Skip to comments.Bachmann: Gardasil causes “mental retardation”
Posted on 09/13/2011 8:09:37 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
Earlier today, I noted that Michele Bachmann finally scored points on Rick Perry by hitting him on his ties to Merck and linking that to the Gardasil mandate Perry imposed through executive order in Texas. This is a fair point on Perrys record, even given his apology for pursuing the mandate through EO instead of through the legislature, and its not surprising that Bachmann was the candidate to first take advantage of the opening. (Mitt Romney passed a mandate on health insurance for all citizens of Massachusetts, which pretty much puts this issue out of reach for him.) However, Bachmann took a winning argument about the method and the wisdom of mandating a vaccination for a limited-spread virus and turned it into an anti-vaccination argument, especially in this post-debate argument on Fox with Greta van Susteren.
>>>"Theres a woman who came up crying to me tonight after the debate. She said her daughter was given that vaccine. She told me her daughter suffered mental retardation as a result of that vaccine."<<<
Huh? Mental retardation typically takes place in a pre- or neo-natal event. Autism becomes apparent in the first couple of years of life and primarily affects boys. Gardasil vaccinations take place among girls between 9-12 years of age. Even assuming that this anecdote is arguably true, it wouldnt be either mental retardation or autism, but brain damage.
The FDA has received no reports of brain damage as a result of HPV vaccines Gardasil and Cervarix. Among the reports that correlate seriously adverse reactions to either, the FDA lists blood clots, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, and 68 deaths during the entire run of the drugs. The FDA found no causal connection to any of these serious adverse events and found plenty of contributing factors to all and all of the events are exceedingly rare.
The mental retardation argument is a rehash of the thoroughly discredited notion that vaccines containing thimerasol caused a rapid increase in diagnosed autism cases. That started with a badly-botched report in Lancet that allowed one researcher to manipulate a ridiculously small sample of twelve cases in order to reach far-sweeping conclusions about thimerasol. That preservative hasnt been included in vaccines for years, at least not in the US, and the rate of autism diagnoses remain unchanged.
The most charitable analysis that can be offered in this case for Bachmann is that she got duped into repeating a vaccine-scare urban legend on national television. It looks more like Bachmann sensed that she had won a point and wanted to go in for the kill, didnt bother to check the facts, and didnt care that she was stoking an anti-vaccination paranoid conspiracy theory, either. Neither shines a particularly favorable light on Bachmann.
Rick Santorum took the correct position on the Gardasil issue. We mandate certain vaccines in children because we mandate children be gathered for educational purposes for many years (in private or public schools), and certain diseases are easily communicable in those settings. By mandating vaccinations against whooping cough, measles, and mumps, we are protecting children who would otherwise get exposed without any action on their part except compliance with the law. Thats not true with HPV, and parents should decide for themselves whether to inoculate their sons and daughters with Gardasil or Cervarix. If Perry wanted to make those inoculations more accessible, he could have crafted an opt-in system rather than forcing parents to opt out.
Many other states are considering legislation with regard to Gardasil. It is simply wrong to suggest that Rick Perry is the only one who has ever thought it would be a good idea.
Kentucky is considering something very close to what Rick Perry wanted.
“Would requires immunization against human papillomavirus for female children and require that parental statements to withhold consent be filed with the immunization certificate. Would also require educational resources to the public and all schools with special information. (In committee 1/29/10)”
I have to question why anyone would feel a need to vaccinate a child against this sort of thing anyway.
In my opinion its something that should be set aside as a specific “Opt in” choice for parents.
[If Perry wanted to make those inoculations more accessible, he could have crafted an opt-in system rather than forcing parents to opt out.]
Except, please correct me if I’m wrong, that wouldn’t have achieved the goal of making insurance companies have to cover the HPV vaccine. It had to be added to the mandatory list, and Perry included a parental opt-out. The goal of this EO was to get insurance companies to cover the expensive vaccine. Too bad Perry fails over and over again to make that point.
True, there was an opt out, but an opt in would have been wiser and less of a gov intrusion into peoples lives. Perry blew it on this one but he has admitted such. The gardisil issue though seems to have now morphed from “was it wise to mandate” to “was it corrupt to mandate.” Without evidence to support it other than Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc, the latter is just a sleazy below the belt slam.
