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Melissa Etheridge: Angelina Jolie's Mastectomy Is "Fearful," Not "Brave"
US Weekly ^ | June 17, 2013 AT 6:00PM | Allison Takeda

Posted on 06/18/2013 4:22:21 PM PDT by drewh

Angelina Jolie's decision to get a double mastectomy after learning she had the breast cancer gene mutation has been lauded by many as courageous, empowering, and even heroic. But singer-songwriter Melissa Etheridge -- a breast cancer survivor herself -- thinks it's actually the opposite of those things.

Asked about Jolie's recent New York Times op-ed, in which she revealed the news of her mastectomy and breast reconstruction, Etheridge told the Washington Blade that she wouldn't make the same decision for herself. Nor would she encourage others to do so without properly researching their options.

"I have to say I feel a little differently," the Grammy-winning chanteuse (who, incidentally, performed at Brad Pitt's wedding to Jennifer Aniston) said of the choice to get a preventive mastectomy. "I have that gene mutation too, and it's not something I would believe in for myself. I wouldn't call it the brave choice. I actually think it's the most fearful choice you can make when confronting anything with cancer."

"My belief is that cancer comes from inside you, and so much of it has to do with the environment of your body. It's the stress that will turn that gene on or not. Plenty of people have the gene mutation and everything, but it never comes to cancer," she continued, noting that surgical removal of one's breasts is "way down the line on the spectrum of what you can do" to lessen your risk of the disease.

"I've been cancer free for nine years now, and looking back, I completely understand why I got cancer," she added. "There was so much acidity in everything. I really encourage people to go a lot longer and further before coming to that conclusion [of a mastectomy]."

To be fair, Jolie said in her May 14 editorial that the decision to have a mastectomy was a personal one. Her main point was that women should be informed about the various options available to them.

"I want to encourage every woman, especially if you have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, to seek out the information and medical experts who can help you through this aspect of your life, and to make your own informed choices," she wrote.

"Life comes with many challenges," she explained. "The ones that should not scare us are the ones we can take on and take control of."


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Local News; TV/Movies; Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: angelinajolie; breastcancer; hollyweird; jolie; lavendermafia; mastectomy
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1 posted on 06/18/2013 4:22:21 PM PDT by drewh
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To: drewh

At this point, what difference does it make?


2 posted on 06/18/2013 4:24:07 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: Nervous Tick

None since Christina Applegate among many others have had this procedure done well before Ms. Jolie.


3 posted on 06/18/2013 4:26:36 PM PDT by UB355 (Slower traffic keep right)
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To: drewh
Etheridge told the Washington Blade that she wouldn't make the same decision for herself. Nor would she encourage others to do so without properly researching their options.

Melissa thinks nobody except her is capable of "properly researching their options."

4 posted on 06/18/2013 4:27:06 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (People with religious faith in government are far crazier than people with religious faith in God.)
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To: drewh

My sister made the same decision as Jolie. The doctors removed a lump but told her she had a 10% chance of it coming back. My sister looked at her two baby daughters. .. 2 and 5. ...and would have cut off her legs to make sure she was there to raise them .


5 posted on 06/18/2013 4:27:20 PM PDT by Blackirish (Forward Comrades!!!!!!!!!)
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To: drewh

>> “My belief is that cancer comes from inside you, and so much of it has to do with the environment of your body. It’s the stress that will turn that gene on or not.”

It’s always been amazing to me how merely having mediocre skill at music, and moderate attractiveness, and the fortune of being in the right place at the right time, confers extraordinary powers of knowledge and understanding about essentially EVERY subject to the American “celebrity”.

It’s uncanny.


6 posted on 06/18/2013 4:28:22 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: drewh; Revolting cat!

Under Obamacare, you’d be advised to just take the pain pill rather than seek any surgery.


7 posted on 06/18/2013 4:29:18 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (America 2013 - STUCK ON STUPID)
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To: drewh

But I bet she thinks it is brave when a homosexual comes out of the closet.

Go quietly fade away, Melissa.


