Attacks in Waves
A supplement labeling push fades, but new threats to health freedom are likely.
A death knell appears to be ringing for the most recent threat to health freedom. As of last month, a full year after it was introduced by Senators Dick Durbin and Richard Blumenthal, S.1425—the Dietary Supplement Labeling Act (DSLA)—is listed on govtrack.us as having a zero-percent chance of getting past committee and a zero-percent chance of being enacted.
Given S.1425’s potential to cripple the entire nutritional supplement industry, on the surface this update appears to be a victory for health freedom. But is it really?
Hydra Grows New Heads
History shows that the enemies of supplements—especially Dick Durbin and his cronies—appear to volley their efforts in relentless waves. As if battling a mythological hydra, when the American public cuts off one snarling head that is attacking health freedom it seems as if two more heads grow in its place to continue the attack.
Consider the following chain of events. In 2003, Durbin introduced “The Dietary Supplement Safety Act,” apparently written to give excessive power to the FDA to pull supplements from store shelves after any adverse event—regardless of causality.
In 2004, Durbin followed that effort up with two sneak attacks on supplements hidden in defense bill amendments. With these amendments, S.AMDT.3225 and S.AMDT.1379, Durbin seemed to be attempting to trigger the beginning of the end of our health freedom by proposing certain situations in which nutritional supplements should be banned from military bases.
Despite repeated failures and voter objections, Durbin doggedly kept at it. He finally succeeded in 2006 with S.3546, the “Dietary Supplement and Nonprescription Drug Consumer Protection Act.” With this bill, Adverse Event Reporting for nutritional supplements was established.
One might think that having won this major victory on AER, Durbin would have chosen to move on and focus his legislative energies on issues other than the destruction of nutritional supplements. But he didn’t stop there.
Durbin next proposed the bill S.1310, also a “Supplement Labeling Act” that was quickly squashed in the Senate. That was followed by yet another proposed amendment to the FDA Reauthorization for User Fees bill that would have buried nutritional supplement manufacturers under burdensome, meaningless paperwork requirements.
This catalog of seemingly endless attack after attack appears to suggest that while S.1425 may be the latest assault on nutritional supplements, it certainly won’t be the last. And while Durbin’s efforts are typically ineffective, it is important to remember that it would only take one sneak attack
to slip through and deliver a death blow to the American public’s health freedom.
Strike Back at the Heart
Just because S.1425 has been fore-cast to fade away doesn’t mean the threat against health freedom is over. Time has shown that a new destructive bill targeting your right to take nutritional supplements will soon manifest, and most likely from Dick Durbin—who has absolutely established himself as health freedom’s Public Enemy Number One.
Here’s the good news: It is an election year. Now is the time to let Dick Durbin know that unless he moves on from senselessly attacking supplements, the public’s votes will go to his opponent. Voting Durbin out of office would be an even better outcome, sending a strong message that we will not elect officials to power if they intend to dictate how we choose to pursue our health and well-being.
Please visit www.nha2014.com for updates on the newest threats to your health freedom, along with action plans designed to keep health-enhancing nutritional supplements in your life forever!
*This editorial is a public service announcement sponsored by the Nutritional Health Alliance (NHA).