This news honestly shocked me, I couldn’t believe it at first. It didn’t seem like PepsiCo was going to budge on this issue, at least not anytime soon. This just goes to show that through God, all things truly are possible and I’m very humbled and thankful this boycott was successful in such a short amount of time. It was only back in March of last year that I shared information about PepsiCo’s relationship with Senomyx and their use of aborted-fetal cell lines to test new flavor enhancers for Pepsico’s beverage products. A lot of people doubted and even denied the truth in this but now, with PepsiCo’s statement, it is obvious.
“In a letter to Children of God for Life, PepsiCo’s VP of Global Public Policy, Paul Boykas stated that ‘Senomyx will not use HEK cells or any other tissues or cell lines derived from human embryos or fetuses for research performed on behalf of PepsiCo.’” This is truly something unique that we, as pro-life consumers, do not usually see happen. As Debi Vinnedge strongly encourages, please take some time to say THANK YOU to PepsiCo.
As shocked as I am by this unimaginable turn of events, it is also inspiring and makes me have a little hope that perhaps we will see the pharmaceutical companies, like Merck, change their ways also and offer ethical vaccines instead of only the ones that have been produced using aborted-fetal cell lines. Or better yet, they could just stop using those cell lines all together!
If you had no idea that some vaccines are cultured in aborted human cell lines, or if you simply do not believe it, check out all the undeniable and well-sourced information on it here.
It’s very interesting to me that the PepsiCo boycott was so effective. They were only using the aborted-fetal cell lines for testing their new product flavors, no part of the human cell lines, or human DNA, ended up in the final product. And while a lot of people love their Pepsi (and Tropicana), we don’t necessarily need these to survive; they aren’t potentially “life-saving” products. So it’s interesting to me that enough people participated in the boycott to make it succeed.
However, with the vaccines that are cultured in the human fetal cell lines, residual amounts of human DNA do remain in the final vaccine that ends up going into our or our children’s bodies. The majority of people consider vaccines to be “necessary” and “life-saving”. So one would think if they are so important, more so than a nice fizzy sodi-pop or sweet glass of O.J., something would have already been done to offer ethical vaccine alternatives to those who find the use of aborted-fetal cell lines morally offensive.
I think it all depends on the power of the people and there is power in numbers. Imagine if all those who claim to be “pro-life” banded together to not only send finger-pointing letters to Merck and voice their concerns to their physicians, but also went as far as to boycott the unethical vaccines in the same way they did with PepsiCo’s products. Imagine the uproar! I’m sure Merck and other vaccine companies would be tripping over themselves to heroically offer alternative vaccines and restore order and safety to public health.
But how do we get this to happen?
As Catholics, as the Pontifical Academy for Life’s statement on the use of aborted-fetal cell line vaccines states, we have a “duty to take recourse to alternative vaccines (if they exist), putting pressure on the political authorities and health systems so that other vaccines without moral problems become available.” (emphasis mine)
Furthermore, we “…should take recourse, if necessary, to the use of conscientious objection with regard to the use of vaccines produced by means of cell lines of aborted human foetal origin. Equally, [we] should oppose by all means (in writing, through the various associations, mass media, etc.) the vaccines which do not yet have morally acceptable alternatives, creating pressure so that alternative vaccines are prepared, which are not connected with the abortion of a human foetus, and requesting rigorous legal control of the pharmaceutical industry producers.”
Yes, yes, the document does go on to say that it is not required to abstain from unethical vaccines when there is no other alternative but let’s just focus, for today, on those responsibilites regarding protesting the unethical vaccines and effectively making alternative ethical vaccines available.
I can count, on my one hand, the number of people I know who have written and sent letters to Merck protesting these unethical vaccines. And we’ve all gotten such lovely responses back promising an end to such an atrocity immediately. (excuse the sarcasm, please). I’m happier to say, however, that I could use both my hands to commend those who have gone so far as to ”conscientiously object” to these vaccines for themselves and/or their children. Logically and especially economically speaking, the only way a company as big as Merck is going to go to the trouble/cost of offering alternative vaccines is if enough people actually stop using the products in question.
I know there is a lot more to this complicated issue, but to simplify it: If we allow and continue to use these unethical vaccines now for “life-saving” purposes, what will we as consumers, pro-lifers and Catholics, allow in the future for other “life-saving” measures? What will our government decide is an “appropriate balance between respecting religious freedom and increasing access to important preventive services”?
No amount of rationalization can ever really justify this wanton disregard for human life (even if these lives were voluntarily aborted some 50 years ago), and even if saving lives and preventing life-threatening diseases is in itself a good end goal.