Thursday, June 22, 2006

I Love the Family Research Council

I may be a little biased, because I'm a big fan of promiscuity, but the Family Research Council's posiion on Merck's new drug Gardasil seems a bit absurd to me. See Time Magazine's article here.

The FDA recently approved Gardasil, which prevents cancer. Cervical cancer, to be exact. From the article:

"it works by guarding against the human papillomavirus (HPV), which is thought to cause about three of every four cases of cervical cancer, the second most common cancer among women, and the third most deadly around the world. It kills close to 4000 women each year in the U.S. alone."

Pretty cool, huh? Well, it seems that the Family Research Council, part of the extreme right wing of the conservative party, doesn't want the government to mandate that children be vaccinated against HPV. Why you ask? Because they feel like the risk of HPV dissuades young women from being promiscuous, and that the better way to prevent against cervical cancer is abstinence until marriage.

This article, and the Family Research Council's position, shows me how calculating politicians and public interest groups at the fringe can be. They view the loss of lives from this disease as a "lesson" to young boys and girls out there not to have premarital sex, when the loss of lives could be prevented. It amazes me, sometimes.

-B. Hammond

2 Comments:

Blogger V. Hammond said...

Barry-

Great post. I had heard background noise of a debate about this HPV vaccine, but had no idea what it was about. UNBELIEVABLE. I hurridly read the article, but it wasn't clear to me how legitmate the FRC's (a cousin of FNC?) opposition has become. Any idea?

-VMH

7:25 PM  
Blogger V. Hammond said...

Matt -

I'm not sure how much anyone listens to the Family Research Council anymore. They were influential in the 80s when they were started because they were almost ideologically parallel to Reagan. I mean, these were the same wackos that were opposed to SpongeBob Squarepants because they thought he was gay.

They've at least remained consistent on this issue, they've been against a government mandated vaccination against HPV since at least late 2005. While they're not opposed to the FDA's approval of Gardasil, their opposition to mandated vaccination brings along with it genuine health concerns; as the Time article I linked to in the original posts provides, vaccinations are most effective when large groups of people routinely get them, they are not as effective when they are optional.

The reason I view this debate as so important is because this will be Ground Zero for any debate concerning an HIV/AIDS vaccination.

-B. Hammond

4:40 AM  

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