8 posted on 06/18/2013 4:29:44 PM PDT by Irenic (The pencil sharpener and Elmer's glue is put away-- we've lost the red wheel barrow)
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To: Nervous Tick

9 posted on 06/18/2013 4:29:50 PM PDT by drewh
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To: drewh

I never thought I would agree with Melissa Etheridge, but I do.

I think what Jolie did was not only fearful, but stupid. You don’t have healthy, normal body parts removed because of a chance of cancer. If you have a very high chance of developing cancer, you simply get frequently tested. If you actually develop the disease, then you take appropriate action. What Jolie did was bizarre and unhinged - no matter how liberals in the MSM laud it as “brave”.


10 posted on 06/18/2013 4:30:00 PM PDT by vladimir998
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To: drewh

Okay, I’ll say it: Melissa Etheridge is retarded.


11 posted on 06/18/2013 4:30:31 PM PDT by SC_Pete
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To: drewh

Mel is right. It’s just foolish to be afraid of getting cancer, dying horribly and leaving your family alone.

Total stupidity.


12 posted on 06/18/2013 4:31:37 PM PDT by Norm Lenhart
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To: drewh

Another story the US MSM can sink their teeth in.


13 posted on 06/18/2013 4:33:32 PM PDT by hadaclueonce (dont worry about Mexico, put the fence around kalifornia.)
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To: Blackirish

>> would have cut off her legs to make sure she was there to raise them

And so proceed the “ordinary” lives of the genuine heroes that inhabit the LORD’S circle of life and love.

(As opposed to many celebrities, who believe they are the only heroes and the world turns around them.)

May GOD continue to bless your sister richly. Seems he has already given her much wisdom, courage, and love.

THanks for sharing that, and FRegards


14 posted on 06/18/2013 4:34:18 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: vladimir998

My sister is a strong Catholic social conservative. I’m not sure how you bring liberal or conservative into this. I think it’s a “Mother Bear” thing.


15 posted on 06/18/2013 4:34:49 PM PDT by Blackirish (Forward Comrades!!!!!!!!!)
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To: vladimir998
Except for the fact that her sister was dying of breast cancer while all this was going on.
16 posted on 06/18/2013 4:35:36 PM PDT by Bratch
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To: drewh

I think they both make valid points and I am not the person to judge. That being said, I think they are both idiotic narcisitics who felt the need to tell the world “look at me, look at me.”


17 posted on 06/18/2013 4:36:28 PM PDT by Behind Liberal Lines
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To: vladimir998

>> You don’t have healthy, normal body parts removed because of a chance of cancer.

And you don’t have much knowledge of state-of-the-art cancer treatment best practices.

Prophylactic surgery for cancer prevention is not only commonplace, it’s proven effective. That’s how it became a best practice.


18 posted on 06/18/2013 4:36:40 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: vladimir998

Obviously, it”s a personal decision, but I’m inclined to agree with you. I don’t care to go under the knife for any reason unless I absolutely have to. And I’m skeptical about whether identifying a gene or genes would really be such an accurate predictor of whether or not you will get cancer.


19 posted on 06/18/2013 4:37:40 PM PDT by fatnotlazy
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

She’s taking it harder than Brad Pitt.


20 posted on 06/18/2013 4:37:41 PM PDT by RegulatorCountry
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To: RegulatorCountry

Well, Brad does have George Clooney for consolation.


21 posted on 06/18/2013 4:40:13 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (People with religious faith in government are far crazier than people with religious faith in God.)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

i know! what an ass to imply Ms. Jolie did not do extensive research... and Mr. Ethridge is full of crap to think cancer is soley caused by environment, and people have full control as to whethet or not we contract it...


22 posted on 06/18/2013 4:40:17 PM PDT by latina4dubya (when i have money i buy books... if i have anything left, i buy 6-inch heels and a bottle of wine...)
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To: vladimir998

Tony Snow was a high risk for cancer... he was frequently tested... and he died of cancer... we don’t always have control no matter the precautions we take...


