The notion that the FDA should “err on the side of safety” sounds like a tautology but is an affront to patients with incurable or poorly treatable diseases: For them, there is no safety in the status quo, and we only damage them further with paternalistic public policy that prevents individuals from exercising their own judgment about risks and benefits. If the FDA must err, it should be on the side of patients’ freedom to choose.
For the full commentary, see:
HENRY I. MILLER. “Paternalism Costs Lives.” The Wall Street Journal (Thurs., March 2, 2006): A14.