THE PLANK NOVEMBER 20, 2009
The newly released recommendations regarding cervical-cancer screening really should not provoke anywhere near the angst and anger of the mammography debate. In this case, the science is clearer, and even the more prominent groups upset about the revised breast-cancer screening guidelines are OK with the new Pap smear ones. (Besides, cervical cancer simply doesn't terrify women en masse the way breast cancer does.)
Of course, with the health-care-reform death-match draining all sense and reason from public discource, plenty of piggish political warriors will be unable to resist pitching these recommendations as part of a fiendish government plot to balance the health care books on the reproductive systems of American women. Sarah Palin, unsurprisingly, is out in front on this.
It's like with the abortion sideshow in the reform debate: Never is the uterus so popular as when it can be wielded as a partisan tool.
"Another Word On The Cervix," by Marin Cogan and Seyward Darby
"The Fate of Lady Parts in the Senate Bill," by Suzy Khimm