What everyone gets wrong about anti-vaccine parents

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We told them this would happen.

We told them that it was only a matter of time before a childhood disease that had nearly been eliminated from the US would come roaring back if they failed to vaccinate their children. And that’s precisely what has happened. Measles has come roaring back, but not simply because a child incubating measles visited Disneyland.

Twenty years ago, if the same child had visited Disneyland, the measles would have stopped with him or her. Everyone else was protected — not because everyone was vaccinated — but because of herd immunity. When a high enough proportion of the population is vaccinated, the disease simply can’t spread because the odds of one unvaccinated person coming in contact with another are very low.

Of course, we told them that. We patiently explained herd immunity, debunked claims of an association between vaccines and autism, demolished accusations of “toxins” in vaccines, but they didn’t listen. Why? Because we thought the problem was that anti-vax parents didn’t understand science. That’s undoubtedly true, but the anti-vax movement is NOT about science and never was.

The anti-vax movement has never been about children, and it hasn’t really been about vaccines. It’s about privileged parents and how they wish to view themselves.

1. Privilege

Nothing screams “privilege” louder than ostentatiously refusing something that those less privileged wish to have.

Each and every anti-vax parent is privileged in having easy and inexpensive access to life saving vaccines. It is the sine qua non of the anti-vax movement. In a world where the underprivileged may trudge miles to the nearest clinic, desperate to save their babies from infectious scourges, nothing communicates the unbelievable wealth, ease and selfishness of modern American life like refusing the very same vaccines.

2. Unreflective defiance of authority

There are countless societal ills that stem from the fact that previous generations were raised to unreflective acceptance of authority. It’s not hard to argue that unflective acceptance of authority, whether that authority is the government or industry, is a bad thing. BUT that doesn’t make the converse true. Unreflective defiance is really no different from unreflective acceptance. Oftentimes, the government, or industry, is right about a particular set of claims.

Experts in a particular topic, such as vaccines, really are experts. They really know things that the lay public does not. Moreover, it is not common to get a tremendous consensus among experts from different fields. Experts in immunology, pediatrics, public health and just about everything else you can think of have weighed in on the side of vaccines. Experts in immunology, pediatrics and public health give vaccines to their OWN children, rendering claims that they are engaged in a conspiracy to hide the dangers of vaccines to be nothing short of ludicrous.

Unfortunately, most anti-vax parents consider defiance of authority to be a source of pride, whether that defiance is objectively beneficial or not.

3. The need to feel “empowered”

This is what is comes down to for most anti-vax parents: it’s a source of self-esteem for them. In their minds, they have “educated” themselves. How do they know they are “educated”? Because they’ve chosen to disregard experts (who appear to them as authority figures) in favor of quacks and charlatans, whom they admire for their own defiance of authority. The combination of self-education and defiance of authority is viewed by anti-vax parents as an empowering form of rugged individualism, marking out their own superiority from those pathetic “sheeple” who aren’t self-educated and who follow authority.

Where does that leave us?

First, it explains why efforts to educate anti-vax parents about the science of immunology has been such a spectacular failure. It is not, and has never been, about the science.

Second, it suggests how we must change our approach. Simply put, we have to hit anti-vax parents where they live: in their unmerited sense of superiority.

How? By pointing out to them, and critiquing, their own motivations.

Anti-vax parents are anxious to see themselves in a positive light. They would almost certainly be horrified to find that others regard them as so incredibly privileged that they can’t even see their own privilege.

We need to highlight the fact that unreflective defiance is just the flip side of unreflective acceptance. There’s nothing praiseworthy about it. Only teenagers think that refusing to do what authority figures recommend marks them as independent. Adults know that doing the exact opposite of what authority figures recommend is a sign of immaturity, not deliberation, and certainly not education.

Finally, we need to emphasize to parents that parenting is not about them and their feelings. It’s about their children and THEIR health and well being. It’s one thing to decline to follow a medical recommendation. Most of us do that all the time. It’s another thing entirely to join groups defined by defiance, buy their products, and preach to others about your superiority in defying medical recommendations. That’s a sign of the need to bolster their own self-esteem, not their “education.”

We have to confront anti-vax parents where they live — in their egos. When refusing to vaccinate your children is widely viewed as selfish, irresponsible, and the hallmark of being UNeducated, anti-vax advocacy will lose its appeal.

 

 

I have had to remove a substantial portion of the comments because the 2000+ comments were crashing the page, and intermittently crashing the entire site.

  • Culchee

    Add to the above Bias Confirmation.

  • DogMa

    Probably a good point. I hadn’t thought of it from that angle, either, only that these were people that needed a quick course in the science. It does make sense that the privileged (awkward word choice, yes, but it makes the point) think they don’t need the vaccines that the great unwashed do. But just wait until one of their precious offspring GETS measles and GETS encephalitis as a complication. Then the now-useless college fund will be used up in a year on 24/7 nursing care for the now hopelessly brain damaged unvaccinated offspring. But the regrets will last forever.

  • Angus Dorbie

    A good article but sadly contaminated by the overused “privilege” insult, a real red flag indicative of a certain political sub-culture.

    • Privilege is a thing that exists. Everyone has varying degrees of it, and since we are all variously privileged or disadvantaged on lots and lots of axes it’s not really insulting to point out that privilege exists. It’s just a fact.

      Axes of privilege in the US include being white, male, Christian, straight, cisgender, young-to-middle-age, able-bodied, mentally healthy, and upper middle class or higher socioeconomic status. Axes of disadvantage include being a person of color, female, non-Christian, transgender or genderfluid or genderqueer, very young or very old, disabled, mentally ill, and working class or lower socioeconomic status. Privilege is subtle- it’s things like being deferred to more automatically, not being followed in stores, presumed to be telling the truth, given more benefit of the doubt, not interrupted in business meetings, having your story and your viewpoint considered the “neutral” viewpoint. It’s not having to spend your life worried about the police coming after you for no good reason. It’s not having to spend your life worried about sexual assault. It’s having your crazy ideas that harm people validated as “freedom” while other people’s crazy ideas that harm people are rejected. It’s having your acts of violence handwaved as aberrations while others’ acts of violence are taken to smear their group as a whole (example: a Muslim shooting up a military base is called Islamist terrorism, but a Christian bombing an abortion clinic is not called Christian terrorism).

      And yes, in case you’re wondering, I have a whole fuckload of privilege and only a few axes of disadvantage. I’m white, upper middle class, mostly straight, well-educated, able-bodied, have no mental illnesses, cisgender, and right in the winning age range (25-50). I’m female and I’m not Christian, so that can suck sometimes, but overall I’m benefiting a lot from a society that assumes I’m valuable and that my ideas are worth listening to, not because my ideas are necessarily awesome, but because of my demographic characteristics. Assuming that your picture is an accurate one and based on the content of your post, I’m going to say it’s highly likely you have almost no disadvantages at all. You have no idea what it’s like to be not-like-you, you have no idea the subtle privileges you get every single day of your life. Maybe you should listen to people who try to tell you that not everyone lives your life, instead of saying “well I don’t deal with it therefore it’s not real”. The privilege to ignore the suffering of others … that’s a big one you seem to have. People who are disadvantaged don’t get to ignore their disadvantages.

    • Who?

      How is it insulting to describe someone who lives in the most affluent society in the history of the world, ‘privileged’? You might feel awkward about your privilege, or it might not fit in with a particular persecution motif you identify with, but simply in practical terms it is not inaccurate.

  • Lyndsy

    It would be nice if we could remember that there are more than two sides to any conversation. We’d all be a lot better off if we could be understanding enough of the other to move out of our “camps” long enough to find a common ground and move forward on this issue in a conscious way. Berating others is not usually a successful approach to having a conversation. The only people nodding their heads in agreement with you are people that already agreed with you. If we really want to see change then we need to let go of our emotional motivations and move forward with objective compassion and creativity.

    • Who?

      Well, there can be two sides to a conversation, but as someone recently pointed out, the truth isn’t necessarily in the middle. Vaccines have saved millions of lives. They are A Good Thing. To say anything else is to misunderstand facts.

      Perhaps if compassion is your thing you might like to think about who really needs it.

      How about people who are too young or too sick to be protected by vaccination, and who rely on herd immunity-are they worthy of compassion?

      Those who would be left dead and permanently injured by VPIs currently avoided by vaccines-are they worthy enough for you?

      How about those whose parents care more about their own fears, egos and beliefs based on self serving nonsense on the internet, than their children’s health?

      People in countries that can’t afford vaccination and who lose family members to VPIs every year.

      Surprisingly often people come here to ‘educate’ Dr T and stay as they learn they can criticise without being blocked, and that the information that is out there from reputable sources is far more accurate and responsible than the nonsense coming from any one or all of the dozens or hundreds of anti-vaxxers pouring out their fear and rage.

      You won’t be blocked. If you forget the ‘compassion’ you claim to be pushing, and resort to insult, you’ll be heard. Have a look down the thread if you haven’t done so already and see people trying to engage with Rosanna, MCH and whoever the other anti-vaxxers du jour are, and only bailing out when the ‘yes, but’ gets too much. You’ll see the paranoia of the current anti-vax lot: it is particularly unattractive to my way of thinking, but there seems to be a personality disorder for every taste and budget displayed in the anti comments across the site.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      I would love to feel the compassion that anti-vaccine parents have for my 4 month old premature baby (vaccinated according to his age), too young to receive the MMR shot.

  • Steel_Wind

    Respectfully, they don’t get herd immunity — because anti-vaxxers are bad at math and make illogical decisions. Their decisions are based on subjective “feelings”, emotion and selfishness.

    This is about mothers who cannot do math. Yes, mothers — not fathers.

    So lets get to it: the embarrassing and profoundly disturbing part of all of this. The large majority of anti-vaxxers are women. This problem is to be laid directly at their feet.

    That’s because when it comes to child care – women carry the keys to THAT magic kingdom. If men were the majority of anti-vaxxers, this wouldn’t be remotely as bad. For the most part, it’s women take the kids to the doctor’s office and sign them up for school and deal with these issues in North America. If men were 80% of the anti-vaxxers, there would have been a HELLUVA lot more kids vaccinated because women would have done it anyway and seen to the healthcare of those kids.

    That’s the way our society works, rightly or wrongly. So when mothers don’t buy in, as a society, we’re **screwed**.

    This is about Mothers who can’t do math, but are very adept at “self-education” and “empowerment”.

    It is infuriating and my patience for this insanity is entirely at an end.

    It is time for sweeping and coercive legislation, with mandatory vaccination administered through the school system without ANY warnings. No opting out for ANY reason. That kid gets the needle no matter what. Because we are not asking sweetheart — this time, we’re telling. And “no” isn’t on the menu.

    The End.

    • KarenJJ

      um.. no..

      Big fan of vaccinations, but no. Medical reasons are still reasons.. Most vaccinations are done for the under 6s, and I’d be livid if someone vaccinated my kid without my consent (and without input from her immunologists).

      Other parents should definitely be encouraged to speak up more, but women are definitely not the only ones in the anti-vax hole.

      • Steel_Wind

        Your dissenting vote on this issue is duly noted — and should be duly ignored. The fact that you’d be livid is no longer my concern.

        I am entirely in support of coercive legislation that will do this no matter how livid that would make you. I no longer care about irrational dissent on this issue.

        • Molly Glenn

          Some people have legitimate medical conditions that compromise their immune systems and prevent them from being vaccinated. This is why herd immunity is so important. This is why we care that other people are vaccinated because they’re hurting the people who can’t be and not just themselves.

          • Young CC Prof

            You know how to tell the difference between an antivaxxer versus someone who has a legitimate medical contraindication?

            The first one runs around telling everyone else how bad vaccines are. The second one says, “I talked to my doctor and I can’t have this shot, so please, other people get it!”

          • KarenJJ

            Not in disagreement with any of that, just the idea that someone might advocate vaccinating little kids at schools without parent’s knowledge.

        • Who?

          So how come your patience being at an end is a huge consideration, but KarenJJ’s child’s legitimate medical concerns about her particular child-who I understand is in any event vaccinated-should be ‘duly ignored’?

          And, btw, what is your problem with women? I suppose you’d love to fix how the washing up is done as well but since women take most of that on, you just can’t.

          • SporkParade

            I assume it is because women are generally assumed to be responsible for family health, including taking children to the doctor. Annoying and retrograde to be certain, but I’ve run into this a lot as a mother, even from our female pediatrician.

        • KarenJJ

          Well, if I’m just being an irrational female then…

          You’ve come late to the conversation. There are 2000 comments below here, part of where I talk of my kid’s medical issues and the lengths we had to go to so that she could be fully vaccinated. She has a rare immune system issue and is under the care of some great immunologists.

          So definitely – vaccinate your kids, kids like mine need it. But medical issues are still legitimate issues and vaccinating at school without my knowledge and without me being able to get her specialists opinion prior is wrong and yes I’d be livid.

          • Steel_Wind

            Look, what you say is true. The problem is that the trend of this current situation is statistically reaching a critical stage in some communities on the West Coast of the USA. Herd immunity in some geographic areas has been lost. The canary in that goldmine is not sick — it is *dead*.

            If people were acting rationally, then medical opt-outs due to real (not imagined) conditions would be entirely reasonable, sensible and ethical. On this we are both in complete agreement.

            The problem is that LARGE SWATHS OF PEOPLE are NOT acting rationally, and **I infer that tendency will not only continue, it will expand**.

            In So Cal, there is strong evidence that rational exemptions are dead CERTAIN to be abused so that this trend will NOT easily be reversed without meaningful coercion. If we do not take steps, we lose herd immunity and MORE people would be hurt than if we don’t make rational and otherwise necessary exceptions.

            That is very ugly, but *very* necessary, math. I’m prepared to draw that inference, make that calculation, and DO IT. You are not. On this point, we disagree.

            We are caught in a real public health dilemma here where you want to believe that we can reason us out of a problem that a very large number of people did not (correctly) reason themselves into. I do not believe in the power of public education to unconvince the convinced. They are not persuadable.

            The tendency of anti-vaxxers to abuse an “ethical or medical objection” appears to me to be extremely large. So large, that the public health cost of accommodating that potential for abuse is greater than NOT accommodating it.

            That is ugly math; once again, on this point, we disagree.

            If your plan will coercively force immunization with a very high degree of compliance, while providing a medically necessary opt-out that will not be abused, I’m okay with that. Indeed, in a medical health system like Canada’s, that is probably achievable, as patients have comparatively little influence over doctors under Canada’s medicare system.

            But in a consumer driven medical system like America’s where the patient has a comparatively much higher influence in the physician/patient relationship, the opt-outs will be abused, there for the asking for those with the money to do so, and we are right back in the soup.

            In a prisoner’s dilemma, people will be dishonest and act out of self-interest, not altruism.

            Coercion with opt-outs for a fee is not coercion at all. However well intentioned, it will not work in the current milieu.

            In short, if the problem was that it was poor people who were abusing the system we could fix it with opt-outs;however, when it’s affluent people doing so, we can’t.

          • KarenJJ

            So you are against medical exemptions as well.

            Nice to see there are uneducated and selfish nutters on the pro-vax side as well.

            Honestly- there aren’t so many of us requiring medical exemptions that herd immunity would be largely affected. You don’t need 100% for herd immunity to work.

          • yugaya

            It has nothing to do with how much influence a patient has over their doctor or the medical system. What you are suggesting, the rounding up of children in schools and vaccinating each and every child without any prior warning or intention to honor valid medical exemptions is insane. It was not done like that even in a communist country during a smallpox outbreak – yes, everyone who medically could had to be vaccinated, if you were in a hot zone and refused the vaccine you were not given the vaccine against your will, you were placed in the quarantine to prevent you from potentially infecting others, and if you tried to break out of the quarantine you were shot because you were breaching martial law which was in place during the epidemic. What you are suggesting is unacceptable, not to mention the sexist arguments you used in its defense.

    • yugaya

      “with mandatory vaccination administered through the school system without ANY warnings.”

      I live in a country with mandatory childhood vaccinations, of which part is done in schools if the parent agrees in advance in writing and if the kid is deemed fit on the day of the vaccination, and I am ok with it. I would never support what you are suggesting here though, you are suggesting inhuman one-size-fits-all no warnings approach. What if the child has health problems at the moment that the parent knows of but the kid is unable to verbalise it or it is not apparent to the nurses and doctors doing the pre-vaccination check up, or what if they have a chronic condition that warrants a medical waiver but the school or medical records are not up to date and are missing that information?

    • MLE

      The CDC itself recommends that I should never receive the pertussis vaccine again after the reaction I had to it the first time, but that’s not good enough for you. You sound just as “educated” on this topic as the anti vax women that you so despise. Maybe drop the charade and admit this is a convenient cover for your general misogyny.

    • rh1985

      Some people cannot receive vaccinations for medical reasons. The point of herd immunity is to protect those people, not harm them with vaccinations they can’t get for a valid medical reason. Mississippi has only a medical exemption, and hasn’t had a case of measles in over 20 years. Medical reasons-only exemptions work.

      Your proposal is ridiculously overreaching. There should be no non-medical exemptions for public school students, but the consequence should be that they are simply not allowed to attend school. Parent feels that strongly about it? Homeschool the kid, and hold the parent liable if they expose someone and kill them.

  • Adam Smith

    I have to respectfully disagree, and would counter that you’ve just added another bad guess onto the long list of things people get wrong about vaccine critics. It’s also very offensive and condescending to keep putting educated in quotes, like somehow you can educate yourself reading peer-reviewed medical journals, but a parent who is not an MD, but rather a bioengineer or mathematician, lacks the mental capacity to analyze statistical data and draw a sensible conclusion. You don’t really need any medical background to understand herd immunity, if you have the best available numbers it’s a straightforward probability problem. But it’s also a buzzword that is overused by people who don’t actually understand it, and applied in cases where the thresholds for the phenomenon to apply simply haven’t been met.

    There is also ego at work on both sides of the argument. Doctors have egos too, and they are not always justified. I didn’t take advice from my GP about vaccines, because I found him ignorant on the subject (I go into this in a little more detail below). But that doesn’t stop him trying to dispense the advice, and his ego prevents open discourse. There is also the ego of the self-proclaimed “pro-vax” people. You know, the ones who fill their Facebook walls with every pro-vaccine pop news article that comes along, captioned with things like “anti-vax idiots, I hope their kids all die”. These kinds of people are the lemmings, the herd if you will. They don’t research anything. Most of them don’t even realize that their own childhood vaccines have long-since lost efficacy, and that they are just as like to be vectors for things like measles or whooping cough as any unvaccinated child. The CDC reports that vaccination rates in adults in the US are drastically low. Majority of self-described “pro-vax” parents are themselves effectively unvaccinated (http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6305a4.htm) James Cherry’s 2012 study of whooping cough concluded that even the current schedule for DTaP leaves many “up-to-date” people at risk, as the benefits of the vaccine are lost more quickly that was originally thought (http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1209051) It’s not a small scattering of religious exemption parents bringing back whooping cough and measles, it’s the fact that far fewer of us have resistance from vaccines than previously believed, and development of vaccines is not keeping pace with new strains. These are the peer-reviewed conclusions of an MD in the New England Journal of Medicine, not a “quack or charlatan”. In a nutshell, Dr Cherry is saying way more vaccines are needed in everyone for them to work. And I would argue that this isn’t long-term sustainable in terms of the cost of research or manufacture and delivery.

    You’re also making some very wrong assumptions about where vaccine critics get their information. I’m critical of how vaccines and antibiotics are being prescribed in the US today, and have refused some of them based on my own risk assessment. But I don’t get my ideas or data from the likes of Jenny McCarthy or Andrew Wakefield as Fox News would have you believe. I read most of the relevant articles on PubMed. I also don’t look to my GP for vaccine advice, because he has demonstrated clearly to me that he’s not up-to-date on the situation; he takes a moment to pretend to acknowledge my concerns, and then gives me a pre-rehearsed speech about why vaccines are so great, and how science conquered Polio, etc… you’ve heard it I’m sure. When I asked him about what exactly is being observed with regards to encephalitis-like swelling reported in some infants who have just had the MMR vaccine, and where this research is at… blank stare, dismissive remarks about “how rare that is”. No actual discussion of SMEI ensued, or any information about how it’s believed to be associated with a spontaneous SCN1A mutation. He’d never even heard of this gene. This is the expert I’m supposed to entrust with potentially life-altering decisions? A guy who’s entire knowledge of the subject is “vaccines are great, mmkay?”

    Real critics of vaccines don’t believe they cause widespread autism, understand that the organomercury metabolites of thimerosal have been found to be relatively harmless (as compared with breathing elemental mercury), are not influenced by vague fear-mongering notions like “kids are being injected with too many bad chemicals”. We do however, believe that medical practice in the US is too heavily influenced now by pharmaceutical company lobbying, and that both vaccines and antibiotics are WAY over-prescribed without diligent risk assessment on a case-by-case, patient-by-patient basis, and without concern for the long-term consequences for and cost sustainability of a biochemical arms race against pathogen evolution. Vaccines are not eradicating diseases, Polio is not gone from the planet as many seem to believe, we’re actively suppressing outbreaks in populations that can afford it, in a manner that has ever-increasing costs. Vaccine critics generally also believe that nothing can be injected into a person without some risk, and the risks are there for everyone to read in each vaccine’s fine print. The CDC acknowledges that death is a possible, if very rare, risk of some common vaccinations. Aren’t they a trustworthy resource? Telling people they should just get the vaccine because the risk of dying from side effects is small is a lot like telling someone they should just fly on airplanes because most of them don’t crash. But the fact is, some do crash, and real people die, and the more planes you go on the more likely you are to be one of them. Likewise, people have adverse reactions to all kinds of medications, vaccines included, and that should never be rounded down to zero risk and dismissed, particularly if risk of getting the disease is on the same order of magnitude as the risk of the reaction.

    We all want a healthy population, but not all of us agree that the number of vaccines and antibiotics currently prescribed in the US is responsible. I’ve seen kids get vaccines they don’t really need (like Hep C vaccine to infants whose parents are neither infected nor intravenous drug abusers), and I’ve seen doctors prescribe antibiotics “just in case”, where no proper diagnosis of bacterial pathogen was made. We need to educate ourselves and make informed decisions to keep this in check. Checks and balances are important!

    Thank you to anyone who took the time to read this and consider it with an open mind, and who didn’t just TL;DR it and then go on to post “anti-vax idiots” somewhere further down this page…

    • Andrew Lazarus

      I agree you don’t need a medical background to understand herd immunity: mathematics will do. You can make a good video game from it. But I’m rather bewildered by your conclusions. The largest estimate of annual deaths from vaccines I have found, even on antivax sites, is 11. Measles ran 450, pre vaccine, and then there are polio, diphtheria, and all the others to add on. So, which is more risky: the vaccine, or letting the measles come back?

      Now, there is another alternative, and you don’t need an M.D. for it; a semester of econ is enough. That’s free riding on your neighbors’ vaccinations: all of the benefits (until enough of them free ride with you!) and none of the risk. Just from an economics perspective, free-riding arrangements are unstable. They’re solved by side-payments or coercion (no public school for you…).

      My experience this month has been that typical antivaxers literally can’t calculate relative risk from observed ratios of vax/unvaxed in the sick cohort and the general population. Someone who can’t do fractions has nothing to contribute to a discussion of anything scientific, including vaccines. And my experience is that antivax web sites that pretend to quantitative literacy are often deceitful—cherry-picking data, fabricating quotations.

    • yugaya

      ” but a parent who is not an MD, but rather a bioengineer or
      mathematician, lacks the mental capacity to analyze statistical data and draw a sensible conclusion.”

      See, that’s the thing: most antivaxxing parents are neither bioengineers or mathematicians. As far as capacity to interpret data goes here is a nice not-so-flammable example of a parenting issue that is similarly filled with quackityquack: bilingualism.

      As “a parent” I do not lack either the capacity or the professional knowledge to read studies on bilingualism or interpret them. I also have extensive first hand experience both professionally working with bilingual language learners and as a parent raising multilingual children. BUT:

      I did have to get someone I know who has a Phd in neuropsychology / brain imaging to look at some of the studies on bilingualism for me and summarise a professional opinion, so that I could go and first interpret the studies accurately in that respect, and then bitch based on facts and factual interpretations about just how utterly stupid, uneducated and even potentially damaging the majority of advice and tips on raising bilinguals that can be found on mommy-bilingualism blogs and websites is.

      As a parent with good reading comprehension and a bucket full of professional anecdata I would have gotten a highly biased, partial, inadequate interpretation of bilingualism studies at best, and that is what highly educated antivaxxing parents are getting out of reading studies on vaccines unless they are of course experts on vaccines.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Any vaccine side effects except redness and soreness on the injection site is statistically higher with the natural disease than with the vaccine. Some people do get encephalitis due to MMR but it is lower than 1 in ten million compared to 1 in 1000 with measles. We do not say vaccines are totally safe and without side effects. We say that they have less side effects than having the disease, that is why they are approved.

      By the way, when you find a vaccine agaisnt hep C, please do tell me. As far as I know only hepatitis B vaccine is available. It is made with just some viral proteins, so the side effects are unfrequent. But it would be great to have a hep C vaccine.

      My son is vaccinated agaisnt hep B. At 4 months old he already has got two doses. No side effects so far apart from a little soreness on the injection site, promptly treated with one dose of paracetamol. I thought that it was best for him to be inmune to a disease that he can get easily and causes cancer and liver failure. Even if he is not expected to have sex anytime soon the vaccine has so little side effects in infants that he already got it.

  • Nick Sanders

    Disqus is having even more comment issues. Some comments are not appearing here but are appearing when I go to the Disqus page for this conversation, some are the other way around, and some are not appearing at all.

    • Samantha06

      It does that a lot.. not sure why that is..

      • Andrew Lazarus

        [off topic] Probably memcache. If they kept everything completely in sync, their servers would be overwhelmed. Comment shows up after cache is updated. Of course, do a reload to make sure the issue isn’t your browser’s cache.

        • Samantha06

          OK, thanks for the tip!

    • Young CC Prof

      That occasionally happens here when comment threads get extremely long. Try refreshing the entire page.

      • Nick Sanders

        I have, several times.

  • Sarah Roney Dalton

    Hit the nail on the head!!! Thank you, I’ll be sharing this wherever I think it might do some good.

  • AmyRose Acker

    You’re an idiot

    • MLE

      So is your face!

    • Who?

      If only all the anti-vaxxers were as succinct as you, Disqus would be having a better time.

  • RB

    I hate to break it to to you doctor, but it isn’t Ego that drives the parent, it’s FEAR.

    • momofone

      One way to counter fear is to learn. I can understand questioning; of course parents want to be sure they’re doing what’s best for their kids. So if I’m fearful of vaccines, it makes sense for me to learn as much as I can about them–and I am not going to get that from Joe Mercola. I’m going to get it from legitimate experts. Fear does not have to be a permanent deterrent.

    • What do you believe experiences that fear: the toenail? No, it’s the ego. It’s the sense of self. It’s the “I.” Fear is experienced by the individual and, in reaction to that fear, the self generates defense mechanisms. See the list above? Those are the defenses of the ego.

      Fear is natural. You will know fear in your life, as will we all. The thing is, if you’re an egomaniac then you’re going to insist on trying to controlling that fear’s source, never understanding that you’re the thing you fear. You make your fear. It’s not outside of you — it’s you.

    • KarenJJ

      There’s a difference in parents not vaccinating due to fear and ignorance and anti-vaccination parents that are against vaccines and have done all this “research” on the internet about how bad vaccines are and how they don’t work and we shouldn’t be giving them to our poor children…

      • Who?

        I bet there’s a fair bit of intersection though.

    • Guest

      I will freely admit that one of the reasons I vaccinate my children is fear of death or permanent disability from a VPD. Contributing to herd immunity to help protect others’ children is just an extra perk.

      • Sullivan ThePoop

        Right, tetanus and IPV are for your own personal protection.

      • Young CC Prof

        Yup! When I had my son vaccinated against measles today, my primary motivation was protecting HIM. Protecting the two younger babies in his daycare who aren’t vaccinated is also important, but I mainly did it for him.

      • Montserrat Blanco

        Me too. We are SO selfish…

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      That’s just a position of privilege. Why are parents afraid of vaccines? Because they can be, because they don’t have to be afraid of diseases. Because of vaccines.

      • Amazed

        It’s the need to have some drama in their lives, I think. Generally, anti-vaxxers don’t have to worry over things like making the ends meet or dying from a small cut, having ten pregnancies with one kid to show for it and then losing it to the measles, or whatever. Their lives are so bloody privileged and well-organized, with no serious problems, that they’re grasping for drama. And I have to admit that vaccines happily satisfy this demand: scary-looking names of the ingredient, Big Pharma, government enforcing them on those poor children…

        I challenge you to find me someone who works 12 hours a day, isn’t sure that she’d be able to pay the rent this month, lives in fear of the kid sneezing because she cannot take sick days, and is sooo scared of them bad vaccines.

