A United States congressman is calling for criminal penalties for any government agency that knew about the dangers of Thimerosal in vaccines, and did nothing to protect American children.
WFFA research showed that the FDA began asking questions about the dangers of Thimerosal back in 1972. By 1992, the preservative had been pulled out of dog vaccines and contact lens solutions because of the risks.
However, it remained in vaccines for children until last year.
Government health officials squirmed uncomfortably in their seats June 20 as more evidence emerged suggesting that they misled the public.
"You mean to tell me that since 1929, we've been using Thimerosal," Congressman Dan Burton (R-Indiana) said to the officials, "and the only test that you know of is from 1929, and every one of those people had mennigitis, and they all died?"
For nearly an hour, Burton repeatedly asked FDA and CDC officials what they knew and when they knew it. And when memories seemed to be a bit fuzzy, the congressman produced old memos as a refresher.
One memo, from 1999, states that the FDA had an "interim plan ... already in place for many years" to get rid of Thimerosal.
The same e-mail also addresses the FDA's fear that it will be accused by the public of being "asleep at the switch for decades, by allowing a dangerous compound to remain in childhood vaccines".
Burton has proposed bringing criminal charges if it's proven the government agencies were involved in a cover-up.
"Look, I don't think it makes any difference whether it's a private company or a government agency," Burton said. "If they know they're harming somebody and they continue to let it happen, then they should be held accountable."
Government accountability is something that parents of autistic children have been asking for for years.
Burton asked the question several times June 20, but never got a direct answer.
Thus far, within the government, Burton has been a minority voice, but he has subpoena power, and he keeps threatening to use it.
"So what you do is keep making the case, and keep trying to get the message out to a broader and broader audience so that people start saying 'Why?'," Burton said. "When enough people say 'Why?', change starts to take place."
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