July 6, 2012 in Health, Lifestyle, Nutrition

How Much Does Freedom Of Choice Mean To You?

The Scales of Justice are a finicky lot. Sometimes they seem to be working in smooth, balanced fashion. Other times, however, they seem to be woefully off-kilter. Of course, this article is concerned with the latter. I’m noticing an ever worrying increase in the Scales leaning squarely on the side of business interests instead of protecting the people.

Two areas are of particular concern for me: 1. The inability to purchase all manner of raw, organic foods; and, 2. The inability for parents to choose which, if any, vaccination protocols to follow based on informed consent. Both issues point to a very important slipping away of personal rights. And the problem isn’t isolated to a particular area, either. The citizens of many countries are losing their right to choose.

A number of years ago when I started my quest to make my own yoghurt here in Japan, I was distressed to discover that it was illegal for stores or farms to sell unpasteurized milk. Good luck finding any raw, unpasteurized honey, either. Being Japan, you can get all manner of raw meat and fish. Culturally, it fits into the big picture. Good luck, however, if you’ve an inclination to take milk straight from the cow and make some ice cream.

The same situation exists in many areas of North America and the EU. Conventional farmers and dairy follow pretty strict rules about how they can get their products to market. To their benefit, there’s a very large lobbying body that ensures their interests are protected. And, currently, it’s in their interest to keep small, organic growers from getting a decent toehold in the market. Economically, it’s not in Conventional Agriculture’s interest to have broad choices. It’s in their interest to make their stuff the only game in town.

That’s the one part of it that bothers me. The other part of it is that when somebody chooses what I can or cannot buy and/or use, it takes away my ability to control my experience. It presupposes that others know my wants and needs better than I do. Moreover, it presupposes that policy makers are better informed than I am. Much of the time, I think I’m far better informed than the policy makers for one simple reason: I’m passionate about the information that I’m researching. I’m not just grinding through the paperwork necessary to get through a day at a political office.

At some point, somebody decided what was good for me. At some point, somebody decided that I couldn’t drink raw milk or eat raw honey. Meanwhile, I can drink alcohol until my liver fails and smoke cigarettes until my lungs are as black as coal. What’s wrong with this picture? It tells the story that where money is to be made, the best interests of the population are secondary. It indicates that choice is left only where profits are foreseen.

The situation with vaccines is similar. Much of the developed world has mandatory vaccine schedules with very few opt-out clauses. Here in Japan, if your kids aren’t vaccinated, they’re disallowed from attending school. Period. Why? Because if your kid isn’t vaccinated, he/she is a risk to other children. Makes sense, right?


Think about it. If A-san is vaccinated and B-san opts out, how is B-san going to be a risk to A-san? If the efficacy of vaccines is as Big Pharma claims, A-san’s vaccination schedule should protect him/her from any risk of succumbing to exposure to anything that B-san catches. Right? This is where the argument fails the logic test. If vaccinations work as advertised, then whomever opts out of a protocol will only prove to a risk to him- or herself. The rest of the vaccinated population will be a-okay.

So, given that, what’s the real impetus for imposing mandatory vaccination protocols? The only thing I can think of is money. And, frankly spoken, 3rd-party verification of the efficacy of vaccinations just does not exist on a large scale. How many large-scale trials have been done to remove reasonable doubt of risk and indicate efficacy of early-childhood vaccinations that are imposed on fixed schedule on infants regardless of how premature they may have been born? In North America and Japan, the protocols for infant vaccinations cover multiple shots of up to 8 vaccines administered at a single inoculation. I’ll tell you now many large-scale trials have been done:

None. Zero. Zip. Nada.

Meanwhile, various areas in the United States are now moving toward revoking parental right to informed consent. This means that if you’re a parent with kids in the US, your kids can come home from school one day to tell you that they’ve been immunized without you having any say in the matter. Parents in Vermont recently ensured that this right to informed consent was NOT taken away from them, but other states are not going to be so lucky. Once rights are taken away, it’s painfully difficult to get them put back into place again.

So, the question is: How much does your freedom to choose mean to you?

It’s a hugely important question. There are people out there with selfish interests who will do what they can to take/keep power and make/keep money. And if it means turning off Survivor and reruns of Fantasy Island for a while so that you can study up on the issues involved, I think it’s worth it. I grew up in an era where it was patently assumed that government, business, medicine and agriculture were ALL working toward the common greater good of everybody. It’s been in the last 20 years that I realized I was very much mistaken.

If we want to retain our right to choose, we need to stay aware of the issues and not fall prey to propaganda. That means you need to learn to do your own research. Read different viewpoints and come up with your own conclusions. The most effective population is one that is well educated and armed with a keen sense of critical thinking. When you can’t be sweet-talked and deceived, you can see the truth and ensure that real justice prevails.

Power To The People!

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