        • Samantha06

          Or like “Ben” one of the other commentators said yesterday, the ones who question have the “educations, means and time” to do it… talk about arrogant and egotistical… that’s a statement of privilege to be sure..

        • 1moreastronaut

          My ex. But one of her 3 children is autistic.

          • Amazed

            Right. I should have clarified. Still. Did she link the changes in her kid (presumably up to weeks after the shot) to autism on her own, or did a well-meaning friend suggested it to her, putting behind all the might of their Google University degree? Perhaps pointing her at Andrew Wakefild “research” waking people up to this supposed link?

  • Cathy

    Truly sad article. It is extremely inaccurate and poorly written. There are reasons that many parents chose not to vaccinate and it certainly has nothing to do with EGO!!! http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_20992083/glaxosmithkline-pay-3-billion-healthcare-fraud-settlement-u?source=rss

    • That had absolutely nothing to do with vaccines.

    • Andrew Lazarus

      General Motors has paid out zillions because of a faulty ignition switch, which they not only made, but which they covered up. By your logic, no one should buy an automobile. We should go back to horse-and-buggy; 19th century transportation meets 19th century public health.

  • Amy Tuteur, MD

    Demonstrating yet again that anti-vax is about privilege:

    Where are the Black Anti-vaxxers?
    http://www.nbcnews.com/news/nbcblk/where-are-black-anti-vaxxers-measles-debate-n301646

  • Rosanna

    That was the MOST inaccurate article I have ready about Vaccines to date. My daughter is vaccinated (so please don’t attack me!) but, once she was 2, I went back to school to become a holistic practitioner. I learned a lot about vaccination that I had never known. Things that Dr.s and the media don’t tell us. Since it appears the author here is a Dr, perhaps some light can be shed on the ingredients used in vaccines and statistics that show deaths caused by some vaccinations??? Parents ARE educating themselves – that is why they are choosing not to vaccinate. To insinuate that a parent would put their own child’s health in jeopardy because of EGO, is the dumbest thing I have ever heard of. Inside vaccinations are monkey kidney cells – yes, from monkeys, and pieces of aborted babies – I couldn’t believe it when I found that out. SO….PRO VAXXERS – who are anti-abortion – are you allowing bits of dead babies to be injected into your child? If I had known that – I wouldn’t have vaxxed. Why don’t they report the ingredients? Why don’t they talk about children who have died after being vaccinated? How many deaths have been reported with this recent outbreak of Measles? I haven’t heard of one – Why don’t these same Doctors who talk so passionately about vaccination talk about the other issues making our children sick? The chemicals, additives and colors put in our children’s food – marketing to children – then we wonder why childhood obesity is on the rise, ADD, ADHD, AUTISM, etc. We all want to protect our kids, but there has to be a safer way – we are not being given all the information and that makes me so sad. Then they call holistic practitioners quacks and charlatans to discredit the truth from really coming out. They are quacks because they uncover information being kept from us? Didn’t one of the co-creators of Gardisil (THhe HPV Vaccine) come out as a whistleblower and state that the vaccine is crap? Interesting how I don’t read any reports on that. The FACTS, not EGO, show that there have been more deaths due to the Measles vaccine in the last 10 years than measles itself – Perhaps the skeptical OB can “educate” all the egotisicals charlatans out there. It’s a scary society that we are living in. I think we should empower ourselves with EDUCATION and our own INFORMED RESEARCH and beware of biased articles, studies and information that only show one side. Any corporation with enough $$$$ can conduct a “study” to determine the results they want reported.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      Thank you for proving the point.

      • Rosanna

        I would just appreciate being told the whole truth – don’t we as a society deserve that?

        • Wren

          Perhaps you should start with checking your own claims for truth.

          • Rosanna

            I have, Wren – do you have some information that you can share? Trust me, all I want is a safe solution for ALL of our children. We all deserve that – and we deserve to work together to find a solution, instead of attacking people and calling them quacks.

          • Wren

            “Injecting bits of dead babies into children” is hardly truthful.

            Certain vaccines are created in cell lines that originated from fetuses aborted in the 1960s. Two fetuses in total. The cells used are decended from those fetuses. Those cells are most certainly not injected as a part of the vaccine however. They are used as medium for growing the viruses for the vaccine. If actual human cells, from whatever source, were being injected the immune response would be to that foreign tissue, not the virus.

            Not all viruses for vaccines are grown in human cell lines. Others have been grown in cells like monkey kidneys and other types of cell.

            This is a simplified explanation and we likely have commenters here who can give a much fuller picture, as could some googling factual scientific information. The truth is far less inflammatory and far less scary than what you presented as FACT.

          • Rosanna

            Thanks Wren!

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Wait a minute – I thought you were all educated about vaccines due to your “holistic” learning? So why would what Wren said, which is readily available information, be of any use for you? Why don’t you already know it?

            Or is it that your supposed “education” on vaccines is a bunch of bullshit?

          • Wren

            You’re welcome.

            I would like to know if that information has changed your stance at all. I am not expecting it to make you pro-vaccine all on its own, but will you continue to make claims about “injecting bits of dead babies into children”? Are you willing to consider your other claims potentially being wrong as well?

          • Andrew Lazarus

            Help out my memory—isn’t the rubella vaccine from a fetus that was miscarried because of maternal rubella. It’s not like cannibalism here.

          • Sullivan ThePoop

            Who needs google where there is this? http://vec.chop.edu/service/vaccine-education-center/

          • Dr Kitty

            The history of cell cultures is very interesting. Particularly the HeLA cell line.

            http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/henrietta-lacks-immortal-cells-6421299/?page=2

            “Oh Noes- vaccines inject cells from aborted foetuses!”
            Makes it sound like
            a) the foetuses were aborted just to get their cells (no)
            b) we’re talking about lots of foetuses (no)
            c) foetal cells are getting injected into people (no, it’s just a way of growing the viruses needed for vaccination, because viruses have to be grown in living cells)
            d) this is in some way an unsafe manufacturing process (no).

          • momofone

            But Rosanna, don’t you have some information that you’re choosing not to share? You could help us on the way to finding the solution you so desperately want.

        • Even when the truth is laid out before you in clear facts and figures you won’t listen to it anyway. Your original post is filled with excessive hyperbole and willful ignorance. Dr Tuteur shouldn’t have to tell you what’s in the vaccines because it’s all readily available on the CDC website along with an internets worth of information around each ingredient. You are using willful ignorance to invoke a superiority stance and it fails with a few clicks of the mouse.

          • Rosanna

            I actually would listen to it. Willful ignorance is when you choose not to see another side to the story. I am actually quite open minded and think there are solutions for everyone, both medical and holistic solutions. Asking questions shows that one is not ignorant. Ignorance is the article listed above. It’s not a trend that has people choosing not to vaccinate their kids. It is legitimate concern and loss of faith in the medical industry. I just wish we as a people would be presented with all the facts. If you don’t realize that we are manipulated constantly by the media and government, then you would be the one who is willfully ignorant. There just has to be a safer way, that’s all.

          • Samantha06

            We have been presented with the facts, and the facts show that vaccines save lives. What do you mean by a safer way? What we have now is the safest it gets. It certainly beats the alternative: letting your child suffer through the actual diseases, which many anti-vaxxers are ignorantly willing to do, rather than prevent that suffering and possible permanent damage and disability with a vaccine. I had all the childhood diseases and my mother said they were horrible. My siblings all had them too and my mom said she was always scared to death one of us was going to die. I was delirious with fever and have small brain lesions consistent with residual encephalitis. And, like everyone else of my generation who had chicken pox, I now have to worry about shingles. Are you willing to accept the very real risk your child could suffer brain damage from measles because you are concerned about the very remote possibility of a reaction from a vaccine? There are no known holistic measures that can ever be as effective as a vaccine.

        • Jason Roder

          The whole truth? That your anti-vaccine movement is built on a tissue of lies? That your founding father, Andrew Wakefield, was lying about MMR so as to promote an alternative, rather than actually caring about the kids he supposedly wanted to help? How about the truth that he lost his license due to his malfeasance? Maybe the truth that you anti-vaxxers are a public health hazard?

          Tell me, which part of the “truth” are we missing?

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Really? Did you learn how vaccines work to protect public health? Please explain how.

      If you can’t explain how vaccines work, then you don’t know much about them, do you?

      • Rosanna

        You are the Dr…..you can tell us how vaccines work – clearly you are avoiding the questions I have asked in the response. Why don’t you answer them for us?

        • Amy Tuteur, MD
          • Rosanna

            By sending another biased article written by yourself? That has no scientific proof attached to it? Tell us what are in the vaccines – tell us whether or not people have died as a result – I am not claiming to be the expert on vaccination – you are the Doctor, so – educate us – what are the ingredients in the vaccines? Interesting how you are still avoiding questions. I would LOVE to be proved incorrect. I wish I never learned what I learned – so please educate the charlatan.

          • KarenJJ

            You are claiming to have learnt a lot of interesting and new things about vaccines but you don’t want to share these insights?

          • Isaac_Laquedem

            Perhaps you can answer three questions:
            1. How many Americans died every year of measles before a vaccine was introduced, when no one was vaccinated against measles?
            2. How many Americans die every year of measles, now that most Americans are vaccinated against measles?
            3. Is the reason that the death rate from measles has gone down by 99.5% (a) because people are vaccinated, or (b) despite people being vaccinated?
            If after considering the answers to those three questions you still don’t think that vaccination saves lives, then try answering the same three questions for smallpox.

          • Thomas

            To answer most of your questions above
            Vaccines are not responsible for the reduction in mortality rates in measles
            Vitamin A and vitamin C is.. They discovered this before the vaccine was licensed in the 60’s and the mortality rates where almost reduced by 100% by the mid 50’s
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11869601

          • Molly Glenn

            Thomas, two sentences into the Main Results section of the article you linked to, it says that there was no significant reduction in the vitamin A group. You have debunked your own claim.

          • Nick Sanders

            He’s frequently been no good at reading his own sources.

          • Thomas

            Obviously you didn’t read the while thing and just skipped to what you wanted to see , there was a 82% reduction with two doses of vitamin A in children under 2 years of age (this is where the argument is emphasized.. CHILDREN dying)

            Of you want more on the subject here is a nother one
            http://www.measlesrubellainitiative.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Vitamin-A-and-Measles.pdf

          • Young CC Prof

            Adequate vitamin A intake greatly reduces, but does not eliminate, the risk of blindness or death in people infected with measles. (Vitamin A deficiency in US children has been extraordinarily rare ever since the FDA fortified the food supply, but it is still common in some parts of the world.)

            So. Nutrition can improve measles outcomes, but improving outcomes is not nearly as good as eliminating the disease in the first place.

            Good supportive care can reduce Ebola deaths up to 75%, would you like to catch Ebola?

          • Nick Sanders

            And all the dying kids over 2? I guess they, well their parents, just have to suck it up and deal with it, right?

          • Thomas

            You mean all zero of them in the last ten years?
            You wanna call the 110 kids patents who died from the vaccine in that same time period and tell them their decision to POSSIBLY prevent a disease that is relatively harmless? Or maybe live with the guilt knowing the decision was not an educated decision?
            If you live in high risk areas like I said before, the risk vs reward might be worth it but there is just to much shady shit going in with this between Merck whistle blowers and vaccinated petiole getting other vaccinated people infected
            That for me regardless of how “safe and effective” they claim they are the small amount of adverse affects (their words not mine) are not worth the risk to me.. Is all I’m saying

          • Nick Sanders

            What you are saying is bullshit.

          • Thomas
          • Nick Sanders

            Self reporting is not confirmation. Further, how many millions of vaccinations were given?

          • Young CC Prof

            How many of those deaths were car accidents, or due to a medical condition that showed up months or years later, with the child perfectly healthy in the meanwhile?

          • Who?

            Yes much better to kill off a couple of hundred a year, and leave a couple of hundred more permanently injured.

            I guess you’d call that bad luck, though, wouldn’t you, and absolve yourself of responsibility anyway.

            Just another overgrown toddler.

          • Molly Glenn

            Thomas, you’re right that I did not waste my time reading the entire article to desperately try to come up with a different conclusion from the author’s based on their data. The scientists who conduct a study are presumably much more qualified than I to determine what their data ultimately means than the non-scientist who reads their study, When you are trying to debunk the prevailing scientific belief, you must you must find a source that actually AGREES with you – the one you provided agrees with me.
            Anti-vaxxers are essentially the climate deniers of the disease world. The scientific community has an overwhelming consensus on the issue, but people like you want to ignore it.
            Apparently you don’t understand how political influence works – it provides kickbacks to private industries like the oil industry, and it prevents regulations that would restrain them, but it doesn’t actually turn government agencies into subsidiaries of private companies. Next you’ll be saying that the Post Office belongs to UPS or FedEx. The CDC’s job is to stop, prevent, and eliminate disease. The overwhelming scientific consensus is that vaccines do that for many diseases, so the CDC promotes them.
            Additionally, vaccines are NOT PROFITABLE. They are often given out for free or barely more than the amount that it takes to develop and produce them. Pharmaceutical companies would much rather produce drugs that manage chronic conditions or keep you just barely from dying because they know you’ll keep taking them. Economically, they don’t want to produce a thing that with one or two dosages prevents you from getting sick in the first place.
            Learn some critical thinking.

          • Thomas

            I never said I’m anti vaccine btw.. I’m saying the risk vs the reward as it stands right now is not favorable for vaccines
            Merck is going through some serious law suits that can likely ruin their credibility
            Fully vaccinated are not only catching the measles they are also shown to pass it on to other FULLY VACCINATED people
            High rates of vaccinated people in most outbreaks suggest the vaccines are not nearly as effective as they claim (especially with pertussis, not sure if you saw the post I did comparing vaccination rates to morbidity rates since 1980 but it proves that regardless of vaccination rates the morbidity rates continue to climb and measles was 30 times more when we where above 95% vaccination rates.. But it’s there)
            The general health of our population compared to other countries with a much smaller vaccination prograsm (less shots) is out of hand, we have really poor life expectancy… You would think all those vaccines would improve health but it’s actually the opposite in comparison to the rest of the developed world..
            The CDC and fda actually admitted in 2013 that the pertussis outbreaks that where happening are due to failing vaccines…
            More people are dying from the vaccines (in America) than the accrual disease

            If you live in high tourist areas or travel then sure, get vaccinated cause the risk is higher (97% of all measles in America is imported)

            But for me and my surrounding the risk is slim to none of getting sick so the risk (how ever small you believe it might be) of having any of those adverse effects (and I’ll even stick to the ones they list on the insert to avoid the inevitable argument about what it can and can’t cause)
            Death, measles (yes you can get measles from the vaccine) deafness, blindness, brain swelling, seizures, permanent brain damage, encephalitis, pneumonia, sterility),… I’ll stop there, that’s enough reason really
            If my son wants to travel when he gets older or decided he wants the vaccine he can make that decision when it becomes necessary (the risk of those adverse effects supposedly go down with age) or if they can come up with some better more trustworthy circumstances, I might reconsider but until then….

          • Nick Sanders

            The risks and rewards are only “not worth it” because you have continually overstated the risks while dismissing the rewards. Such as with your claim that there are high rates of fully vaccinated people catching the measles in this, or any other, outbreak.

          • Wren

            Actually, as long as most people do vaccinate, enough to keep the spread of VPD under control, no foreign travel is planned and access to good healthcare is available in case of catching the disease anyway, for an individual the risks of not vaccinating are very low. It is possible that it is lower than the risks of vaccination. However, as more and more people make that decision the risks of not vaccinating increase.

          • Jason Roder

            If you aren’t an expert on vaccination, then why should anyone listen to you prattle on about it? If you don’t know how vaccines work, then why should anyone take your word about whether they are dangerous or not?

          • Molly Glenn

            Rosanna, you want data? Here is data: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/ You will see many links to the data throughout their website. You cannot claim that the CDC has an economic agenda, so hopefully you will actually respect their data.

          • Thomas

            Keep in mind the CDC said in 1958 that you do not get cancer from cigarettes…
            They are very funded by the very people who produced the crap they are pushing as “safe”…

          • Nick Sanders

            Source?

          • Thomas

            http://www.journaloftheoretics.com/editorials/vol-1/e1-4.htm

            Only confirms that they said it but also breaks down how they twisted the statistics to fit their agenda .. Cause technically the way they worded it it’s a valid claim.. And what would make you think they aren’t doing the same with vaccines.. We already know Merck is in trouble for falsifying test results to secure the contact to manufacture the vaccines,..

          • Wren

            Are you actually using an editorial from 1999 as your evidence?

          • Thomas

            The World Health Report 1999, chapter 5 and Statistical Annex and CDC data (http://www.cdc.gov/scientific.htm).
            Is clearly listed as the source for the data..

          • Nick Sanders

            How an individual not associated with the CDC interprets data put out by the CDC, does not actually reflect on the CDC.

            Edit: Also: 404 Page Not Found

          • Nick Sanders

            What the hell does an *editorial* from 1999 have to do with the CDC in 1958?

          • Molly Glenn

            Thomas, given that the CDC only expanded from study of Malaria to covering STDs also in 1957 and had not yet expanded to cover TB or vaccinations in 1958, your statement is suspect. What is your source? The CDC is funded by the government, so your economic motivation claims are bunk.

          • Thomas

            “Funded by the government” and who do you think funds the people in that government? It couldn’t be the big corporations right? The koch brothers for instance are spending a BILLION dollars on the up coming elections.. You think they do that without expecting anything in return? You can’t be that naive

          • Molly Glenn

            Additionally, you seem to not understand the difference between funding a campaign and funding the government. Government employees and activity are funded by our tax dollars, fees, and fines. Donations by people like the Koch brothers go to campaigns, which goes to the candidate – win or lose. The campaign money is used primarily to fund advertising and the people who make that advertising happen and shape the image of the candidate. It doesn’t build our roads, fund our scientific studies, pay for the FDA inspector’s salary, or the single mother’s food assistance. The oil magnate Koch brothers are not paying for the EPA with the billions they spend on elections. Similarly, you seem to not understand the difference between the legislature and government agencies. Buying a candidate’s way into Congress isn’t the same as buying an agency. If you “own” a congressman, he will attempt to make laws in your favor or block laws that work against you. He’s not the scientist doing the studies. He may attempt to eliminate the EPA or de-fund the CDC, but he doesn’t dictate their findings. That is why public studies are more reliable than industry funded studies.

          • Thomas

            Yeah I guess you believe that those campaign funding scenarios doesn’t come with favors expected from whom ever the funding is for? You’re basically buying your way into politicians who have the same agenda hoping that they will gain power so you have leverage… And findings can be twisted to appear one way or another depending on the outcome your looking for.. That’s the beauty with statistics
            For example my highschool had a blood drive one year and they said the drive was useless because 50% of the blood donated was HIV positive (that sounds horrible right?)
            But further investigation revealed that only 4 people actually gave blood so only 2 donations contained HIV (and they where siblings) so technically the 50% was a true statement but the reality paints a totally different picture

            The statement CDC made that said cigarettes don’t cause cancer is technically true as well (using similar principles as my high school example) in the fine print it says cigarettes is a contributor, NOT a cause in cancer..
            Contribution money gets you those kind of results, just like a lawyer can get you off even if you’re guilty just in the way the case is worded

          • Thomas

            To say there is no money in vaccine?
            http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/awardees/vaccine-management/price-list/

            The vaccine schedule calls for between 24 and 56 vaccines depending on the state (and that’s just for children before they start school) add in boosters and travel required shots, the flu shots etc.. We have 350 MILLION PEOPLE IN AMERICA.. That’s not exactly “no money in vaccines”

          • Young CC Prof

            Look at the balance sheets. Making vaccines is expensive, and most of them are sold at fairly low cost.

            Trust me. The drug companies would rather be selling a brand-name daily treatment for a chronic disease, one which is a pill rather than a sterile injectible.

          • Thomas

            http://www.journaloftheoretics.com/editorials/vol-1/e1-4.htm

            Not only verifies they said it, he also explains why they where able to claim cigarettes do not cause cancer.. It they way the CDC worded their claim it’s actually true.. But we all know that cigarettes do in fact cause cancer
            This just shows you how they manipulated the date and twisted the statistics around to justify their agenda, why would you assume it would be any different when it comes to vaccines?

        • Nathan Walter

          “I went back to school to become a holistic practitioner. I learned a lot about vaccination that I had never known.”

          If you went to school and learned a lot about vaccinations, you should know how they work enough to enlighten the masses when asked about it.

          Talk about avoiding questions…

    • StarieNite

      In 2013 400 people died worldwide every day from Measles.

      • Thomas

        “Worldwide” is misleading.. Look deeper and you’ll find that is almost all in under developed and third world countries… Measles can be harmless if you have proper nutrition (the big player in this is vitamin A and high doses of vitamin C.. It’s actually proven that those two vitamins dropped the mortality rate almost 100% in the early 50’s which if you look you will also find that it’s about 10 years BEFORE vaccines where licensed)

        • Andrew Lazarus

          That still left 400-450 deaths per year. Indeed Vitamin A (not clear about C) is associated with better measles outcomes: just, not as good as the vaccine, which drove deaths down to zero.

          It’s also not harmless, unless you want to discount deafness, blindness, and, yes, the occasional death. Antivax arithmetic bewilders me: 10 (tops) vaccine deaths is a disaster, 450 wild measles deaths is a sign of harmlessnesss.

          • Thomas

            2014 VEARS data, which covers reports processed as of Dec. 14, 2014. VAERS data shows (as of Feb. 3, 2015):

            1,244 cases of people reported hospitalized
            416 cases of people reporting a disability
            122 reported deaths
            388 reported life-threatening cases

            Measles btw.. A hand full of hospitalizations for dehydration and NO OTHER ISSUE during that same time period (or any time since the 50’s) you are more likely to die from the common cold..

            You obviously have not looked into this and going by what the CDC tells you… Thence they also said sugar is good for you and cigarettes will not give you cancer (look that shit up). Consider for a minute the shit storm that would incur if they didn’t sick with their story after all these years, they are going to do everything in their power to convince you that you need to get vaccinated..
            America had the most vaccines required than any country in the world and we have the unhealthiest children in recent history right now.. The countries with less vaccines have a much higher life expectancy and much better health over all (we are Nr 34 on that list if healthy countries)

          • Young CC Prof

            People with measles pneumonia often wind up getting ventilated. Over 100 people died of it between 1989 and 1991, and thousands were hospitalized.

          • Andrew Lazarus

            There were most assuredly not 122 reported deaths from the MMR in 2014. You can search VAERS yourself (here). That’s for all vaccines. And its juxtaposition in time, not necessarily causal. You can find an explanation of why that number is probably inflated at Politifact, which looks to be where you got the number in the first place.

            So the total vaccine deaths from all vaccines is about 1/4 pre-vaccine deaths from measles. And that’s before we add in polio (thousands of deaths) and flu.

            The usual antivax number is 108 measles vaccine deaths, but that is in ten years, or since the inception of VAERS over 25 years ago. Why would we want to trade 11 annual MMR deaths (although the 2014 total, from my search, was only 2)?

            I’d like a source that we have more than 450 deaths each year from the common cold. Or is it the usual antivax narcissism: people who die from measles are filthy, impure, weak immune system, McDonalds eaters? There really isn’t any evidence for that. Your good health is not from your Awesome Lifestyle™ and Badass Immune System™: it’s because all your neighbors vaccinated.

            Did you notice that all those countries with better health also have government-run or government-subsidized health care? Our statistics are comparably to theirs, if you exclude American poor people, whose health, pre-Obama, we largely ignored.

          • Thomas

            Well of you follow the conversation you will see that I did say vears data according to the CDC is between 10 and 30% “real” cases.. That still leaves about 10 deaths last year (falls in line welt your estimated 11a year)
            And the rest of the issues still add up to more than the actual disease’s complications annually (in America).. Those hospitalizations from measles are generally from dehydration, not a big deal.. I tried to find some solid evidence on deaf and blind that are caused by measles and I can’t find much so I’m going to assume it’s not really a issue (or there would be more available information or things online)
            The brain swelling and pneumonia are also very rare in developed countries…

          • Andrew Lazarus

            There was a deaf-from-measles boy in my grammar school. Hundreds of such cases every year, because ear infections are a common complication. The hospitalization rate for measles in advanced countries is about 10%, taken over recent outbreaks, as is a death rate of 1:3000 to 1:1000 reported cases.

            The Lizard People at the CDC say

            From 1985 through 1992, diarrhea was reported in 8% of measles cases, making this the most commonly reported complication of measles. Otitis media was reported in 7% of cases and occurs almost exclusively in children. Pneumonia (in 6% of reported cases) may be viral or superimposed bacterial, and is the most common cause of death.

            Acute encephalitis occurs in approximately 0.1% of reported cases. Onset generally occurs 6 days after rash onset (range 1–15 days) and is characterized by fever, headache, vomiting, stiff neck, meningeal irritation, drowsiness, convulsions, and coma. Cerebrospinal fluid shows pleocytosis and elevated protein. The case-fatality rate is approximately 15%. Some form of residual neurologic damage occurs in as many as 25% of cases. Seizures (with or without fever) are reported in 0.6%–0.7% of cases.

            I never understand antivax arithmetic. 3 (or 11) MMR deaths per year is a disaster, and 450 wild measles deaths per year is the sign of a mild, benign, routine disease.

          • Thomas

            OK so basically you just provided the evidence that says diarrhea is the main “complication”. As I stated earlier ” most hospitalizations are from dehydration (probably from the diarrhea) AND diahrrea ”
            You know of ONE person who was deaf from measles in grammar school (I’m going to assume your in the 40-50 age group judging by the picture next to your name) that means roughly 30-40 years ago and you only know of ONE deaf.. “From ear infections, because they are common with measles”.. You know where else ” ear infections ” are “common”? ALMOST ALL INFANTS because the ear canals and the angle they are in infants do not drain properly (you know how I know this? I personally had l huge problems with ear infections as a child and I was told this is very common (my 8 month old son has had 4 (2 of which was double ear infections) of them already) this is less likely in older kids to adults because the angle of said ear canal changes when your head grows to accommodate them properly..
            What happened to blindness btw, I didn’t see ANYTHING (pardon the pun) in the CDC jargon you quoted about going blind..
            Pneumonia : (notice how often ” developing world “and ” low income countries ” is used in this piece from Wikipedia

            “In 2008, pneumonia occurred in approximately 156 million children (151 million in the developing world and 5 million in the developed world).[6] In 2010, it resulted in 1.3 million deaths, or 18% of all deaths in those under five years, of which 95% occurred in the developing world.[6][11][77] Countries with the greatest burden of disease include India (43 million), China (21 million) and Pakistan (10 million).[78] It is the leading cause of death among children in low income countries.[6][64] Many of these deaths occur in the newborn period. The World Health Organization estimates that one in three newborn infant deaths is due to pneumonia.[79] Approximately half of these deaths can be prevented, as they are caused by the bacteria for which an effective vaccine is available.[80] In 2011, pneumonia was the most common reason for admission to the hospital after an emergency department visit in the U.S. for infants and children.[81]”
            What you will also find is the lack of measles being a big contributor to pneumonia
            You are more likely to get pneumonia from the flu (like I said in a previous post)
            Your chances of catching (and/or dying from) in America from measles is slim
            That leaves encephalitis..
            0.1% of cases..
            And each and every one of those things you listed are also listed as “side effects” FROM THE VACCINE
            Basically the odds of catching measles and becoming immune for life are smaller than the risk of having any of the issues or death caused by the vaccine (no matter which ones you believe are causde or not caused by vaccines there are a hand full they admit to and have been proven so there are some regardless) especially since it’s not just one shot, you play with these odds every time you get another one (no one has ever had measles twice, with exception for an unclear case of a girl in 1952 who was thought to have it twice in 14 days but it is unclear if it’s the same instance lasting longer than usual or two separate instance PLUS she had some hereditary immune deficiency so it was deemed unclear)
            I’m not sure if you have seen the vaccination rates vs the morbidity rates I’ve posted in this thread but they show that vaccines are not doing what they claim they are doing (pertussis being the stronger case with vaccination rates above 95% almost the entire 33 years listed yet the morbidity has steadily increased by about 1200 a year for 33 CONSECUTIVE years)
            Measles was 30 times higher when we where above 95% vaccination rates and where deemed eradicated when we where at the lowest rates (below 87% I think it was, not just for one year but 5 years running in both cases)

          • Thomas

            I should point out that I am fully vaccinated and I have had measles myself (and pertussis, mumps, pneumonia, chicken pox and meningitis) so I have personal experience with the disease(s).. I am neither deaf nor blind and most certainly not dead..

