Saturday, August 18, 2007
South Dakota State University is one of the larger schools in the state of South Dakota. We're looking forward to using tactics other than posters at this school since the climate promotes more indoor activity during the long winter months!
As always, if you believe your school could benefit from our message, please let us know. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you would like to hold a Food Not Condoms demonstration in September or October, the time to start planning is now! You can contact us for information at email@example.com.
Finally, we are looking for someone with web expertise to help us with our websites. Currently we do not have the equipment available to us to update our main page at www.theprojectplus.com. If you have this equipment, or are willing to help up update our pages, please contact us at either of the above email addresses!
Have a good first week of class!
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Friday, April 13, 2007
A friend of a friend recently got back from a mission trip in Africa and she had this story to tell.
While she was there, she went to visit a local health clinic. She was taken on a tour of the facilities by a member of the staff, and was brought back into the supply room. There her guide showed her the supplies that this small village had to work with. She opened one cabinet marked first aid and found a few small boxes of bandaids, and a few other gauze stripes, but a basically bare cubbord. She then opened the medical refridgerator, used to keep antibiotics and other medicine at the proper temperature, and found no supplies whatsoever. However, that was just 2 doors, there were still several more to go. She opened the last three with the guide and was stunned.
All three cabinets were FILLED completely with American Condoms.
Her guide looked at her and said "Please, when you get back to America, tell your country we need band aids, no more condoms!"
I knew that the African people were being shipped boat loads of condoms but I had absolutely no idea the insanity! So i decided to do a little break down of funds.
I tried to do research to find out exactly how many condoms were sent to Africa each year. Unfortunately, there is absolutely NO way to figure this out. Nobody knows, not even the US government. There are just that many.
So I went to International Planned Parenthood Federation, and this is what I learned.
In 2005 alone, IPPF sent some 103.4 million condoms to Africa. At a meer 50 cents a condom (a very conservative estimate) that is about $51.7 million spent on condoms to Africa.
Seeing as the more prevalent problem in Africa seems to be lack of food, not lack of condoms, (according to my friend of a friend) I decided to figure out just how much food those 103.4 million condoms COULD have bought.
(I figured my prices based on the American market, again a conservative estimate since food prices are MUCH lower in developing countries.)
An average meal (1/4 cup beans, 1/4 cup rice and 1 piece of flat bread) would cost only 25 cents to prepare.
Since my estimate for condoms is about 50 cents each, that means each condom sent could have provided 2 meals for starving people.
With IPPF's funds alone, that's 206.8 MILLION meals that could have been purchased in just 1 year for the price of those condom.
And then comes the matter of the homefront. Certainly, this is a great case for not sending condoms to starving people- but what about here.
Well, the same rule applies. For every dollar (about how much a condom retails for in the States) spent on a condom here, you could feed 4 starving people. Basically, if you didn't have sex that one time, 4 people could have had dinner. If that doesn't make the decision to have promiscuous sex a little more difficult, iIcan't think of what would!
Beyond that, the average price for the Birth Control Pill, after Insurance, is approximately $25. At 25 cents per meal, that means each month's worth of pills is worth the same as 100 meals. Break that down by days, and each individual pill is worth 3.3 meals.
That means, if you gave up your birth control pills for just 1 month, and sent the money you saved to feed the poor, you could feed 1 person 3 square meals a day for that entire month, and have leftovers.
So the decision is yours- have 'responsibility free' sex and let that person die of starvation, or take responsibility for your role as a memeber of the global community- live without birth control pills for just 1 month- and save a fellow human from a gruesome, slow death due to starvation.
To me, that's a no-brainer.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
The Natural amount of normal female hormones (estrogen and progesterone) found in an adult female ranges from between 40 and 500 picograms per day depending on the point she is at in her monthly cycle.
Scientists found that because of the above average amount of synthetic hormone that was being used in HRT, women were at a higher risk for Breast cancer and other cancers, as well as heart disease, diabetes, and other health problems.
The average level of hormone in HRT is between 300,000 and 625,000 Picograms per day, nearly 1000 times the normal amount.
However, doctors and scientists have consistently sworn that hormonal birth control has no such side effects, regardless of the data on hormonal treatment of women for reasons other than contraception. But how could it not?
Hormonal Birth Control contains 20 to 50 MILLION picograms in EACH daily pill.
