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I'm not sure the data support your conclusions. I am a fully assenting Catholic, but I was also a cancer vaccine researcher before I became a stay at home mom.

The fact presented here is that the vaccine does not help, and may harm someone already infected. This does suggest a sexually active woman should be tested before vaccination, but it actually supports the vaccination of young girls.

Also, it is indeed well known that HPV does not "cause" cervical cancer in the sense that HIV causes AIDS. Instead, it damages the cells of the cervix, increasing the likely hood of cancer causing errors as the body repairs those cells.

There may be reasons to oppose the vaccine being used for girls, but this is not a valid one.

Consider this: If "nearly all sexually active women" have HPV, that would mean nearly all sexually active men have HPV. In that case, unless your daughter's husband is a virgin, she is likely to be exposed if she marries. Once exposed, there is no cure, although most infections have no symptoms. This will not directly cause cervical cancer, but it will increase her chances of getting cervical cancer. The chances of cure on cervical cancer are not too bad if they catch it early, but not too great either. The chances of a cure if they don't get it early are really pretty bad.

It's all chances, of course. Most women with HPV don't get the cancer. You have to weigh the risks of getting cancer (pretty low) with the consequences if that 1 in whatever number is your daughter (pretty severe) and the risks/consequences/benefits of the vaccine.

If I vaccinate my own daughters (I have not yet decided)it will not be because I think she won't be a virgin when she marries, but because I think she may marry someone who is not in the same state, and because I will have decided the vaccine is relatively safe (not determined).


Thank you, Wendy. It's hard to sort out, so I appreciate your expertise. You bring up very valid concerns. I hope reliable information will soon be available. Regardless, with so many in the sexual revolution having already sown the wind, the next generation will indeed reap the whirlwind.


Good information, thanks. I'm holding out for more information as well. We've got time; my daughter is only three.

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    • From Benedict XVI
      “People have realized that the complete removal of the feminine element from the Christian message is a shortcoming from an anthropological viewpoint. It is theologically and anthropologically important for woman to be at the center of Christianity."
    • Anger and Patrimony (from Donna)
      This is just another of the unintended consequences of the cultural acceptance of contraception and abortion! Men's sexuality has been robbed of its creative essence. It is now viewed as something that imposes a burden on women (when conception happens to occur), something used to control women or something that is purely recreational. Why would men bother?? In taking away their responsibility, we've also robbed them of their significance! In the big picture of humanity, men have been made into nothing more than a nuisance women have to figure out how to control in order to bring about the next generation. Men don't see it as their task to protect the vulnerable because they see themselves as the vulnerable ones. A few well preserved vials of sperm would make men entirely obsolete in the world's ethos today!!
    • Excellent, Dom! (from Teresa)
      That is astounding Robin, and good for you for standing up. At the heart of that matter, I think, is even worse than a gender mixing message. There is an increased sharper and sharper focus on the "self." Solid Catholic teaching returns our focus away from ourselves to Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The original sin, Eve denied her womanhood when she desired to be like "gods." Since the only god she knew was the Father. Where was Adam? He stood impotent... in other words, they were divorced. There's a young girl at Robin's son's high school who was just told that she is the center of the universe and it's a tragic disservice to her.
    • Find the logic (from "me")
      Ditto what Mary said! A lot of high schools have very poor math and science depts, for boys and girls. I also am educated as a chemical engineer, but chose to teach the two years before we had children because its hours were more suited to spending time with children. (I was looking ahead). When it came time and I was pregnant with our first, I realized that I did not want to leave him with someone else, and was able to stay home full time. I am not sure it would have been that easy if we were used to another engineering income and not just a private school teacher income. Also some of my first job offers were out on oil rigs - I had no interest in that at all even though I enjoyed my engineering classes and did well in them. No one discouraged me from an engineering job, on the contrary I got a lot of flack for my decision not to pursue an engineering career.
    • Find the logic (from Mary)
      I've been lurking, but this is one that irritates me. Beats the heck out of me what these "barriers" are. I was educated as a chemical engineer, where 1/3 of our class was women. However, in electrical engineering, only 1 or 2 out of 30 were women. Is it possible that women are Just Not Interested in some areas? Nah, it must be The Man keeping us down so we must legislate (and, I agree -- when they say "legistlate", I hear "quota"). And actually, I have a friend that was also a chemical engineer. When she lost her job, she decided not to go back into engineering and started working from home so she could spend more time with her 3 kids. Also, if nothing else, there are all kinds of incentives for women to enter science and engineering -- scholarships not available to men, guaranteed housing on campuses that do not guarantee housing to the general population, etc. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that schools in general are not preparing students for the hard sciences. It is truly a sad state of affairs, the lack of science education these days.

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