          • Wren

            And there are plenty of people who have driven while drunk more than 6 times without an accident. Your personal experience is rather irrelevant compared to the overall population. Obviously those who have died from VPD will not be here to say that.

            In the developed world, most people have access to health resources to treat complications of these diseases. That means death rates are drastically reduced. It does not mean death cannot still result or that complications do not occur. It does mean higher health care costs, either directly through insurance or indirectly through taxation, for the society as a whole, costs which could be reduced through avoidance of the disease altogether through vaccination.

        • StarieNite

          400 deaths is 400 deaths. That year it was 400 people that stopped living every day because they got a disease that can be prevented with a vaccine. 400 people dead. It doesn’t matter that it wasn’t the US. Measles can kill and we can’t downplay the deaths because it didn’t happen here, yet.

          • Thomas

            014 VEARS data, which covers reports processed as of Dec. 14, 2014. VAERS data shows (as of Feb. 3, 2015):

            1,244 cases of people reported hospitalized
            416 cases of people reporting a disability
            122 reported deaths
            388 reported life-threatening cases

            Measles btw.. A hand full of hospitalizations for dehydration and NO OTHER ISSUE during that same time period (or any time since the 50’s) you are more likely to die from the common cold..

            You obviously have not looked into this and going by what the CDC tells you… Thence they also said sugar is good for you and cigarettes will not give you cancer (look that shit up). Consider for a minute the shit storm that would incur if they didn’t sick with their story after all these years, they are going to do everything in their power to convince you that you need to get vaccinated..
            America had the most vaccines required than any country in the world and we have the unhealthiest children in recent history right now.. The countries with less vaccines have a much higher life expectancy and much better health over all (we are Nr 34 on that list if healthy countries)

          • Nick Sanders

            I’m still waiting for that evidence the CDC said cigarettes don’t give you cancer.

          • Thomas

            Let’s take whooping cough as an example. In 1979 Sweden withdrew use of the DTP vaccine on the basis that it was not effective and possibly unsafe. The fear, of course, would be that with lower vaccination rates, the death rate would increase. So what happened in this case?

            A 1995 letter from Victoria Romanus at the Swedish Institute of Infectious Disease Control indicated that deaths from whooping cough remained near zero. Sweden’s population was 8,294,000 in 1979 and 8,831,000 by 1995. From 1981 to 1993, eight children were recorded as dying, with the cause of death listed as pertussis. This averaged to be about 0.6 children per year possibly dying from whooping cough. These numbers show that the odds of dying from pertussis in Sweden were about 1 in 13,000,000 even when there was no national vaccination program. [6]

            In another case, DTP vaccination coverage in England dropped from about 78 percent to 30 or 40 percent because of concerns over safety. The assumption was that there would be an increase in deaths due to the decreased coverage. The years from 1976 to 1980 were the ones when vaccination rates were at their lowest. Using official statistics, the number of deaths in those years totaled 35. The deaths from the previous five years (1971 to 1975), while vaccination rates were higher, totaled 55, or about 1.5 times greater than when vaccination rates were lower. [7] This was directly opposite what is generally believed should have happened.

            http://vaccineimpact.com/2015/the-truth-about-measles-the-mainstream-media-is-suppressing/

      • And there are close to 300 deaths EACH DAY! just in the US from medical malpractice.

        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1117251/

    • Dot Newkirk

      Death does not have to be the worst outcome from not being vaccinated and getting measles, living the rest of your life with the other problems that can result from having measles like eye problems, lung and heart problems, can be just as bad, especially when you could have avoided it by being vaccinated. I have never heard of vaccines being made from aborted fetuses, viri need living cells in order to replicate. Aborted fetuses are DEAD. By the way, every time you eat a hamburger, steak, bacon or eggs, you are putting foreign protein into your body, so what is so different from injecting them into an arm, butt or leg muscle? What “facts” show that there are more deaths from the MMR vaccine than from the disease? Please cite the source of this information. Some holistic practitioners
      are well read, and informed, but I’d also trust an immunologist before most holistic practitioners.

    • Nathan Walter

      Speaking of “Any corporation with enough $$$$ can conduct a “study” to determine the results they want reported”… what about a massive industry that would be vastly threatened by a major pharmaceutical companies… say, companies that sell “natural medical products”… you know, the holistic medicine industry?

      When I read links from guys like Dr. Mercola, and the whole time I’m reading him, I see advertisements for his 9,000 various supplement products… I wonder, gee, this guy’s livelihood isn’t threatened by the pharmaceutical industry, now is it? He certainly wouldn’t have a reason to spend money on “research” to boost sales…

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        Why do supplement companies spend so much money not to just hide bad results or whatever, but to make sure that they are not even subject to FDA oversight?

        Even if we grant that pharma is going to try to do whatever they can to skirt regulatory issues, it’s nothing compared to the scam that big-supplement has pulled, convincing lawmakers that they don’t even need to be watched!

        And now we’ve seen how honest they are.

    • Nick Sanders

      Speaking of money, how much did they charge you for that worthless degree?

    • Andrew Lazarus

      In very rare cases, people can die from vaccines. Even the most fanatic anti-vax sites give about 11/year, which is inflated. But let that go. We had 400-450 deaths every year just from measles, now add on polio, pertussis, diphtheria.

      Why would a parent pick hundreds of deaths versus (alleged) 11 deaths? One reason is ego: the bad outcomes of “natural” illness can’t happen to people who go to “naturopath” practitioners. Another reason is sociopathic selfishness, letting everybody else vaccinate and free-riding on the fact there is no one left to catch most diseases from (tetanus being a prominent exception, since you can get it from a cut). That’s not a very moral approach either.

      • Nathan Walter

        It’s like the person who fears driving over a bridge because they watched the I-35 collapse in Minneapolis.

        Millions of people drive over some of the thousands of the bridges in the US every day, and 99.9999999999% of them don’t end up in the lake. But the moment they do, all the skeptics question the integrity of the engineers, the builders, the materials… they cite that no bridge is 100% safe and call for everyone to drive 397 miles out of the way to avoid the bridge or to work and live and operate our lives on one side of the bridge, lest we endanger ourselves by crossing the bridge (heaven forbid our car is the one that puts the bridge’s strength in jeopardy).

        People will always question vaccines, even if we have ridiculously favorable statistics for them.

    • Archer

      I bet you’d fall off your seat if I told you that you could die in a car accident.
      A large amount of people who wear socks have also been found to be autistic, therefore socks can cause autism. Seriously, what is wrong with you. Definitely make a note in your Health Mom diary to go and get educated.

    • Samantha06

      You know what I find so hilarious about the “chemicals and toxins” argument? When I was a very young kid and margarine made it’s debut, it came in bags with a food coloring “button.” You would pop the button and squeeze the bag around until the food coloring mixed in to make it look like the color of butter.. talk about chemicals! haha! It will be interesting to see how the “all natural, organic” generation fares in old age in comparison to their “toxin-ingesting” counterparts. I bet they will all have the same health issues their own parents faced.

      • Nick Sanders

        Interesting story behind that: the margarine manufacturers had the capability to color the margarine at the factory, but the dairy industry was afraid of the competition from nice, pretty yellow margarine, so they lobbied Congress to make doing so illegal.

        • Samantha06

          Oh that’s funny! I didn’t know that! I just remember my favorite thing was to pop the button and mix it around!

    • SydneyChip

      Oh dear what an uninformed rant.

    • Steel_Wind

      A “holistic practitioner”, telling a M.D. about how inaccurate her article was?

      That describes the science-level of anti-vaxxers, summarized in the first three sentences. Emotion, “alternative medicine” and pseudo-science clouding judgement and getting in the way of medical science and the laws of probability.

      This is about herd immunity and the laws of probability.

      The fact that many lefty women are bad at math and distrust authority is not a shocker.

      • yugaya

        And this is how she argued her point that the article is inaccurate:

        -because my child was vaccinated until the age of 2

        -because I have a quack degree that allows me to go around pretending I know what I am talking about when I talk about things from the field of formal medical science

        -there is a media cover-up conspiracy regarding vaccine safety

        -will the dr. please stand up and list the ingedients in vaccines and “statistics that show deaths caused by some vaccinations” that I have bookmarked off the internetz?

        -“dumbest thing I ever heard” argument

        -sth about monkeys, dead foetuses and however that is in her mind relevant to artificial colouring and rise of obesity in children

        – holistic practitioners are the same as real doctors

        -mentioning of THE FACTS, as in facts like probably citing VAERS as the source of deaths that have been documented as attributable to vaccines

        -some random generaélised fearmongering in the shape of “it is a scary society out there”

        -some more random fearmongering in the shape of “trust no one with an actual medical degree”

        She like, totes debunked it. Did I miss anything?

      • Nick Sanders

        You were doing so well until the “lefty women” crack. Why bring politics and sexism into a discussion about medicine?

        • Cyndi Simpson

          Thank you, Nick! I would go beyond “sexism” all the way to “misogyny” in Steel Wind’s case.

          • Who?

            Oh I think you’ll find SW is disrespectful of all sorts of people-anyone who disagrees with his politics for a start, then women.

            Every year I age it becomes more clear that there are many very disrespectful people in the world-women are just an everyday opportunity for them.

    • yugaya

      “Then they call holistic practitioners quacks and charlatans”

      Gee I wonder why that is? Maybe because when your comment of a holistic practitioner is read straight after this blog written by an MD you are the one who sounds incoherent, uneducated and stuck knee-deep in conspiracy theories?

  • Sally

    My whole family is vaccinated with that being said, you are dead wrong. The choices they make are made with the knowledge they have gleaned everywhere. I have a cousin who has never been vaccinated, whom is being raised by her great grandma. Doctors told us NOT TO VACCINATE due to the fact the use live viruses in the vaccins and people, like great grandma here, who have little to no immune system are at a higher risk of catching ONCE the child was immunized. That means that live virus that was injected into said child just became a possible killer to grandma. You say anti vaxers are the reason for the outbreaks, it is just aspossible to have come a vaccinated who was carring the live virus who then in turn infected someone with the compromised immune system. By the way, I too work in the health field and my area of expertise are elderly, disabled, and those who have a compromised immune system.
    Lets remember when AIDS and HIV first came to light. They have that compromised immune system, there wasn’t one thing they didn’t catch and it was not due to being expised to a non vaccinated person
    Your article only proves yoyr narrow mindedness with atupid comments that arent tru. I personally know many non vaccinators. One reason was the government has lied one to many times to be trusted with thier child well being. Two a vaccinated should not be at risk of anything if the vaccines worked like they have been telling us. Three when confronted with a question of government back peddles and WILL SAY ANYTHING TO COVER IT’S OWN ASS! Howmany times have we heard that something is healthy or safe only to have them retrack it as well as statements concerning it. I personalky find that people who have high education are the ones who put on airs of superioty and believe just because they have said degree that the rest are stupid. I need to stop, I could go all day on this. This just makes me so angry.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Thanks for demonstrating the truth of my piece.

      • Tommy

        Great article. I think there’s another factor. There’s a fair amount of distrust of drug companies and their profits by anti-vax folks—founded or otherwise. Paranoia and conspiracy theories go a long way. What about the argument that the scientists were paid by big pharma? There are many articles claiming fraud.
        Thank you.
        Tom

        • Nick Sanders

          Those companies would make a hell of a lot more money selling medicine to treat the illnesses than they do off of vaccines.

          • Tommy

            Great point.

        • A liberal estimate of pharma company profits from vaccines is about $24 billion. Before we start talking greed please recognize that this is about 2.5-3% of their total profit alone. If profit was all they were after they would shift priorities over to Viagra or other lifestyle drugs that people will pay through the nose to get.

        • Andrew Lazarus

          I see that the NY Attorney General has just alleged massive fraud in the Alternative Medicine supplement business. Whatever value these supplements might have, what gets sold is sugar pills without even the claimed ingredient.

          • Who?

            Interesting, this is getting some traction in Australia too. There is a lot of discussion about how what is says on the bottle may not be what is in the bottle.

            And many companies happily sell both, which shocks the alternative guys quite a bit. Never understood how they do all their research and don’t know that.

          • Young CC Prof

            Dietary supplements really are a scandal.

            If this happened with a food or drug, deliberate counterfeiting, mislabeling, and tainting on that scale, it would be front-page news for days. The entire country would be howling for the manufacturer’s head, laws rammed through Congress to bring an end to it. But for herbal supplements, apparently we’re OK with “caveat emptor.”

        • Sullivan ThePoop

          If you are afraid of profits by people selling treatments, why oh why would you trust Dr. Mercola or any of the other antivaxx doctors that have online stores. Or who is paying for all the antivaccine information?

          • Who?

            I would have said ‘treatments’ not treatments, but otherwise 100% agree.

    • Nick Sanders

      Being an anti-vaxxer and not being vaccinated because of a compromised immune system or other legitimate medical issue are two completely different things.

    • Life Tip

      I love putting on airs of superioty. It’s the best.

    • Dot Newkirk

      Not all vaccines have “live” viri in them. Many are “killed” or “attenuated”. Your comment, with all of the spelling mistakes, misinformation and conspiracy theory overtones shows that YOU are not as “educated” as you think you are. You obviously can use a computer so do a bit more self education at sites like the CDC and medical information sites like Web MD instead of “Bubbas nose medicine” and Faux News..

  • Skaldie

    Great article and you hit the truth which unfortunately is something most of those who chose to put their children at risk will still not accept about their thoughtless “informed ignorance”.

  • MM

    How sad, to perpetuate stereotypes when there’s a real, nuanced situation at hand. I and many parents have chosen not to vaccinate our children, and for none of the reasons you list. When thoughtfulness is derided as ignorant privilege, we are all in trouble.

    • momofone

      When ignorant privilege masquerades as thoughtfulness, we are all in trouble.

    • Mom2Many

      Oh my goodness, reading all of these comments are painfully exhausting. At what point do you accept that your desire to be mollycoddled through this “nuanced” situation comes at a price not just to your child but also to mine?
      My special needs foster child needed a blood transfusion recently, and consequently may not receive any of his childhood vaccinations until 6 months pass. I am TERRIFIED that he will catch something since he is unable to have the added level of protection that vaccinations will bring him. Your “thoughtfulness” IS ignorant privilege…My child has NO say, while you play with his health. I just can’t anymore….

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        Amazingly, this is not the first to come in and proclaim to have a great, nuanced justification. And when asked about it, it turned out to be….oh, look at the pretty butterfly!

        • Samantha06

          Yes, that. Or, like that one guy asked me to “explain my position, then he’d answer my question.” He was asked over and over, and it was always pretty butterflies everywhere..

          • Who?

            Given the state of that guy’s brain I wouldn’t be so sure they were pretty.

          • Samantha06

            Haha! You’re probably right..

    • JJ

      I used to not vaccinate either until I realized that I have a sociology degree and that essentially the entire medical scientific community disagreed with me! (I was also letting anxiety get the better of me).

      Reading the internet was not the same as 1000s of highly educated specialists collaborating on the safety and efficacy of vaccines. I can’t imagine even reading the internet to build my house to code!

    • Monnie

      Personally, I think you are an idiot for not vaxing your kids. I think this article is very on point, and hopefully your own children don’t suffer because of your lack of poor judgment

    • Isaac_Laquedem

      Bear in mind that if everyone in (say) California were equally thoughtful, and declined vaccination for themselves and their families, over time the measles rate in California would increase to roughly 500,000 cases/year, and roughly 40 deaths/year from measles. Not a great risk — unless one of those is your child. What makes the sort of thoughtfulness you describe work is actually merely the privilege of living among neighbors who are vaccinated.

    • Jason Roder

      Nuance, my gluteus. There’s nothing “nuanced” about “whaargarbl the Illumnierty are aut to get us”, or buying into Wakefield’s reprehensible lie about autism, or deciding that since others have gone to the trouble to get vaccinated, you don’t need to, or “but vaccines don’t work” (protip: they’re probably the single most successful medical treatment in human history), or whatever other absurd excuse you might have.

    • Andrew Lazarus

      Some say the earth is round, some say it is flat. Let’s go for a nuanced “it’s wavy”.

    • Cyndi Simpson

      So, what are your “thoughtful” reasons, MM? Do share. We’re all ears, here.

    • What reasons have you chosen for not vaccinating your children?

  • virginia

    I am very pro-vaccine and my whole family is vaccinated but I think this article is pretty harsh and unhelpful. Rather than attribute all the worst character traits to those who don’t vaccinate, I think more reasonable explanations exist for their concern. Addressing those would be more constructive. For starters, why have so many Americans grown distrustful of the accepted authorities on everything from healthcare to education? It’s not an insignificant portion of the population so, it’s just illogical to write them all off as crazy. Could it be that the public gets conflicting reports from “experts” on nearly everything, all the time? There is ample evidence of a lack of integrity and objectivity in many of the government oversight organizations that are supposed to protect us. I’m not gonna spend hours doing a research paper here but there are plenty of historical examples of the FDA either failing to do it’s due diligence or caving to corporate interests and allowing harmful ingredients into the food and drug supply. I think our energy is better spent in looking for ways to improve the public trust with these agencies rather than demonizing non-vax parents.

    • Nick Sanders

      I don’t need a research paper, but at least a few of these “plenty” examples would be nice.

      • virginia

        Well, Nick, I read the paper daily (Usually the WSJ or Washington Post) and over the years have read a number of stories about conflict of interest and unsafe approval practices at the FDA. Unfortunately, my middle aged memory doesn’t allow me to recall details with encyclopedic precision. Thank goodness for google, which for the internet comments section is all the effort I’m willing to muster. Here’s one article I found (though a little old now) that chronicles some of the more high profile examples. http://fee.org/freeman/detail/abolishing-the-fda

        And some others:

        http://www.businessinsider.com/zohydro-pay-to-play-scandal-2014-3

        http://www.cbsnews.com/news/reports-emails-show-alleged-pay-to-play-between-drug-companies-fda/

        http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/01/08/fda-scientists-complain-obama-corruption/

        • Andrew Lazarus

          My favorite example is the fine and civil suit against GM for its bad ignition switches. You don’t see anti-car people going in horses-and-buggies, do you? Whether one or another pharma company cheats or just screws up, that can happen. But antivaxers have a counterrevolutionary idea that Purity and Cleanliness protect from measles and polio, at least from bad outcomes. This is rubbish.

        • SporkParade

          Okay, you don’t trust the FDA. But there is extremely little variation in the vaccine schedule between countries. Are you suggesting that every first-world country on the planet (not to mention global health organizations) is part of a massive conspiracy to overstate the benefits and downplay the risks of vaccines?

          • Wren

            I find it much more likely that Virginia has never stopped to consider any country but the US in regards to this topic.

          • Young CC Prof

            Often people who say that also claim other countries don’t vaccinate nearly as much as we do. Occasionally they choose examples that are right, usually they choose examples that are either flat wrong or a few decades out of date.

    • Cyndi Simpson

      In other words, you think that folks who are anti-vax for no good reason whatsoever need to be coddled and begged to “trust.” Here’s the thing: we live in a very complex world with lots of information flowing out there. It behooves all of us to be as informed as possible, to use logic, to examine facts and identify reliable sources. Have there been some spectacular failures of trust in the world of public health? Of course there have, including the Tuskegee syphilis ‘experiment’ and the dreadful forced sterilizations that many states engaged in with the ‘science’ of eugenics as their basis. The victims in these cases were members of severely oppressed classes – it was our systemic racism that drove these hideous events. Do corporations unduly influence our political world, to the point of owning it? Yes, I believe that is so. I’m one of those Occupy Wall Street kind of people when it comes to money in politics and the inequality of wealth. Do I loathe Big Pharma? Yes, largely, I do. Yet, none of that has anything to do with the science around vaccines. This isn’t about “trust” and the need to grow it. It’s about people who choose willfully to ignore the nuances of our complex world, who have a flat-earth mentality that no amount of facts, discussion, explanation or patience can affect. Whose minds are not open to any information that does not agree with their pre-determined conclusion. I think the author here really may have a handle on what is driving this: ego and privilege. It is not possible to “build trust” with folks who are determined not to have it. Full disclosure here: I have an MS in Public Health and worked in state and local health departments for years in the arena of prevention. When I was running a 10-county (very rural counties) HIV/AIDS program in the midwest in the early 90s – I kept encountering, regarding the transmission of HIV, the same kind of vein-popping anger and willful ignorance as in the anti-vax folks. What I found underneath that anger, fear that could not be relieved by any information and mistrust of “government” etc, was homophobia. It’s those horrible “others” that were the problem. Those horrible sinful “others.” And people were hatefully furious about it and terrified. Over the ensuing years, as people realized that if mosquitoes could carry HIV (something I was routinely accused of “hiding”), the patterns of infection and transmission would look completely different, and so on – most of that craziness went away. And in this same time period, we’ve had great strides in protecting the rights and civil liberties of LGBTQ people. That has had its effect, too. In this case, the horrible “others” are the pharmaceutical industry, ‘government,’ etc. Not the oppressed and the powerless. This makes me think that the craziness is NOT going to to away on this issue – it’s privilege vs privilege here. Not sure your well-intentioned platitudes about building trust hit the mark. Why put that burden solely on the pro-vax side to begin with? Where is MY responsibility to build reasonable trust through self-education?

  • Rich T. Anderson

    I agree, ego is the problem. But I think you’re missing a bit here.

    It’s a feeling of superiority, but it’s not about rebellion per se. These folks really seriously believe they are doing what’s best for their children. The problem is they also seriously believe their children are special.

    They honestly think their children are pure.

    Let that sink in. More and more that’s what I’m hearing and seeing. They say, “My child isn’t a breeding ground for bacteria.” “I keep my kids clean.” & “My son is pure.”

    Purity. It makes me shiver. Whenever a group starts defining themselves as more pure than the rest of us, well, it’s time to worry.

    Showing those who refuse vaccinations for their children science that their being defiant without reason, I believe, will be as ineffective as trying to teach them science. They don’t care about being rebels, they don’t care if people think their stupid. They think their child is the Übermensch who cannot be harmed because they aren’t unclean like you are.

    Even if they aren’t that far gone, they are so far gone that no amount of logic can reach them. They are intractable, just like NRA zombies or those that believe in a 6,000 year old Earth. They will not be swayed.

    • Guest

      Oops. There’s an extra “science” in the middle of the first sentence in the 6th paragraph.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        As a registered user, you have the ability to edit.

        • Rich T. Anderson

          I did. Then I deleted my correction comment. The edit took, but the deletion did not.

  • Thomas

    The vaccination rates have stayed relatively the same for the last 15 (and they actually went UP after the “anti vaxxer movement” started, they where below 90% for about 5 years prior) the anti vaxxer movement supposedly started in 98 with the Wakefield report about measles .. If you look at the vaccination rate for the 33 years listed in this chart from WHO you will see that it’s been relatively the same with exception for those years prior to 2000 (when measles was deemed eradicated btw, the vaccination rate was it’s lowest, keep that I’m mind.. And in the early 80’s when the vaccination rate was above 95% for 5 years we had THREE TIMES THE AMOUNT OF MEASLES as we do now.. Did you get that? The higher the vaccination rate the MORE measles we had)
    But back to my original point.. The claim that less people are vaccinating is NOT supported in the numbers of actual vaccinations
    Measles vaccination rates
    http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tscoveragemcv.html

    Vs morbidity rate for same time period
    http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tsincidencemeasles.html

    And if you look at pertussis vaccinating the case is actually worse for you and your theory about less people vaccinating
    In fact we have had a vaccination rate ABOVE the mythical “herd immunity” (92%] for almost 33 years (it’s been in the 96% on average)
    What’s makes MY case stronger is the morbidity rate of pertussis has been steady increasing for 33 CONSECUTIVE years by roughly 1200 cases.. So not only are you wrong when you say “less” people are vaccinating this data suggests that the vaccine does NOT work as they claim..
    Pertussis vaccination rates
    http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tscoveragedtp3.html

    Vs morbidity rate for same time period
    http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tsincidencepertussis.html

    • Guest

      I assume you are familiar with the church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster and their beliefs regarding pirates and global warming?

    • Wren

      The anti-vac movement began long before Wakefield. Wakefield was actually developing his own vaccine.

    • Nick Sanders

      That looks at the total vaccination rates across the entire country, and ignores that the outbreaks are all happening in places where the local rate is far lower.

      • guest

        how do you explain Disneyland in California then? People come from all over to go there, you can’t attach a ‘local rate’ to a place like that.

        • Nick Sanders

          You absolutely can. How many of the children who got measles at Disneyland weren’t vaccinated?

          • Thomas

            That’s pretty much the ONLY instance where there where in fact more unvaccinated than vaccinated.. Almost any other outbreak the vaccinated are as high as 100% of the sick.. Ever heardheard of “measles Mary”? She is patient zero in the new York outbreak in 2011 SHE WAS FULLY VACCINATED and she even passed it on to another 4 FULLY VACCINATED people… The pertussis outbreaks in California recently 92% where vaccinated

            http://healthimpactnews.com/2013/pertussis-vaccine-failure-is-not-just-modern-but-historical-vaccine-has-never-been-effective/

            http://news.sciencemag.org/health/2014/04/measles-outbreak-traced-fully-vaccinated-patient-first-time

            1985, Texas, USA: According to an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1987, “An outbreak of measles occurred among adolescents in Corpus Christi, Texas, in the spring of 1985, even though vaccination requirements for school attendance had been thoroughly enforced.” They concluded: “We conclude that outbreaks of measles can occur in secondary schools, even when more than 99 percent of the students have been vaccinated and more than 95 percent are immune.”[8]
            1985, Montana, USA: According to an article published in the American Journal of Epidemiology titled, “A persistent outbreak of measles despite appropriate prevention and control measures,” an outbreak of 137 cases of measles occurred in Montana. School records indicated that 98.7% of students were appropriately vaccinated, leading the researchers to conclude: “This outbreak suggests that measles transmission may persist in some settings despite appropriate implementation of the current measles elimination strategy.”[9]
            1988, Colorado, USA: According to an article published in the American Journal of Public Health in 1991, “early 1988 an outbreak of 84 measles cases occurred at a college in Colorado in which over 98 percent of students had documentation of adequate measles immunity … due to an immunization requirement in effect since 1986. They concluded: “…measles outbreaks can occur among highly vaccinated college populations.”[10]
            1989, Quebec, Canada: According to an article published in the Canadian Journal of Public Health in 1991, a 1989 measles outbreak was “largely attributed to an incomplete vaccination coverage,” but following an extensive review the researchers concluded “Incomplete vaccination coverage is not a valid explanation for the Quebec City measles outbreak.[11]
            1991-1992, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: According to an article published in the journal Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Tropical, in a measles outbreak from March 1991 to April 1992 in Rio de Janeiro, 76.4% of those suspected to be infected had received measles vaccine before their first birthday. [12]
            1992, Cape Town, South Africa: According to an article published in the South African Medical Journal in 1994, “[In] August 1992 an outbreak occurred, with cases reported at many schools in children presumably immunised.” Immunization coverage for measles was found to be 91%, and vaccine efficacy found to be only 79%, leading them to conclude that primary and secondary vaccine failure was a possible explanation for the outbreak.[13

          • Nick Sanders

            I can cherry pick too:
            http://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications/Publications/varicella_report_2010_euvacnet.pdf
            “Of the total cases with a known vaccination status,
            115,716 (99.5%) were unvaccinated and 630 (0.5%)
            had received at least one dose.”

          • Nick Sanders

            I mean, hell, your own second link points out that such a thing was the FIRST TIME EVER.

          • Thomas

            Yeah because no one had thought to look into this before because it was assumed to be impossible… Imagine how many other cases there may be of someone had looked into it… I personally was fully vaccinated as a childchild, I had ALL the childhood diseases.. Mumps, measles, chicken pox, pertussis and even meningitis.. So did my little brother (and half of the kids I went to school with) vaccines do not work as advertised period.. They do not make ANYONE immune, you might become resistant to, bit not immune
            The industry doesn’t do ANY long term studies or testing, half of the side effects listed are followed by the words “is unknown at this time”.. What other thing meant for human consumption gets approved with words like that listed in the risks and dangers section?
            Where is the studies showing over all health between vaccinated vs unvaccinated dime by the vaccine manufacturers? Kiggs did one and it suggests unvaccinated children are far more healthy than vaccinated with less ” general “health issues, fewer learning disabilities, ADD, asthma, diabetes, allergies common colds etc etc are almost non existent in the unvaccinated compared to vaccinated
            The vaccine manufacturers just keep saying ” one more shot should cover it ” then when it doesn’t they just say it again and again with the argument “the viruses mutated” or “it didn’t work as well as we had hoped”.. That doesn’t sound very scientific to me… If you wanna vaccinate your children that up to you but the argument ” for the greater good “and the ” risk is worth the reward ” are all based on the assumption that the vaccine are more effective than they are.. Bit now that you need constant boosters and more shots because the shit is wearing off sooner than expected the “good” gets less and less rewarding and the “risk” goes up with every shot…
            If you just get the measles your I’ll for a few days and your immune for life..