Not only is that 75 times the amount of hormones found in HRT drugs, but it is nearly 400 thousand times more than what is normally found in a woman's body, even at the peak moments of her cycle!
Somehow the scientific logic does not flow here. One drug that contains 2 synthetic hormones at one dose is severely dangerous for all women and should be discontinued, but the same 2 synthetic hormones found in another drug at an astronomically higher rate is supposed to be good for you?
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Project Plus is growing! It makes sense. Our generation will not stand to be controlled by anyone or anything, let alone by the lies of big corporations. We want to be healthy, to live happy lives, and to have the best chance of success at everything we do no matter what. There's a huge movement among us to eat healthier and treat our bodies right, and Project Plus is right in line with this. We won't stand for trans fats in our foods so much that we're banning them from entire cities! We won't buy meat that has been treated with growth hormones, both for our sake and that of the cow. We question whether taking pills for every ailment is truly beneficial to our bodies, or whether natural remedies might take their place.
So it follows that contraception, the drug that the vast majority of the female population doses themselves with daily, is coming into question. If we won't let our arteries fill up with trans fats, why do we take medicine that significantly increases our chance of heart disease, the number one killer of women world wide? If we won't buy meat injected with growth hormones, why are we injecting ourselves directly with practically the same thing, all in the name of "woman's health"? If we question the amount of anti-biotics and other medications that we pollute our bodies with, why do we allow massive amounts of steroids to pump through our system every day?
These are the questions that we have to ask ourselves. Are birth control pills really the "wonder drug" they claim to be, or are they just another way to perpetuate a toxic lifestyle?
Monday, February 05, 2007
In 2004 a study was released from a well respected German research company that had been studying the components of condoms. The results of the study were simple, but profound. Nearly all condoms studied (including all major American brands) contained high amounts of a toxic chemical known as N-Nitrosamine which has been proven to cause cancer. This carcinogen was banned from all children's toys and some other appliances, causing massive recalls in the late 1990's. It is responsible for helping the latex in the condom stay elastically and is often found in elastic-like material. "If it's so toxic," you ask, "then why is it found in so many materials but banned from others?" The answer is simple. N-Nitrosamine is only able to enter your body through contact with your bodily fluids (i.e. saliva, mucus, blood, semen, and vaginal discharge). So products that contain N-Nitrosamine but are never intended to be in contact with these substances are allowed. However, the big stink over this chemical came when it was banned from baby toys because there is no way to limit which toys an infant puts in her mouth, thus causing concern. The only other product that was ever considered were kitchen appliances, like spatulas and rubber spoons. With condoms only purpose being to come between 2 people and prevent the passage of bodily fluids, shouldn't they be considered for the chemical ban? The FDA said no, but only after testimony by big business condom makers like Durex and Trojan about how much money they would loose from such a ban.
Now our culture is at a cross-road. Much of our energy and resources goes towards fighting diseases like Cancer, which is a major killer of people world wide. But we are also constantly promoting the concept of "Safe Sex" which undeniably includes the consistent use of condoms by all sexually active people. They are given out for free in many places, including college health centers. But with this study we are forced to decide between what seems like two bad options. Either we must quite using condoms in order to prevent getting cancer, but risk contracting STD's like Herpes or AIDs from our sexual partners, or continue using the carcinogenic condom and theoretically protect ourselves from other diseases. It's a choice between 2 (or more) equally as gruesome fates.
Or is it? There is always a third choice! The third choice in this case would be to stop using condoms, which lead to cancer and may lead to other health problems, and stop having sex with multiple partners! As counter-cultural as that seems, isn't that the only way to prevent the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases anyway? If everybody on this planet decided today to stop having sex with more than one person, and only had one sexual partner for the rest of their life, then in approximately 3 generations all Sexually Transmitted Diseases would be functionally wiped out! And then there would be no need for condoms to begin with.
"But that'll never happen" you say. To that, we reply that it'll never happen if you never do anything about it. Perhaps it will take more than 3 generations, but the more people who have more than one sexual partner, the less spread of disease will occur. Most specifically, if you stop having sex with multiple partners and wait for your "one and only", you will have almost 0% risk of contracting an STD.One last note: The researches in this study refused to release the information to the public about which brands of condoms fell in the highly toxic category, and which did not. Why? Because they are afraid of big companies like Durex and Trojan suing them for their well-done research which exposed their product's flaw. The big companies think that what we don't know won't hurt us, but that is a lie. No matter what, a condom that contains carcinogens will still give you cancer, whether you knew about it or not. Don't play Russian roulette with your life by hoping that the condom you're using is part of the 7% who passed…. Be smarter than that!
