Many people have worked very hard to eliminate synthetic chemicals from their homes. They use organic cleaners, eat organic food, and wear clothes made from natural fibers that have been raised organically. They mistakenly believe this means they have a pesticide free home. It does not.
Pesticides, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), kill something. That means sanitizers, fungicides, germ killers of every stripe, as well as the more familiar insecticides, are all pesticides. If it has an EPA registration number, it is a pesticide. Not all pesticides are bad. We would not have the food we have and the standard of living, or the lifespan, we enjoy without them.
For example, aflatoxin is a fungus that infects corn grown during drought conditions. It causes hallucinations and sometimes death in mammals. Some scientists believe it is responsible for the Salem Witch Trials, or at least a part of them. Now all corn is tested for aflatoxin and destroyed if too much is present.
Hand sanitizers and counter cleaners, even organic ones, contain compounds that kill germs. This helps keep our homes safe. However, anything that will kill germs is a germicide, a type of pesticide. These products should be handled accordingly.
I am not making the argument that pesticides should be used indiscriminately. They should be used with caution and care. DDT and Agent Orange are testament to that. At the same time, knee jerk reactions against a substance without understanding what the label it carries means are also unwarranted. Thinking through the risks and benefits is the most reasonable course of action. The income may vary for different individuals in different situations.