          • Young CC Prof

            Half of your class had meningitis? That’s terrible! How many of them died?

            Oh, right, none, because you’re making it up.

          • Nick Sanders

            Where is this alleged study?

            And tell that to all the children who have died of the measles, or gone deaf, or blind, or are now mentally retarded because of encephalitis, or thought they had gotten better only to die a few years later to SSPE.

          • Thomas

            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11869601
            Two doses of oil and water based vitamin A were associated with a 82% reduction in the risk of mortality in children under the age of 2 years (RR=0.18; 95% CI 0.03 to 0.61) and a 67% reduction in the risk of pneumonia specific mortality (RR=0.33; 95% CI 0.08 to 0.92)

          • Nick Sanders

            You know what works even better? Not catching the measles in the first place.

            More importantly, that’s not the study I asked for. You claimed “Kiggs did one and it suggests unvaccinated children are far more healthy than vaccinated with less ” general “health issues, fewer learning disabilities, ADD, asthma, diabetes, allergies common colds etc etc are almost non existent in the unvaccinated compared to vaccinated”.

          • Thomas

            Oh, sorry..
            http://healthimpactnews.com/2011/new-study-vaccinated-children-have-2-to-5-times-more-diseases-and-disorders-than-unvaccinated-children/

            This has the links to it and a few others

            Not for nothing but 102 cases (last I looked at the Disney outbreak) is coincided an outbreak of historic proportions but in 2000 when measles was “eradicated” we had 82 cases.. That’s 20 less than this “epic outbreak”.. And 102 out of 350 MILLION people is hardly epidemic (and Disney during Christmas peak is the perfect incubator, how many cases of the flu or common colds where cought? This kill more people annually than measles in America but no one is taking about those)

          • Young CC Prof

            82 cases in a year, versus 100 in a month. Remember the outbreak keeps hitting new states, cities and counties. If we continue to get 100 per month, that’s 1,200, which is a bit more than 82.

            Of course, outbreaks don’t grow linearly. They grow exponentially until they hit a limiting factor, such as improved vaccination coverage or effective quarantine measures. (Or, they grow exponentially until a large percentage of the susceptible population gets it and die down naturally.)

            Some days, I hate math.

          • Nick Sanders

            And the vast, vast majority of those 102 cases were unvaccinated. So, what’s your point?

            Edit: Also, 102 cases in a few days versus what I’m guessing was the number for an entire year.

          • Nick Sanders

            “The data was collected from parents with vaccine-free children via an internet questionnaire by vaccineinjury.info and Andreas Bachmair, a German classical homeopathic practitioner.”

            Quality data right there.

          • Thomas

            OK and explain to me why it matters who asks a select group of people the same “yes and no” questions and tallies up the answers? No one is diagnosing anything or making any medical suggestions is a simple yes and no questionnaire.. If you have more of one answer than another then you have a result, it’s not rocket science
            There is no other way to conduct that type of study really.. So it makes no difference who asked the questions.. And if the vaccine manufacturer was so sure of their product why haven’t they conducted such a study? I would assume that should actually be part of the fda approval process actually but it’s not for vaccines..

          • Nick Sanders

            Because self-report is incredibly unreliable, even when done by actual doctors. A homeopath? Please. And there is certainly another way to do it: actually have someone competent examine the kids.

          • Nick Sanders
          • Young CC Prof

            Internet questionnaire means massive selection bias.

          • Nick Sanders

            Especially given the site name.

          • Siri

            I like the euphemistic ‘vaccine-free’, and propose that from now on we talk about children being ‘hearing-free’, ‘sight-free’ and…errmmm…’life-free’.

          • Nick Sanders

            Also, that 102 number is for a single outbreak that happened in a matter of *days*, the 82 cases were for an entire *year*.

          • Thomas

            You’re almost proving my original argument by yourself with that statement.. Remember the vaccination rates? In 2000 it was LOWER (I forget the exact number but it was between 83 and 87%) it’s listed as 92% now (above 91% since 2000) and using Disney is a cheap shot in the first place because under normal circumstances we have been between 50-100 cases a year .. Disney is a special circumstance, and 97% of all measles in America is imported to begin withwith

            Anyway I have better things to do than argue details with you.. All I did was provide a non autism related angle to the argument with plenty of information suggesting the risk vs reward is at the very least not nearly as good as they like you to believe
            What you do with your life and children (if you even have any) is totally up to you
            The only reason I even participated in this conversation is because I don’t think autism is the primary reason people don’t vaccinate anymore and frankly because of the autism claims the whole situation gets discredited in my opinion and there is so much more to this than that..
            You seem to have all the answers you need to justify your beliefs but there are some out there that are not sure that could use a fresh perspective that doesn’t include mercola or any other biased sources… Vaccination rate vs morbidity rates as reported by WHO is raw data without any bias or opinion based information that for some reason has been over looked in any discussion I’ve seen

          • Nick Sanders

            I see you still don’t understand that you are only looking at the total national rates and not the local ones.

          • Nick Sanders

            I replied to this once already, but Disqus seems to have eaten it. You still don’t get that you are only looking at the total, nationwide rates, rather than the local ones.

            https://www.facebook.com/RtAVM/photos/pb.414643305272351.-2207520000.1423287090./839922689411075/

            Edit: whoops, miscopied the URL the first time

          • Thomas

            I replied to that as well. The population in California for instance is large enough that what ever they do our don’t do well be reflected in the national total so regardless of the few percent they change locally if it where a significant amount it would change the national total because of the volume of people who live in those places…
            And I also pointed out that there was a bigger correlation between the outbreaks and Filipino people.. Why Filipino? Because of you look into it 49% of the measles in America is traced back to someone who traveled to or from the Philippines.. They have the biggest problem with measles per capitacapita (something like 50k cases last year)
            My point is, where we have the biggest concentration of Filipinos in the US also happens to be the exact regions with the most measles.. Presumably because more people travel to and from the Philippines in those areas this there o is a greater risk to catch the measles in those areas..
            http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Filipino_Americans

          • Nick Sanders

            “The population in California for instance is large enough that what ever they do our don’t do well be reflected in the national total”

            If the whole state did, sure. County by county variance, which is what’s actually happening, no.

          • Thomas
          • Nick Sanders

            Do you have one that’s not from a crank website?

          • Nick Sanders
          • Samantha06

            And the author’s qualifications are???? Oh, that would be “lay person” right? A commentator asked her for citations to prove her claims, but alas, she had none….

          • Thomas

            http://www.kiggs-studie.de/english/survey.html

            You’re saying these people are not qualified? It’s where the German government gets their advice from… The homeopath dude just put their study results into something the general public can understand

          • Nick Sanders

            Kiggs did not do the study. The answers were compared to a Kiggs study.

            “The independent study is self-funded and is not sponsored by a large “credible” non-profit or government health organization with political and financial conflicts of interest.”

          • Thomas
          • Nick Sanders

            I tried to post a pair of comments earlier, but they seem to have vanished into the internet. The first was, do you have one that isn’t from a crank site.

          • Nick Sanders
          • Thomas

            Every heart of vaccine “shedding”.. That means that the vaccine itself can actually spread measles up to 21 days after its given.. Yes that means the vaccine itself can actually give you and others the measles… (It’s even listed in the vaccine insert as a possible side effect along with death, pneumonia, and everything they say is bad with measles IS LISTED AS A SIDE EFFECT from the vaccine)You will never look at vaccinated children the same!- Shedding Viruses: http://youtu.be/VKSeiAs_A4w

            Pay close attention to the part with the insert from the vaccine.. He reads it out loud for you
            Disneyland Measles Outbreak Caused By Vaccine?: http://youtu.be/eTE26ENzQr8

          • Nick Sanders

            I’ve heard of it being debunked.

            Also, those side effects of the vaccine are because it’s made with measles. The difference is that the chances of them happening from measles is 0.1% to 10%, depending on the specific complication. With the vaccine it’s 0.0333…% to so low that it can’t even be determined if it was actually the vaccine that caused it.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            Can you explain why we should listen to you instead of the overwhelming number of immunologist, pediatricians and public health officials around the world?

            It takes an extraordinary amount of hubris to imagine you know more than they do. That’s the ego I’m talking about in this piece.

          • Nick Sanders
      • Thomas

        It still doesn’t show any drops in vaccination rates.. Even if there are clusters of these mass groups of people who are not vaccinating it would still show a drop in the total percentage (most of those places are highly populated so it would make a significant impact on the total regardless)

        • Cyndi Simpson

          Thomas, where did you get your degree in epidemiology? Just wondering……

          • Thomas

            Didn’t know you need a degree in epidemiology to observe trends between two things that are supposedly connected, if one goes up and the other doesn’t or one goes down and the other goes up you have a result that shouldn’t be happening.. That’s math and logic.. In not trying to diagnose anyone or fix the problem I’m just identifying there is a problem..

            You can look for yourself
            The vaccination rates have stayed relatively the same for the last 15yrs and they actually went UP, they where below 90% for about 5 years prior to the anti vaxxer movement that supposedly started in 98 with the Wakefield report about measles .. If you look at the vaccination rate for the 33 years listed in this chart from WHO you will see that it’s been relatively the same with exception for those years prior to 2000 (when measles was deemed eradicated btw, the vaccination rate was it’s lowest, keep that I’m mind.. And in the early 80’s when the vaccination rate was above 95% for 5 years we had THREE TIMES THE AMOUNT OF MEASLES as we do now.. Did you get that? The higher the vaccination rate the MORE measles we had)
            But back to my original point.. The claim that less people are vaccinating is NOT supported in the numbers of actual vaccinations
            Measles vaccination rates
            http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tscoveragemcv.html

            Vs morbidity rate for same time period
            http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tsincidencemeasles.html

            And if you look at pertussis vaccinating the case is actually worse for you and your theory about less people vaccinating
            In fact we have had a vaccination rate ABOVE the mythical “herd immunity” (92%] for almost 33 years (it’s been in the 96% on average)
            What’s makes MY case stronger is the morbidity rate of pertussis has been steady increasing for 33 CONSECUTIVE years by roughly 1200 cases.. So not only are you wrong when you say “less” people are vaccinating this data suggests that the vaccine does NOT work as they claim..
            Pertussis vaccination rates
            http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tscoveragedtp3.html

            Vs morbidity rate for same time period
            http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tsincidencepertussis.html

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            Do you mean like this trend?

            I suppose that now you think breastfeeding causes autism.

          • Thomas

            Well not really, I would need to know what other factors there are (like medications mother was on or is on)
            I happen to believe there is a connection to anti depressants and anxiety meds prescribed to the female population today more so than the vaccine causing autism but that’s not what I’ve been arguing in this thread at all.. I think autism claims are no longer the primary reason people don’t vaccinate either…

          • Young CC Prof

            You really said that breastfeeding might cause autism, on the basis of that trend line? Thanks for proving Dr. Amy’s point!

          • Thomas

            When you compare vaccine vs what they are supposedly protecting you from I.e morbidity rates is simple and straight forward.. No degree necessary as I said

          • Young CC Prof

            You compare it in a simple and straightforward way, and that’s why you get it wrong every time.

          • Young CC Prof

            You are misreading that measles vaccination graph. Notice how the trend is “broken” in between 1989 and 1992? That’s because the second dose was introduced in 1990, and it took a few years to get a second dose to many children.

            Yes, pertussis is on the rise. That’s because the acellular vaccine doesn’t work as well as the old one. Personally, I think the solution is to offer the old vaccine again, since it was only taken off the market due to antivaxxer lies.

          • Thomas

            The information is readily available if you look for it btw

            “The CDC  admits the data shows “pertussis is greater in vaccinated persons.” Yet they continue to recommend the vaccines because “current evidence suggests pertussis vaccines continue to prevent disease caused by both pertactin-positive and pertactin-negative pertussis strains since other components of the vaccines provide protection.”
            http://healthimpactnews.com/2014/failed-whooping-cough-vaccine-still-being-used-in-the-united-states-outbreaks-blamed-on-unvaccinated/

            A New England Journal of Medicine letter was published on February 7, 2013, noting the first appearance in the United States of pertussis strains that are missing pertactin. More recently a paper evaluating the prevalence of these pertactin-deficient strains in the United States was published in Clinical Vaccine Immunology.

            Pertactin is one of several components of all pertussis vaccines. It is a protein that helps pertussis bacteria attach to the lining of the airways. There is a new study that found the likelihood of having reported pertussis caused by pertactin-deficient pertussis compared to pertactin-producing pertussis is greater in vaccinated persons. However, current evidence suggests pertussis vaccines continue to prevent disease caused by both pertactin-positive and pertactin-negative pertussis strains since other components of the vaccines provide protection.

            CDC is currently conducting studies in the United States to determine whether pertactin deficiency is one of the factors contributing to the increase in the number of reported pertussis cases. CDC will continue to closely monitor the situation and evaluate all available scientific evidence before drawing any conclusions. (Source: FDA.gov.)

      • Thomas

        Not to mention when the vaccination rate was at its highest in the first part of the 80′ WE HAD 12 TO 18 THOUSAND cases.. That’s THREE TIMES more than the “record” year of 600 last year when we where at 92%
        And we all agree that the measles was deemed “eradicated” by the CDC in 2000.. Yet the 5 years preceding that we where THE LOWEST in those same 33 years..

        • Nick Sanders
        • Thomas

          While everyone is all hung up on the risks of vaccinating (regardless of how severe you agree they might be) the fact is they are hardly doing what they say they are doing and there is no trend that suggests less people are vaccinatingvaccinating
          Measles is not half as scary as they make it out to be, the “thousands of deaths worldwide” that they keep pushing is really “thousands if deaths in THIRD WORLD countries” cause there is a song correlation to mortality rates and malnutrition (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10944494 there are more in depth studies on this but I’m trying to get ready for work but this one does mention it as well)
          Measles is 3 to 5 days of fever and rash, diahrrea and dehydration is the most common for contributing to anything “terrible” in those days.. Then you are done and immune for life.. Deafness, blindness and pneumonia can all be associated with ANY VIRAL OR BACTERIAL infection from the common cold to a sinus infection so those are general complications that rarely happen
          Bottom line is the vaccines are not 100% safe (iort they wouldn’t make you sign a waivier giving up your right to suesue) they are nowhere near as “effective” add they claim and the disease is nothing like they suggest (in the developed world anyway) so why would anyone get vaccinated (vaccines have killed 108 in the past ten years and measles zero btw)
          The risk vs the reward for me anyway is not favorable for the vaccines

          • Samantha06

            “Measles is not half as scary as they make it out to be…Measles is 3 to 5 days of fever and rash, diahrrea and dehydration is the most common for contributing to anything “terrible” in those days. Then you are done and immune for life.. Deafness, blindness and pneumonia can all be associated with ANY VIRAL OR BACTERIAL infection from the common cold to a sinus infection so those are general complications that rarely happen.”

            You forgot to mention that pesky encephalitis and brain damage… tell that to the parents of those children. If it’s YOUR child who ends up with it… well, I’m sure you’ll find something else to blame that on.

          • Nick Sanders

            And don’t forget SSPE. You think you’ve fully recovered only to develop a degenerative and fatal neurological problem several years down the road.

          • Samantha06

            Yes, you are right! I hadn’t heard of it, until another commentator posted about it… that is so horrible. That alone would convince me to vaccinate!

          • Nick Sanders

            Same here. Scary, scary stuff.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            You know, the whole “it doesn’t kill you so it isn’t that bad” is a bunch of bullshit.

            OK, so let’s say it’s only a few days of a nasty rash, fever and diarrhea. You know what’s even better than that? Maybe a day or so of “redness at the injection site.”

            And no, you don’t get to bring up “serious complications” of the vaccine, because, while they are possible, they are less likely to occur than serious complications of the measles, which are so conveniently ignored.

            What kind of monster would subject their child to a week of rash, fever and diarrhea, assuming that is all there is, when there is a perfectly good vaccine that prevents ALL OF THAT!!!!???? What total assholes.

          • Samantha06

            Exactly! Or the huge possibility of brain damage and disability! Assholes is right..

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            No, we are ignoring the potential for serious side effects. I don’t care, let’s ignore that and let’s just consider the typical presentation.

            How, still, can anyone justify subjecting their kids to that shit?

            I’ve said the same thing about the chicken pox. I don’t give a flying fuck whether anyone dies from it. It sucks. And it is for the most part easily avoidable with a simple vaccination. How is it even close? Only a total fucking monster of an a-hole would choose that for their kids. I don’t give a shit about “oh it can be mild.” Even a mild case of the chicken pox is far worse than the most common side effect of the vaccine (which isn’t even more likely than not to occur). Most kids have absolutely no response at all to the vaccine, not even redness or swelling. And yet, 1 week or more of chicken pox is better than that?

            How much of a monster do you have to be to think it?
            Then again, I just read this morning about some total asshole parents who faked a kidnapping of their 6 year old, complete with threatening him with a gun and rape, to try to teach him to be scared of strangers. That kid needs to be scared of his parents.

            I have a 6 yo. I can’t even fathom subjecting him to such torture. Thinking about him having to go through that makes me cry right here. How awful! Such fucking a-holes people can be.

            I need to go home and meet my son when he gets off the bus and give him a hug.

          • Samantha06

            See you are the difference between a non-selfish, loving, responsible, aware parent and the idiots who have their heads up their asses… I heard about that 6 year old, it just made me sick. I just don’t have any patience with anti-vaxxers. I honestly believe they have to have some degree of sociopathic personality traits to be so stupid. I also think they are narcissistic for the most part too. It’s hard for people like us to even fathom that these parents would be willing to subject their kids to unnecessary pain and suffering. It infuriates me to no end too. Give your son a huge hug and know that he is a lucky boy to have a dad like you 🙂

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            It’s hard for people like us to even fathom that these parents would be
            willing to subject their kids to unnecessary pain and suffering.

            This is the thing. We just had a round of the “stomach flu” (as my folks used to call it) through the house. First our 6 yo, and then the 4 yo a couple days later. It was just a 12 hour thing, and they all got over it fine.

            Even then, I don’t know how many times I told each of them how I wished there was something I could do to make it better. Even though it was nothing serious, and I knew it would be gone in 12 hours, it STILL made me sad to see them feeling so sick.

            Who can watch their kids feeling miserable and not feel bad for them?

            Give your son a huge hug and know that he is a lucky boy to have a dad like you 🙂

            We just got done reading The Lorax. We have to get his brother from daycare, and then he wants to read And To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street (in case you haven’t guessed, we are on a Dr Seuss kick these days)

          • Samantha06

            “Even then, I don’t know how many times I told each of them how I wished there was something I could do to make it better.”

            It makes me wonder how the anti-vax parents react to their kids when they get a VPD or anything else. Do they pat the kid on the head and say, “Oh you’ll get over it….here, have some organic bat-shit juice” or something like that? It wouldn’t surprise me..

            “Who can watch their kids feeling miserable and not feel bad for them?”

            That’s the thing, how can these parents even, for one SECOND, think it’s “OK” for their kids to suffer? But when I heard the “Wolfman of Arizona” (my nickname for him!), admit, without batting an eye, he wouldn’t care if his unvaxxed kid caused someone else’s death, my first thought was, narcissistic sociopath who wouldn’t care about his own child either.

            I think putting it into perspective and realizing that these folks have more than a few screws loose helps me realize how glad I am not to think that way! And thank God there are more of us than them!

            I’m not up on all the latest kid’s books, but I have always loved Dr. Seuss.. he is just timeless.. I know you enjoy story time with them as much as they do! I think that’s something kids always remember fondly when they get older too 🙂

          • Elaine

            The theory is that natural immunity is better than vaccine-induced. They want to make sure their kid is immune for life, rather than being immune from a vaccine, having it wear off later in life, and getting a really nasty case of the disease then. It makes a certain amount of sense, until you remember that adults get vaccinated too! Me, I’d rather just give my kid a booster vaccine if it came to that–even if it happens when they’re an adult, I know that when my kids are adults I’ll still try to make sure they stay up to date on this stuff. The ACIP recommendations change all the time. I’m sure they’ll eventually start talking about adult chickenpox and MMR boosters.

            I am not really clear on why anti-vaxers treat the whole “Immunity wears off” thing as such an argument against vaccines. That’s not an argument against vaccines, it’s an argument for boosters. Maybe more people are getting shingles because there’s less naturally circulating chicken pox in the population. So what? Now we have a shingles vaccine. Fixed that for ya.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            “Natural immunity” misses the whole fucking point – you want to NOT get sick in the first place!!!

            What’s the first step in getting “natural immunity”? Getting the disease.

            Moreover, it’s not like getting the disease guarantees lifelong immunity anyway.

            You are right – just get the vaccine.

          • Thomas

            Those things are also common as “adverse effects” FROM THE VACCINE btw… I personally have had measles.. It’s not that bad
            If you live in a developed country the chances of those are slim at best.. You figure out of the 50-100 cases on average we have had in the last 20 years (I know last year was a bigger than usual year but I’m arguing the possible odds of getting brain damage and encephalitis) how many cases in America ended up with ANY of those? I haven’t heard of ANY.. How about blind and deaf? (Also listed in the risk and danger section on the “vaccine insert” as a side effect) can’t say I’ve heard any of those either.. I know of one person, who was a neighbor of a friend who had measles complications FORTY YEARS AGO.. But that’s it. Bottom line is the fears they are using to get people to vaccinate are things that where caused by the measles in the early 1900’s .. Medicine and environment (hygiene, clean water, healthy foods and healthcare etc) have come a long way since and the measles today is no more dangerous than the flu or a cold (I think the flu is actually far worse)
            Compare that to the amount of deaths and serious adverse effects, vaers gets 30k reported cases a year and the CDC says up to 30% of that is “real” so let’s use 900 cases.. That’s more serious adverse affects (not including deaths) ANNUALLY than measles had in the entire 20 years I used in the example above…

          • Nick Sanders

            Common, from the vaccine? Not by a long shot.

            Common, from infection? Yes, and your anecdotal evidence does not overturn the statistics:
            http://www.cdc.gov/measles/about/complications.html

          • Samantha06

            Sorry to break it to you, but your entire comment is simply information you’ve gleaned from disreputable internet sources. Bottom line is, vaccines save lives. Encephalitis is a real risk. And I should know, I have brain lesions consistent with residual encephalitis from having the measles. Measles no dangerous than the flu or a cold?? Well, that statement right there proves you have no idea what you are talking about.
            And thank you, Nick Sanders for posting that link..
            ..

          • Nick Sanders

            Looks like the real person to thank is Guesteleh. They are really going above and beyond here.

          • Samantha06

            I know there was a post with a great link you posted right before my above comment but I can’t find it now! Disqus is overwhelmed again….

          • Guesteleh

            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1022280/

            During 1988 through 1990, California experienced its worst measles
            epidemic in more than a decade, with 16,400 reported cases, 3,390
            hospital admissions, and 75 deaths. More than half of the patients were
            younger than 5 years; the highest incidence was among infants younger
            than 12 months. The epidemic centered in low-income Hispanic communities
            in southern and central California. The major cause of the epidemic was
            low immunization levels among preschool-aged children and young adults.
            Rates of complications, admission to hospital, and death were
            surprisingly high. Outbreak control efforts met with indeterminate
            success. Problems with these efforts included insufficient funding early
            in the epidemic and disappointing public response to community-based
            immunization campaigns. The cost of medical care and outbreak control
            for the epidemic is conservatively estimated at $30.9 million. Unless
            the level of immunization in preschool-aged children is increased, this
            type of epidemic will probably recur.

          • Guesteleh

            http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/551272_5

            In 1989, another major resurgence of measles occurred with more than
            55,000 cases reported between 1989 and 1991, an average of more than
            18,000 cases a year compared with approximately 3000 cases annually
            earlier in the 1980s (Fig. 1).[25-27]
            The resurgence was particularly severe accounting for more than 11,000
            hospitalizations and 123 deaths. The cases were predominantly
            unvaccinated preschoolers but, particularly early in the outbreak, there
            were many college students affected who had received one dose of
            vaccine previously

            Because >95% of children entering school had received a dose of
            measles vaccine, preventing the school-aged outbreaks required a second
            dose of vaccine. Waning immunity with increasing time since vaccination
            was not a significant cause of vaccine failure.[28] Instead, the major problem was primary vaccine failure-the failure to respond to the first dose.

          • Guest

            I was in high school during this outbreak. Two of the kids affected were my teacher’s children. My mother dragged me (kicking and screaming – I was a dramatic teen) to the doctor got a booster (my THIRD MMR) because she was so scared I’d get it. Says a lot for the generation that saw death from VPDs. Both my parents remember standing in long lines to get their polio vax as well, and how relieved their parents were when the vax became available.

          • Young CC Prof

            My father stood in one of those lines to get the measles vaccine. He’d managed to get through a few years of school so without ever catching it, then the vaccine became available, and his very protective mother dragged him to the first clinic in the area.

          • Cyndi Simpson

            Well, there’s the kicker: “I personally have had measles and it’s not that bad.” There’s your “science” right there – your own personal, precious and HIGHLY MEANINGFUL experience. Thank you for truly, truly proving the point of this article.

          • Guestelehs

            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1022280/

            During 1988 through 1990, California experienced its worst measles epidemic in more than a decade, with 16,400 reported cases, 3,390 hospital admissions, and 75 deaths. More than half of the patients were younger than 5 years; the highest incidence was among infants younger than 12 months. The epidemic centered in low-income Hispanic communities in southern and central California. The major cause of the epidemic was low immunization levels among preschool-aged children and young adults. Rates of complications, admission to hospital, and death were surprisingly high. Outbreak control efforts met with indeterminate success. Problems with these efforts included insufficient funding early in the epidemic and disappointing public response to community-based immunization campaigns. The cost of medical care and outbreak control for the epidemic is conservatively estimated at $30.9 million. Unless the level of immunization in preschool-aged children is increased, this type of epidemic will probably recur.

          • Thomas

            Yeah I know, I mentioned in my earlier post that during the time when we had the HIGHEST VACCINATION RATES (the timeframe you are pointing out in this comment) was the highest we ever had on record around 98%… That’s right, during the HIGHEST VACCINATION RATE we had THE MOST MEASLES… what was your point? We need to vaccinate because it causes more measles? Just checking
            http://apps.who.int/immunization_monitoring/globalsummary/timeseries/tscoveragemcv.html

            Look at the vaccination rate

          • Nick Sanders

            “The major cause of the epidemic was low immunization levels among preschool-aged children and young adults.”

            Read.

          • Cyndi Simpson

            It’s hopeless. Thomas doesn’t understand what he’s reading. Next he’ll be suggesting we quarantine the Philippines. And all Filipinos wherever they may reside, worldwide.

          • Guesteleh

            http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/551272_5

            In 1989, another major resurgence of measles occurred with more than 55,000 cases reported between 1989 and 1991, an average of more than 18,000 cases a year compared with approximately 3000 cases annually earlier in the 1980s (Fig. 1).[25-27] The resurgence was particularly severe accounting for more than 11,000 hospitalizations and 123 deaths. The cases were predominantly unvaccinated preschoolers but, particularly early in the outbreak, there were many college students affected who had received one dose of vaccine previously (Fig. 6).


            Because >95% of children entering school had received a dose of measles vaccine, preventing the school-aged outbreaks required a second dose of vaccine. Waning immunity with increasing time since vaccination was not a significant cause of vaccine failure.[28] Instead, the major problem was primary vaccine failure-the failure to respond to the first dose.

          • Nick Sanders

            Name one thing that is 100% safe. Go on, I’ll wait.

          • Thomas

            Never claimed anything is 100% safe, I only claimed that the risk vs the reward is not favorable for vaccines … If I lived in the Philippines or somewhere else that it’s a huge problem then maybe the risks are with the reward or if you live in a big tourist trap or travel a lot then it may be worth it as well but that doesn’t mean that it’s worth it for every situation

          • Nick Sanders

            Do you even know the relative risks?

