Thursday, February 15, 2007

I don't know if folks outside of Texas are aware of the raging controversy here, but I want to throw my two cents in.

Our governor, Rick Perry, an investor in the pharmaceutical company Merck, has issued an executive order that within 2 years, all girls entering 6th grade in the state of Texas must be administered a shot of a new anti-viral drug which ostensibly will prevent these girls from contracting HPV (human papilloma virus) for a period of some years afterward. Early contraction of HPV has been linked with cervical cancer in women, and the thought process is that preventing young women from contracting HPV will result in fewer cancers.

Well, that's just ducky. Except I think it's kind of icky that the only company producing this anti-viral drug is *TA-DA!!!* Merck. OK. Let me say that again in another way. Second verse, same as the first, a little bit louder and a little bit worse. All 6th grade girls in Texas will be forced to have a $300-400 shot (on the taxpayer dime, no doubt) to minimize certain consequences of early sexual activity. People are too stupid to manage their children properly. Why not issue condoms at the door of 6th grade, too, while we're at it? Why don't we wrap every child in a 3" padding of foam rubber so they don't hurt themselves? Why should such stupid creatures be afforded enjoyment of the rights of free will? We obviously are too stupid to function.

Something else I want to know is where is the National Organization for Women on this? Why aren't they screaming about the invasion of rights of all these young future women who are being subjected to a drug which in all likelihood will kill some of them? What do they always say - if it's a woman's/girl's body, it's her choice-- whatever happened to this line of reasoning? Just say no. Why not make it an available option for young women of an age more likely to be sexually active - say, high school girls? Available, but not compulsory? Oh, and the immunity against HPV has a limited range, apparently, and the protection the drug affords has a limited life-span. Some ignorant rubes will think they have permanent protection from HPV, and that is just a host of lawsuits waiting to happen, 20 years down the road.

Oh, and while we're at it, why just immunize the girls? Why not the boys? Here's what I read over on the Centers For Disease Control's site:

Certain types of HPV have been linked to cancer of the anus and penis in

Aren't boys' penises and anuses worth protecting too? Oh, I forgot - only females are stupid enough to have to be herded into pens and given a mass sheep-dip.

The sad thing is this smacks not of concern for the future, but of an arrogant, condescending politician with a monster company in his back pocket. There may not be anything corrupt going on here, but it sure smells fishy. In fact, it stinks on ice.

And then there's the thing about Rick Perry's promotion of a company that wants to buy the Texas Lottery. Yeah, ok, fair enough. But the whole to-do about the lottery when we GOT it was that it was going to make SO much money for the Texas school systems - if it's such an all-fired cash cow, why are we going to sell it?

And I'm not saying there's anything untoward - probably just coincidence, but why is Rick Perry playing the PR rep for the company that wants to buy it, and why is his son working for that company?

It just looks bad, is what I'm saying, and I'm also saying that I am deeply chagrined that I wasted my vote on an independent gubernatorial candidate last November when I should have voted for the Democrat who actually had a chance of beating this bastard.

Oh, and one more thing: I am going to be contacting my state Representative and demanding RP's impeachment, and I hope enough of my fellow Texans will do the same. It's a long shot, but I'll always regret it if I don't do something more tangible than bitch about him on a blog.


Anonymous said...

All this, and you didn't mention his shenanigans with the Trans Texas Corridor? Li'l Rickie's well on his way to being the most hated man in rural Texas right now, his previous base notwithstanding. Of course, it's no more than he deserves.


Darkmind said...

What's that? A politician using his position for financial gain? Under the guise of helping the children you say? Preposterous!!

G Bro said...

What? He's more than a talking hair-do? He can kiss up to special interests, too? Seems to me he ought to get back to his fence-building. I haven't heard enough about his border control initiatives since the elections. Maybe he can build little fences around our private places. (Where am I going with this?)

phlegmfatale said...

james - yup, there's that, too. I could have gone on for hours, but I risked being a one-note symphony. I think the first story I mentioned was enough to prove my point.

darkmind - I know - who ever heard of such?!!!

g bro - Wherever you're going, g bro, it makes more sense than anything RP has done. Yup, he needs to stop being such a schmuck.

