, it’s not only, they don’t understand the constitution. Like they’ve never read the constitution or think it’s important. We elected them to Congress and they want to take care, they want to engage in vast censorship. I don’t care what Newsmax says. I don’t have to watch it. I don’t care what Fox says, but they have the right to say it.

Farron Cousins:                  Right. Absolutely. And that’s what is so ridiculous about this story, because it’s a, was it representatives Anna Eshoo and Jerry McNerney from California, have sent letters to all of these different cable carriers and media carriers saying you have a duty to get rid of these networks because they’re spreading misinformation.

Mike Papantonio:             Good God.

Farron Cousins:                  Sure. Look, there’s no question they’re spreading misinformation. We know that. MSNBC and CNN do it too.

Mike Papantonio:             When you turn it on, you know.

Farron Cousins:                  Right.

Mike Papantonio:             MSNBC, turn MSNBC in the first five minutes, you’re going to be overwhelmed with misinformation.

Farron Cousins:                  Right.

Mike Papantonio:             CNN, Fox news. But do we tell them they can’t do it?

Farron Cousins:                  Right. And that’s the thing that these representatives have to understand. The courts have already ruled on this. The media actually has no legal obligation to tell the truth and we understand, look, we’re not trying to downplay what this kind of misinformation does to the public here in the United States. But this is one of those things where they have the right to do it. We may disagree with it.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  We may not like it, but how do we deal with it? We fight it, you and I, every day.

Mike Papantonio:             It’s when the Nazis and the KKK were permitted to march through Skokie, right? We understood that, okay, there are things that offend us. But are we these snowflake whinnies who need our personal safe space because we can’t turn on and listen to somebody who disagrees, you know, what we have is an entire generation of people who never took civics. They never had to sit through a civics class and understand the importance of the cons, constitution and the freedom of speech. These bird brains, they’re part of it and this is going to blow up. I’ll tell you, if the Supreme Court gets a hold of this, what they’re going to do, we’re going to see the fairness doctrine again, which was not, probably not a bad idea. We’re going to see expansion on what we’re able to do to prevent the type of censorship these Congressman want. Farron Cousins, thank you for joining me. Okay.

Farron Cousins:                  Thank you.

Mike Papantonio:             The EPA has known for years, that PFAS chemicals are hazardous to human health and the environment yet industrial giants 3M and DuPont managed to flood our drinking waterways with that product and that toxin. Joining me to talk about this is attorney Madeline Pendley, you know, Madeline, what strikes me is I look at this fellow right here, probably a 3M employee he’s in, he’s in the Tyvek suit, got gloves on. He’s got a mask on. He is set to where if this stuff gets on him, he can save himself.

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:             You know what the ugly part of it is, this is the same stuff they’re putting in our drinking water.

Madeline Pendley:        Exactly. He’s decked out to protect himself. But when it comes to the rest of us, the firefighters that use this stuff, the people who get it in their drinking water, we’re not protected at all. And so to back up a little bit, that term PFAS that you mentioned that actually encompasses a class of thousands of different dangerous chemicals, as you know. So in particular, we’re going to be talking about C8 and those chemicals also very dangerous. Interestingly, despite being so dangerous, they were using a ton of different consumer products like Teflon. You’re familiar with that. Scotchgard and most recently, what’s called AFFF or firefighting foam, which is what we’re going to talk about today.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. What we, what we found in the trial that I tried up in Ohio was that they had tons of experiments to show that it would cause cancer. It would cause birth defects. It would cause a whole issue, a whole line of health problems that they didn’t tell the public. Now here’s what’s important. It’s in your drinking water now.

Madeline Pendley:        Exactly.

Mike Papantonio:             More than likely if you’re in a big urban area, this is in your drinking water, there is no safe level. They say, oh, well, you know, there’s a, there is no safe level, right?

