This week, the Science and Technology Select Committee’s report on Homeopathy came out. Homeopathy did not do well. Think of the report as a fishmonger and homeopathy as a fish, and you’ll get a good idea of the kind of evisceration we witnessed on Monday morning.
I could talk at length about how great the report was, how well it communicated its points, the extent to which it backed every one of our issues with the 200-year-old-quack-therapy, the way it dismissed like cures like as nonsense, waved aside the law of infinitesimals as if it were meaningless (it is, after all), laid the smackdown on the MHRA for failure to regulate properly, proposed labeling regulations so strict that only the partially-sighted would fail to spot that these tablets are nothing more than sugar, outright accused the homeopaths of cherry-picking evidence to suit their cause, utterly demolished said cherry-picked evidence and generally all-round gave Hahnemann’s magic a good kicking – but I won’t. Partly because that sentence was long enough as it is, and partly because a full and thorough dissection of the report has been done far more competently and comprehensively elsewhere than I could muster.
Instead, I’m going to ask the awkward question – the one nobody dares to ask. I’m the kind of brave, rebellious, devil-may-care health-rangery-type of non-conformist who’d go ahead and do that. By which I mean this:
Did the report go far enough?
Yeah, that’s right, I’m asking the question we’re all thinking. Because while the recommendations in the report pretty much destroy every shred of credibility homeopathy has had, and leaves almost no stone unturned in its aims to take away the rocks that homeopathy’s been hiding under, I think there are some key suggestions it failed to put forward. Namely:
- Anyone who uses animals to prove homeopathy works to be henceforward treated exclusively by vets
- Anyone who genuinely believes that the process of diluting liquids makes them stronger to be banned from working in cocktail bars
- Subscribers to the notion of ‘like cures like’ to be forbidden from becoming firefighters
- Tate and Lyle to be forced to carry warnings on their packets stating ‘Granulated sugar containing no homeopathic vibrations’
We can only hope such vital measures are put in place in the coming months.