Skip to comments.MERCK: VOTE AGAINST RESOLUTION TO STOP THE USE OF ABORTED FETAL TISSUE IN VACCINES
Posted on 03/25/2003 9:36:50 PM PST by cpforlife.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 25, 2003
Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director
Children of God for Life (727) 538-5558
MERCK REQUESTS SHAREHOLDERS VOTE AGAINST RESOLUTION TO STOP THE USE OF ABORTED FETAL TISSUE IN VACCINES
(Clearwater, FL; Front Royal, VA) Pro-life organizations, Children of God for Life and Human Life International charged today that pharmaceutical giant, Merck & Co. has betrayed their stockholders by refusing to include language in Shareholder Proposal No. 7. that would have revealed:
- An organized boycott of all Merck products
- A resolution by the Catholic Medical Association to use alternatives to their vaccines cultivated on aborted fetal tissue
- Instruction by investment counseling organization, Pro Vita Advisors, that investors divest their Merck stock.
By using aborted fetal cell lines in vaccine production, Human Life International, President Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer, who purchased sufficient shares of Merck stock demanded fellow shareholders be informed that Merck has violated its own Statement on Values, which states in part, "We are committed to the highest standards of ethics and integrity".
In a 5-page letter to the SEC, Merck pleaded their case to keep the entire resolution from becoming public, stating that the use of aborted fetal cell lines falls under ordinary business and therefore should be excluded from the proxy vote. In addition, Merck refused to acknowledge that they were profiting from the destruction of human life, stating there was no financial evidence to prove it. Mercks net income for 2002 was $7,149.5 million, with $34.6 million in viral vaccine sales.
While the SEC agreed to allow the information to be included in this years annual meeting, Mercks attorneys were able to successfully remove most of the critical language.
What they have done is deny their stockholders the right to vote on the true language of the resolution, stated Children of God for Lifes Executive Director Debi Vinnedge, who has organized the boycott and the Campaign for Ethical Vaccines with over 475,000 signatures.
Rev Euteneuer agreed. Watch for your proxy cards in the mail and if their practice of using aborted fetal cell lines offends you, vote in favor of Resolution 7., to appoint a special committee linking executive compensation with the Companys ethical performance.
"What went in and what came out of that resolution are quite different", said Vinnedge. "While we are pleased that the SEC agreed to provide stockholders with the information that aborted fetal cell lines are used in Merck's vaccines, we also believe they should be aware of boycotts, investment warnings and the resolution by the Catholic Medical Association to use alternatives. In effect, such actions by several organizations and parents to boycott all Merck products and use alternatives may eventually decrease their sales numbers and devalue the stock".
To review the Merck Proxy statement being mailed to shareholders for consideration at the upcoming meeting, go to: http://www.merck.com/finance/proxy/pr2003/proposal_4.html
To review the unabridged version of this press release with the original language of the Resolution as submitted by Human Life International go to: http://www.cogforlife.org/merckpress.htm
God bless always, Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director Children of God for Life http://www.cogforlife.org
Could this be because of pressure to stop using animals?
Merck uses aborted fetal tissue in their vaccines.
Then today: MERCK REQUESTS SHAREHOLDERS VOTE AGAINST RESOLUTION TO STOP THE USE OF ABORTED FETAL TISSUE IN VACCINES.
Please read and forward!!! WE CAN STOP THIS!!!
FREEP MERCK AND BOYCOT MERCK!!!
I believe they are the Pro-Life authority on tracking companies that use ABORTED FETAL TISSUE IN VACCINES.
I personally met with Debi Vinnedge last year at a Pro-Life conference. She is a great pro-lifer and tackles this area with absolute dedication.
Children of God for Life http://www.cogforlife.org 2130 Catalina Drive, Clearwater, Florida 33764 (727) 538-5558
THE DARK HISTORY
For over thirty years pharmaceutical companies in this country have been producing vaccines derived from tissues of aborted fetuses, a fact that was brought to light when several prominent Catholic newspapers published articles on the morality of using the vaccines. The trouble began when a new law in St. Louis County, Mo. required food handlers to obtain the Hepatitis-A vaccine for employment. When the source of the vaccine was revealed, many principled individuals objected and with good reason. And as this information has continued to become more and more public, a large number of physicians and parents are highly troubled by the ethical issues involved.
During the Rubella epidemic of 1964, some doctors advised exposed pregnant women to abort their children. The resulting virus strain developed was known in the science world as RA/27/3, where R=Rubella, A=Abortus, 27=27th fetus tested, 3=third tissue explant. There were actually 26 abortions prior to finding the right species with the active virus. The vaccine was then cultivated on the lung tissue of yet another aborted infant, WI-38. WI-38 (Wistar Institute 38) was taken from the lung tissue of an aborted female infant at 3 months gestation in the 1960s. A second human cell line, MRC-5 was derived from a male at 14 weeks gestation in the 1970s. They were used to cultivate the weakened virus strains of several diseases to produce immunizations. These two human cell lines cultivated in the lab continue to provide an ongoing source for many widely used vaccines.
NO OTHER SOURCE
Three of the vaccines were produced solely from abortion and to date, there is no other source available to treat their diseases. The vaccines are:
CHICKEN POX HEPATITIS - A RUBELLA
Following is the information on each vaccine, its clinical name and the pharmaceutical company producing them.
CHICKENPOX: VARIVAX/VARICELLA Uses both MRC-5 and WI-38 human cell lines and is produced by Merck & Co.
HEPATITIS-A: HAVRIX, VAQTA Uses MRC-5 human cell lines and is produced by SmithKline Beecham and Merck & Co.
