Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Antibiotics discussion

The State News never supports healthy discussion that disagrees or might sway readers against their own self-proclaimed liberalism. However, in the interest of freedom of speech and thought, I will post mine here for your benefit in response to the latest antibiotic opinion column. All I did below was compile research published in journals. That's not just going to Google and copying the first article you see. Journals are refereed by research peers who don't usually have the same viewpoints as you, but they check to see if you have researched and concluded in a way in which is scientifically justifiable. Enjoy.

"For a picture of how banning antibiotics will play out, I refer you to the case of Denmark which is now standing out some years from when their bans were put in place in the mid-90's. Their bans were pushed for by the media, the consumers and the politicians, yet the ideological benefits of banning the antibiotics are either not present or non-convincing from a statistical standpoint. This is important when you weigh out the fact that the number of hog farms in Denmark are anticipated to dwindle from 25,000 to 5,000 by the year 2015. Not only have the benefits of banning antibiotics not been seen as they were promised, but now the industry has moved on, leaving people without jobs and without a better prospect in life, which far overshadows the fear of antibiotic resistant bacteria.

"What the contributor in the most recent antibiotic opinion column fails to observe is that there are different types of bacteria. Growth-promoting antibiotics counteract gram-positive bacteria while the bulk of the rising number of antibiotic resistant cases are caused by gram-negative bacteria. Banning growth-promoting antibiotics which are fed on a daily basis will have no impact on the resistance of gram-negative bacteria because of how differently the bacteria function. The faulty reasoning contributing to the bans resulted in outbreak infections increasing instead of the consumer anticipated decrease. Even in the case of those bacteria which could increase in resistance, there has been a rise in their infection rates post-ban as well since the growth promoters also contribute to a cleaner kill floor with less GI ruptures, etc., since they are keeping the GI tract healthier.

"In the end, in an antibiotic free Denmark, there has been in increase in infection and no change in resistance. Just because the consumer always gets what they want, that doesn't mean they are always right or that life will get better for them. They are just ignorantly blissful because they have swallowed sugar-coated lies."

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