There’s a big push on in certain circles to have some sort of mandated vaccination program for all girls between 9 and 18 to receive the Gardasil shot. This vaccination is intended to prevent cervical cancer caused by the sexually transmitted disease HPV. Here’s the controversy: While the vaccine is touted as preventing cervical cancer from HPV, it must be taken by girls in their adolescent years. Of course, since you can only get HPV through sexual activity, some folks believe that giving their daughters the vaccine will be a tacit acknowledgment that they engage in premarital sex. I’m not sure if I buy that argument or not. For one thing, you don’t have to tell your pre-teen daughter that’s what it’s for and, human nature being what is, it is still possible for your daughter—no matter how well you raise her—to user her free will and make a mistake somewhere down the line. I don’t believe the vaccine itself is immoral, which is in contrast to the use of contraceptives.
Miss Kelly looks at the economic, scientific, and political ramifications of the vaccine. In Texas, Gov. Rick Perry wants to make the vaccinations mandatory, which makes some people suspicious because Perry has ties to Merck, the drug’s manufacturer. Other states are also considering making it mandatory as well, along the lines of other vaccinations required of all students in public schools.
Safety, effectiveness, and delinquency