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10_Sex, Drugs, and Politics - Casper and Carpenter

10_Sex, Drugs, and Politics - Casper and Carpenter - Sex...

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Sex, drugs, politics and the HPV vaccine 895 © 2008 The Authors Journal compilation © 2008 Foundation for the Sociology of Health & Illness/Blackwell Publishing Ltd plan for sexuality, which is sexual abstinence until marriage and sexual faithfulness within marriage’ (FOF 2006). Such claims suggest that, safety arguments notwithstanding, moral concerns are paramount for social conservatives. Curiously, the statement, ‘Clarification of 2005 Family Research Council Media Remarks on HPV Vaccine’, affirming the organisation’s support for the vaccine since late 2005, was issued in February 2007, suggesting that FRC felt compelled to respond to critics who accused it of promoting abstinence over cancer prevention. With the vaccine threatening their claim that ‘only abstinence can solve sex-related ills’, conservatives aimed to regain the upper hand in the sex wars by shifting the terms of the debate from providing the vaccine (acceptable) to mandating the vaccine (unacceptable) – even as they continued to insist that abstinence offers the best protection.
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