Australian Govt to Apologize for Thalidomide Tragedy

Do you support national apologies?

  • 89.9k
    LeslieG
    11/17/2023

    National apologies are a step in the right direction but changes in policy are even better.

      Luckily due to thalidomide deformities drug regulations have already been changed. In the US the Kefauver-Harris Amendments (1962) require drug companies to prove efficacy and safety before being marketed, and gives the FDA 180 days to review drug applications.

      The US also suffered less deformities due to a FDA pharmacologist (Dr. Frances Kelsey) who refused the drug application to market the drug due to a lack of safety evidence and reports of nerve damage, so only clinical trials were using thalidomide with only 17 birth deformities unlike other countries with 10,000.

      A study of National apologies found 329 apologies by 74 countries usually involving human rights in liberal democracies. Another study found strong support in the receiving group but backlash from other groups.

     Courts also look favorably on apologies with lighter sentences and damages where there are apologies.

      "329 political apologies offered by 74 countries, and cross-nationally mapped and compared these apologies. Our data reveal that apologies have increasingly been offered since the end of the Cold War, and that this trend has accelerated in the last 20 years. They have been offered across the globe, be it that they seem to have been embraced by consolidated liberal democracies and by countries transitioning to liberal democracies in particular. Most apologies have been offered for human rights violations that were related to or took place in the context of a (civil) war, but there appears to be some selectivity as to the specific human rights violations that countries actually mention in the apologies"

      "They find that apology-making, both as statements acknowledging wrongdoing and as expressions of remorse, boosts approval in the recipient state. But in the apologizing state, backlash is likely among individuals with strong hierarchical group dispositions—manifested as nationalism, social-dominance orientation, and conservatism—and among those who do not consider the recipient a strategically important partner."

    "More apologies would therefore reduce litigation and speed up settlements."

      https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/how-the-thalidomide-scandal-led-to-safer-drugs#Embryo-development

      https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/world-politics/article/abs/impact-of-political-apologies-on-public-opinion/7B4BBB7F4E9790229E0C5E36B8A5B35A

    https://uh.edu/~emliu/jru11/JRU_final.pdf
      https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/00223433211024696

  • 3,908
    Jim2423
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    It sure is hard to apologize when you find out you made a mistake. I commend Australia for honesty. To bad we can't learn from them.

  • 2,380
    Martha
    Voted Apathetic
    11/17/2023

    An apology is better than nothing, but efforts should be taken to provide restitution to the victims and their parents of this hideous error (if restitution has not already been issued).  Furthermore, if the partiees involved who manufactured, distributed, and approved this drug for use haven't been charged with criminal or civil charges they should be and ordered to make restitution.  These kinds of errors are totally unacceptable.

  • 1,832
    Dawn
    Voted Sad
    11/17/2023

    Usually they're insincere so there's no point. There should also be some sort of compensation to the victims or their families as well. 

  • 13.1k
    MrGeer
    11/17/2023

    an apology is hollow without action to correct.

    if I steal your car- then say ''sorry''- but don't return your car, and continue to drive it, thats not justice. 

    we need restorative justice.

  • 5,144
    Adam
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    I mean, they don't usually achieve anything unless there's some sort of legislation attached. But it's a good sign of a healthy democracy when a government can acknowledge past mistakes.

  • 1,663
    Nancy
    Voted Sad
    11/18/2023

    No it would never end!

  • 3,645
    Kevin
    Voted Happy
    11/18/2023

    Yes, I support many types of corporate responsibility.

  • 613
    Dona
    Voted Happy
    11/18/2023

    When we know better, we should do better.  That includes admitting to previous errors. 

  • 594
    Lyn Z
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    However,an apology doesn't make it right, and what else have we all done to remedy the tragedies that came from this drug. Anybody get assistance or compensation?  But at least, Aussies have a sense of ethics that USA often overlooks in medical matters (and others).  Nobody won on this one.

  • 3,262
    Steph
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    I am for national public apologies, and that's fine-but they need to change policies to show that their apologies are sincere.....otherwise, it's just empty words.

  • 1,515
    Lael
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    Yes and reparations where appropriate!

  • 7,715
    PLZ
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    This shows respect and character of the country.  Too bad so many have suffered.  
    It also shows how dangerous a drug can be when we rush for an antidote.

  • 24.2k
    Frank_001
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    I'd support National Apologies
    IF
    Each National Apology is accompanied by compensation, education, commemoration, and guidelines for not repeating the same mistake(s), and memorializing the past mistake in museums or other cultural sites, gestures like postage stamps, and events. There also needs to be a "letting go" occasion for the travesty. Holding onto grievances is a mistake

  • 24.2k
    Frank_001
    Voted Happy
    11/17/2023

    Shame On Australia For Waiting 60+ years!