“Save a Turkey, Stuff an Activist” – Bumper Sticker on Uncle John’s Pickup Truck
The radical activists doing outrageous things in the areas of environmental and animal rights extremism never cease to amaze me. What has currently flipped my wig, however, is an activist organization I discovered this week called “Breast Cancer Action.” On a subject I thought we all agreed, there are an organized group of loonies out to derail the activities of those companies and organizations trying to advance the cause of breast cancer research and awareness.
Sounds too outrageous to be true, right? Just visit their website “Milking Cancer,” and you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about:
Reducing the risk of breast cancer requires understanding and eliminating its causes. Pinkwashers are companies that claim to care about breast cancer but make or sell products that are linked to the disease. rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone) is one of those products.
Eli Lilly is a pharmaceutical company that claims to “care for our communities.” But the company is responsible for the cancer and infertility causing DES (diethylstilbestrol), for the illegal marketing of the schizophrenia drug Zyprexa and for the illegal marketing of its osteoporosis drug Evista as a breast cancer “preventive.” And now it’s Eli Lilly & rBGH.
Lilly and its subsidiaries manufacture literally dozens of products for human and animal health that promote longer lives and better health. Companies like Lilly, long vilified by anti-business and anti-technology extremists, are now being targeted specifically because they support breast cancer prevention and research as part of their community outreach and philanthropy.
If you think I’m taking this group to task because of it’s stance against rBGH (or what some also refer to as rBST), you’re dead wrong. What caught my eye about this group was this statement:
“Mammography screening is in the news again. The US Prevention Services Task Force has announced new guidelines for breast cancer screening that would mean women get fewer mammograms. This is good news.”
Like many Americans who spend some amount time and money supporting efforts of groups like the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, or the efforts of late Buckeye legend Stephanie Spielman, I was more than a little concerned by efforts in Washington to hamper early detection protocols. So when this activist organization trumpeted these suggestions as good news, my suspicions were heightened.
From the BCA’s policy on mammography: “Women who are pre-menopausal should not have regular screening mammograms, and everyone should know the benefits and risks of all screening methods.” So what exactly are the “risks” of getting a mammogram to detect breast cancer as early as possible? From the BCA’s policy statement:
– False negative results (mammogram reads as clear, but there is breast cancer present)
– False positive results (mammogram shows a problem, but biopsy reveals that the problem is not cancer). False positive results result in unnecessary biopsies, increased anxiety and stress, and physical scarring
– Cumulative exposure to radiation. (Radiation is one of the few known causes of breast cancer. All radiation exposures accumulate in the body. Our bodies do not eliminate these exposures.
– Diagnosis and treatment of cancers that are not life threatening at the time of diagnosis and will never become life threatening if untreated.
Sounds like nonsense to me. Medical professionals have long recommended, and judiciously analyzed, the use of mammography as the “first line of defense” against breast cancer. Early detection has given our wives, daughters, mothers, and friends a far greater chance of long-term survival than ever before.
In aggregate, I have a keen distrust for this organization. Their attempt to link rBST/rBGH to breast cancer combined with their call for reduced use of mammography to detect cancer as early as possible is to say the least, irresponsible. This type of reckless activism puts peoples lives in danger.
Editor’s Note – Because I refuse to help “promote” these wackos, I’m not linking to their sites. You are welcome to Google them on your own…