RP65 Relating to the immunization of young women from the cancer-causing Human Papillomavirus.
Parents Rights. The Department of State Health Services will, in order to protect the right of parents to be the final authority on their childrens health care, modify the current process in order to allow parents to submit a request for a conscientious objection affidavit form via the Internet while maintaining privacy safeguards under current law.
Hold on to them. Someone must, because others are losing theirs!
“Science” cannot, if continued to all eternity, come up with a single policy. A moral imperative is not contained in any premise in its bailiwick. So no syllogism can be constructed from its premises whose conclusion is a moral imperative.
Yea, that is really stupid of the government to think they can MAKE people have immunizations!
What’s next, shots for polio, or tetanus, or measles, or hepatitus A, or hepatitus B, or pneumococcal vaccine, or rotavirus vaccine, or influenza, or MMR, or varicella vaccine, or meningococcal vaccine, or human pappilomavirus vaccine? Guess they already do since the above list is from the recommended immunization schedule/S
Your constant spinning for Perry’s flaws is getting annoying.
She wasn't my candidate, but to me that remark made it clear that she is a pure politician out for her own gain rather than the Tea Party saviour that many seem to think.
False. The Executive Order actually made the Opt out easier than any vaccine in Texas before. It also required the state health department to protect the right of parents to be the final authority on their childrens health care.
“My understanding is that any parent could opt out of having this for their child
under the Perry/Texas law so how can anyone continue to call it a “mandate?””
Because you understood wrong. The opt out had to be by filling in a governemnt form, all things correct, filled out every two years, and many private schools refused to accept the opt-out program, placing parents of those schools in a pickle.
Sorry, but government tyranny that has an odd opt-out is still government tyranny.
>>I have to question why anyone would feel a need to vaccinate a child against this sort of thing anyway.<<
Because the government is using scare tactics to push parents to get it.
Every report about girls maturing earlier is forcing the age down too. My doctor asked me about it when my daughter was still 9. When I said no, he told me that he won’t get it for his own daughter, either. Too many side effects for something that is easily avoided. And no, this doctor is not anti-vaccine, just anti-THIS vaccine.
I even had a college aged friend tell me that she got it because her college clinic told her that it prevents all kinds of herpes AND all cervical cancers. Nice, huh?
But on the flip side, that means more business for Merck than if it was an option at direct parental expense, where parents can see it. (It is at parental expense in the big picture, because the insurance company recoups the cost through the premiums it charges. Insurance policies never create money — never.)
“My understanding is that any parent could opt out of having this for their child under the Perry/Texas law so how can anyone continue to call it a “mandate?”
Because it suits their agenda.
“My understanding is that any parent could opt out of having this for their child
under the Perry/Texas law so how can anyone continue to call it a “mandate?”
Another Perry apologist?
Since when are “conservatives” open to allowing the government to force us to “opt-out” of anything?
The government should stay the hell out of how we choose to live.
I am extremely disappointed with the easy comfort many here appear to have with govt coercion, when it's their guy doing it.
People will rationalize anything.
>>Because you understood wrong. The opt out had to be by filling in a governemnt form, all things correct, filled out every two years, and many private schools refused to accept the opt-out program, placing parents of those schools in a pickle.<<
People don’t seem to get this. AND like the government has never lost a form. I could see girls getting this vaccine when the form has been lost.
It's probably worthwhile for contagious diseases spread by casual contact or by water or air, but a disease spread by sexual contact is different. Also the burden of the side effects is placed onto young people. The disease they want to prevent doesn't usually occur till the forties or fifties. Even then cervical cancer is highly treatable. Gardacil only protects against 4 strains of HPV, although Merck is testing its cross-strain efficacy against others. It's an expensive vaccine. The vaccine doesn't eliminate the need for regular pap smears due to the fact that it doesn't protect against all strains of HPV and future strains that may emerge. I was reading that a study didn't recommend it for mass vaccinations, because the cost of the vaccinations would be greater than the cost of treating the diseases it is supposed to prevent.
Hey, isn’t a lot of this “need” the fault of the gummit in forcing larger crowds of kids together than would exist in a homeschooling situation or most parochial/private schools? If there is an axe to grind against the pub skewls, this would be the place to do it.