23 posted on 06/18/2013 4:43:11 PM PDT by latina4dubya (when i have money i buy books... if i have anything left, i buy 6-inch heels and a bottle of wine...)
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To: Nervous Tick

Very good! What you say is true.


24 posted on 06/18/2013 4:43:25 PM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

It’s a tangle ain’t it.


25 posted on 06/18/2013 4:43:25 PM PDT by RegulatorCountry
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To: RegulatorCountry

>> She’s taking it harder than Brad Pitt.

Sure. He had ‘em frozen, you know. Out of the icebox, they feel about the same as when they were original equipment.

NT!!! STOP THAT!!! BAD BOY!!!

I’ll admit, that *was* cold...


26 posted on 06/18/2013 4:44:38 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: Nervous Tick
It’s always been amazing to me how merely having mediocre skill at music, and moderate attractiveness, and the fortune of being in the right place at the right time, confers extraordinary powers of knowledge and understanding about essentially EVERY subject to the American “celebrity”.

Well said!

27 posted on 06/18/2013 4:48:16 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing)
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To: drewh
I guess Ms. Ethridge didn't do all of her research. There is also a blood cancer - called Acute Lymphobastic Leukemia - and it waylaid a family member. She had blood work done in the first part of September - nothing showed up - and by the end of October (8 weeks) she was fighting for her life.

In this case, chemo bought her 8 months against that monster. (and she nearly died twice during that initial fight.) I know - I was there as her PCA (and everything else she needed) those first three months of that fight.

So I won't denigrate Ms. Jolie for making her choice - or Ms. Ethridge pontificating hers.

I loathe that anyone has to go through such a terrible disease.

28 posted on 06/18/2013 4:51:17 PM PDT by Maigrey (Life, for a liberal, is one never-ending game of Calvinball. - giotto)
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To: drewh

And, Angelina Jolie should care what Melissa Ethridge says - why?


29 posted on 06/18/2013 4:51:39 PM PDT by Gumdrop
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To: drewh

I thank God every day that my tests came back that I didn’t have the BRACI or BRACII gene as well a a more obscure gene for ovarian cancer.

But, after much thought while waiting for the results, I would have a hysterectomy&/or mastectomy if the test cam back positive. Disclaimer: I have 4 kids and have passed the point of having more.

After watching my mother battle ovarian and colon cancer, I will do what ever I have to do not to go through that.

And, please, the screening for colon cancer isn’t the most fun thing in the world, but bit the bullet and just do it!! Cancer is so much worse than a day or 2 of discomfort!! (My personal cause)


30 posted on 06/18/2013 4:57:44 PM PDT by KosmicKitty (WARNING: Hormonally crazed woman ahead!!)
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To: vladimir998

I disagree. Jolie’s mother died of breast cancer, and while she was waiting for her own genetic test results, her aunt died of breast cancer. Since she has adopted several children, she either doesn’t want to, or can’t carry children herself.

That being said, her breasts are ornamental, and with post mastectomy repair would look much the same. The difference being that she would not have two hand grenades taped to her chest.

Her odds for cancer were 50% for ovarian, and 87% for breast. Now, at least for breast cancer, her odds are down to about 3%.


31 posted on 06/18/2013 4:59:47 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy (Best WoT news at rantburg.com)
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To: Nervous Tick

you wrote:

“And you don’t have much knowledge of state-of-the-art cancer treatment best practices.”

Actually I do. I just disagree with hacking off perfectly healthy body parts merely because there is a chance that the person might later develop cancer. If the flesh isn’t diseased, it shouldn’t be hacked off.


32 posted on 06/18/2013 5:10:21 PM PDT by vladimir998
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To: Norm Lenhart

OTOH, Jolie could get hit by a bus tomorrow and still be dead. I find her choice to be fearful as well. I get regular cancer screenings, and if I had the BRAC 1 gene, I would probably get twice yearly screenings. In the meantime, science might discover better screening methods or a more precise way of eradicating the disease. Jolie has no way of knowing this. However, it was her decision to make and I respect that.