      • Thomas

        You know what correlates even more than the pockets of low vaccination rates in those places? The concentration or Filipino communities (almost EXACTLY as a matter of fact)… What does the Filipino have to do with measles you ask.. 49% of ALL measles in America is traced back to someone who traveled to or came from the Philippines (they happen to have the worst measles outbreaks in the world per capita btw AND their vaccination rate is pretty high if I remember correctly as well)
        But back to my point, this could be a coincidence but the concentration of Filipinos in the same exact areas where the measles are prominent is something that should be looked into I think since they could be more susceptible perhaps but they probably have more people traveling to and from the Philippines (is where I’m getting at anyway) so the risk of getting measles there are far greater (regardless of vaccination rate) than anywhere else in America
        http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Filipino_Americans

        • Andrew Lazarus

          The largest outbreak of measles for 2013-14 was in Amish who got it from some Amish missionaries to the Philippines. But the second largest outbreak was an Orthodox Jewish sect, where someone brought it back as a souvenir from London.

  • sdsures

    I have the sniffles today. My flu jab must not have worked. (Har-har.) SEE???? VACCINES DUN WERK!

    • Samantha06

      I guess mine didn’t either.. I had my vaccine and got a cold 2 months later… definitely a correlation!

  • onnesty

    I have an idea… stop putting mercury (and other carcinogens) in the mix and I’ll probably be much more supportive.

    • Wren

      Please do at least a tiny amount of googling on whether mercury is actually in infant vaccinations. Then you could maybe, possibly, try to find out from valid scientific sources where else children get mercury.

      • onnesty

        Infants shouldn’t even be given vaccines – period.

        • Wren

          I totally disagree. Infants shouldn’t die of whooping cough-period. A shot to prevent that? Yep, pretty much all infants (leaving room for medical exemption) should get that.

          • onnesty

            Well, I’m not impressed that you disagree. That’s not shocking at all. What is shocking is that you’re so willing to pump live virus and various toxic chemicals into a child when their immune system isn’t even fully functioning yet.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Tell us about their immune system. Come on, you seem to know so much. How does their immune system work? In what respect is their immune system “not even fully functioning yet”?

            Explain it to me.

          • onnesty

            OK, yeah I’ll do that when you find me evidence that there aren’t any harsh chemicals or live virus in barrage of children’s vaccines they’re ‘required’ to take. Smug much?

          • Wren

            You made the claim. You provide the evidence.

          • onnesty

            Hey Wren, I know, do “a tiny amount of googling” and you’ll find tons of information about mercury, etc. in vaccines. (Sorry, couldn’t resist)

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Yeah, I’ll grant one thing – wren’s comment was rhetorical, because she knows damn well which vaccines contain mercury and which don’t. You obviously don’t, but hey…

          • Wren

            I’ve done my google “research” and can back up the factual claims I make. You could try to do the same, and then an actual debate is at least possible. Or you can just keep throwing out absurd claims anyone with actual knowledge instantly recognises as false and evidence you generally aren’t worth engaging.
            Personally, I’ve got a bit of spare time, for the next 5 minutes or so, so I figured why not?

          • Siri

            5 minutes of googling reveals the astonishing fact that Onnesty’s mum is Azura Queen of Slugs from the planet Og. So I think you should really cut him a bit of slack. Do YOU have alien aristocracy in your lineage?

          • sdsures

            Do you like eating apples? They have formaldehyde. Better stop eating apples then.

          • annoyed

            FROM WHAT SOURCE? Anyone can start a blog and say whatever they want. Why don’t you provide a link to a credible peer reviewed study instead of what you heard on antivax.org

          • MILK&Whiskey

            Onnesty, as you google, do try to consider the source. My daughter’s friend just “proved” to their Kindergarten class that unicorns are real. When I was researching vaccines (because, as a parent, it’s what you do) I found that the voices and arguments in favor of vaccines were from reputable, specifically educated people, and the voices and websites against consisted of a group using questionable information to back up bad arguments and endlessly citing each other and throwing out statements like “we all know herd immunity is a myth” without anything to back up knowing something that goes against all current reason. In the end, because it’s a lot of science to wade through for an art major, I had to decide whether to trust pretty much every doctor and scientist alive (and some dead), or a few loud parents who could be scared of the wrong things. I figured, if something went wrong with my kids, I’d feel better saying “I trusted science” than “I trusted the internet.” But then, I play fast and loose with mercury…I sometimes eat tuna.

          • Nick Sanders

            Are you trying to claim MLP is lying to me? Because those are fighting words.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Some vaccines are live attenuated viruses, yes. That’s a silly red-herring. I don’t know what a “harsh chemical” is, or at least what you mean by it. Then again, I am a chemist, so I actually KNOW what the chemicals really are and what they do.

            Now, can you please explain how the immune system works and in what respect their immune system is “not fully functioning”? I’m not an immunologist, so maybe you can help me out.

          • Wren

            Well, I’m pretty sure they all contain some of that harsh H2O. That chemical causes many deaths every year.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            And they inject that straight into your bloodstream!

          • Epoch1

            How about you provide proof that there aree harsh chemicals, live viruses and dangerous components to vaccines.

            Real, qualified and validated proof… not just your tin-foil hat explanations.

          • Wren

            a) Live viruses? Which vaccines on the routine pediatric schedule in the US include live viruses?
            b) Pump? A tiny injection hardly equals a “pump”.
            c) Toxic chemicals? We have already established you believe chemicals long since removed are still in vaccines, and the removal of mercury was not due to any established harm anyway. Which toxic chemicals are the problem now?
            d) Not yet fully functioning immune system? When and how does it become “fully functioning”?
            Having watched my baby sister suffer and end up hospitalised for pertussis, yep, I was more than happy to vaccinate my babies.

          • Siri

            Not half as shocking as the fact that you a) married a spatula and b) worship elderberries.

          • Epoch1

            Were you vaccinated as a child?

          • sdsures

            You have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.

          • Annoyed

            First of all, if the CDC was the only source of pro-vaccine data, your mistrust might give you pause. But, the ENTiRE world’s health organizations and every research university on the planet have come to the same conclusions. The one study that linked vaccine to autism was proven to be completely faked, on purpose at that and you don’t trust the CDC? Your mistrust should be in the anti-vaxx movement spreading the lies they do. There is not a single post you have made that does not contain an egregious and refutable error. Your fear of vaccines is based on fear alone. There is absolutely no factual basis for it. None. Zero. Cite a single peer study from a single from a single credible source to back up your claims about vaccines. *crickets chirping*

        • Montserrat Blanco

          And we should listen to someone that has no idea what vaccines are made of…

          • Siri

            That’s not why you should listen to him. You should listen to him because he has three ears and a troupe of performing caterpillars.

          • sdsures

            Are the caterpillars vaccinated?

        • Amazed

          Then don’t give your infant vaccines. Then, you can exercize your freedom to choose: the kid, the trunk, off to the jungle you go, and stay away from the locals who don’t deserve something like your diseases in their lives. Or, sealed away in your house with your brood so you and your diseases cannot harm the society you intend to leech off, exposing people to diseases, death, and disabilities. No one is obliged to suffer you, your refusal to contribute, your greed in the taking, your arrogance and most of all, your danger, period.

          • onnesty

            Man, this ‘anti-choice’ movement is rabid. I had no idea.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            How can one make a rational choice based on delusional fantasy?

            Sorry, you want kids to suffer because of fiction? That’s not a real choice.

          • Siri

            Some people will never hear the truth. I keep telling them that since you fell into the porridge pot as a child you have the special power of oats, but they refuse to listen.

          • Amazed

            Yeah. I’m pretty sure most of us here are rabidly against anyone’s choice to steal from our purses and against anyone’s choice to steal from our health.

            Must be because we vaccinate against rabies each time a stray dog bits us. No doubt, you’d rather die of rabies infecting other people on your way to the other side, rather than taking the ebil vaccine.

          • onnesty

            If I was bitten by a rabid dog. Yes, I would get the shots. Thanks for asking.

          • Amazed

            Thank YOU for demonstrating the self-serving lie permeating the heart of the anti-vaxx movement. It’s all ebil mercury and poisoning one’s ummune system. Those enlightened people cannot be fooled by evil doctors and Big Bad Medicine. But when the shit hits the fan, they trot over to the doctor bleating “Save, doc! Big Bad Medicine, help!” As evidenced by the loving mommies who don’t vaccinate their kids against measles because medicine is ebil but when their superior knowledge and warm mama milk fail to stimulate the Great Immune System into fighting this tiresome little thing off, they rush to the doctor, infecting everyone around who can be infected.

            All hail the Enlightened People!

          • onnesty

            You’re sick dude. Makes no sense. That’s like Starbucks saying “You either buy the CD in front of the register, or we’re not going to sell you any coffee.”

          • Young CC Prof

            More like, “We aren’t going to sell you coffee without a cup.” Picking and choosing which medical care you believe in is about as illogical as asking your barista to serve coffee into your cupped hands.

          • sdsures

            Yes we are – when the choice is stupid. Your freedom to choose ends at other people’s expense.

          • onnesty

            “at other people’s expense” Yeah, I’ll never understand that as it relates to vaccinations. Hmm.

          • Nick Sanders

            It’s called herd immunity.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            “at other people’s expense” Yeah, I’ll never understand that as it relates to vaccinations. Hmm.

            YOUR inability to understand herd immunity is not a failure of vaccines, it’s just a reflection of your ignorance.

            But then again, so is everything else you say.

          • momofone

            I’ll help you out with an example: a woman has an infant daughter who is exposed to pertussis by a cousin (prior to availability of vaccine). Baby dies. Woman has another child the next year, a boy. He is exposed by a cousin, and dies. So yeah, at other people’s expense. The difference is that now “other people” can vaccinate, and the babies can be protected even if they’re too young to be vaccinated themselves.

          • onnesty

            OK, I’m with you in your particular story… but that (as you pointed out) is not the scenario we exist in. When someone tells me “anti-vaxxers are putting us all at risk” in 2015, your illustration is irrelevant.

          • momofone

            In what way? Unvaccinated person transmits disease to another unvaccinated person. It certainly sounds like the scenario in which some of us exist. (For the record, I didn’t point out that we don’t; my point is that we absolutely do when people who can be vaccinated aren’t.)

          • onnesty

            You qualify your story with “prior to availability of vaccine”. But I’m talking about right now… 2015. I’ll repeat the scenario for you…

            If I chose not to be vaccinated, how does that hurt YOU who has been vaccinated?

            Or similarly… How would my kids (assuming they weren’t vaccinated) put your (vaccinated) kids at risk?

          • momofone

            I have been (fully) vaccinated. But what about people who can’t be/aren’t old enough? THAT’s how you hurt other people.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            If you don’t know the answer to that question, you don’t know how vaccines work. And if you don’t know how vaccines works, you aren’t knowledgeable enough to make judgments on their safety or efficacy.

          • onnesty

            Are you really an MD? I just have to ask.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            So you don’t know how they work. That’s not a surprise. Anti-vax is based on ignorance and you are demonstrating that.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Oh Amy, that was demonstrated early this morning. I especially like the whole,

            “Their immune systems aren’t fully functioning yet.”
            “Oh, so tell me how their immune system works?”
            “Did I ever mention that the CDC is lying?”

          • onnesty

            Wait… did you just gloss over my question? Are you really a Medical Doctor?

          • Jim Johnson

            Why would anyone who fraudulently puts an MD after their name respond to your question with a no?

          • onnesty

            True.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            If you can’t even research a basic question like that and find the correct answer, how can we take your “research” on vaccines seriously?

          • momofone

            Not everyone can be vaccinated, and some people have other medical/physical issues that place them at risk even if they have been fully vaccinated.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            It reminds of the part that starts at about 42 seconds in this video

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQGgaI-BcI4

          • JJ

            My newborn will be at risk.

          • AllieFoyle

            It puts all infants at risk until they are old enough to receive the vaccine and develop immunity. It also puts older children and adults who are immunocompromised because of illness or medication at risk. Imagine you or your loved one enduring cancer treatment or serious chronic illness and then having to also worry about catching a preventable communicable disease.

            Further, some people do not become immune after they are vaccinated. More than 95% of people are immune to measles after vaccination, but for those who aren’t, a 95% immunity rate means that the disease doesn’t have a chance to spread in the community, so they stay protected too.

          • Tikatu

            Okay. Anti-vaxxing started in 1989 according to a poster above. So, girl child born in ’89 is now 26. Still unvacccinated. (Protected by herd immunity!) She’s pregnant. Someone’s unvaccinated child gives her rubella (aka German measles-which is prevented through that much-maligned MMR vaccine). Baby is born mentally disabled. That good enough?

            Your kids can’t put my vaccinated kids at risk unless they develop which destroys their immune systems. However, we’re getting to the point where unvaccinated kids can (and do) infect other unvaccinated kids–to devastating effect. The herd immunity can’t be counted on anymore.

            And before you say such cases as I’ve described above are rare, well, so are the complications from vaccines.

          • Wren

            A few clues:

            1) Are vaccines 100% effective for every person who is vaccinated?
            2) Can everybody be vaccinated?

            You might also wish to consider that diseases which are unable to spread are also unable to mutate much.

          • Wren

            That explains so much.

          • yugaya

            Yeah but they will never understand why.

          • onnesty

            Well, I’m waiting. Seriously….
            If I chose not to be vaccinated, how does that hurt YOU who has been vaccinated?

            Or put more broadly. How would my kids (assuming they weren’t vaccinated) put your (vaccinated) kids at risk?

            I really want to know. Not just toying with you.

          • yugaya

            My wee kiddo was two weeks old when she started using public transport in October and spending up to four hours on school premises every day Monday to Friday.

            Thanks for nothing had you chosen not to be vaccinated or not to vaccinate your kids.

          • Nick Sanders
          • Jason Roder

            Solipsism is a failure of a philosophy.

          • Who?

            You say that like it’s a bad thing?

          • momofone

            Exactly. Don’t vaccinate. Just leave the herd, because I’m sure you don’t want to be saddled with the immunity that comes from the herd’s evil immunizations.

        • anh

          “Infants shouldn’t even contract vaccine preventable diseases–period”
          there, I fixed it for you

          • onnesty

            Thanks. That’s helpful.

        • Siri

          Brown sugar causes moral collapse in the elderly.

          • onnesty

            Awesome. I’ll tell my grandmother. Thanks.

      • onnesty

        I’m not sure how you can say this will so much confidence when the ‘science’ on this topic is far from settled.

        • Wren

          Far from settled? How many thousands of studies do you require? How much more research funds and time should be poured into this rather than cures and vaccines for diseases not yet preventable by vaccines?

          • onnesty

            “How much more research funds and time should be poured into this” – A bunch! And it should never stop. If you’re going to “REQUIRE” me to inject my kids, I want there to be no doubts that they are 100% safe. And that is certainly NOT the case now.

          • Wren

            Nothing is 100% safe.
            It’s about comparative risks. Seatbelts can, in extremely rare cases, cause more damage than they prevent. Vaccines can, in extremely rare cases, cause serious adverse reactions. However, a car accident without a seatbelt is far more likely to lead to serious injury or death than one with it. A vaccine preventable disease is far more likely to lead to serious adverse effects or death than the vaccine.

          • onnesty

            True what you say about risk. But I believe the rates of of adverse reactions from immunizations are grossly understated. The CDC is a government controlled organization. Therefore, they can and will understate any and all statistics that do not line up with their objectives. This has been shown repeatedly true over the years, and is no less true (in my opinion) in this particular case.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            ut I believe the rates of of adverse reactions from immunizations are grossly understated.

            So just make things up, and all of a sudden, poof! It’s real!

          • onnesty

            It is real. I said “I believe” the rates are overstated. That is a real statement.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Yes, it’s all your fantasy.

            But it is good that you admit that you have absolutely no real basis for anything, and it is based on something you have made up.

          • onnesty

            I’m observant. I read. I watch what happens around me. I analyze what I’m being told. I listen to the experiences and knowledge of others. My viewpoint is not made in a vacuum, as you suggest. Just because I oppose your viewpoint doesn’t mean it’s “made up.”

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Sorry.

            “…it is based on something completely made up.”

            There, it doesn’t require that you made it up, it could have been someone else and you just accept it.

            You don’t know the first fucking gnat about the CDC. So yes, it is pretty much made in a vacuum.

          • onnesty

            Do you believe everything you hear? I mean, I would assume you listen to the news and occasionally go “Yeah, I don’t think that’s true”. Don’t you? Or do you just accept everything that is said? I’m really curious. For real.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Depends on what is said and who says it. Moreover, it depends if I have actual knowledge regarding it.

            However, when it is something said by a reputable source in an area where I have no expertise, my response is to shrug and say, meh, they likely know more about it than I do. And if it is something that concerns me, I will ask people who I know who know something about it. So if I had any concerns about the CDC vaccination recommendations, I would talk to our pediatrician for starters, and if I needed more, I could contact an immunologist. Heck, if I really had a concern, I would contact someone on the committee that makes the recommendations (email is so great) and ask them directly.

            What I don’t do is assume they are lying and think I know more about it, nor do I make decisions based on the presumption that they must be lying or conspiring.

          • onnesty

            Yeah, you are much more trusting than me. I will admit. I think the CDC is about as reliable as the FDA.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            As I said, you don’t know the first fucking thing about the CDC nor the FDA, for that matter, so whether you “trust” them or not is pretty much irrelevant to anything. It doesn’t matter who YOU trust because you are an ignorant doofus.

            Now, that in itself doesn’t make the CDC nor FDA trustworthy, but it certainly doesn’t have any bearing on whether they are untrustworthy.

            BTW: go back and look at your comments here about your objections to vaccines. Notice that it has changed in pretty much every single comment. Recall that the initial claim about about harsh chemicals and live viruses, which you know nothing about, and then you went to the immune system, which you know nothing about, and then you are on to conspiracies, which again, you know nothing about.

            A little self-reflection might be in order here.

          • Nick Sanders

            So, pretty reliable?

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            ..and the post office.

          • Epoch1

            Real for sure… totally stupid and misinformed… but real.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            That he believes it is real, but what he believes is fantasy.

          • Wren

            “That is a real statement.”

            I cannot even begin to figure out what this means in this context. I mean, yes, onnesty made this statement, but what is making a statement of belief meant to prove?

            I believe my cats can cure cancer. That is a real statement.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            onnesty,

            Thanks so much for dropping in to demonstrate what I mean about ego. It’s difficult to imagine a larger ego than someone who claims to know more about adverse vaccine reactions than the Federal government.

            How do you? You read it on a website created by quacks and you think that marks you as defiant of government authority and smarter than the rest of us, when it really demonstrates your appalling ignorance and gullibility.

            Oh, and thank you ever so much for caring about us so ardently that you want to educate us about what you think you “know.” Please, save yourself the trouble. You are yet another of those privileged, defiant, “empowered” fools who bolster their egos with anti-vax nonsense. We already have more than enough of those.

          • onnesty

            Amy, not to be disrespectful. I have nothing against you. And I’m not completely “ANTI-VAX” as you might suppose. But I also don’t agree that the Federal Government has the people’s best interest in mind – in the slightest. And they have repeatedly earned my mistrust – the hard way. And THAT of course is the real heart of the problem. It’s almost to the point now where regardless of what is said by the FDA, CDC, FBI, EPA, NSA, etc, the opposite is actually probably closer to the truth.

            So if you were to tell me the Federal Government started demanding/suggesting mandatory vaccines across the board, my assumption would be that it’s a result of some sort of financial corruption and back-door deal from pharmaceutical companies and/or their lobbyists. Would I have proof? No, of course not. But this type of thing has happened many times before, and it will continue well into the future. If it quacks like a duck…

            You can (and likely will) call me ignorant because I hold to a healthy caution in these matters. But I won’t be convinced until the evidence comes from unbiased/independent sources that are not government funded. It’s just that simple.

          • Wren

            So you don’t trust the U.S. government. To take this stance against vaccines that mistrust has to extend to most governments in the world. There is a lot of world outside the U.S.

          • onnesty

            I can’t really speak to other governments or people groups. Show me one that is immune to corruption.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            Show me one anti-vax celebrity that is immune to corruption? Yet you choose to believe them. Why?

          • onnesty

            No, I don’t believe anti-vax celebrities. I’ve actually never knowingly met/seen one. I’m not sure what you’re saying.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            Where do you get your information on vaccines? You don’t do original research on vaccines, right? So you trust others to provide you with information. Why them and how do you know they’re not corrupt?

          • Wren

            You don’t have to believe any are immune to corruption. However, for your mistrust to make any sense, you do have to believe they are all corrupted by some shadowy group that wants to harm us all through vaccines. You must also believe that no opponents to incumbent governments have ever discovered this corruption, even though they must have participated if ever they got into power. In addition, thousands of scientists and millions of doctors have either been a party to this conspiracy of corruption or too ignorant to notice it despite their education in the field.

            You will not accept funding from the pharmaceutical companies, governments or anyone else with a vested interest in vaccines. Who the heck else would pay for these studies?

          • onnesty

            By the way. My kids are vaccinated. I held my nose and did it. And they are fine. But I do know of a couple personally who took their child in for vaccinations. Upon getting the shot(s), baby cried uncontrollably for about 12 hours and then died in their arms. Anomaly? Perhaps. But I also know of several people who’s children were diagnosed with autism within days of getting injections. CDC says “there’s no connection”. I just don’t believe them. That’s all. I just don’t believe them.

          • SEC

            You said: “But I do know of a couple personally who took their child in for vaccinations. Upon getting the shot(s), baby cried uncontrollably for about 12 hours and then died in their arms”

            Really? Since you know them personally, can you give me their names? City and date? This would be news. Can you point me to a news article?

          • sdsures

            No chance the COD was something else? (I’m not actually asking onnesty because I know he’ll claim it was the vaccines even if it turns out it wasn’t.)

          • Nick Sanders
          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Nick – the problem is, facts don’t matter. He’s already said that. He knows very well what the facts are, he just doesn’t believes them, and creates his own.

          • Nick Sanders

            Even so, I refuse to let their denial make the facts just go away. No matter what, I will not let anyone ignore the clear as day evidence that there is no link. Especially since I am on the Autism Spectrum, and I am absolutely sick of people screaming about how you shouldn’t get vaccines because you might end up like me. Does being autistic suck? Yes. Is it better than dying painfully as a child? Hell fucking yes, there’s no comparison. Even if the alleged link existed, vaccination would be the way to go. Since it doesn’t, there is no excuse whatsoever.

          • Cyndi Simpson

            Ah, yes – the “MY OWN PERSONAL PRECIOUS EXPERIENCE AND THAT OF MY VERY SPECIAL FRIENDS” argument. Ego. Ego. Ego. Privilege. And you “just don’t believe them.” Because….you just don’t.

          • Jason Roder

            In demanding absolute certainty, you ask for a thing that does not and can not exist.

    • Nick Sanders

      What mercury? And what carcinogens?

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Stop changing the goalposts! Infant vaccines do not have mercury in them! You said they do and they do not. Stop lying or at least admit you life and you have no idea what you are talking about!

    • Information please!

      Agree. Full disclosure on what is in the vaccines would be appreciated. Not something I should have to try and decipher myself. If they are truly safe, then we should be told what’s in them – EXACTLY what’s in them. not like ‘natural flavours’ like you see on ingredient lists, but actual ingredients. The push to vaccinate should be accompanied with facts and data not – they’re safe so do it or you’re an arrogant moron.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        Be careful with matches around that strawman.

        • Information please

          Personal insults are not an argument for or against something. Show data revealing what is in each vaccine and provide that to parents at their doctor’s offices. Wouldn’t take much to do that and then people can make informed decisions about what goes into their bodies and their children’s bodies.

          • Nick Sanders

            Do you have the medical training to actually read the ingredient list, and know what’s worth caring about and what isn’t? Does the average parent?

          • sdsures

            Medical dictionaries online may be able to simplify explanations for parents.

          • Nick Sanders

            True, but how many have the time and patience to check them while in a doctor’s office while the doctor is waiting and their kid is getting antsy?

          • guest

            The doctor could send them home with the information at their previous appointment, then the parents can check into it. Remember that not all parents will request this information – it’s the ones who want to know what’s in the vaccine, so they are already invested in learning more.

          • Nick Sanders

            If the doctor has to send them home with it, why can’t they just look it up for themselves in the first place? It’s already been pointed out that it’s available online.

          • sdsures

            Do it when the kids are asleep the week before.

          • guest

            I don’t believe I need medical training to read words and understand them. I am an intelligent person, if there is something I do not understand then I can look it up.

          • momofone

            Words with no context are meaningless. Your ability to read is one thing; an ability to put what you read into context and understand THAT is another thing entirely.

          • Nick Sanders

            Ok, here’s a test for you. Without using google, which of these chemicals should you be worried about if you see them:
            Cyanocobalamin
            Ergocalciferol
            Pyridoxal

            Ammonium sulfate
            Promanullin

            Cetyltrimethylammonium bromide

            L-Histidine
            Coniine

          • guest

            ok. Well, I get the point you’re trying to make and I’m sure I will guess wrong. I am going to actually assume the medical community feels they are all safe. But I will play and I pick Cetyltrimethylammonium bromide and Cyanocobalamin as the ones to me that sound worrisome.

          • Nick Sanders

            Actually, I did put two really nasty things on the list. You were polite and reasonable, so I wouldn’t stoop as low as “Haha, gotcha they’re all safe!” All I’ll say, for the moment, so as not to spoil it for other people who wish to take a crack at it, is that you didn’t guess correctly.

          • guest

            🙂 Thank you for not blasting me for getting it wrong. The concern was there, some of the comments and personal attacks around here are pretty nasty.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Cetyltrimethylammonium bromide is certainly not it (am I the only one who reads the ingredients list on shampoo/conditioner in the shower?)

          • Nick Sanders

            Now you’ve got me thinking about a vaccine against dandruff.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            I have met the guy who developed the zinc formulation of Head and Shoulders at P&G.

          • Nick Sanders

            Cool. They seem to have changed the formula of Head and Shoulders in the last few years. Which is a shame, the old one for oily hair, which I can’t find anymore, was the only thing that I had ever found that could keep me from getting scalp zits.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Saying that you’ve created a strawman is not a personal insult. It’s an accusation that you have made a strawman argument.

            The FIRST LINK on a google search for “vaccine ingredients” which automatically filled in was to this page

            http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vac-gen/additives.htm

            which has a pdf file of all the ingredients lists.

            Now, as Nick says, whether you have the knowledge to be able to understand the big words there is a different question, but it is not an issue of it not being disclosed.

            ETA: btw, a note to all the cranks, this is how you support an argument without saying “look it up yourself.”

          • guest

            Thank you for posting the link – I appreciate you taking the time to post that.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            It took me literally 5 seconds to find it!!!!!!!!

            As I said, I type “vaccine in”, Google autofilled the rest, and it was the top link!!!!

            It’s THAT EASY to find the information.

            What does that tell us about, e.g. the commenter above who is whining about how we need “full disclosure”? For me, it tells us that the problem is not a lack of disclosure, and it is that people are so desperate to find a problem that they have to create the flimsiest strawman.

            If you want to know vaccine ingredients, it’s trivial to find it out. If you don’t know that, it tells me you aren’t really interested in the ingredients, and it’s about something else.

      • moto_librarian

        Yeah, I guess those package inserts that I see posted all the time aren’t ingredients lists…

    • Rich T. Anderson

      No mercury in vaccines these days. They’ve been gone a long while.

      Ta da! Now you can go vaccinate your kids. Thanks.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        Sorry, Rich, you’d think. However, read through the rest of the comments and watch the goalposts move, with total amnesia about where it started.

        Oh, it’s the mercury!!!! (there is none)
        But babies’ immune systems can’t handle it!! (tell us how their immune system works)
        The CDC can’t be trusted!!!! (fantasy…)

        • Rich T. Anderson

          Yeah, I know. See my stand alone comment.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Yeah, but I am referring to the argument that THIS single poster just this morning. Not in general (although it applies) but to this specific example. That’s how fast the goalposts move.

          • Rich T. Anderson

            Ahhh. Indeed.

          • Rich T. Anderson

            Also, “There’s Wocket in my Pocket” is a favorite.

  • Rick Santorum

    What’s funny is that all of these people would try to be first in line if there were a vaccine against aging, or cancer, or something that would prevent you from ever getting the flu or a cold.

  • Fox Mulder

    I
    believe that the government is behind the anti-vaxxer movement. It has
    been proven by many reputable scientist that we need to lower the worlds
    population by at least 10% in the next three generations to maintain
    the planet. Vaccinations are preventing that from happening. The best
    way to get this accomplished is to get a large segment of the population
    to quit taking them and get sick and die. The over classes meanwhile
    continue taking the vaccines and the “better” bloodlines shall continue.

    • annoyed

      Which government? To believe your conspiracy theory, you’d have to have hundreds of governments, allies and enemies, universities, public health agencies worldwide and all the hundreds of thousands of people who work for them in on it. That would be the largest and frankly most impossible conspiracy ever. You sure think big.