There are many people in today's society, especially among our age group (17-25) that are trying to live more healthy lives than the one's we were brought up with. Many of us are children of the 80's who remember, or remember being told, about Reagan's push for Ketchup to count as a serving of vegetables in public school lunches. Now many programs are in place trying to correct old misconceptions and bad eating habits. Because of this, and with the wave of new internet technology, you can find thousands of websites devoted to simple organic or natural living, like the website "Organic Authority", or "Vegan Action". Many new grocery stores have popped up, like Whole Foods or Trader Joe's (just two of the many!) who's entire purpose is to promote healthy organic living. Even the government has gotten in on the action, requiring more and more health information on every food label, and even going as far as to try and ban trans-fat from restaurants in certain cities like Los Angeles. You can even see the difference in fast food chains, like McDonald's (known for its unhealthy foods, it was exposed in a documentary, "Super Size Me", several years ago) who now offer whole grain bread and low fat options for sides instead of its legendary "Super Size" meal. We are trying harder and harder to eat healthier and healthier, but one product seems to be immune from all the hubbub. Birth Control.
The logic is incredible! A woman in our society will refuse to purchase meats infused with growth hormones and buy veggie burgers or naturally grown meat instead, but will purchase her birth control pills at the same grocery store. Girls who insist on taking daily vitamins are taking their daily pill along with them. Couples who claim to be vegan or vegetarian applauded the FDA's approval of the morning after pill, when a quick glance at the ingredients list would tell them that gelatin, a product of horse and pig hoofs, is among the ingredients. That same couple, while donating time and money to PETA, will also donate money to contraceptive research, without realizing how much animal research is really involved! When will this sick cycle end?
The Pill is not only a high dose of hormones, a significantly unnatural level for a woman's body, but these hormones are also synthetic! They were lab created, and tested on mice and monkeys, to perfect a way of keeping a woman's natural cycle de-feminized. Not only that, but almost all condoms and birth control pills contain lactose, the sugar produced in milk, which is purely non-vegan, and could even cause severe allergic reactions in some people. The pharmaceutical corporations will try to argue that some women need this drug in order to maintain normal lives because of medical conditions such as PCOS and others. The truth is that there is no reason whatsoever to need to take birth control. It is a purely "cosmetic" drug. For any medical concern, be it PCOS, acne, irregular periods, amenorrhea, and others, there are alternative medicinal options available.Don't be confused. There is absolutely no Vegan or Organic method of birth control outside of Natural Family Planning (or periodic abstinence). Natural sex is the only real "Safe Sex"!
Thursday, November 16, 2006
First, I'd like to point out the ages of these women: 17, 18, 19, 20, 24, ect.... that's OUR age group. Thos are women who could have been going to school with us at the time they died or were injured from the patch.
Second, i'd like to do a little math. According to this article, which cites the FDA and FOIA as well as the AP and other news organizations, there are 9.4 million people per year that are perscribed the Patch. In a one year period between 2002 and 2003 the FDA logged 9116 cases of "adverse reactions" to the Patch (from blood clots to death). Also, according on one critic, only approximately 10% of all adverser reactions are ever reported to the FDA. That means in one year, while 9.4 million women are one the patch, about 90,000 of them experience patch related serious health complications. That's 1% of all women on the Patch. Ok, that doesn't sound like a whole lot, right? Well, let's just assume that on a typical college campus about 1 in every 10 women are using the Patch (a modest assumption). Now let's also assume that the campus population is about 4000. That means about 400 women are using the patch. One Percent of 400 is 4, so that means that approximately 4 women on OUR campus will experience serious health concerns (or will die) because of the Patch.
Will you be one of them?
The following synopsis is from:
"During its investigation, the Post used the FOIA to obtain FDA records that showed that 17 women between the ages of 17 and 30, who had used the patch, had died from unlikely causes in view of their age group, of heart attacks, blood clots, and possible strokes, since August 2002."
