According to Mr. Lockert (Letters, March 18), science becomes "settled" when a "practical use" is found for it. Really? I do not believe there are many practicing scientists who would agree with this utilitarian definition of the scientific endeavor.
Putting this aside, I still do not understand his point. Round-Up was developed by scientists. It works. It is an incredibly effective weed killer—at least in the short run. That is settled. Its effect on the human organism and on the long-term ability of the earth to sustain agriculture and life is not part of this equation. This is a separate scientific question, one that needs research grants and other resources to study it.
I did not say that the rise in childhood asthma and autoimmune diseases is caused by vaccination. I said that this is a legitimate scientific question to ask, and that there is no research money available to study this hypothesis. I also said that it might be dangerous, based upon historical precedent, to raise such radical questions. Mr. Lockert extrapolates from this that I "assume all of our fellow citizens employed in immunology, virology and epidemiology are so motivated by greed that they are cowed into submission and will not speak out." That is quite a stretch from anything that I said (or think). It is a mean-spirited, ad hominen attack and diminishes the possibility of dialogue on this vital public health question.
Vaccines are chemicals. They are introduced into the interior environment of very young human beings in massive doses. And they work.Just as Round-up works to kill weeds, vaccines work to kill measles. We live in a society in which, by Mr. Lockert's characterization, it is possible for "thousands of untested chemicals to be put into the environment." Why then is it so far-fetched for people to question this one? Vaccines may work in the short term, but is incumbent upon us as parents and as a society to consider the long-term consequences of this immediate "victory" over the diseases of childhood.
It seems we are living in a bacon wonderland ("It's Raining Bacon," March 25). It's interesting to note that when your product doesn't stand up on its own, you have to add plant-based spices and sugars.
Here's a bacon story: A father takes his four-year-old to "agriculture day" where there seems to be a lot of happy animals and nothing bad is happening. The father hands his son a bacon sandwich, the son asks, "Where did the bacon come from?" Dad replies, "You don't want to know, but I've got good news. For your fifth birthday, we're going to have a big bacon-infused cake, and of course, a side of bacon. Everybody can bring their dogs. We'll have T-shirts with pictures of happy pigs on them, and remember, if anybody mentions the pigs, make a joke real quick and change the subject." The child persists, "How did you get the bacon?" Dad says, "Well, there's a machine, and the pig goes in one end and the bacon comes out the other." The forward-thinking child reacts, "I'd rather have a happy pig tomorrow than a bacon sandwich today."
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