As the mother of a child with Down syndrome, I recall learning that very few agents are confirmed to cause birth defects. That made me interested when Zika was cited as the cause of microcephaly. (As did the fact that I met an anencephalic baby once and the doctors didn’t know what caused it. They encouraged the parents to have more children and the next child, tragically, was also born anencephalic.) Then, when I noticed that many of the pictures I saw in the news reports of the “thousands” of cases of Brazilian microcephaly were actually of the same baby (“Daniel”), I started to dig into the Zika virus scare. As I dug in, I discovered that the 4,000 cases were more like 400 cases and only 17 were found to be even potentially related to Zika. I further discovered that 25,000 cases of microcephaly occur in the US annually where there are no reported cases of a Zika relationship. Just comparing the relative population sizes of Brazil and the US, by this measure, Brazil should have 14,000 cases of microcephaly even without Zika, yet it has nowhere near that number.
I started to wonder what the agenda might be of panicking people unjustly over Zika-related birth defects when I saw this: Obama asks for $1.8 billion in emergency Zika funding. Given that there has been maybe one case of Zika in the US (despite the CDC assigning Zika Level 1 status–a status only issued by the CDC thrice before, for Katrina, ebola & swine flu), I found this curious. What would the money be used for?
$365 million of the Zika money is slated for South American foreign aid and one of the goals cited by the Administration is “women’s health” and pre-natal screening for poor women. I started to think that at least part of the agenda is likely birth control and abortion in Catholic countries. Pre-natal screening for microcephaly can diagnose the condition but not cure it. The “treatment” at that point would be abortion. Given that abortion is illegal for the most part in Brazil where this “outbreak” is said to be happening, I thought perhaps it was a way to chip away at that law. Then today when I saw this article about Pope Francis, I felt the agenda for sure includes some of this: Pope Francis Says Contraception Can Be Acceptable in Regions Hit by Zika Virus. This seems like a rash conclusion for the Pope given that his world-class intelligence agency should be able to debunk the Zika myth at once. Unfortunately, this only adds to my observations that Pope Francis continually promotes agenda-driven elitist memes at the expense of his actual responsibilities.
UPDATE: As if on cue, this article appeared the day after I wrote the above post…I expect this won’t be the end of it…
Zika is a Reproductive Rights Issue
Several countries afflicted by the Zika virus are asking women to delay getting pregnant. Yet local laws — and U.S. foreign aid rules — make it impossible for many to get safe abortions.
Update (4/22/2016): Does the government really need to fund developing a vaccine? Can’t Big Pharma handle that?? http://www.wsbradio.com/news/ap/top-news/senate-gop-drafts-zika-funding-bill-for-thursday-p/nq8QD/
Update (8/9/2016): The statistics this doctor presents are actually far more conservative than I found on the National Institute of Health website, and still they do not point to a causal relationship between Zika and microcephaly. (Specifically, the doctor in the video below says there are 25,000 cases of microcephaly in the US, while the NIH article says there are 25,000 cases diagnosed annually in the US! That’s a huge number. Presumably the definitions vary from source to source, but that is part of this doctor’s point.)
Update (8/12/2016): I just read that the government is spraying insecticides in Florida to combat Zika after a handful of cases have reportedly been detected. I also read recently that doctors in afflicted countries have identified a link between microcephaly and larvicides, while the Zika-microcephaly link remains highly speculative. My fear is that the insecticides being sprayed in Florida might lead to illnesses that also will be erroneously linked to Zika and lead to a spiral of the cure being worse than the disease! This is a real possibility with precedent in my personal experience–my brother was diagnosed with AIDS though he had no symptoms (as an IV drug abuser, he had had TB and hepatitis, both of which can lead to a false positive for AIDS), he was treated with AZT, which he claimed was what resulted in his developing symptoms, and he died–whether of AIDS or AZT poisoning we’re not really sure.
Update (8/23/2016): Why stop at trying to change laws in Catholic countries? The ZIKAgenda could also serve up late term abortions right here in the US.
Zika Virus Spread Renews Focus on Abortion Debate
Some Southern states, most vulnerable to spread of the virus, tighten restrictions
As “luck” would have it…
Abigail Aiken, a researcher at the University of Texas at Austin and one of the study’s authors, said that while it was still unclear how prevalent Zika would become in the U.S., access to abortion for infected pregnant women was likely to become an issue in some areas. “The states likely to be hardest hit by Zika virus are also states where rates of unintended pregnancy are high and access to contraception and abortion services are most restricted,” Dr. Aiken said.
By the way…used to be even in the US doctors attributed anencephaly to industrial pollution. Check out this New York Times article from 1992: