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Murder and Suicide the American Way

Illustration courtesy Alliance for Human Research Protection

By Jill Chapin, Special to FogCityJournal.com

September 15, 2007

At some point we must come to grips with the sobering reality that Americans are getting sick and dying due to our lemming-like acceptance of lethal decisions made by both our government and ourselves. And nowhere is this acceptance more alarming than with our staggering ingestion of drugs and chemicals.

How could we ever call ourselves the healthiest country in the world if we are also the world’s leading purchasers of drugs? What is making us so sick that we need them?

Americans seem comatose in our collective lack of outrage over the legal sanctioning and the wholesale poisoning of an entire country, so in this sense we’re all guilty of complicity. Our passive acceptance of this is probably due to several factors. It would be extremely traumatic to contemplate our government’s proactive role in keeping us sick, we’re too trusting of the authorities, we’re lazy, and we feel incapable of making a difference.

The FDA admits that over 100,000 deaths occur each year from prescription drugs, the fifth leading cause of death in the United States. Further, they report over two million people experience severe medication reactions in American hospitals, such as permanent disability, further hospitalization or death. Yet the government outcry is greater over the possible side effects from natural supplements or from Canadian drugs. What has happened to our collective common sense in allowing this perverted sense of logic to prevail?

Some put these numbers in more astonishing perspective. An average of three hundred deaths annually caused by airline crashes draws more government scrutiny than ongoing deaths from prescription drugs that average three hundred a day.

Besides all the drugs we take, there are thousands of known or suspected carcinogenic chemicals that we interact with daily. It is curious that there isn’t an uproar from the American public to do more than just study them more and investigate further. One has to wonder at what point do we realize that researching ad nauseam for that definitive smoking gun may never be discovered, at least not in our lifetime. Since these suspect chemicals were introduced into our lives not to improve our health but to improve some company’s bottom line, why are scientists and researchers and doctors not speaking out on our behalf? Why would they risk our well being by suggesting it’s still okay to associate with these likely killers while they go on about their endless business of studying them?

Cancer treatments using highly potent chemotherapies have been known to sometimes later cause secondary cancers. Perhaps this is why cancer rates have soared in the three decades since we aggressively declared war on this disease. But scientists often use the bad genes excuse to partially explain away this alarming increase. Are we to believe that we have suddenly become a nation of genetic mutants?

Sadly, we’re a long way from implementing any meaningful intelligent approach toward improving our nation’s health. A consumer health advocate unabashedly stated that the entire drug industry, along with their FDA co-conspirator, is now the single greatest threat to the health and safety of the American people.

Except for the omission on the complicity of Americans themselves, I couldn’t have said it better.

Jill Chapin has been a guest writer and columnist in several Los Angeles area papers for over fifteen years. She has written a bilingual parenting book, If You Have Kids, Then Be a Parent! and a children's book entitled My Magic Bubble.

Jill Chapin





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