      • Jason Roder

        Did you miss the name? “Fox Mulder” here posted that as a joke.

  • Feli

    Oh, and this article is supposed to make want to vax??? Very weak job 🙂

    • fiftyfifty1

      This article isn’t trying to make little ol’ you wanna vax. What it is is a rallying cry. It’s the same sort of well reasoned and well argued piece that was influential in helping America see that even though drunk drivers didn’t wanna quit driving drunk that they should be required to do so and held accountable when they didn’t.

      • Wren

        Are some people really incapable of understanding the point of this article is not to convince anti-vaxers to vaccinate? It would explain why those same people don’t vaccinate I guess. Poor reading comprehension at best.

    • annoyed

      Loving your children should make you want to vaccinate them. Even if you don’t give a flying leap about kids with cancer etc. who can’t give vaccinations, your love for your own children should lead you to look at credible evidence by public health agencies world wide, hundreds of peer reviewed studies from universities with nothing to gain from vaccines and the six million children who have lived since childhood vaccines have lived. I hope you never, ever have to learn the hard way.

  • linda

    Yes how fortunate for them, isn’t it. Until the court case is settled we don’t really know how it works and either does anyone else as the data was falsified.

    • Nick Sanders

      What?

  • Really?

    Who’s ego, Merck’s?? Kind of interesting that this outbreak comes right after they suffer a very low 4th quarter end to the last year and disappointing financial forecast for 2015, but now see a sudden spike in vaccinations. A vaccine which, by the way, Merck is currently being investigated for falsifying trial data. Oh, and “low” for them is $366 million worth of vaccines sales in the last quarter of 2014 alone.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Actually all the vaccines manufactured by Merck represent less than 9% of their income, and less than Singulair alone (you can look it up online on their investors brochure for 2013). I hope that according to that you are not taking Singulair, nor blood pressure drugs (as Cozaar is also a big thing for them), not to speak of antibiotics and of course chemotherapy nor anti-cancer antibodies.

      Of course you would never deny your children something that can spare them a deathly disease in order to do not give money to that evil corporation while taking something like chemotherapy that might only increase your life by a few months.

    • Who?

      Really working that conspiracy theory there…

    • Nick Sanders

      Numbers are a bit low, time to start killing people. That’s always good for sales, right?

  • Lindaxox

    I think this article is 100% wrong, I see ego and superiority by the writer. She is right and unless you agree with her you can’t be. There is enough science and evidence to sound alarms and these parents are worried as they should be. We don’t get all the info, drug companies are fined millions through the courts for exactly that reason. Vaccines are a billion $ business and will be defended by all means possible. We were lied to about the immunity from the vaccines, ppl vaccinated can get measles and they can spread it. We had other outbreaks before. People who travel to the 4 countries where measles is still very active, what do we do about them? Lock them up upon return. This outbreak is being cleverly used to set the righteous against those who have not had their children vaccinated for many reasons including rejection drugs for transplants, bad allergies, sickness, and numerous others and yes including concerns. If the state has the right to tell you what you must put into your child’s body then freedom is over. I am not totally against vaccines, the idea is good but what’s on the market today is not as safe as it could and should be.

    • Mermy

      The writer has a lot of ego issues of her own, and absolutely assumes her superiority over the rest of us – on this issue, in particular. However, she is educated as a doctor, and has read far more about this than most parents could – whether pro or anti vaccination. Just because her ego is huge doesn’t mean she is wrong. It also doesn’t mean she is right. I see no issue with letting parents slow it all down a bit, and get all their questions answered. Especially if a child under three is not going to be in daycare, there seems to be little harm in slowing down the schedule. Please don’t assume that everyone who doesn’t want their child to get vaccinations for over 20 different diseases/conditions in the first months of their child’s life is a pompous jackass. Doctors’ offices need to work on not assuming that full vaccination on an aggressive schedule is the only way to go, and if you disagree, you must not care about anyone else’s child. They hand you a piece of paper with bullet points, and call it “informed consent”. Seriously? If complications only happen with .10% of vaccinations given to children in their first three months, is that much consolation if it is your child that has the serious complication? If experiences with doctors and government intrusion have been frightening or pedantic, then don’t drive the parents further away from taking your advice by being even more patronizing or steamrolling them into something. Do you want them to not bring their child to a doctor at all? They do have that right. And they have the right to educate their own children at home (in most states? or all of them?), and keep them hermits. Is that what we want? Children hidden from the medical system out of fear or a sense of righteous indignation are at far more risk of being abused in one way or another. Isolation breeds paranoia and feeds controlling egos.

      • Box of Salt

        Mermy “Especially if a child under three is not going to be in daycare, there seems to be little harm in slowing down the schedule”

        What if they go other places, since they’re not in daycare? Such as . . . Disneyland?

        • Wren

          That argument always makes me crazy. If your child is never leaving the house, then I suppose delaying until later is fine. However, most toddlers go to parks, indoor play areas, play areas in restaurants, Sunday school, libraries, toddler groups or other places children are gathered together.

      • Nick Sanders

        Please explain how the schedule is aggressive, and what could be done to improve it. Be sure to include research, or at least data suggesting current research may need revising, to back up this schedule.

    • KarenJJ

      ” People who travel to the 4 countries where measles is still very active, what do we do about them? Lock them up upon return. ”

      You are joking surely? Why would we lock up people that have visited another country? How would that work better than a vaccination program that has been around for decades? How is that better for personal freedoms?

      • Linda

        Because even those vaccinated can get and spread measles

        • Montserrat Blanco

          No, very few people that has been vaccinated can get measles. With 2 doses it is about 1%. If someone vaccinated gets the disease and everybody else is vaccinated, the odds that person can infect somebody else are extremely low. That is why when a vaccine coverage is over 95% there are no outbreaks (as happened in the USA 10 years ago). When someone gets the disease and sick and in their school are only 30% vaccinated children, then you get an outbreak. It is extremely difficult for measles to spread on a well vaccinated community.

          • birthbuddy

            So Linda, that is a part of how vaccines work.

          • linda

            Well that theory is about to be determined in the courts

          • birthbuddy

            And what are you going to do when they confirm that you are wrong?

          • Nick Sanders

            Courts are not scientific examinations.

          • linda

            The NYC theater worker who had both the vac and the booster and still got it and spread it to 4 others

          • Who?

            Were the others all fully vaccinated?

          • Montserrat Blanco

            Where the 4 others vaccinated? If you read what I posted, that is exactly the point. I do not say that someone that is vaccinated can not get the disease, I say that on a country whith a vaccine update higher than 95% cases are isolated because the chance that someone infected contacts someone that is not inmune are extremely low. If those 4 people happened to be unvaccinated, yes, that is very possible.

          • Young CC Prof

            The problem in the USA is not that total vaccine coverage is too low. If the unvaccinated people were evenly distributed through the country, we would still have herd immunity. The problem is that the unvaccinated are clumped together, so you’ve got schools where vaccination rates are 70% or worse.

      • W

        One of the really interesting things about these discussions over the last week or so has been the extreme positions put by anti-vax posters. From Ann’s apolcalyptic foretellings, through the spitting ‘all my rights’ rage of various contributors, it is all or nothing.

        And Lindaxox carries on the same proud tradition. ‘We were lied to’, ‘lock them up on return’, ‘all rights are over’.

        I have a lot of sympathy for the busy thoughts and feelings in the heads that dream up those things. So fearful that someone might come and tell them what to do. It’s actually sad.

        Not as sad as the very young and immuno compromised becoming ill due the this fear and ignorance, but sad all the same.

        BTW I’m staying off trolls for a while, they don’t bring out the qualities in myself I’m most proud of. Though sometimes I can’t resist a poke.

    • birthbuddy

      So, how exactly do vaccines work?

    • Young CC Prof

      The 4 countries where measles is still very active? You mean like most of Europe? Or are you claiming Europe is one country?

    • Jason M. Fitzmaurice

      No one lied to us. It has always been known, and never concealed that vaccines are not 100% effective. I still remember the way it was explained to a friend of mine, who was the first of our group to have a kid. His doctor has once been an army medic. “Bullet proof vests aren’t 100% effective either, but there’s a reason I wore mine.”

    • Annoyed

      Your opposition to vaccinations is based on ideology. The argument in favour of vaccines is based on science and a mountain of evidence. Yet your ideology to stand on a soapbox and plant seeds of doubt about the safety of vaccines IS harming others. Sleep well. The author is not the one acting superior, but you certainly are. The people ignoring peer reviewed science in favour of internet blog movements and memes are ideological to the peril of other human beings. You must consider the source of your information and not weigh it all the same. And the next time you write questioning the safety of vaccines, ask yourself some questions. What if I’m wrong? What if there’s no conspiracy and all that science and the all the public health agencies in the world are right and I’m just wrong? Please read something from a credible source. If there’s no link to peer reviewed science to a real public health organization or university, just don’t believe it. And don’t say stuff like vaccines are not as safe as they could be (read what the REAL situation about mercury). Your arguments are dangerous because you don’t sound like a crackpot and yet what you say is insidiously creeping its way into parents minds and causing them to not vaccinate. Stop and do some real research please.

  • Nate Jones

    Fuck them. Let their children die and remove their ignorance from the phenome pool.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Yes, the problem is that in the meanwhile they might be able to kill someone like my son, a preterm 4 month old infant vaccinated on schedule but without the possibility of getting the vaccine yet for doing something like entering briefly a shop where they have been one hour ago.

      • Montserrat Blanco

        Another problem in my country (Spain) is the cost. We have a national health system paid by everybody with taxes. Vaccinations are for free for everybody if they are included on the schedule. Hospital admissions are also for free for the patient. The most expensive MMR vaccine costs 18 euros and the NHS gets a better price, but for comparison sake let’s say 18 euros. A 10 day hospital admission for measles is 6000 euros the cheapest, so we could get 330 doses of the MMR vaccine and inmunize 165 persons with that money. As two doses are about 99% effective we are saving a lot of money. If we inmunize 1650 people the cost would be 60000 euros for inmunization and maybe two admissions getting to 1200 euros, so 72000 euros. If those 1650 people are not inmunized we will have to pay almost a million euros… I pay about 30% of my salary on taxes. I really do not want to waste money on those people.

    • Except it’s not just their children that are dying, Nate. There are many children who can’t be vaccinated either because they’re too young or they have ongoing health problems that make the vaccination unsafe. That’s why herd immunity is so important. The anti-vax parents aren’t just risking the lives of their own children. They’re putting other children at risk as well.

      • Nate Jones

        Good point. How can we quarantine them? Mandatory face masks if they have no proof of vaccination?

        • Samantha06

          Some doctors are refusing to accept non-vaxxed patients, and some are segregating non-vaxxed kids into separate waiting rooms and so forth. I haven’t seen any reports of mandatory face masks, but it wouldn’t surprise me if that happens at some point..

    • Jason Roder

      Nope. First, you don’t punish the kids for their parents’ wrongs. Second, letting them get sick endangers everyone else; diseases spread when allowed to exist like that. Third, I’m pretty sure you meant “gene pool” and not “phenome pool”.

      • Nate Jones

        The term phenome includes behaviors influenced by environmental factors; I’m including social factors–i.e. cultural myths–as part of the human environment.

  • Ben

    I just came across your post, and think it misses the real underlying reasons that some parents have refused vaccines for their children. I think the refusal is very much with their children in mind. Rather than being motivated by privilege, refusal-because-I-can, defiance, or empowerment, I have found that it’s out of fear, and also mistrust of government studies and corporate greed. There are enough documented instances when whistle-blowers (eg, the Merck legal cases re MMR) say that studies were manipulated, and this causes the educated population who have the time and the means of accessing information to question or abandon their confidence and trust. The main question they ask is “who’s actually telling me the truth.” Perhaps you can be a little more generous before you write off serious concerns to ego?!

    • moto_librarian

      If a parent is on the fence, I will absolutely try to dispel his or her fears. But at the end of the day, evidence is evidence. For a long time, enough people were still getting vaccinated to maintain herd immunity and parents could have the best of both worlds – not vaccinate their own kids while riding off of the protection provided by everyone else. If you are willing to believe conspiracy theories or the words of a disgraced medical professional, there is nothing that I can say to change your mind. I’ve tried being nice, and it does no good when dealing with a true anti-vaxxer. So now I will simply call a spade a spade. You deserve to be called out for being a selfish asshole.

      • matthewkaney

        This person didn’t say they were an anti-vaxxer, they were merely trying to be empathetic to parents who are. So it’s not really fair that you call them a selfish asshole. The more people respond like this, the angrier and more resistant others are going to become.

        • Poogles

          I actually read it as a general “you”, not specific to Ben.

        • moto_librarian

          I was using “you” in a general sense. Sorry if that was unclear.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      That’s the unreflective defiance of authority that I’m talking about. You need to evaluate the overwhelming evidence on the efficacy and safety, not reflexively refuse to believe large institutions.

      • truffle19

        Unreflective? Reflexively? How can you be certain that the majority of anti-vaxxers did not reflect on the evidence? Is it because you believe that if anyone of right mind did properly reflect on it they would agree with you? That would just be an assumption. I reflected on the topic and I ended up agreeing vaccines are vitally important. But I’m willing to believe others reflected and didn’t.

        • birthbuddy

          Perhaps they refracted instead?

      • matthewkaney

        I appreciate your perspective on unreflective defiance… but some of our large institutions then play a role in having created this problem, as they have given people plenty of reason to be suspicious.

    • Lizernst

      If that were the case, there would be far few unimmunized children – these parents are projecting their unfounded fears and refusing to listen to facts. I have children too – I had concerns about immunizations. I listened to facts, I asked many sources, I researched it and everything pointed me back to immunizing. It takes a certain, self-important psychosis to ignore the dreadful repercussions of more than a handful of people refusing to immunize their kids. For most of these parents, hysteria, self-willed ignorance and a need to look like better parents than they actually are rule the day. These are the people who don’t understand real responsibility, to their own children and to society.

      • Who?

        This a hundred times.

    • Nick Sanders

      There have been hundreds of studies around the world. How would one manufacturer manage to manipulate them all?

    • truffle19

      Agree 100%. Get ready for a storm of disagreement.

    • Isaac_Laquedem

      Try some actual information from the CDC: in 1962, before measles vaccine was introduced, more than 90% of Americans were infected with measles by age 15 – roughly 4 million people a year. (The number of reported cases was lower, about 540,000/year or 313 per 100,000, because the disease was so common that lots of people didn’t report.) From 1956 to 1960, about 450 Americans died from measles every year – about 1 of every 3800 deaths was from measles. Another 150,000/year had respiratory complications and 4000/year developed encephalitis from measles; 48,000 Americans/year were hospitalized because of measles.
      Twenty years after the first measles vaccine was licensed, the reported rate had dropped from 313/100,000 to 1.3/100,000 — a drop of 99.6%, an inconvenient fact that the pro-measles people don’t seem to be aware of.

      http://jid.oxfordjournals.org/content/189/Supplement_1/S1.long

      • birthbuddy

        Where is Linda?
        How do you explain this?

        • Montserrat Blanco

          They stop replying when they do not like the questions asked…

    • Samantha06

      Actually, I think it is totally about ego. And it’s about control and privilege. This is my take on it:

      You say a few documented instances of whistle-blowing
      “causes the educated population who have the time and the means of accessing information to question or abandon their confidence and trust.”

      Perhaps you don’t realize it, but to me, that is an extremely pompous and egotistical statement. It sounds like you are inferring that the less educated, or those who make minimum wage (less means) at a job they work 12 hours a day, (less time) but trust their doctors to provide them with accurate information regarding their children’s health are not as able to “question.” Or is that only reserved for the wealthier, better educated folks? Or are they just part of the “masses” that blindly follow mainstream medicine, unlike the educated who are perhaps just a little bit better equipped (privileged) to research these “issues”? Do you see my point? That’s what I am reading between the lines.

      “The main question they ask is “who’s actually telling me the truth.”

      Mistrust of mainstream medicine. You take your child to your pediatrician and trust them to provide expert care, so why would you think they would not tell you the truth? I’m not saying you shouldn’t have questions. Of course you should question. You can always get a second opinion if you aren’t comfortable with what one physician says. But the core issue is why would you take your child to a doctor, then mistrust them based on quackery and misinformation gleaned from the internet, what “someone” said or one bad incident? Especially when you have an educated, knowledgeable physician who is looking out for your child’s best interests? Perhaps you didn’t hear what you wanted to hear (ego) and have found “other sources of information” and now “know more.”

      It’s also a moral issue. It’s very easy to determine a person’s moral stance based on how they feel about exposing more vulnerable people to disease.

      Just a few things to ponder:
      I heard on the news tonight that there is only a 90% vaccination rate in the states with the most measles cases. And, in another state, a daycare was shut down due to measles. 14 NEWBORNS have been exposed, all too young to receive the vaccine. Hopefully none of those babies are high risk, as in born prematurely, or have other high-risk issues, because if they contract measles, they might not survive.

      Some other info:
      The RSV vaccine is administered to premature babies in the hospital. I gave it all the time when I worked in the step down NICU. Without that vaccine, many babies would die.
      RSV is a very serious disease. It’s like a cold in an adult, but in a child it can kill. If you’ve watched a child struggle to breathe, blue lips, little chest caving in with each labored breath, and a terrified parent, you might understand the importance of vaccines. Sometimes you have to see things to really understand their significance.

      If you are interested in learning accurate, trustworthy information on vaccines, there are lots of great scientists and chemists on this blog who can answer questions about the chemistry of vaccines, ingredients, and the studies to support their use.

      • Samantha06

        I want to add that I had measles myself as a child and my mother said it scared her to death. I had an extremely high fever and was delirious. Interestingly, a brain MRI I had in my 30s to rule out MS showed small lesions consistent with residual encephalitis. I also had chicken pox, so it could have been from that too, or measles. Also, since I had the chicken pox, I am at risk for shingles as an adult, which can be extremely painful and debilitating. I will definitely be getting the vaccine asap, as well as the pneumonia vaccine.

        • linda

          My neighbour got the shingle vac last year and then got shingles

          • birthbuddy

            So, how do vaccines work?

          • Samantha06

            I’ll take that under advisement…. NOT!

    • Lindaxox

      Right on, thanks

    • TomInCali

      >The main question they ask is “who’s actually telling me the truth.”

      So they have difficulty choosing between their own doctor and the vast majority of the medical and public health community, or the handful of allegations of manipulation they found on some web site? I think attributing their actions to ego is a whole lot more generous than the other explanation that more immediately comes to mind.

    • Annoyed

      You had me until the last line. I think the author is right that a lot of parents are making this decision because they don’t trust the man and it’s about their own ego. But, I agree some parents really believe they are doing harm to their children. I don’t know how to make people believe facts over internet memes. Nothing seem to be working other than shaming them at this point. How else do you make someone who refuses to see evidence and chooses instead memes from Reddit or conspiracy blogposts?

  • matthewkaney

    The problem with your logic is that vaccination rates were LOWER 20 years ago

    • People weren’t traveling the world as much 20 years ago. Communicable diseases become more of a concern when more people bring more of it around the world.

      • matthewkaney

        Well, two things… if it was because of international travel, then there’s not a lot we can really do about that. She is blaming it on domestic anti-vaxxers. Secondly, do you have any data to support the statement that people weren’t travelling the world as much 20 years ago?

        Here is the data for the vaccination rates:
        http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SH.IMM.MEAS/countries?page=4

        • “if it was because of international travel, then there’s not a lot we can really do about that.”

          Sure there is. Vaccinate.

          “do you have any data to support the statement that people weren’t travelling the world as much 20 years ago?”

          Sure.

          http://www.iata.org/pressroom/pr/pages/2012-12-06-01.aspx
          http://adg.stanford.edu/aa241/intro/airlineindustry.html

          • matthewkaney

            Thank you. I’m still a proponent of freedom, and I believe that even though it has a cost, it is one worth enduring. But I appreciate your logical, reasoned response and that you provided facts to support it.

          • That’s fine, but I take exception to the implication that there are people here (myself included) who aren’t “proponent[s] of freedom.” It’s an easy characterization, like believing in sunny days, that positions other people – those who are in favor of vaccination, to whom I assume you’re referring – as tyrannical and autocratic. Hardly logical or reasoned.

          • matthewkaney

            If you’re talking about forced vaccination, then that is a violation of people’s control over their own bodies and their childrens’. I’m not saying you’re a tyrant in that case, that would be quite a stretch, but I would say that you don’t support people’s freedom of choice in this matter.

          • Your freedom stops where others’ freedoms are interfered with. We require automobile drivers to have car insurance. We require parents to provide the necessary nutritional care to their children. But that does not allow people to make the characterization that those who support regulations along these lines are somehow against freedom.

            In any event, your original statement was being a “proponent of freedom” without qualification, which people can reasonably construe as intended in the general sense, which implies that the rest of us were indeed opponents of freedom in the general sense. This characterization, if intended, is absurd on its face and needed to be countered.

          • matthewkaney

            You have a different view of freedom than I do. All of those things absolutely allow me to characterize those who support such regulations as against freedom. When you speak of freedom, you may be referring to a society that allows certain freedoms. When I speak of freedom, I am referring to it in an absolute sense, aside from committing violent and property crimes, which are a direct violation of someone else’s freedom and therefore have to be regulated to ensure freedom.

          • Who?

            I love how property is given the same respect as the human being.

            Shows where the values really lie.

          • matthewkaney

            I didn’t give it the SAME respect, but they are actions with a DIRECT victim.

          • momofone

            So if my child gets measles and dies because someone didn’t vaccinate their children, there’s no direct victim? Or am I not understanding?

          • Perhaps, but this is not a society based on what you term as freedom in an absolute sense, but one that recognizes the necessity of a balance between individual freedom and social responsibility (beyond the basic responsibilities of not committing violence and stealing things), and frankly, the latter society is the one I prefer to live in.

            Actually, I imagine that you perceive the tension between freedom and responsibility, but your perception of where the line exists is far different than my perception. In my view, not vaccinating is tantamount to threatening the lives of others around you. This has to be unacceptable, and cannot be offset by claiming freedom.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            First they take away your freedom to make small children sick and let babies die and the next thing you know, they’re implanting computer chips in your body and controlling your mind in order to implement their plan for world government.

          • Nick Sanders

            You know what really puts a damper on freedom? Dying.

          • matthewkaney

            It certainly does. But “freedom isn’t free.” The cost, however, is not the lives of young soldiers we send in to defend corporate interests, the true cost is the consequences of allowing people to make their own decisions even when they’re wrong.

          • Nick Sanders

            Consequences like measles outbreaks, you mean?

          • matthewkaney

            That is exactly what I mean

          • Nick Sanders

            Then the cost is too high.

          • matthewkaney

            Before you argue that it is a violation of OTHER people’s freedom to not vaccinate. That would be similar to the Nancy Reagan school of thought and the logic that has driven the war on drugs.

          • Nick Sanders

            You’re an adult? Ugh, fine whatever, if you don’t want a vaccine, no one will force you. Just stay the hell away from the rest of us if you do get sick.

            But kids? Nope, sorry, I’m not accepting any excuses. If there isn’t a medical problem preventing them from receiving vaccines, they need to get them, parental wishes be damned. Parents do not own their kids, and they do not get to abridge their child’s right to life because they are an idiot.

          • matthewkaney

            I’m vaccinated and not an anti-vaxxer. That being said, parents own their kids a hell of a lot more than government owns their kids.

          • Who?

            Actually, people don’t ‘own’ their kids at all, just to put it out there.

            Where do you come down on parents who refuse medical treatment for their children? Is that their right, up to and including the death of the child? Courts in the US say no-what do you say?

          • matthewkaney

            I really don’t want to get into this argument all night because it goes far beyond the subject here. Suffice to say that it seems to me that all the deaths caused by people making stupid choices or all the deaths resulting from other people making stupid choices COMBINED do not equal the deaths caused by government. The deaths of children in Iraq ALONE far exceed any number of deaths that would have occurred from a government which was limited in its scope to national *defense*. You can argue all day long about the benefits of the nanny state, I stand firmly behind the idea of freedom and its consequences.

            To answer your question specifically…. I think that parents should have the right to refuse medical treatment. I think that children have the right, if they are physically able, to defy their parents and accept the medical treatment. Is this kind of notion of society dangerous to some? Absolutely. But again, not nearly as dangerous as what we have wound up with. If you want to save children, insist that our government begin dismantling its nuclear arsenal.

          • Who?

            You’re talking about living in a jungle where you can shoot someone for trying to steal grandma’s china and simulltaneously leave your two year old-who can’t communicate well enough to advocate for himself-to die of whatever treatable illness. Where the weak rely on the advocacy and patronage of the strong. So free-if you happen to be you.

            Horrifying and pathetic at the same time. If that’s freedom, keep it.

          • Nick Sanders
          • Wren

            You can’t rely on facts though. That’s probably false information released by the vast international conspiracy run by the US government and the CDC.

          • Nick Sanders

            Which is why there are no laws against child endangerment, neglect, or beating the shit out of them, right?

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            It’s not “government” who owns the kids, it’s society. Folks like ME are the ones who speak on behalf of those kids who are being neglected and put to risk.

            There are enough folks like me to make it so that we can use the force of government to do that, but I tire of these accusations of the faceless “government.” That government is ME. And you, and everyone.

            WE are ones looking out for the children. Not “the government.”

            You know the old saying, “it takes a village”? WE are the village.

    • Derp

      Are you an ignoramus? The vaccination rate in 1980 was 97 percent according to your website. You just proved that the decrease in vaccination in the US has a good chance of being the cause of the increase in new outbreaks. There was a short 4 year dip and that could have a little to do with hippies and baby boomers too…Try to think critically not emotionally like you are doing now.

      • matthewkaney

        I am thinking critically you jerk. I’m not even an anti-vaxxer but I do believe in freedom even if that has consequences. You know what the problem is with this whole discussion? It’s self righteous indignation. It’s people insulting other people because they think of themselves as intellectually superior.

        Anyway, that aside, the rates have varied by years. I was merely referring to the time frame which she was talking about. I prefer to have discussions with people like Roehl below who are capable of such discussions without being condescending. *I* am not the one being emotional, you are.

        • Poogles

          People tend to get emotional when many small children get very very sick and it could have been prevented.

        • If your freedom only kills you, I don’t give a flying fuck. If your “freedom” kills someone else’s infant, then yeah, you don’t get to be free to do that anymore. Your right to swing your fist ends at my nose, remember?

          • Who?

            Unless he thinks you intend to steal or break his stuff, apparently, in which case your nose is fair game. Since the only limitation on rights-according to this poster, below-is violence and property.

            Oh and he’s relaxed about parents letting their kids, even those who are too young to speak for themselves, die of treatable illness if that is the parents’ wish.

            Freedom must be so lovely, don’t you think?

          • As I’ve said to others, freedom to starve is no freedom at all. His version of freedom, keep it far away from me!

          • Who?

            Me too it’s like a nightmare.

  • ngonie

    Free choice, human rights, soon it will be a chip to be implanted in Ya kids… the world has fears of epidemics.

    • Nick Sanders

      Take your nonsensical slippery slopes elsewhere.

      As far as human rights, and epidemics. I think not dying of a preventable disease is a pretty important right. One that no parent has any business taking away from their child.

  • Kq

    Anyone else running out of bingo cards?

  • yugaya

    I’ve landed myself with the little kiddo in the central national infectious diseases hospital last night due to a viral infection complications and the fact that all other children’s wards in town were over booked ( we’ll be residing there for a couple of days and I’ve just skipped home for a bit to feed the other kiddies and do the dishes and make sure the fishes are still alive when we get back).

    The first thing everyone checked in her medical records? Kiddo’s vaccination status. Limiting the amount of bad guys out there that have unrestricted access to our children is what reasonable adults ought to consider/feel/think/believe is safer.

    • Samantha06

      Hope your little one gets better soon!

      • yugaya

        She is better already, just a more severe case of dehydration.

        • Amazed

          Good to know it! Keeping my fingers crossed for a fast recovery (and a kid that’s as good as gold for a few days, at least. That’s for your sake, of course. So, keeping fingers crossed for both of you!)

          • yugaya

            We are getting out tomorrow, cleared on all other more serious things that present with similar symptoms. I’m brushing up on my sleeping on the floor and in a chair skills.

    • charlotte

      Thank you for being a parent!

      • yugaya

        Oh no, I suck at that big time – otherwise I would have figured out a way to keep wee kiddo hydrated enough “naturally”, and my bigger kids would be “like our ancestors did it thousands of years ago” hunting their lunch while I am away.