33 posted on 06/18/2013 5:17:47 PM PDT by rabidralph (http://www.cafepress.com/westernwis)
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To: rabidralph

Since losing my wife to liver cancer at 29 (not a typo) And raising aour daughter alone, I think people SHOULD be REALLY scared of what cancer does. Personally I’d rather not give the disease 180 days to grow undetected between screenings when I KNOW I am at risk genetically.

But to each their own.


34 posted on 06/18/2013 5:25:18 PM PDT by Norm Lenhart
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To: drewh

i think angelina jolie made an informed decision and it’s nobody else’s life but hers. nobody cares more about jolie’s health more than jolie.

nobody cares more about your health than you. you have to care, only you live in that body. she didn’t just make this decision on a whim and without consultations and research and taking family history into account.

i have no problem with her doing proper research and consultation and contemplating the odds, and from that, making her’own medical decision she believes is the right way to go.

if i were a woman, facing a similar issue, i am not sure i’d make the exact same one, or have the same timetable. but i am not her.


35 posted on 06/18/2013 5:25:54 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (Gone Galt; Not averse to Going Bronson.)
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To: vladimir998
Her mother and aunt died from breast cancer. On her mother’s side of the family her uncle, grandfather and grandmother all died of cancer.

I don’t think her decision is bizarre at all.

36 posted on 06/18/2013 5:27:04 PM PDT by CaptainK (...please make it stop. Shake a can of pennies at it.)
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To: drewh
My mother died from ovarian cancer at age 52. My sister died from inflammatory breast cancer at age 37. My sister tested positive for BRCA 1. I was tested after she got her results and I'm negative. Had I tested positive, I'd have had the surgery done in a NY minute. If a person is positive, than 50% of their offspring will also have the gene mutation. People with the BRCA gene tend to get cancer an average of ten years younger than their parent was when diagnosed. IMO, Angelina Jolie did what she had to do and Melissa Ethredge is a fool.
37 posted on 06/18/2013 5:27:11 PM PDT by Lilyjuslan
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To: drewh
My mother died from ovarian cancer at age 52. My sister died from inflammatory breast cancer at age 37. My sister tested positive for BRCA 1. I was tested after she got her results and I'm negative. Had I tested positive, I'd have had the surgery done in a NY minute. If a person is positive, than 50% of their offspring will also have the gene mutation. People with the BRCA gene tend to get cancer an average of ten years younger than their parent was when diagnosed. IMO, Angelina Jolie did what she had to do and Melissa Ethredge is a fool.
38 posted on 06/18/2013 5:27:12 PM PDT by Lilyjuslan
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To: drewh

My dad has had several cancers. We have the same endocrinologist and he’s never advocated having body parts removed “just in case”.


39 posted on 06/18/2013 5:29:43 PM PDT by VeniVidiVici (Obama's Enemies List - Yes, you are a crook.)
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To: drewh

Gee. So much for a woman’s right to choose. THese liberals are a hoot. Angie made her decision and I am sure it wasn’t easy. She wanted to be sure to be there for her family and wanted to do anything necessary. Melissa made up her mind about what she wanted. I noticed Angie didn’t attack people her chose to use alternate therapies and even validated it as an option. Angie showed class, thoughtfulness, and respect. She also choose to go to any lengths to be there for her children. I admire and respect that. Melissa is a classless trash.


40 posted on 06/18/2013 5:30:24 PM PDT by GOP Poet
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To: vladimir998
It's not a bizarre choice. I have a friend who lost several siblings (brothers & sisters) to different types of cancer, including ovarian and breast cancer. Two of her nieces (daughters of the two sisters who died of cancer) have also had bouts of breast and ovarian cancer. My friend got tested, and the doctor told her that it wasn't a matter of IF she'd get cancer, it was only a matter of WHEN. She chose to have her breasts removed.