"Scores of other women on the patch, the Post reported, had suffered other complications including 21 life-threatening cases of blood clots and other ailments."
"Doctors who reviewed the reports voiced alarm over the number of fatalities. "This is a cause for concern," warned Dr John Quagliarello, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at NYU Medical Center."
Critics also point out that these records do not accurately portray the number of women injured by the patch because according to the FDA, at best, only 10% of all adverse events get reported to the agency.In 2005 alone, doctors wrote more than 9.4 million prescriptions for the Ortho Evra patch, according to IMS Health, a pharmaceutical industry-tracking firm.
One case that was settled with a confidentiality agreement involved the first fatality attributed to the patch in the media which occurred on April 2, 2004, when 18-year-old Zakiya Kennedy collapsed in New York City while waiting for the subway.
The people who did catch the story about this 18-year-old dying so suddenly the few times it appeared were not surprisingly shocked. An autopsy revealed the cause of death was a blood clot called a pulmonary embolism that had moved to the lung as a direct result of using the Ortho Evra patch, the coroner ruled.
Thousands more young women have died or been injured needlessly.
In fact, the records show that back in 2000, the FDA scientist in charge of reviewing the pre-approval clinical trials submitted on the patch, warned FDA officials that blood clots could be a problem if the device was approved.
The reviewer also said "the label should clearly reflect this reviewer's safety concern about a potential increased risk."
The official specifically said the professional product labeling and information written for women using Ortho-Evra "should reflect the possible increased risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE) associated with this new transdermal combination hormonal contraceptive containing the new molecular entity progestin norelgestromin (17d-norgestimate)."
The reviewer might as well have been talking to himself, because when the device was approved, there was no warning on the label about the risks he identified and no requirements for post-surveillance studies other than routine monitoring of the adverse event reports from consumers, doctors and the drug makers.
Under the FOIA request, the FDA released approximately 16,000 adverse event reports associated with the patch ranging from a mild rash to death. Within these reports, the AP found 23 different deaths associated with the patch and the doctors who reviewed the 23 deaths, found about 17 to be clot related.
Nine months after the article in the Post about the 18-year-old women dying in the subway, a glimpse at the truth about the patch occurred in October 2004, when the first lawsuit was filed in Austin, Texas, on behalf of a paralyzed woman who suffered a stoke after only 12 days on the patch.
The lawsuit listed FDA records that showed forty-six women who were on the patch had suffered blood clot related injuries or death in a 1-year period between May 1, 2002 and April 30, 2003.
The plaintiff's attorney told CNN that the women listed in the lawsuit were all between 18 and 47-years-old, from Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Mississippi, New Jersey, Ohio and Oklahoma.
The plaintiffs had all suffered debilitating long-term health problems as a result of using the patch. Plaintiff, Amanda Bianchi, 19, developed a 10-inch blood clot in her brain, which doctors said was a direct result of the patch she used for 3 months in 2004, and according to the complaint she had suffered two strokes.
And as far as what the FDA knew first-hand, according to the lawsuit's complaint, during a 17-month period between April 2002 and September 2003, the FDA logged 9,116 reports of adverse events due to of the patch.
On May 12, 2006, Knight Ridder reported the case of 20-year-old nursing student, Kristin Ribakusky-Templin, who experienced what started as a dull ache in her leg that within two weeks turned into shooting pains leaving her unable to walk and sent her to the emergency room where doctors found multiple blood clots deep in the veins of her lungs and leg. (THIS YEAR!)
On September 5, 2006, a Drug Newswire press release reported the latest federal lawsuit filed in Texas by a 24-year-old woman who suffered a miscarriage and developed life-threatening blood clots after using the patch.
According to the lawsuit, in 2004, Elizabeth Barroso, began experiencing chest pains and difficulty breathing after using the patch for three weeks and spent eight days in the hospital where doctors treated her for blood clots in her lungs.
Upon release from the hospital, Ms Barroso was placed on blood thinning drugs for 10 months. She became pregnant in October 2004, but later suffered a miscarriage.
In 2005, she became pregnant again and was forced to endure daily injections of blood thinners to prevent another miscarriage. Due to her injuries, all of Ms Barroso's future pregnancies will carry a risk of miscarriage and will require similar treatment.
From April 2002 to December 2004, Johnson & Johnson logged 27,974 adverse events among Ortho Evra patch users.