  • Bernard Dijkstra

    You go ahead and inject your baby with monkey cells, formaldehyde,
    mercury, and chicken fetus. Anyone who is a pro-vaxxer is ignorant,
    stupid, and has not bothered to do any research. It is funny how people
    want less government but are okay with the government injecting their
    kids with up to 40 vaccines before kindergarten. 1 in 50 kids has autism
    now. Pretty soon the gov will have their way and the entire population
    will be retarded zombies.

    • demodocus’ spouse

      Bless your heart. My husband and I must be retarded zombies. Clearly shows by how many times we got onto graduate school honor rolls.

      • Bernard Dijkstra

        School is about learning stuff by heart with no questioning whether it’s true or false. You were honoured for your efforts, not for your intelligence.

        • Young CC Prof

          People with autism are good at going to school and learning stuff with no questioning? Do you actually know anyone with autism?

        • demodocus’ spouse

          Actually, I find memorization very difficult, and questioning authority very easy. In our honors program as undergrads, our first class was “Introduction to Critical Inquiry”, team taught by an English and a philosophy prof. Our schools both under and grad *encouraged* critical thinking. But thanks for assuming.

          • I Love Science

            The problem is that critical thinking is not taught in schools any longer. It is my firm belief if critical thinking skills were taught in high school (or sooner) we wouldn’t have any “anti-vaccers” or evolution deniers. Being able to think rationally and scientifically would end the problem, stat.

        • Amy Tuteur, MD

          In other words, you don’t have an advanced education so you make yourself feel better about that deficiency by pretending it doesn’t matter.

        • charlotte

          So, so wrong. I didn’t learn what to think but how to think. As a professor I demand the same thing from my students. Only someone with no experience with higher ed thinks they know everything.

        • Patrick

          And yet you accept the anti-vaxx propaganda without questioning whether it’s true or false. So what does that say about your intelligence?

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            But that’s different. He didn’t learn that in school.

          • KarenJJ

            Heck yes – the internet is wayyy more reliable than school…

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            And you don’t have to think critically, you just accept everything you read on the internet, so long as it is from a non-official site.

            That’s so much more acceptable than just accepting whatever you are taught in school.

        • Yelda Miedema

          Keep digging buddy. You’re almost at the bottom of the ignorance pit!

          • Jason Roder

            Sadly, there is no bottom to the ignorance pit, as ignoranuses like Bernard here demonstrate daily.

        • Montserrat Blanco

          What is the measurement of intelligence for you????
          PhD? I hold one.
          Over 140 CI? yes, I do.

          My son is vaccinated on schedule.

        • sdsures

          That’s school, dear, not university. You don’t get top marks for “effort” at university.

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      The vaccine “debate” is done. You lost. Get over it!

    • Nick Sanders

      What monkey cells, mercury, and chicken fetus? Also, vaccines do not cause autism or retardation.

    • Fuckantivaxxers

      You, and people who think like you, are the literally the most ignorant and dangerous people in this nation. When your baby gets measles, or pertussis, or diptheria, or botulinum, or polio, or whatever the fuck else you don’t vaccinate your child for, I hope you realize your mistake and let modern medicine save your child’s life. Then, I hope you’re arrested for child abuse and your children are taken care of by someone with the mental capacity to raise a child.

    • Lucki Grrl

      I smell a troll

    • Yelda Miedema

      Wow, an ignorant Frisian! Unbelievable.

    • Who?

      You should protect yourself by staying far far away from all the ignorant stupid people.

    • Guest

      There are fourteen recommended vaccines given prior to kindergarten in the US. Not forty. Though I can think of quite a few other deadly diseases I’d like to vaccinate against (RSV especially). So I’m curious what the other 26 this poster thinks exist.

      • Jason Roder

        Too bad there isn’t a vaccine for stupidity. We wouldn’t have problems like Bernard here that way.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        RSV would be good, but I would prefer hand/foot&mouth. That was nasty.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      Please, please, do not give your children pears (more formaldehyde in one single pear than in all the vaccines in years), fish (much more mercury and better absorbed by mouth than in all the children vaccines, that have NONE), and eggs (at my local supermarket sometimes with chicken fetus inside). 1 in 50 kids have autism. mmmm Maybe, all the studies regarding autism incidence demostrate that it changes according to diagnosis criteria and programs for diagnosis. You have no idea of what is inside vaccines nor their effects.

    • Dr Kitty

      Bernard, please outline to me exactly how increasing the incidence of autism would be in the best interest of governments?

      I mean, if you can…you don’t seem to be the sharpest knife in the drawer yourself…

    • Anj Fabian

      A reluctant 2 out of 10 points. I gave it an extra point for specific details. Zero points for style. Zero points for blatant ad hominems.

      All in all, a disappointing read although thankfully a brief one.

    • sdsures

      You must be one of the zombies.

    • yugaya

      You go ahead and don’t. For people who are still not convinced either way, I suggest they instead of dr. Goggle go and ask their questions the parents in their local infectious diseases children’s wards (I’m having some unexpected insights at the moment): In my country, it’s currently full of nursing children and toddlers with chicken pox complications, and they are averagely spending more than a week on the intensive care ward. I think enough of proof of how serious these complications can be is the fact that this children’s infective diseases hospital in our run down state medical health care system has its own neurologist on call 24/7 as well as full science-fictiony looking neurology diagnostics lab.

      All my kids had mild chicken pox, the vaccine was optional and I did not really “think” it was you know, serious enough childhood disease to consider getting it. Ask me now, in retrospect, after talking to some moms there last night, how serious it can get and whether I would be ok with not vaccinating my kids against it. The risks of chicken pox and all other VPDs, unlike your monkey-chicken-poison ramblings, are real.

  • arcade2

    I’d like to know what people have to say about this, since there is more than enough in this article to give anyone pause about who exactly they are entrusting their bodies and immune systems to. Stop marginalizing and vilifying people who ask questions! It’s anti-intellectual, it’s not scientific and it’s got to stop.

    m.huffpost.com/ca/entry/5881914

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Ther’s nothing remotely intellectual about mindlessly questioning authority.

      • arcade2

        Nobody is “mindlessly questioning authority.”. Stop trying to make anyone skeptical of the “all vaccines are safe” dogma conform to your ridiculous narrative. Did you even read the piece? Your comment is mindlessly dismissive.

        • Amy Tuteur, MD

          You are mindlessly questioning authority.

          Didn’t you just write, “it’s enought to give anyone apuse about who exactly they are entrusting their bodies and immune systems to”?

          That’s a paradigmatic example of mindlessly questioning authority.

          • arcade2

            Nice try. Maybe you should stick to medicine and stop debating me on semantics, though based on this exchange I don’t think I’d trust your medical conclusions either.

            I said “it’s enough to give anyone pause” – “it” referring to the contents of the article you refuse to read or address. Because there is a basis for the raising of questions, that would be considered “mindfully questioning authority.”

            But go ahead, you’re as free to be delusional as I am free to demand accountability of those who make and administer what goes into my body.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            You’re not debating. You’re throwing random links (that you apparently haven’t even read) and saying, “See, see, here’s why I don’t trust authority figures.”

            If you want to debate, you might try using facts.

          • arcade2

            There’s nothing at all random about the posted link. I also never said anything about not trusting authority figures.

            You need to stop trying to paint me with that brush, it’s just baseless nonsense.

          • charlotte

            OMG please review what you wrote.

          • arcade2

            OMG nobody’s talking to you.

          • Wren

            OMG you are posting in a public comments thread so everyone is free to read and respond. For private correspondence perhaps you could try the email address given above?

        • Sullivan ThePoop

          There is no narrative and no one said all vaccines are safe for everyone. So now you are being dishonest.

          • arcade2

            Yes, there IS a narrative – the narrative upheld by the author of the piece of pure fiction above, which is that anyone who doesn’t unquestioningly vaccinate is somehow flawed in their thinking – either because they are anti-authoritarian, or because they are ego driven. This is absolute nonsense.

          • Sullivan ThePoop

            No, it actually is not. She never said anyone who doesn’t unquestioningly vaccinate. Now you are being dishonest again. What is it with you people and lying?

        • charlotte

          Yes you are doing this mindlessly. You get an answer and because it’s not what you want you dispute it…

          • arcade2

            I have no idea what you’re talking about. Sullivan posted an explanation to part of the article I linked to and it did NOT jive with my expectations, yet I thanked him for the information. Please, carry on.

    • Sullivan ThePoop

      It is completely fine to question. What is not fine is getting the answer over and over and over again and still asking the same questions. Oh, and nothing Lawrence Solomon says could ever give me pause other than to wonder how anyone could be so intellectually dishonest.

      • arcade2

        Excuse me? Where are the answers to the problems raised by the article I linked to? Where are they?

        • Sullivan ThePoop

          Lawrence Solomon is talking about a case against Merck that has not been settled. The case is not about safety but about efficacy. If Merck lied about the efficacy of the mumps component of MMR then they should be punished, but real world outbreaks seem to show they did not. Then he is dishonestly bringing up a CDC whistle blower which was not a whistle blower at all.

          • arcade2

            Let’s not make this about Lawrence Solomon, ok? This is about what he has reported, specifically, and most disturbingly, this:

            “The third whistleblower — a senior CDC scientist named William Thompson — only indirectly blew the whistle on Merck. He more blew it on himself and colleagues at the CDC who participated in a 2004 study involving the MMR vaccine. Here, the allegations involve a cover-up of data pointing to high rates of autism in African-American boys after they were vaccinated with MMR.”

            So yes, it IS about safety.

          • Sullivan ThePoop

            That is the whistle blower that is not a real whistle blower. So, not disturbing because it isn’t true. Also, when someone dishonest with no knowledge on the subject writes an opinion piece it is hard to not make it about them.

          • arcade2

            Oh, so we’re playing “your source is discredited” are we? Show me that he’s not a real whistleblower.

            You people are amazing!

          • Sullivan ThePoop

            He never said anything about a coverup. He complained that information should have been left in that showed that African American males that had an MMR late had a higher incidence of autism. The problem is that it was such a small group of children that were both African American and received their MMR between 24 and 36 months that nothing statistically significant can be gleaned from that information. Dr. Thompson is from the camp that says include everything and let the chips fall where they may. I am of the camp that giving statistically insignificant information to the public is not helpful for understanding. I have no problem with the first camp and understand their thoughts on the matter. This is an issue that most lay people do not think about and has nothing to do with dishonesty as Dr. Thompson has repeatedly said. If you looked up this information on anything but an antivaxx site or from an antivaxx author you would easily find the truth.

          • arcade2

            Thank you, this is a great, substantive reply to the issue I raised and I appreciate the information and your time. This will be taken into consideration.

          • Roadstergal

            More simply:
            http://xkcd.com/882/

          • Young CC Prof

            That one was on my office door at one point.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            A fact, a fact, my kingdom for a fact!!

            We’re not amazing, but you are coming across as a fool.

            If you want to debate, make an empirical claim about vaccines and defend it.

          • charlotte

            There are plenty of articles about how he came forward and disputes his status as a whistleblower.

          • Jason Roder

            Jeebus son, did you really need to mount rocket engines on those goalposts of yours?

    • Nick Sanders
    • Patrick

      I would have to say that the case has proven to have no merit.

    • Jason Roder

      Antivaxxer are indeed anti-intellectual and non-scientific. People calling them out? Not so much.

  • My comment got deleted so I’ll post it again:
    This article says nothing about what people don’t understand about anti-vaxers. In fact, it doesn’t say much about anything. Like a horoscope reading, I could replace the word vaccines and anti-vaxers with any idea and group I disagree with and get just as much out of this article.

    • Nick Sanders

      Well, apart from all the science denial and arrogant disregard for the wellbeing of others of the anti-vaccine crowd.

    • KarenJJ

      I doubt it got deleted. There are over 1000 comments on here.

  • Sathya Rau

    With the measles epidemic there is a lot of derision poured on vaccine hesitant parents and even on pediatricians who accept parents who do not immunize. I am a pediatrician with a flexible open-minded vaccine policy. I accept the patients who don’t immunize and have, in fact began to attract them from a considerable distance. I have been under considerable pressure to turn away those patients who don’t adhere to the AAP-ACIP-CDC guidelines. I understand the risks and hence the urge to deny care to vaccine non- compliant patients, from the practical business point of view, the medico-legal consideration and epidemiological concerns.

    Isn’t that not the surest way to make the problem worse?

    Closing the door on the un-immunized and the under immunized to me feels a lot like giving up, quitting when the going gets tough. In my practice I don’t take the no on face value, I keep a constant pressure on them to vaccinate. On every visit I offer them the vaccine, they politely refuse, and I launch into a whole set of ‘rants’ I on the ready, to counter their arguments and ally their fears. Some of them leave, most of them eventually will accept vaccines, perhaps with some caveat– Only two shots per visit or, no live virus vaccines or, no mercury/aluminum containing vaccines. I graciously accept and shower them with praise like you would a toddler in toilet training. Until the next visit and the nagging/negotiations begin again.

    We try to win parents over by giving them scientific facts, which is never going to work. It is a very basic protective instinct that parents have where they feel they are protecting their child from harm and pain. We are up against maternal protective instincts and overcoming that. Their fears however unfounded they seem to us, are very real to them and we have to acknowledge it. I pick the ‘rant’ most likely to work in the circumstance. here is a small sample of my rants:

    “This very germ in his ear, can cause meningitis if it went half an inch farther.”“The miracle of immunization is not the vaccine, it is you baby’s amazing immune system”. “The vaccines are merely mug shots we are showing the immune system so that it can recognize the bad guys” “We can wait till he learns to talk and you are convinced he is not autistic, then give we him the MMR.” ‘If you use a car seat, a football helmet, training wheels why not vaccines’

    One of the greater didactic pleasures I have enjoyed the most over the years has been convincing anti-vaccinator parents, surrender to reason, and actually sign the consent form and have their child immunized. It is a lot like winning an argument with your wife, just the quiet inner triumph.

    Sathya Rau MD

    • GuestK

      Are there precautions taken to protect the other children in your practice? Does any pro-vaccine families leave? I can imagine one un-vaccinated child bringing the measles into your waiting room could transmit it to quite a few babies and other un-vaccinated children.

      • Sathya Rau

        I do the best I can with the resources I have. Separate sick and well waiting rooms, side entrance for febrile rashes, etc. Measles is still only a nightmare, Influenza is very real as a problem we take for granted.

        • Who?

          I really admire your patience and compassion, because of course the children benefit when you win the parents over. Hope the measles stays away from where you are, and long may you engage in your didactic rants!

    • Young CC Prof

      Doctors who accept non-vaccinated patients and try to change their minds are one thing. What I have an issue with are the doctors who tell parents that not vaccinating is a fine choice.

    • Samantha06

      You are a good and patient man. It’s very difficult to try to convince people who have their minds made up. I totally understand that in my dealings with the natural childbirth crowd. I get very impatient and angry with them and the anti-vaxxers and spout off about how we need to be drastic with them. Your approach is very gentle and compassionate and I admire you for that. I also like your simple approach to explanations in a way that they can actually visualize, like the germ in the ear moving one inch and causing meningitis, I like that. That is something that will cause a parent to really sit up and take notice. I hope you continue to win them over.

    • Guest22

      I actually have more respect for pediatricians who turn away parents for non vaccinating their children. You obviously have no respect for yours.

      • Guest22

        And to clarify the above comment – the bullying every time a parent comes in is completely disrespectful.

        • fiftyfifty1

          Bullying? How is this bullying? These parents are electing to drive long distances to see him so they can be…bullied?!

        • Samantha06

          Those “bullied” parents don’t seem to agree with you.. they keep going back to him.

    • DiomedesV

      OK, but you owe it to all your patients to put a sign up in your waiting room that states that you accept parents who don’t vaccinate their children. Even better, please put the rate of unvaccinated kids in your practice. The other parents should be able to make an informed choice to leave your practice. I would.

    • lunachick

      Thanks for your thoughtful response. I have an honest question: why are the parents of vaccinated children so worried about the un-vaccinated ones infecting their children? If the vaccine works and their children had it, then how are they at risk by those who did not get it? Are not the only ones at risk the ones who did not receive the vaccine?

      • Amazed

        Vaccines are not always effective. For a very small number of children, they do not catch. And some of the vaccines are given at certain ages. Until then, babies are vulnerable.

        I already posted this link below but I’ll give it again for your sake. The tragedy of two teens whose only fault was being in their pediattician waiting room when too young for the MMR shot.

        http://justthevax.blogspot.com/2011/10/so-predictable-so-sad-natalie-dies-of.html

        • EmbraceYourInnerCrone

          Thank you for bring this up again. I don’t think a lot of those parents who think getting measeles “naturally” could be a death sentence for their child a few years later, even if they appear to recover completely. SSPE is rare but, as was the case with these 2 kids, it does happen.

          • Amazed

            As ill luck would have it, the pediatrician the 3 kids shared (with other 4 exposed children as well!) now has 2 cases of this rare and fatal complication on their record. I wonder whether he or she changed their treatment of unvaxxed kids or even whether they reconsidered accepting them at all. It must be horrifying for someone who, no doubt, only had the best interests of all the children in mind to know that they were unlucky enough to have 2 of those rare lethal cases originating from their own waiting room.

            Anti-vaxxers scream, “My riiiiiights!” but they don’t give other people’s rights a fleeting thought. When you have chosen not to vax your kid, the least you can do it is inform yourself about the signs of the VPDs that your special snowflake was sure never to catch because they were so special and not bring a kid with such symptoms in the waiting room! There is a wonderful invention by the name of phone. Sorry but when you choose not to vax, you relinquish some of your rights, like going to the pediatrician without thinking. You’re bloody obliged to think more than your average parent, the unenlightened sheeple you so despise.

            Same problem with homebirth, VBAC and so on. “My midwife has delivered more than 300 HVBAC babies and no one ruptured, can you believe it?” Yes, indeed I can. I can also believe that your midwife delivered only 10 VBAC babies at home and two mothers ruptured. Nature has skipped maths lessons at school.

          • Patrick

            Here would be my question for the anti-vaxxers in this regard. If you don’t trust science and medicine enough to know what they are doing with vaccinations, which most doctors and scientists are in agreement with about their efficacy, why do you trust them to bring your child to them about the rest of their health?

            If your all natural, non vax ways are healthy and lead to a stronger child, why bring them to the doctor at all?

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            I’d go further than that. If you don’t trust science on vaccines, why do you trust aerodynamics to keep your plane in the air, computer science to transmit your thoughts across the internet, and structural engineering to make sure your house doesn’t fall down?

            Why don’t anti-vaxxers apply their intuition to these other areas of science?

      • fiftyfifty1

        Because many of the patients at a pediatrician’s office are babies too young to have received the full series. And even if you have received the full series of a vaccine, there is a certain small percentage (2-5%) of people who, for whatever reason, don’t mount much of a response to a given vaccination. You don’t know if you are one of those people, but if you are one of those people you are relying on herd immunity.

      • Michele

        Because I have a 3 month old who is not old enough for many of the vaccines yet, including MMR.

      • Amy Tuteur, MD

        Please explain to us exactly how vaccines work to protect public health. If you can do that, you will have your answer. If you can’t do that, you don’t understand enough about vaccines to make any determinations about them.

      • Houston Mom

        As some of the other comments say, vaccines are not always effective. My husband was vaccinated against mumps but came down with mumps anyway in adolescence. He was very sick, in a lot of pain, hospitalized and rendered sterile. Ask him how fun a decade of fertility treatments and testicle biopsies were. Unless everyone gets their immunity tested post-vaccination, how will they know if they are in that small group of people for whom the vaccine was not effective? I don’t want to find out our son didn’t acquire immunity from his vaccinations because a vaccine refuser’s child has made him sick.

      • Patrick

        It’s not a matter of the vaccinated children that come in, but those too young to be vaccinated. If the unvaccinated child comes in with the disease, all the children too young, and most at risk for deadly or debilitating effects are at risk. So your argument doesn’t take into account all the facts. Also the vaccines are a series, so it takes time for the immunity to become fully active, at which time those children are still at risk as well. It’s not the vaccinated children that most are worried about, it’s those that are too young, or haven’t finished the series that are the major concern.

        • KarenJJ

          Because some kids are on a medication that is contraindicated for receiving live vaccines as their immune system is being suppressed by medication to control an underlying condition. My daughter is one of these kids and we had to get a lot of advice about the MMR from immunologists and vaccine specialists. Most doctors wouldn’t have given her the MMR.

      • Sathya Rau

        Measles like chickenpox is more severe as you age. The older you are when you get it, the higher the risk of morbidity.If there is a serious outbreak much of the mortality will be in people in adults in whom the effect of the shot has worn off, or who were never immunized. Infants less than the 1 year of age cannot get the measles shot. so if you have a baby less than a year old exposed to measles the infant needs to be quarantined. If your baby is quarantined for 3 weeks, you can’t go to work. that is a potentially bankrupting situation for a lot of folks.

    • Patrick

      Now that is an amazing response to the problem.

  • BBrown

    Vaccines are free????? how is it a privilege to get one?

    • Stacy48918

      If you don’t have insurance, vaccines are free for you here.

      How is it a privilege? Well, how is it a privilege to live in an age with antibiotics, clean water, hospitals, medicine, etc? We benefit enormously from the advances of the past, including vaccination.

      • lunasalix

        It’s also important to mention that not all regions of the world are afforded things such as free, accessible vaccinations.

    • Dan

      When did the author say that?

      The actual quote from the article clearly states, “Each and every anti-vax parent is privileged in having EASY AND INEXPENSIVE ACCESS to life saving vaccines.”
      Nothing about free. Easy and inexpensive is better than can be said for children in the Congo and North Korea.

    • BBrown: In a system where you pay for what you get, how is free NOT a privilege?

    • demodocus’ spouse

      we pay for vaccines in our insurance premium. Because of DH’s pre-existing condition, we need one and that one needs to be a little above the bottom shelf. Our particular brand figures that giving us vaccines without an extra charge means they don’t have to pay more if we catch something and need to be hospitalized.

    • sdsures

      I don’t remember if they’re free in Canada, but I know they’re free here in the UK.

  • truffle19

    Let me start by saying I am 100% pro sciene and pro vaccination. I always have been and always will be. That said, I think this article is horseshit. I’ve known two parents who were anti-vaccine. Where they misguided? Yes. Absolutely. But their sole focus was the health of their children. They were NOT acting out of privilidge, a desire to defy authority or a need to feel empowered (at least any more than all of us have this need). It’s fun to pile on, but Dr. Tuteur is being completely unfair here.

    • KarenJJ

      I think differently of the people that don’t vaccinate due to fears or concerns about underlying conditions as opposed to the anti-vaccine movement which seeks to capitalise on that fear to create pseudo-experts and bolster fragile egos by “outsmarting the sheeples”.

      • truffle19

        I agree with you there.

    • Who?

      So they thought they knew more than the combined knowledge of all the people who put their professional lives into this? To the point where they put their kids’ lives at risk? If they have gotten away with it so far then it is likely they live either is a closed community or one with high herd immunity: either way they’ve been lucky.

      Those people have let their fears overwhelm their good judgement.

      • truffle19

        I don’t disagree with you. But nothing you just wrote has anything with this piece or my response.

        • KarenJJ

          I don’t know. I wonder about some people’s focus on their children. Is it about their kid’s welfare, or about how they view themselves as a “good parent”?

          • truffle19

            “Some parents”? Of course. But this article didn’t ever say “some parents.” It said anti-vax parents. And I’m saying that generalization is not fair.

          • Amazed

            In the beginning, I thought like you did. But when it became clear how rigid true anti-vaxxers were, unable to be reasoned with, I changed my tune. It takes a ton of hubris to think that you (and maybe the quacks you consult) know more than the generations of scientists developing and perfecting the very thing that got us rid of the smallpox. Really, how else can you explain this paranoid fear and absolute belief that they know best? Do they check the ingredients of every toy they give their children? Every cloth? The background of every child they invite in their home? They don’t, right? But when it’s vaccines, it’s suddenly, “nothing can convince me because I know best!”

            I’ve had contacts with many parents who are anti-vaxx to some degrees. Diehard anti-vaxxers are despicable. Utter disregard for other people’s lives. “Well, not that I want anyone to die, of course, but it isn’t my obligation to protect you.” But the majority of those “anti-vaxxers I know” (they say “I don’t know, I am not sure it’s safe, it’s too much interfering. Yes, I am against vaccines”) look at you if you’ve grown a third head if someone suggests that they mean they’d leave their kids without the MMR or TDP, or something like that. Turns out, they are not sure about Gargasil and the flue shots. But that’s fine with me because their children are too small for Gargasil anyway and there’s time for them to grow out of their parental fears and flue shots are not this popular here as a whole. But they are utterly astounded that someone can actually leave their kids without protection against diseases that killed and maimed so many not even three generations ago.

          • truffle19

            You are making broad generalizations. I know of two people who don’t fall into your generalizations. That is all.

          • ENK

            Sigh… law or large numbers…

          • Amazed

            Unfortunately, the world is made of generalizations. That’s the way it works. And while usually I don’t care what individuals do with their life and just how much they don’t fall into generalizations, when they undermine innocent people’s lives, I am totally fine with lumping them together with the rest of the people whose values and actions they share. You whine how unfair “the good doctor” and we here are being to your wonderful friends without mentioning how unfair your good friends, those good peopleare being to the world, leeching off everyone else’s heath. Some priotities you have! Love your sarcasm, by the way. That’s why I’m using it for your friends, who, according to me, are not good people. Anti-vaxxers are not good people by definition. They mooch off her immunity, claim that they don’t believe medicine, then rush in with their disease spreading kid, infecting others who are not always lucky enough to eat, and then have their friends defending them in forums explaining that they onoy think of their kids. If they believed what they preach, they would be keeping their kids out of the Big Pharma’s reach anyway. Good people, ha! Yes, I’m a zealot.

            IMO, the pair you know, those good people, are utilizing everyone else’s contribution making out excuses that make them sound better, or are simply very stupid people, so dumb that they don’t know that the modern healthy eating fads are nothing like vaccines which have been working for more than 200 years (any of them ever opened a few books from the period before vaccines emerged to save us? Because literally, you cannot read more than two books from the period without coming across the smallpox.) I really have trouble believing that anyone with more than 2 brain cells to rub together can deny the effect of one of the greatest gifts medicine ever did to humankind without being brainwashed, self-centered enough to care only about their own precious snowflakes, or so stupid that they don’t believe VPDs are still a thing today. Either way, those good people don’t come across looking good.

          • truffle19

            I’m sorry if I sounded sarcastic in my responses. I was just trying to make my point. I understand that people like to make generalizations and that we seem to love calling people who disagree with us stupid and selfish and the enemy (I’ve been guilty of doing that when it comes to politics). But I don’t think it helps anything. I happen not to agree with Dr. Tuteurs assumptions (and, yes, they are nothing more than assumptions) about people’s motivations.

          • Kq

            I know nine people who do fall into these generalizations. My anecdotal evidence wins. That is all.

          • truffle19

            Congrats! I have a feeling winning means a lot to you. However, my point wasn’t that people don’t fall under the doctors description, it was that it wasn’t fair of her to make a blanket statement about all anti vaxxers. I wrote that more than once (in fact look up around 5 posts). P.S. You’re not a fan of anecdotal evidence, but you don’t seem to have any problem accepting the doctors opinion on this topic, and she provides no evidence whatsoever.

          • KarenJJ

            Maybe it’s not fair, but the anti-vax parents that have posted in the comments below have mostly served to bolster the generalisation.

          • truffle19

            As you know Karen, people with the loudest voice often don’t represent the majority. They are often the outliers. We just assume they’re the majority because they’re making the most noise.

          • KarenJJ

            “As you know Karen, people with the loudest voice often don’t represent the majority.”

            Actually I don’t know.

          • truffle19

            Sorry, shouldn’t have assumed. Yes, people with the loudest voices usually represent the extremes (where they can make black & white, soundbite friendly statements), whereas most of the followers usually tend closer to the middle. Politics is a good example. Note: I don’t have any stats to back this up, so even though I’m pretty sure there are studies, I can only say it’s my opinion here.

          • KarenJJ

            So do we aim to undermine the loud voices? Or appeal to the middle ground? Or a little bit of both?

          • truffle19

            I would suggest appealing to the “middle ground” or the more reasonable of the unreasonable if you will. The complete stubborn extremists (the ones Dr. Tuteur is really describing) are probably beyond convincing anyway.

          • sdsures

            On the other hand, by not vaccinating their spawn, the “reach” of anti-vaxx parents has the potential to roam far and wide. Its reach is so vast that generalization (like measles spreads) to the larger group is a given because smaller targets are meaningless.

        • Who?

          SporkParade said it much better than I did-the people you are talking about have the luxury of fearing vaccines because they don’t need to fear the actual illnesses, thanks to vaccination.

