Proposition 15 is the Right Medicine to Help Cure Cancer
We all have the face of someone in mind when people talk about cancer. Someone who is no longer with us. Someone in treatment. Someone who survived.
Cancer is one of our most formidable enemies. It is the number one cause of death for Americans under the age of 85 and claims the lives of more than 37,000 Texans every year.
It is largely out of our control if cancer strikes, who it strikes and where. We can commit to an exercise regime, champion our friends not to smoke and teach our children to eat their vegetables. But we do not know what causes some cancers or who they will victimize, and while cancer treatments continue to advance there is no cure.
With such a great Goliath before us, the questions remain: When will there be a cure? And who has the grit to get us there?
Texans have an opportunity to answer these questions on November 6th. We can choose to take up the gauntlet and slay this giant by making a decade-long commitment to infuse cancer research with $3 billion. We can choose to provide cancer research with $300 million annually at a critical point when cancer research continues to make medical leaps towards targeted treatments, but the federal government is ratcheting down funds for cancer research.
There are 400,000 cancer survivors in Texas right now, and approximately 95,000 more Texans will hear the dreaded words “you have cancer” this year. We believe passing Proposition 15 will inspire doctors, patients, and their families to persevere in their fight, knowing that there is a renewed effort underway to find a cure.
While scientists have made many advances in their understanding of cancer, there is still much we don’t know. We cannot pinpoint a single cause. We do not know why normal cells that divide and grow in an orderly fashion morph into cancerous cells that grow out of control to ravage the human body.
We believe that three billion dollars will help produce answers that ultimately save lives.
Perhaps those dollars will lead to the discovery of a single cure for cancer or maybe they will lead researchers to discover new therapeutic approaches that specifically target different kinds of cancer.
Building on the successes of mainstay, broad spectrum cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation, researchers are exploring more treatments that target the cancerous region, instead of the entire body. Other cutting-edge research is delving into new arenas like light therapy, nanotechnology and gene therapy. Providing more money to these efforts can deliver more treatment options.
With $300 million in annual cancer-fighting funding, we can broaden the front in our war on cancer to include more rare strains of the disease while deepening our investment in cures for the most common types.
In addition to accelerating existing research efforts, new funds will also attract the world's leading medical minds to our state. This research capital will increase the collaborative efforts among our state’s universities and medical centers. The six-major university systems in Texas will help screen the research applications that seek these state funds.
If the people of Texas approve this constitutional amendment, they will double funding for cancer research in our state. Proposition 15 will create the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas, which will be authorized to issue $3 billion in general obligation bonds to fund cancer research, clinical trails, and laboratory facility construction throughout Texas.
One cannot put a price tag on the value of a human life, but Texas voters can commit to a decade-long investment in cancer research. We believe more research will lead to more answers, more cures and, ultimately, saving more lives.
Cancer is a personal burden with a public solution. Like thousands of cancer survivors, in the face of this dark enemy we can choose not to bow down, retreat or despair. We can research, build our medicinal weapons and find cures. On November 6th, Texans have opportunity to strike a blow against cancer by voting yes on Proposition 15.
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