Monday, February 05, 2007

Your Body Your Choice Your Freedom at Stake

When people need to make personal medical decisions they should have the right to make those choices for themselves. That is a statement which I believe that most people would agree with. The average person would not expect that it is the business of others what health choices they might make. That is something between the individual and the medical professional. After all, if it does not adversely impact others then what business is it how I decide to manage my health?

Indeed, there are laws making it illegal for those who have access to the medical records of an individual to make available to third parties such information in almost all circumstances other than a rare occasion for law enforcement reasons. Even then there are standards which must be met. A police officer could not simply request the medical records of an individual just because he wanted to have a look.

If making information available is illegal how then is impacting the actual physical administering of such medical procedures any less a violation of law? How is it that the
Governor of Texas can sign into law legislation requiring that all girls entering the public school system be required to receive a vaccination for the Human Papilloma Virus? That isn’t to say that the ability of someone to receive such a vaccination is a bad thing.

Anytime that the medical community has available to them a vaccine which offers a degree of protection against something as potentially deadly as the Papilloma Virus it should be greeted with at least the respect it deserves.

But to legislate that anyone should have any form of drug therapy or medical procedure forced upon them so that they might be able to participate in something such as public school education or risk having such education withheld is wrong.

Unlike a virus which might be spread through basic daily contact and interaction, the Papilloma virus requires such a degree of intimate contact that it would preclude it from being listed among such common viruses which are or have been a problem in the past such as polio.

Since the Papilloma virus is not born by some sort of vector it is not as if it is going to jump off someone infected with it and migrate to the vagina of a female student standing nearby therefore the idea of mandated immunization is stupid and unreasonable at best.

Yes, the law in the instance of the Texas legislation does make exceptions for religious reasons, but if the immunization can be excluded for reason of religion then why compel other young girls who have no religious prohibition to receive it? It is reasonable that such a product should be made available to all who not only require it, but request it as well.

There is no reasonable explanation as to why young girls should be subjected to this course of action by way of a governmental mandate. The only rational explanation for such a mandate is that some political lobbyist doing his or her job for the pharmaceutical industry has been busy at work.

This as in all medical decisions which do not represent a clear and obvious threat to the health and wellbeing of the child should in almost all but the most extenuating of circumstances be left to the parent.

As a matter of fact there are areas which are so sensitive that I do not offer any firm opinion on the matter. That though does not prevent me from bringing such issues to light of day when such come to my attention. I find such situations simply fascinating and a study in human nature and only offer a point of view for the consideration of others.

What then when ones religious beliefs come into direct conflict with the interests of the state? The issue is fairly well understood by the judicial system when the issue involves adults. But the matter is far less clear when it involves a minor child. Time and again the state has taken action to seize
temporary control of minors for medical purposes. Is this right? You will have to decide for yourself.

Remember though that when you side with the state simply basing your viewpoint on the fact that you disagree with the beliefs of the individuals undergoing a human drama you, by your implicit support for the action of the state, authorize them to take control over your life at a time in the future when the issue involves your health decisions. It is truly a matter which requires and deserves some prudence.

Someone once said to me that it might sound strange that I am willing to die for my religious belief. I agreed with the statement. He then said this to me. How many fine young American boys were willing to die in World War 2 for something which they strongly believed in?

His point was made. There are some things that are worth dying for and whether or not a particular understanding of biblical scripture from the perspective of a
particular theologian or a religious body rates up there with dying for liberty and freedom remains to be seen. Still it is an issue of faith, an issue of protected personal belief and freedom. No less important than the right to speak freely.

And since Snake Oil Sam is all about individual freedoms who am I to decide for someone else. The one fact which is clear to me is that such things are and should remain a personal decision which is not done under the compulsion of any other person, governmental entity or religious body of men.
Snake Oil Sam
Internet Media Publishing © 2007

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