Madeline Pendley:        Right. So they have studies, both 3M and DuPont, going back to the 1950s saying that this stuff, one, builds up in your blood. You know, once it’s there, it stays there. They have studies in the 60s, classifying it as a toxin in their internal documents. Didn’t tell anybody that. In the 70s they learned it continues to build in your blood. In the 80s, they went so far as to remove their female employees from the factories because they learned that PFOS exposure could harm their unborn children and like you said, cause very serious birth defects. And even in the 90s, they learned that their employees were more at risk for cancer development and death than the general population. But they didn’t tell anybody.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. Well now, DuPont, is the case that I tried in Ohio and the information they had in their files was something they kept secret.

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:             You know, and, and now we’re just catching up. If you were to talk to 10 people and you were to say, what do you know about PFOS or PFAS? They don’t even know what you’re talking about.

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:             So the biggest delivery system right now is through, as you point out, AFFF firefighting material, right?

Madeline Pendley:        Yes. And so the way that works, it’s, it’s what you think about they use to put out fires in aircraft fires usually very large, very hot oil based fires. Spray the foam on there, it deprives the flame of oxygen and it does work much more quickly than water would. And so 3M to kind of launch this product had to get a little bit creative, did two main things. One, they pitched this product to the air force at a very vulnerable time for our military branches. We had recently had several very tragic events where we lost service members due to flames who were not able to put out in time. In comes 3M with their miracle product. You know, the air force picks it up and they start using it all over the country, you know, contaminating water all over the country because they didn’t know this was dangerous. The other thing they did was they sold it to airports, just your everyday commercial airports and they actually helped create a regulation that required airports to purchase this type of foam. So they created a regulation that would ensure there’s a market for their product. Again, didn’t tell the airports how to properly clean this stuff up or what it could do to the people who are using it and that are exposed to it.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. The ugly part about it is, and you know, we’re going to be at some point, well, look to understand it, all you have to do is watch the movie, “The Devil We Know.”

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:             It’s on Netflix. It’ll tell you everything you want about it. There’s really nothing secretive about this right now. All of the facts are out there. They came out in the DuPont case that was, that we tried up in Ohio, but nevertheless, people don’t know about it. There’s another great movie, you know, it’s called, “Dark Waters,” but the Netflix movie, you can just go to Netflix and it’ll, “The Devil We Know” will tell you the whole story. So my point is, there are no secrets. I mean, everything we’re talking about is in the public domain right now.

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:            We don’t, can’t talk about what’s not in the public domain, but there’s so much out there that people can look at and understand, but they have to, they have to educate themselves, don’t they, about have dangerous this is.

Madeline Pendley:        They do, and they have to learn what products this stuff is in. It’s not enough to know that just, you know, the term PFOS means it’s dangerous. What all does that encompass? What all products are exposed to that. A lot of people didn’t know that fast food packaging contains variations of PFOS. You know, the food is soaking in it, and then it goes into your body and you absorb it. And I don’t think people know that it’s in our drinking water due to things like firefighting foam.

Mike Papantonio:             You know, what’s remarkable, 3M put all this product on the market. You know what they’re selling now, they’re selling a home filter system for $6,000 that you can buy to get their stuff out of your drinking water so you can feel safe about your children taking showers and drinking this stuff everyday. They’re actually making money now by selling the solution, in about $6,000 you can add it to your home.

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:             They want you to pay for it though.

Madeline Pendley:        For they problem that they caused, exactly.

Mike Papantonio:             Right. So I got, I guess where this lands right now is there’s, there’s litigation pending.

Madeline Pendley:        Right.

Mike Papantonio:             As litigation, as litigation progresses, when it’s over, the whole story will be told. It’s a startling story. It’s a, it’s a remarkable story, but at least “The Devil We Know” on Netflix begins to tell the story a little bit.

Madeline Pendley:        It does.

Mike Papantonio:             Thank you for joining me. Okay.

Madeline Pendley:        Thank you.

Mike Papantonio is an American attorney and television and radio talk show host. He is past president of The National Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious trial lawyer association in America; and is one of the few living attorneys inducted into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame. He hosts the international television show "America's Lawyer"; and co-hosts Ring of Fire Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio program, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Sam Seder.