Join Date: Feb 2007
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There are two knowledgable provaxers at BBC, and one of them posts over here. Technically, she's a selective vaxer, though. But she generally argues the pro-vax side when debates come up. But the arguments of the knowledgable "laymen" on both sides are far, far, far superior to anything you'll find on a pro-vax or anti-vax website. The "websites" on both sides overwhelmingly tend to be emotive and factually incorrect.
This debate honestly ends up boiling down to a lot of unknowns most of the time. And really, most people who know the most about this subject end up thinking that vaxing or not vaxing probably isn't a huge deal either way. Vaccines aren't the be-all-end-all evil, and they're not the great saviors of humanity, either.
|Would you say that the tone here tends to have emotive and somewhat incorrect qualities at time?|
|But this is all hideously complex. The only news that parents really need is, "give your daughters the vaccine." If the vaccine had been made available 20 years ago, it's probably the only information they would have gotten. In 1993, the medical authorities began vaccinating babies against hepatitis B, which like HPV is generally a "sin" virus in that it is spread predominantly, in the U.S. anyway, through sex and shared hypodermic needles. (Mothers can also transfer it to their babies, and when babies get the disease they often get if for life, whereas people in their 20s can easily shed the virus following an acute infection... another complex story)
In 1993, as evidenced by the newspapers and medical journals, there was not so much resistance from parents to the introduction of the hepatitis B vaccine--although there has come to be some grumbling in recent years.
But now, because of the not entirely unmerited mistrust of the pharmaceutical industry, the quick spread of information, good and bad, over the Internet, and our puritanical
over sex, we have to get the whole complex story of HPV before we commit to the vaccine. In fact the story is so complicated that I imagine many people watching the Merck advertisement feel the same way they do watching any of these direct-to-consumer ads: skeptical and jaded. Why is all this necessary? A lot of Christian conservatives are said to want to withhold the vaccine from their daughters because they feel it sends a message that encourages sexual experimentation. However, it wouldn't send that message if they or their daughters didn't know what it was for and just did what their doctors told them to do. After all, this is a vaccine to prevent a disease, not encourage sex. Ironically, most of the Christian right organizations that initially feared the vaccine now say they think it's a good product.
I know, I know, this is all wishful thinking. Informed consumers want choices, informed consent, this is the information age, etc. ad nauseum. I guess this is just a longwinded way of saying that I think this is a good vaccine.