HEPATITIS A-B: TWINRIX New combo vaccine uses MRC-5 human cell lines and is produced by SmithKline Beecham (NOTE: Hepatitis-B alone is NOT tainted.)
RUBELLA: MERUVAX, MMR Uses WI-38 human cell lines and is produced by Merck & Co. NOTE: MMR PROVIDES SIMULTANEOUS VACCINATION FOR MEASLES-MUMPS-RUBELLA. ANY VACCINE WHICH COMBINES WITH RUBELLA, IE, RUBELLA-MUMPS, (BIAVAX) RUBELLA-MEASLES (MR-VAX) USES THE SAME ABORTED FETAL CELLS. MERUVAX IMMUNIZES FOR RUBELLA ONLY.
OTHER TAINTED VACCINES
There are some vaccines that have been manufactured from these same aborted fetal cell lines, (MRC-5 and WI-38), however there are also alternative sources used in their production that do not come from abortion. Following is the information on each vaccine, its clinical name, the alternative untainted source and the pharmaceuticals producing them.
TAINTED VACCINES (continued) MUMPS MEASLES POLIO RABIES
MUMPS MUMPSVAX (UNTAINTED) Merck & Co.: Uses the cell cultures of a chicken embryo. 1-800 422-9675
MEASLES ATTENUVAX (UNTAINTED) Merck & Co: Uses the cell cultures of a chicken embryo. 1-800 422-9675
POLIO POLIOVAX (TAINTED) Aventis-Pasteur: Uses MRC-5 human cell line. IPOL (UNTAINTED) Aventis-Pasteur: Uses monkey kidney cells. 1-800-822-2463 ORIMUNE (Oral Dosage - Untainted) Aventis-Pasteur: Uses monkey kidney cells. 1-800-822-2463 RABIES IMOVAX (TAINTED) Aventis-Pasteur/Connaught: Uses MRC-5 human cell line. RabAvert (UNTAINTED) Chiron Inc.: Uses chick embryo. 1-800 244-7668 (Pacific Time)
Your doctor can order these untainted versions in single doses by calling the 800 numbers above.
NOTE: As new vaccines are being developed Children of God for Life will monitor their production. If the vaccine you are questioning is not listed here, as of the release date listed below, it is not derived from aborted fetal tissue. As the new smallpox vaccines become available, we will update you with the name of both the tainted and untainted versions, which will be produced by both Acambis and Acambis-Baxter. (Information Release Date: January 2002)
Many ethicists have tried to justify the use of vaccines derived from aborted fetal tissue when there are no alternatives available. They make a legitimate argument that we have a moral obligation to protect our children and society from life threatening diseases.
Those opposed to abortion, find the use of these vaccines morally objectionable. The aborted child has already had his/ her human dignity severely violated. The callous practice of using these babies' tissue amounts to further violation of the dignity of the unborn person. Some think using such vaccines constitutes complicity in the evil of abortion; others argue that it is morally permissible in the absence of alternatives. Still others argue, Well, the abortions were performed over 30 years ago, so what's the big deal?"
In our culture, unfortunately it is a big deal, because researchers are still exploiting aborted fetuses and are lobbying to create embryos strictly for the purposes of research. They use the existence of vaccines from aborted fetuses to justify their proposals. At the Senate subcommittee hearings held April 26, 2000 on Embryonic Stem Cell Research, Senator Harry Reid compared the use of future products taken from destroyed human embryos to the benefits of the Polio vaccine. The University of Nebraska used the same argument in defending its' experiments on fetal tissue donated from abortion facilities. But perhaps most disturbing was President Bush's use of these vaccines to justify his decision on funding embryonic stem cell research in August 2001. He compared the use of these destroyed human embryos to the development of the chickenpox vaccine.
If we accept the status quo now, what argument against further research and products in the future could be legitimately argued? It is certain that scientists and pharmaceutical companies will pursue an avenue of research they perceive to be perfectly acceptable to the public. We have a moral responsibility to promote, request and use those vaccines that do offer alternatives
And remember the Rubella epidemic mentioned on the previous page? Scientists did not have to use aborted fetuses in order to isolate the Rubella virus for creating a vaccine. They could have done exactly what the Japanese did: they swabbed the throat of an infected child and grew the virus on non-fetal cell lines, producing a vaccine that unfortunately, is not currently available in the United States. There is no doubt that American scientists wanted to use fetal tissue and this simply gave them the opportunity and excuse to do so. The same holds true for those who are pursuing embryonic stem cell research: there are alternatives and they should be utilized.
Unless all our actions show respect for human life, we will be less able to oppose the actions of those who discount the inviolable dignity of embryonic and fetal life. The most important fact is that vaccines can and must be made from sources other than tissues from aborted fetuses. We proved it with our smallpox campaign in November 2001 by demanding an untainted alternative - and we got it! Had we remained silent, millions of Americans would be forced to use a life and death vaccine, grown on the MRC-5 aborted fetal cell lines. Perhaps then, the real complicity lies not in whether we choose to use these vaccines, but rather that we do nothing about them.
The Campaign for Ethical Vaccines
Is Now On-Line!
Sign our petition as we demand that our pharmaceutical manufacturers produce safe, effective vaccine alternatives that are not derived from aborted fetal tissue. For more information, visit our website:
http://www.cogforlife.org Children of God for Life
Or write to us at: Children of God for Life 2130 Catalina Drive, Clearwater, Florida 33764 (727) 538-5558
Produced by Children of God for Life With Grateful Acknowledgement For The Assistance of Dr. Janet Smith, PhD, University of Dallas
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