I’m not sure what it is with lawmakers. Are they only interested in increasing control over citizens’ lives? Or is it that in combination with ignorance?
Let the Boston Globe tell it:
Seventh-graders in Rhode Island started school this year under a new mandate rarely seen in the country: Girls and boys must be vaccinated against HPV — the human papillomavirus — a sexually transmitted disease that can cause cancer.
The move sparked protests from parents, who resented a school requirement to immunize against a disease that spreads through sex rather than anything that could be transmitted in the classroom.
Despite the uproar, public health officials in Massachusetts are watching Rhode Island’s move. If it succeeds, Massachusetts may want to take the same route to boost the use of a vaccine that has long been a hard sell, said Kevin Cranston, director of the state’s Bureau of Infectious Disease.
“We’re going to be very intrigued by the Rhode Island mandate experience,” Cranston said.
In other words, Cranston wants to see if he can get away with it, too.
Listen closely, nervous lawmakers. If your kids are vaccinated against HPV, and the vaccine was effective, which it almost always is, then it does not matter if the kid next to yours are not vaccinated. Your kid can’t be infected.
There is thus no reason to mandate a vaccine.
HPV is spread by sexual transmission. Having the HPV vaccine is thus a little like putting helmets and pads on (American) football players. It encourages those players to hit a little harder, to take more risks. Same thing with the vaccine. It will encourage some—not all—kids to have underage immoral out-of-wedlock sexual intercourse whereas without the vaccine they would not have. The vaccine will encourage some—not all—kids to have unprotected sexual encounters, whereas without the vaccine they would not have.
The HPV vaccine is thus not like the one against polio, which can be caught any old way, regardless of behavior. HPV can only be caught doing what is wrong. Many parents like the idea of being in charge of their children’s notions of right and wrong. The government has here usurped the parental role.
And here’s another case of cronyism. Merck, the makers of Gardasil, are richer than individual parents, and therefore possessing more access to lawmakers, and so will encourage the passing of these needless laws. And not out of altruism. You don’t have to believe me. Back to the Boston Globe:
In 2006, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended the vaccine for 11- and 12-year-old girls, as three doses given six months apart. (Boys were added in 2009.) But when Texas Governor Rick Perry required HPV vaccination for girls entering middle school, the state Legislature overturned it — after it was revealed that Gardasil’s manufacturer had contributed to Perry’s reelection campaign and lobbied legislators.
How much Merck gave to Rhode Island personages is unknown. Anybody want to bet it’s zero?
Side effects. Are there any? Hey. What are you, some sort of tin-foil-hat wearing weirdo? If there were side effects, would our beneficent government mandate the vaccination? Wee p-values have proven the vaccine’s effectiveness!
Lastly, control. The government is staffed, it tells us, by experts, many with advanced degrees. They have studied child rearing, whereas you, the parent, are a educational novice. How dare you think you can raise your child better than government experts?
Just what argument do you have that rebuts raw power? The government first mandates all children must be in government schools, or some school, then mandates your child must have this unnecessary vaccine. Your hope is to home school. But just wait: once that movement gains enough momentum, the government will step in here, too. Regulate, regulate, regulate.
It’s time for a change.