Skepticism

Skepchick Quickies, 5.12

Jen

Jen is a writer and web designer/developer in Columbus, Ohio. She spends too much time on Twitter at @antiheroine.

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12 Comments

  1. It’s going to be a bloody miracle if the human race survives for another millennium. If we’re not irreparably poisoning our environment, we’re neglecting to protect ourselves from easy preventable diseases. Throw in the chance of random space rocks or supervolcano eruptions, and it’s looking pretty grim.

  2. I just gave a copy of the whooping cough article to the coworker whos argument against imunization was that it’s the parents choice and no one should force their kids to take them. “Read this, and if parents decide not to imunize then their children should not be allowed to attend public schools.”

  3. I really think it is time for public health to trump the religious and/or personal choice exemption for vaccinations. Many schools will not allow a child to ride their bike to school without a helmet but will allow the opting out of vaccinations… . Folk who don’t vaccinate their children can home school or find private schools that share their beliefs and a willingness to take risks.

    Perhaps if the vaccines were certified organic and vegetarian there’d be fewer issues??

  4. And the ironic thing it, it is vaccines which have allowed the new-agey anti-vax crowd to thrive.

    These fluff heads haven’t seen the full horrors of polio, measels, or chicken pox. They haven’t seen people in iron lungs, reduced to drooling vegetables, blinded, scarred for life or just plain dead.

    Personally I would ship them all off to a third world country where such diseases run rampant, and see how long it takes for them to start squealing and change their tune.

  5. Up in Canada, this is starting to get a lot of publicity. I don’t know if it is refreshing or not to know that such idiocy isn’t exclusive to the christian types.

    http://www.thespec.com/News/Local/article/366835

    “The family says they have native blood in their veins. That dad’s ancestors were native. That stepmom is native. And that the boy is Metis. (Family court documents say, however, that the child is “found to be non-native” and “non-Indian.”) They say their spiritual beliefs guided their decision.

    “There is only one person — The Creator — who decides who lives or dies,” says dad. “It’s not you or me or McMaster Hospital or the CAS — it’s The Creator.”

    “They believe oregano, turmeric and green tea have healing powers.”

  6. Reading the comments on the story about organic farming just makes me wish there were such a thing as “evidence-based agriculture”. It seems obvious that USDA Organic is a joke, more a marketing term than anything (and this comes from folks I know who do their own “organic” gardening), but that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be looking at sustainable alternatives to “conventional” farming. Especially as oil prices continue to rise, conventional farming is going to be less and less viable, economically.

    As with everything else, we’ve been lucky to have such a cheap source of energy for so long, but now that our primary energy source is getting less cheap we need to find some way to transition smoothly to an economy that uses alternate energy sources and also just less energy overall. I’m confident that science can come up with solutions to these problems, not only of energy in general but for sustainable agriculture in general, but the ultimate question is whether policy will keep up with the science. So far, it hasn’t.

    On a side note, the one thing I do like about Whole Foods, despite their pushing of homeopathic products, which needless to say annoys the crap out of me, is that they offer a lot of locally-grown produce from around the northeast. I don’t have anything to back it up, but I just have a feeling that decentralisation is going to be one key to building a more sustainable future for us.

  7. One of my favorite movies is James Cameron’s masterpiece (IMO) “The Abyss.” One of the reasons I like it so much is that he went out of his way to make the whole thing plausible from a scientific perspective. There might be a few gaps here and there, but it’s clear he spent a lot of time researching the concept of living in a deep sea habitat.

  8. Out of curiosity, given the anti-vaxers are freaking and suing over MMR and equivilant vaccines, I was wondering about the fairly new HPV vaccine.

    Given that the vaccine prevents cervical cancer, it covers a lot of ‘forbidden territory’ in the US political environment (anti-vaxers, religious prudes, the HPV vaccine will turn women in nymphomanaics grousp, etc), what is the general stance the US politicos have towards HPV vaccine?

    Is it recommeneded, banned, free, lost in committee?

  9. Ta :)

    Detail is always good – as to use the expression, that is where the devil usually hides.

    Unfortunatly it seems option “D” (vanished into a committee) is the current model for the majority of States. Virginia seemed to have progress, but now a bill is in to overturn it and replace it with “fluffy-do-nothing-but-here’s-some-pamphlets legislation”, as Texas has done.

    I wonder what they’ll do if a HIV vaccine is ever developed given their current attitudes. :(

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