Thursday, December 01, 2005

When science is rejected: AIDS and the failure of South Africa

This is the saddest news I've read in some time.
BBC NEWS | Africa | Controversy clouds World Aids Day

... South African Health Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, who has long been lukewarm over the usefulness of anti-retroviral drugs, refused to back their use.

In an interview, she said that anti-retrovirals offered no cure, and that she might use food supplements or traditional medicines if she became infected.
Logic, empiricism, and science are an integrated package. When Bush endorses teaching intelligent design in American schools he strengthens people like Tshabalala-Msimang. When republican senators exempt herbal remedies from FDA safety standards required for pharmaceuticals they strengthen people like Tshabalala-Msimang.

Whatever good Prime Minister Mbeki has acheived in his entire life, it will all be outweighed by the tragedy of his HIV policies. He will be remembered as a catastrophe for South Africa.

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