I think that Rick Perry’s mandatory HPV vaccine for girls entering 6th grade is upsetting.
* Parents should have the right to decide whether to give their teens this vaccine. The government should not take the place of parents.
* This is a weak bow to big company and Perry campaign donor Merck, which will benefit financially from this decision
* Rick Perry made an executive order and thereby circumvented the legislature and the public on this issue.
* Tax payers have to pay.
* Giving parents the option to “opt out” does not constitute a return of control to parents. Having to go through paperwork and red tape removes autonomy from parents. . .
I normally don’t make a practice of defending Republican Governors, but I agree with Rick Perry on this issue. The HPV vaccine will be unavailable to many young women unless it is required (and is paid for by either insurance or the state), and this vaccine will likely save far more lives than the other required vaccinations.
I’m glad of course that there is a religious exemption to the vaccine (in fact, I used such an exemption in law school. The new required meningitis vaccine cost $200+ which I didn’t have, so I used the religious exemption since my “religion” prohibits me from spending $200 I don’t have for a vaccine that is only really needed for folks who live on campus in tight quarters).