HollyB said...

Well, gee, as a former Pub.Health gradual student I'm torn on this issue.
I dropped out of the program b/c my advisor told me my goals were incompatible with living in TX and I refuse to move.
Actually, my response would be so long I'll just blog on this from Killeen.
But thanks for shaking me out of my indolence on this subject.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I read about this - the old bys' club is alive and well.

"...stupid enough...herded into pens...sheep-dip." LOL!

Sadly, however, having taught and listened to the the kids, 6th graders are sexually active.

Zelda said...

I was not sexually active until I was in my 20s. I would have been in more danger from the vaccine than from HPV. And this is a very new vaccine. I wouldn't let my girls have it for another 20 years at least. Rick Perry will not be enhancing his portfolio on me, and I am so happy I didn't vote for him in the last election.

Anonymous said...

I want run into the wilderness and live in a dugout. America is making me want to go Grizzly Adams. Actually its the World, the whole crapshoot. I'm gonna go crawl back in my bubble... A

Dick said...

Rick Perry has pretty much lost me as a supporter. Then again, so has the rest of the Republican party.

Dick said...

Zelda said...

"I was not sexually active until I was in my 20s."

That has to be some sort of crime with the guns she's packin.

Anonymous said...

The great intoxication....

Merck follow-up (44.25 -0.88) -Update : As noted at 14:33, MRK and Gardasil partner MEDI sold off in the past 15 min, possibly due to the afore-mentioned National Vaccine Information Center post on Gardasil: "On June 8th 2006, the Food and Drug Administration announced the approval of GARDASIL, and on June 29th the Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices voted to recommend adding GARDASIL human papilloma virus vaccine to the Centers for Disease Control's national childhood recommended immunization schedule. On July 14th the first report of a serious reaction to the vaccine was filed with the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS)... Six months later, 82 reports of GARDASIL reactions have been submitted to VAERS on behalf of at least 84 young girls and 2 boys. Reaction reports have come in from 21 states and the District of Columbia. Reactions were reported for children and young adults ranging in age from 11 to 27. Of the reports indicating what day the vaccine was given and the reaction occurred, 63 percent stated that the reaction occurred the same day the vaccine was given. All but three of the reports were for reactions that occurred within one week of vaccination... "

Two boys?

Tickersoid said...

OK, not my field of expertese, but from what I've read, I'm with you on this.

phlegmfatale said...

hollyb - I'll be curious to hear your opinion on the subject

leazwell - Yeah, I'm sure you're right, but I hope it's more the exception than the rule.

zelda - good on you - stick to your guns lady! He's a bastard - at least I can say I didn't vote for him either.

Sister - I know exactly what you mean - I keep thinking of a Wilderness Family existence - it sounds better all the time. So long as we have a rural delivery carrier who will bring me wine and cheeses of the world.

dick - no shit - they have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. Pitiful! ...and speaking of Zelda's guns, maybe she was biding her time until she had license to use them...

nein - get down with your cryptic self! Nice to see you.

tickersoid - I always knew you were a smart guy!

Anonymous said...

Lets go. I'd have to study up on the cheese, but I'm pretty sure I could make some wine if you wanted. You might have to lower your standards to enjoy it though. A

FHB said...

Whole thing is a stupid mess. Too bad Kinky didn't win.

Darkmind said...

(insert controversial matter here)
Maybe we should think in the other direction. Lets legislate sex in schools. Make it mandatory as part of gym class or something. That way, we could curb the childhood obesity thing by getting them motivated to participate in gym class! The kids who die from "sex cancer" will have done so when they were too young to reproduce, making the human collective gene pool that much stronger. As an added bonus, by the time you get to adulthood, everyone will be an expert and partners that are "lame in the sack" will go extinct. It win-win people!!
(end of statement)

Meg said...

I hear they're going to make this compulsory in Australia (or at least in some states), too, and some health professionals are trying to make this compulsory in NZ also. I believe 12 was the key age on this.

The thing that bugs me the most is that the coverage here never mentioned HPV - it's been tooted simply as a vaccine that prevents cervical cancer - which changes the tone somewhat, dontcha think?