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We are afraid of getting sick. Our fear is, at times, overwhelming. It is a thought in the back of our minds, and it surfaces as we sit on our couches and watch TV during a drug commercial with a slightly louder volume.


The drug commercials list the ailments that we may have, and the symptoms that we suffer from. Toward the end of the commercial, it lists the side effects the new drug may give us, but the emphasis is always on the new drug and it's benefits.

We do as the commercial says and make the necessary appointment with our doctor. We tell him or her that we want to try the new drug. We really believe that this new drug will make us feel better, as the commercial describes. We become a new consumer of the pharmaceutical company that manufactured the drug.

We, like never before, have become self prescribers, self technicians of our own aches and pains. The drugs may not help us, but they can't hurt us, right? Are we lead by the information of commercials and the media? In 2007, Consumer Drug Safety reported that deaths related to consumer drugs were on the rise. The study was published by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices in Huntingdon Valley, Pa. The adverse drug events more than doubled between 1998 and 2005 in the U.S.

Drug side effects injure more than 500,000 American children each year according to the researchers at Children's Hospital Boston between 1995 and 2005. The study was published in the journal Pediatrics from research of the National Center for Health Statistics, according to a Health Day news report.

We, as a society, have never been so immersed in our fears of our own physical dispositions and it is on the increase. We rely on the drug market for the quick relief of our discomforts, and who might be profiting from this? The medical establishment, the health insurance establishment, and the pharmaceutical companies would be. We are so afraid of illness that we will gladly submit to vaccines to apparently protect us from possible future illnesses.

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The H1N1 Virus, the dreaded Swine Flu Virus that the media is reporting, is the most widely reported virus ever. Fear of the new virus is very real, as the World Health Organization increases the pandemic level to six.

Millions of vaccines are now created for us. Most of it has been bought and paid for by the governments of the world. Many become horrified by the thought of a massive outbreak of a deadly virus they don't really understand. The virus, though, only appears to be as deadly as other yearly viruses as the deaths associated with the new virus are at a minimum. But the fear is now established and people want the vaccine.

It may be time for a change. We may, through certain insight and reason, look at our fear and discontent within ourselves with calmness and clarity. That which we are most afraid of about our lives may be only a misunderstanding. Through a thorough examination of ourselves, we may find that life isn't so harsh. We may find that virus and bacteria are a natural part of the biosphere that we live in and their existence is important.


We may find that we can live with certainty and harmony with other life forms and understanding and wisdom is inherent within us all.

The drug companies may not bring in such large profits, but we may feel more secure in our own lives. This is a progressive way to think about our environment and procures a longer and healthier lifestyle. Lose the fear, and gain your life back.

S. Blair Fox

Steven Blair Fox was born in West Los Angeles in 1955. He enjoys jazz and loves to improvise. He currently resides in a cozy pueblo style house built in 1928, in north Glendale, California and earns his keep as a diesel truck parts technician.