You're saying you'd rather wait until you get diagnosed with cancer, to do anything, instead of doing something to prevent getting it altogether. If you had a 90% chance of getting cancer by not having the surgery, and a less than 20% chance of getting cancer by having the surgery, which option would you choose?

41 posted on 06/18/2013 5:31:41 PM PDT by mass55th (Courage is being scared to death - but saddling up anyway...John Wayne)
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To: Lilyjuslan
My mother died from ovarian cancer at age 52. My sister died from inflammatory breast cancer at age 37. My sister tested positive for BRCA 1. I was tested after she got her results and I'm negative. Had I tested positive, I'd have had the surgery done in a NY minute. If a person is positive, than 50% of their offspring will also have the gene mutation. People with the BRCA gene tend to get cancer an average of ten years younger than their parent was when diagnosed. IMO, Angelina Jolie did what she had to do and Melissa Ethredge is a fool.

Absolutely! I agree. Many blessings to you and yours and convalescences as well.

42 posted on 06/18/2013 5:32:05 PM PDT by GOP Poet
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To: GOP Poet
apologies . . . convalescences = condolences
43 posted on 06/18/2013 5:33:23 PM PDT by GOP Poet
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To: vladimir998

>> Actually I do [understand cancer treatment best practices].

We’ll see.

>> I just disagree with hacking off perfectly healthy body parts merely because there is a chance that the person might later develop cancer.

So you disagree with prophylactic oophorectomy for women with a high probability of contracting ovarian cancer? On what basis?

How about prophylactic hysterectomy for women at risk of endometrial cancers?

If everyone took your advice, and chose not to have anything done until they actually developed cancer, what would be the difference in incidence and mortality from these cancers?

What would be the economic impact of taking your advice?


44 posted on 06/18/2013 5:37:50 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: vladimir998
" If you actually develop the disease, then you take appropriate action. "

That's very easy to say, but appropriate action when it comes to cancer doesn't always work, does it? Jolie had a high likelihood of developing breast or ovarian cancer. I don't laud her as "brave"; IMO it was a personal decision involving self-preservation more than bravery. But I understand why she did it.

45 posted on 06/18/2013 5:39:12 PM PDT by CatherineofAragon ((Support Christian white males----the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization).)
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To: Norm Lenhart

Norm, my condolences on your loss. God bless you and your daughter.


46 posted on 06/18/2013 5:40:31 PM PDT by CatherineofAragon ((Support Christian white males----the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization).)
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To: mass55th

“You’re saying you’d rather wait until you get diagnosed with cancer, to do anything, instead of doing something to prevent getting it altogether.”

I’m saying, if you’re not sick, you’re not sick.

“If you had a 90% chance of getting cancer by not having the surgery, and a less than 20% chance of getting cancer by having the surgery, which option would you choose?”

I am in fact in a similar situation (and no, it’s none of your business what that is) and I will not have surgery unless there’s a need to have surgery. I don’t take medicine unless I’m sick. I don’t have surgery unless I need it. I don’t pay taxes unless I owe them. I generally don’t eat unless I’m hungry (although my waistline would disagree). I live by a simple rule: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. If she didn’t have cancer why remove healthy body parts?


47 posted on 06/18/2013 5:43:17 PM PDT by vladimir998
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To: KosmicKitty

>> the screening for colon cancer isn’t the most fun thing in the world

Are you talking about colonoscopy? Or something else?


48 posted on 06/18/2013 5:43:20 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Without GOD, men get what they deserve.)
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To: CatherineofAragon

Thanks. I just brought it up to point out that cancer kills and has consequences. Real ones. You can’t live without a liver, but you CAN live without breasts.

One of the men on the oncology ward had testicular cancer. He refused the snip that could have saved him. He died before she did.

He may well still be here today.


49 posted on 06/18/2013 5:45:19 PM PDT by Norm Lenhart
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To: Nervous Tick

Risk is not about present actuality. Risk is possible future not definite future. If you are not diseased you should not undergo treatment as if you were.


50 posted on 06/18/2013 5:46:12 PM PDT by vladimir998
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