          That’s privilege, whether or not they realise it.

          As Dr T said, parenting is about what is right for kids, not parents.

          • truffle19

            Well, sure. And we have the luxury of getting to have vaccines, which is also privilege by that broad definition. Which means both sides have privilege and it’s pointless making that a pillar of her argument. And I agree with your last sentence. I have never disagreed with that thought. Let me repeat, on the question of vaccination, I am completely a believer in them. I personally think the government should consider making them mandatory. That is not my problem with her article. I just want to be clear on this.

      • SuperGDZ

        And their conceit.

    • SporkParade

      Keep in mind that, when people talk about privilege, they are often talking about an unrealized benefit of belonging to a certain class, race, or other social sector. So they are acting out of privilege in the sense that they have grown up in a society where vaccines are readily available and these diseases are consequently rare. When a parent says, “I am a good parent because I question what the doctors say about what is best for my child’s health,” it is because they have the privilege of doing so without immediate consequences (maybe Dr. Amy is conflating “feeling empowered” with “feeling like a better-than-average parent”).

    • AJ Escott

      You obviously dont understand the psycology behind it. They didnit for the health of the child? Soo ignoring expert reccomendations, and going by what ypu THINK is right, and what you think you know is not feeling empowered?

      • truffle19

        You understand the psychology behind the actions of two people you don’t know better than I do? Interesting. You’re amazing. And as I wrote in my original post, we ALL want to feel empowered.

        • sdsures

          That word (empowered) is used so much these days it’s become meaningless.

          • truffle19

            I agree. It’s usually used in a positive way. But clearly in this case it wasn’t.

          • sdsures

            I’m not even sure anymore what it’s supposed to mean. Do you know?

          • truffle19

            The way I hear empower used most often is “giving someone the confidence, freedom or ability to do something.” If you feel empowered, then you’re the one who’s been given those gifts. That’s why it’s usually considered a positive.

          • Cobalt

            Vaccines are empowering. Americans have the gift, the privilege, of the ability to choose to let themselves and their children be free of diseases that readily cause suffering and death those underpowered by this choice.

          • truffle19

            I agree on both counts. I’ve actually mentioned both elsewhere in my comments.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            BUT
            being empowered is manifested in the ability to do things, not in the things we do.

            So yes, we have the choice to vaccinate or not. But we have that choice, i.e. “are empowered to do so” regardless of whether we do or it or not. I am JUST AS EMPOWERED if I choose to vaccinate as when I don’t..

            So what does empowerment have to do with anything? Anti-vax people aren’t more empowered. They are making different choices.

        • SuperGDZ

          Your two people are irrelevant, if they even exist. What’s relevant is the core psychology/sociology of the anti-vax movement as a whole.

          • truffle19

            Thanks Super. I’ll tell them they’re irrelevant right after I sign off here. Also, why would I put myself on here for this debate if they didn’t even exist? Do you think I actually enjoy arguing with a mass of people (who, btw, I agree with on almost all aspects of this debate)? No, I do not derive pleasure from this experience. However, the doctor didn’t talk about a movement as a whole, she talked about the personal motivations of the people in the movement. I know of two cases where she was dead wrong.

    • Jonathan Joseph Reddoch

      People who care about their children’s health consult experts on children’s health, not make up garbage.

      • truffle19

        I know these two people and you don’t. I feel more qualified to speak on what they care about than you.

        • sdsures

          You cannot quantify the love of parents for their children, or concern for their children’s health. You CAN quantify the lack of education of the “experts” they consult.

          • truffle19

            The original post by the good doctor, quantified a lot of things and that quantity was 100%. She didn’t right 25% of anti vax people have a “sense of privilege” or that 75% of anti vaxers “are anxious to see themselves in a positive light.” She just said anti vaxers, as in all of them. My argument was NEVER whether anti vax is right. In fact, I’ve said numerous times it’s WRONG. Seriously wrong. What I did write, was the doctors generalizations were very unfair. I stand by that, and I haven’t read an argument that has really tried to counter that.

          • sdsures

            Probably because the ramifications of any percentage of anti-vaxxer’s decisions go far beyond the individual.

          • truffle19

            This article is not about ramifications. It’s about the psyche of anti-vaxxers. To do that, you have to concentrate on the individual.

          • sdsures

            Except that ramifications are the result of anti-vaxxer. I don’t understand how that can be adequately addressed by only looking at the individual, because without the group entity, anti-vaxxers would be less…I don’t know if this is the right word…powerful? To be part of the larger group who agrees with you lends legitimacy to your beliefs. If you are alone, it takes much more to keep your belief system intact.

          • truffle19

            Well, that is true. But let’s go back to what this article was about. It was about this doctor’s understanding of what mentally drives anti-vaxers. Obviously, since there are no real studies on this topic, she’s basing this on her beliefs, assumptions and logical reasoning. I have personal experience with 2 people who I am certain were not driven by the factors the doctor mentions. Therefore, I believe she is mistaken in generalizing about all anti-vaxers. Remember, she put no qualifiers on her statements. She just said anti-vaxers. I find that to be unfair. Basically, it’s just fanning the flames of our dislike of these people, rather than trying to solve anything. It’s pointless. It’s just trying to get clicks (…I think. Obviously, I have no real idea of her motivations, either).

          • sdsures

            I would be very interested if a large-scale psychology study were conducted on anti-vaxxers to understand what makes them tick.

            Writing about hot-button topics is what Dr T does. One way to understand her motivations would be to email her and ask, which you can do in the RH sidebar.

          • truffle19

            Good point. She also has a comments section. That’s where I chose to comment.

          • sdsures

            The government also forces everyone to have car insurance. Boo-hoo.

          • Who?

            ‘Unfair’. Are we doing ‘unfair’ now?

            People whose thinking is disordered are lumped in with a group who they claim to not be allied with despite sharing their core activity. That ‘sharing’ puts other community members and their own children at risk.

            And it is the lumping in that’s ‘unfair’? Get a grip.

          • truffle19

            Okay, who. Two things. First, you’re getting emotional and rude, so this will be my last post to you. Second, while I’m busy getting a grip, perhaps you should be getting a clue. My initial post was all about the fairness of her post. Closing line: “It’s fun to pile on, but Dr. Tuteur is being completely unfair here.” Are you just realizing that was my main point?

          • SuperGDZ

            Perhaps you’re confusing anti vaxers with reluctant vaxers. The latter are parents who may be hesitating to vaccinate because they don’t understand the science and are getting conflicting messages. The former are those who’ve heard the science, “done their research” and insist on going their own way nonetheless, against all reason, and in trying to persuade others to do the same (thereby further confusing and scaring the reluctant vaxers).

          • truffle19

            Perhaps I am. I thought in this article the doctor was considering all people who aren’t vaccinating their kids anti vaxers.

          • truffle20

            You’ve got yourself worked up defending the honor of your friends, but consider this seriously before you impulsively reply:

            Every decision people make is inherently filtered by ego. If you choose to accept nonsense from quacks, that is the very definition of acting selfishly. Accepting any of the anti-vax garbage that is very easily proven false mean in this case that you’re valuing your own decision-making over the health and well-being of your community at large.

            Your friends may be lovely people in many respects, and your desire not to vilify them specifically is understandable. But you should really consider the possibility that you’re irrationally upset about the article because you don’t want to hate your friends or believe that Dr. Tuteur has accurately described them.

          • truffle19

            I have not been screaming and shouting or being irrationally upset. I have tried to clearly explain my viewpoint. You might want to consider the possibility that Dr. Tuteur might not always be right. Just a thought.

          • KarenJJ

            Nobody said you were screaming or shouting?

            As for clearly trying to explain your viewpoint, I’m still not sure what it is you are trying to explain? About your friends that we don’t know and have been trying to work out their relevance to the conversation?

        • Jonathan Joseph Reddoch

          Oh I see. You provide “evidence” but you think that because they are your friends, this protects you and them from scrutiny. If you present Exhibit A, you better be prepared to have that evidence cross examined, counselor. Or keep your biased opinions of your friends to yourself.

          • truffle19

            All opinions are biased, Jonathan. Every last one of them. And what “evidence” did you cross examine exactly? You just made a broad comment about people and what they care about.

          • sdsures

            True. In the case of cognitive biases, we can’t rid ourselves of them. The most we can hope for is that being aware of them helps us make better decisions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AK0GYBTNx5Q

        • JeffMc2000

          Is one of these two people a type of edible fungus?

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Sorry, but if people are really concerned about the health of their children, they don’t consult Jenny McCarthy. They consult experts.

      The fact that anti-vaxxers are unwilling to consult experts speaks to their lack of self-esteem and feeling of intimidation in the presence of those with more education. How much easier, then, and how much more self-affirming to pretend that you can learn all you need to know by ignoring experts and reading quacks and charlatans.

      • truffle19

        Dr. Tuteur, your first line is a funny crack, but you know as well as I do that it’s not based on anything real. You don’t know the motivations of my two friends better than I do. In fact, you don’t know them at all. You are making assumptions. You are generalizing. Obviously, you are on the right side of the vaccination argument, but your approach is geared only toward the zealots. I believe the problem is, you’re convinced that they’re all zealots. Your goals are noble and correct. You’re frustration is understandable. But your solution is wrong. When you make assumptions about people, you have little chance of changing their mind. That said, keep up the good fight regarding vaccines. I’m 100% behind you on this bigger issue.

        • ENK

          I’m sure, as the modern figurehead, she’s just the stand-in for the “man who” statistic these days.

    • Johannine L

      Truffle, you have to keep in mind that Dr. Amy lives in an universe in which the majority consensus of scientists and doctors is infallible. At the end of the day, all of her arguments boil down to an appeal to a majority consensus. “There’s more of us; we win; you’re stupid” is Amy’s battle cry.

      As for the bizarre, over-the-top judgmentalism and patronization — keep in mind that blogging is her full-time job and this web site is supported by ads. She has a very real financial incentive to get as many clicks here as possible. I don’t believe Amy is actually so obtuse to think that vaccine-skeptics abstain out of a sense of privilege, rather I think she is quite smart recognizing that the more shocking her claims, the larger the crowd she’ll draw and the more engaged they’ll be. And it worked — here you and I are, not only reading her article but writing comments about it.

      • ENK

        It’s not argument from authority if you can legitimately question the credentials and the motives of an opponent, nor is it ad hominem. Argument from authority is only a logical fallacy when it is the sole element of reasoning, as is argument by consensus. The key element is that, in this case, experts can a) conduct research, b) have training and education necessary to critique research, and c) that those without the training and education do not understand population epidemiology, immunology, and pediatric medicine.

        The other side makes innuendos about “big pharma” conspiracies, argument from ignorance, and commits the appeal to nature; in addition, they also over rely on single experts (which can turn into personality cults), over reliance on poor-quality anecdotal evidence and “man who” statistics (“I know a man who…”), and confirmation bias.

        Having said that, there are also problems in framing the risks (i.e., they really don’t understand population statistics and Bayesian maths), they rely on the green precautionary principle over harm reduction (even when the risks and benefits are well known) in the absence of satisfactory evidence (to them, since in many cases, no amount of evidence is sufficient, it is entirely unfalsifiable), and wishful (borderline magical) thinking in that the law of large numbers and demonstrable immunology does not apply to them.

        • SuperGDZ

          An argument from expertise is not the same as an argument from authority.

          • ENK

            I was addressing Johannine L who said, basically, that it’s an argument from consensus, but I wanted to be as broad as possible listing the possible sources of cognitive bias. I will add that argument from expertise is not an informal fallacy, and thus supports what I’ve said as not illogical.

            “experts can a) conduct research, b) have training and education necessary to critique research, and c) that those without the training and education do not understand population epidemiology, immunology, and pediatric medicine.”

            Argument from authority is only invalid inasmuch as the claim rests solely on the authority, not the weight of the evidence produced under that (standardized and credentialed) authority. That is also not to say that two experts are equal either: a Ph.D. in neurobiology may make valid statements, and their truth values may be “1” (true), but without appropriate cross-training and education in immunology, the Bayesian value would have to be calculated against the mean of professional practice in, say, immunology, when weighing the probabilistic evidence when making inferences.

          • SuperGDZ

            Yes, I was agreeing with you. Sorry if that didn’t come across

          • ENK

            I was addressing @johanninelogos:disqus who said, basically, that it’s an argument from consensus, but I wanted to be as broad as possible listing the possible sources of cognitive bias. I will add that argument from expertise is not an informal fallacy, and thus supports what I’ve said as not illogical.

            “experts can a) conduct research, b) have training and education necessary to critique research, and c) that those without the training and education do not understand population epidemiology, immunology, and pediatric medicine.”

            Argument from authority is only invalid inasmuch as the claim rests solely on the authority, not the weight of the evidence produced under that (standardized and credentialed) authority. That is also not to say that two experts are equal either: a Ph.D. in neurobiology may make valid statements, and their truth values may be “1” (true), but without appropriate cross-training and education in immunology, the Bayesian value would have to be calculated against the mean of professional practice in, say, immunology, when weighing the probabilistic evidence when making inferences.

      • sdsures

        “Truffle, you have to keep in mind that Dr. Amy lives in an universe in which the majority consensus of scientists and doctors is infallible.”

        I would hope that if that consensus were ever to change due to new scientific findings superceding the old, that scientists and doctors would appropriately alter their views based on solid evidence. Those who do not change their views in light of solid scientific evidence (like anti-vaxxers) scare me.

    • Andrew Lazarus

      To come to this conclusion, they obviously can’t be coming from any mainstream scientific viewpoint. (Except one, discussed below.) So the question is: what’s the psychology behind their adoption of the Purity Model of health (over against the germ theory of disease)? It’s pretty hard to come up with non-narcissistic justifications for that.

      Now, there is an exception. You can also decide to free-ride, agree that vaccinations are beneficial, but enough of your neighbors have taken the small risk that you don’t think your children have anyone left to catch diseases from. That’s like dumping your household waste in to the street because your neighbors are hooked up to the sewer system. One person can do it, but if everyone free rides, the system breaks down.

      • truffle19

        Well, Andrew. Your exception in the second paragraph is most definitely not the case for the two people I can speak for, so lets focus on your first paragraph. Personally, I think they had some doubts about established scientific viewpoints, because it seemed to them that scientific viewpoints often change (for example, what is and isn’t healthy to eat, which does seem to change on a monthly basis). And so they don’t take mainstream viewpoints as gospel or infallible. Second, they erroneously believed some of the fear statements made by some of the mouthpieces of the anti-vax movement (ie they were misguided, the I word used in my original post). So for my two friends (the only two people I can speak for), their intentions were good and, yes, their decisions were made for their kids and not for their own egos.

        • Andrew Lazarus

          Free riding is coming in, whether consciously or not. Back when the vaccines first came out, parents queued up to get their kids immunized. Because, of course, they had seen the damage these diseases can do. It’s only the fact 99.99% of measles and polio are gone that anyone not working for a quasi-religous or cult viewpoint can consider this option—and that’s free riding on the rest of us.

          • truffle19

            The “free riding” really has nothing to do with this article or my response to it. I know it wasn’t in the conscious minds of the two people I know. So, though you have a very valid point, I think you’re making it in the wrong place. I interpret your second comment as “if the problem (measles/polio) has been eliminated through vaccines, then the only way a person could still be against vaccines is if they were in some cult/groupthink environment.” However (and remember I don’t agree with what I’m about to write, but it is another possible explanation), the thought that the potential risks are not worth the proven benefits (which is what a lot of anti vaxxers seem to believe) does not require a cult type environment.

          • Who?

            No it doesn’t, but it does require some pretty disordered thinking.

            Tell me the kids have the tetanus vax.

          • truffle19

            If this article’s point was that anti-vaxers are guilty of disordered thinking, I would have been the first person to hit “like.”

          • Who?

            So these guys are oh-so-independent and deranged as well. Sounds lovely.

          • truffle19

            Off topic, who. Go back to the doctor’s post. That’s what I was arguing against. It’s possible to agree on the main point (vaccines) and disagree with some conclusions. Also how you’ve made “deranged” a synonym for “disordered” is beyond me.

          • Andrew Lazarus

            It is true that if everyone else vaccinates, it really is statistically safer to skip the vaccine. All the benefits, none of the (small) risks. It’s just an unstable situation—economists don’t use free riding as a moral term. Society has to impose costs, because too many free riders, back come diseases.

          • ENK

            Maybe in a closed system, but with mass-transport and transit, it’s not a true case of skipping vs. getting in the risk-reward benefit ratio.

          • ENK

            A modern day tragedy of the commons…

        • SuperGDZ

          Scientific viewpoints, especially on what is and isn’t healthy to eat, don’t change as often as the media would lead one to believe.

          The conundrum is why parents who demonstrably care about their children stubbornly persist in demonstrably false and irrational beliefs that demonstrably harm children. The evidence for vaccinating is so overwhelming, and so near to unanimous amongst medically qualified people, that there must be something other than love and reason going on in their decision-making.

          • truffle19

            I think your first paragraph about diet is probably correct. But with different media bringing up different “studies” which seem to counter each other on topics like “what foods are good/bad for you”, or “are gmos really dangerous” etc., it’s understandable that some people would be confused about what’s true and what isn’t. And perhaps they become a bit distrustful of the information they get.

            As far as your second paragraph, I’m with you except that when you say there must be something other than love and reason, I don’t automatically assume that something else is ego like the doctor does. At least not with everyone. It may be concern for their kids and doubt on who’s really right (because as you said the media is good at seeding doubt). It might be their susceptibility to people who were really good at scare tactics. It could be a gut feeling that they’re choosing to trust. Who knows? But to just make a blanket statement saying it’s all hubris that drives anti vaxers (like the doctor did) is not beneficial. It’s certainly not going to help the debate. All it does is make one side hate the other side a little bit more. I believe it’s written to stir things up more than to fix a problem.

          • SuperGDZ

            Well they should certainly be distrustful of what the media tells them about science. Not what their doctor tells them.

          • truffle19

            Sure. And we shouldn’t believe gossip. We shouldn’t believe everything our teachers taught us. We probably shouldn’t always believe what we think we saw. We shouldn’t even believe what’s written on Wikipedia, at least without double checking the facts somewhere else. But most people (even smart people) do end up believing things they shouldn’t. That doesn’t mean they have ego issues.

          • KarenJJ

            The ego issue is when they can’t admit they are wrong and can’t learn from others expertise. Someone that is afraid of vaccinating and seeks expert advice to learn more about it is one thing. Someone reading scare tactics on the internet and then combatting every attempt to dispel that misinformation and being afraid to “lose face” because some tightly held beliefs might be wrong. That’s ego.

          • truffle19

            Absolutely. If they’re being stubborn just so they don’t lose face it’s absolutely about ego.

    • Eric Mathiasen

      It’s not a conscious attitude – they’re not going to say, “I’m doing this because I want to feel the privilege of doing this,” or “I get off on defying authority.”

      But what is the psychological mechanism that causes them to reject established science in favor of bad science? It’s the same as the psychological mechanism that causes any wilfully ignorant person to be wilfully ignorant, and privilege and defiance of authority are the two key features of that.

      When I was in high school I used to tutor kids in math. Most kids accepted what I taught about math and, by extension, logic, but occasionally I would get kids who flat refused to believe the math I taught. One who particularly sticks out in my mind was a neighbor boy who insisted that 2×2 did not equal 4. He didn’t say, “I’m rejecting your authority,” or “I’m rejecting your claim because I have the privilege to do so.” But he was in a broken home with an emotionally unstable mother and her unstable boyfriend and I knew better than he did that he was only doing this because it was one small area he could exert control in his life. Most anti-vaxxers don’t have such specific things they are reacting to, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that the sea change in society and the economy over the past 30+ years has left many people feeling, even if just subconsciously, that they are no longer in control of their destiny. And they would be right, individuals rarely have as much control over their destiny as they’d like to believe, but contemporary society makes that, at times, far more clear than at other times in history. A subconscious effort by parents to be able to make a decision that puts them at odds with the establishment and, as a side benefit, allows them the self-deception that they are improving the chances for their child is a psychological win-win for anyone who doesn’t have a rigid background in logic and scientific method.

      The biggest difference between anti-vaxxers and my defiant student is that he ended up homeless for a big chunk of his young adulthood and they rarely suffer any real consequence thanks to a still-mostly-intact herd immunity.

      • Amy Tuteur, MD

        Exactly!!

      • arcade2

        You know what’s bad science? Skewing and distorting efficacy findings and/or covering up data.

        • Nick Sanders

          So, who did that?

        • Jason Roder

          You mean like Andrew Wakefield?

      • truffle19

        “… and I knew better than he did that he was only doing this because it was one small area he could exert control in his life.” How did you know this?

  • Samantha06

    Now when I get on the site, it’s not in disqus, it’s in wordpress. I am actually posting this comment through my disqus account. I’m not that savvy with websites and so forth; do I need to create an account with wordpress?

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      No, you shouldn’t have to do so. What does you mean that is in WordPress. The site itself has always been in WordPress. The comments are a separate part.

      • Samantha06

        The entire format of the comment area looks different. Each comment has a “log in to reply” message and when I click on that, it goes to the wordpress log in screen, not disqus. So I went to my actual disqus account to post.

        • Amy Tuteur, MD

          Ugh!

          Anyone know a good webmaster I could hire?

        • yes, it seems they changed something in the last 24 hours.

        • Who?

          I had that too-glad to see it back to normal!

          • Samantha06

            Yes, it looks like it is! Although I am noticing one thing, when I hit “view comment” it went back into disqus instead of going directly to your comment on the post… I guess it’s still working out some little glitches!

  • Amy Tuteur, MD

    So sorry that the website has been having serious problems all day. I got on a plane and got off and found it down. I’ve spent hours on the phone with my webhost and hopefully the problem is fixed!

  • Elizabeth

    You left out selfishness. Anti vaccine parents don’t care that their choices may cause other kids who are too young or too immune-compromised to get sick or even die. How any one person ever thinks they are so much more valuable than everyone else on earth is a mystery to me, but certainly applies to all who refuse to vaccinate.

  • TraciB

    You could say the same about parents who choose risky home births (such as the woman who was determined to have a home birth of her breech baby, despite the fact that it is prohibited in her home state of NY). It’s all about them, not their child.

    • Samantha06

      Yes, exactly!

  • Anthony Clifton

    I think that this article misses the mark. The reason for the anti-vaccination movement is that our government has been so corrupt and incompetent that more and more people reasonably don’t trust it.

    We are asked to trust the same organization that has given us the DMV, the US Post Office and Lois Lerner combined with big drug companies to inject chemicals into children. I mean, what could possibly go wrong?!

    I am all for 100% vaccination. But, demonizing people for not trusting groups that have proven to be untrustworthy is not the right solution. We need to recognize that big government has failed us and misguided movements like this are a consequence. Our media doesn’t hold government accountable. We have to.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      the US Post Office

      What’s wrong with the Post Office?

      The US Postal service is AMAZING! It costs 45 cents to send a letter ANYWHERE IN THE COUNTRY!!!!!! And it gets there. And it has been self-sufficient (until congress tried to kill it by requiring massive funding of pensions far into the future, which is something that no private company has to do)

      Try sending something to a remote place by FedEx or UPS. It costs more than 10 times as much.

      And the DMV gets a bad rap, but seriously, what is the real issue? That it is busy? That it needs to be open more? And shoot, now that the bulk of the DMV services have moved to on-line, what is the problem?

      Finally, what do either of these have to do with vaccines? How do you go from “I had to wait in line all day at the DMV” to “the CDC vaccination schedule is wrong”?

      • gia manry

        Actually, I’ll second the USPS part of this, they rock. But Bofa, Anthony’s comment is spot on, because people absolutely do associate things like the post office and the DMV with every single thing the government does, because they are things the government is responsible for– sort of like, “If the government can’t even get _________ right, why would I trust them with my child’s life?”

        Which is absolutely a mindset that exists.

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          Which is absolutely a mindset that exists.

          Oh for sure, but it is an illustration of why that mindset is so stupid. It makes no sense at all.

          “If the DMV can’t be open longer hours or hire more people, then why should I trust the people who set the vaccination schedule?” How does that even follow?

        • Young CC Prof

          What was that line? Tell the government to get its hands off my Medicare?

      • Samantha06

        I love the USPS.. when I lived in US, I had an issue with my mail being delivered to an address that was very similar to mine. I went down to the local office and they were gracious, responsive and fixed the problem. Now, since I’ve lived in Canada, it’s been a different story. Friends send me cards that I don’t receive, many are actually OPENED, and, one time, I got only the envelope, with no card! Never had those problems in the US..

    • gia manry

      I think this comment and the article both have important contributions to make. Anthony’s response gets to the heart of the reasons that people THINK they decide not to vaccinate; the original article gets at some of the emotional appeals of those reasons. In other words, a two-prong approach is needed: one that thoroughly explains the science/logic behind vaccinations, but whose tone helps counter those emotional appeals.

    • Somewhereinthemiddle

      You are kidding right? The post office, while imperfect functions really, really well and will mail your stuff for quite a reasonable price. They’ve never lost anything of mine and I use it at least once a week. And the DMV? Well, no lie, the lines suck but they do a decently good job at keeping us licensed/ relatively safe to drive. I don’t see the problem.

      • neeneko

        I am always perplexed by people bashing the post office. Granted in poor urban areas they tend to be understaffed relative to the population, but as a general institution they do a fantastic job for what they are tasked with doing.

      • Who?

        Do they still come and collect the mail you want to send if you put the little flag up? That is so great…

    • ActualModerateConservative

      Talk about missing the mark.

      While I don’t disagree that people trust the government much less – in AMERICA – than they used to, the American people have provided their signature incoherent response to the issue. Vaccination was not created by the government.

      People trust the government much less IN AMERICA because there is a coalition that has grown up around the concept of keeping the American public in the iron grip of fear, and government is the ideal target for that coalition.

      You seem like a reasonably intelligent person. I don’t think I need to explain to you the key leaders and benefactors of that coalition. It has been a fact of American life. The result is that the occasional nutbar group – anti-vaccination, the contrails folks, anti-GMO idiots, paramilitary lunatics, and other goofball conspiracy groups – are now able to gain some traction as a result of the generalized sense of fear held by many Americans.

      I am no conspiracy theorist. All that stuff is nonsense. I am a capitalist through and through (a near 1%-er, if you will), with a lot of equity in the system. However, what is true is that there are both political forces and commercial forces whose interest is served by creating an atmosphere of fear in the country. Why on earth would they not serve their own interest?

      • yugaya

        I don’t get the whole government argument really – vaccination extends over all types of societies and cultures on this planet, so either it is the case of a civilisational accomplishment embraced by all based on its proven merits or you have to go down the global conspiracy route. And once you go down the global conspiracy route how good or bad or trustworthy your own government is becomes insignificant.

        • Wren

          Honestly, I have pretty much only heard the government stuff from Americans. They seem to be the only ones that don’t realise there is a whole rest of the world out there.

          • Wren

            I should point out for anyone who doesn’t know, I am an American.

          • yugaya

            I should probably point out how I hold such trust in a government as a concept that I successfully took part in a revolution once. 😀

    • Walrus Alt

      As an anarchist, I would never trust any government. But I don’t let that get in the way of being scientifically literate and doing what’s right. Thus, I am not anti-vax.

    • BBrown

      Well said, and there is more to the story. People also refuse vaccinations because it IS about science, for some. Not only are they concerned about the toxic content, it relates to what Anthony is saying; that somehow the immunologists are missing the mark on its effectiveness, and/or age old vaccines that are presenting as no longer effective. So, until the folks who are EXPERTS, consider ecological change and human population growth, people do not have confidence in the government to accurately create effective new vaccines for first timers, nor do they feel the experts are on top of what the adults longevity is in terms of said effectiveness over time for those who were vaccinated. I feel there may be a need for a booster in adults for measles. For the flu, well, with a 20% effective protection, I pass, since I can provide myself with that level of immunity, + some.

      • Barb

        Oh, and by the way, whoever said that the government does not create the vaccines? Not sure where you are at, but here in Canada, it is a government agency that provides immunization FREE, and they are responsible for monitoring it nationally, which has been a failure. Flu is 1% of deaths, now, we are experiencing a measles outbreak, and meningitis which has had fatal results. Why? it has nothing to do with people NOT vaccinating, its about not having the right vaccine for the current need, wrong strain used in making the vaccine or targeting the wrong strain, in comparison to what has emerged as an outbreak (different strain). And for adults with measles? I am thinking boosters need to be looked at. Somehow, it relates to environment/population changes in relation to vaccinations over 20+ yrs old.

        • KarenJJ

          So we need better vaccinations and until they’re better, you are going to keep arguing against vaccinating? Seriously? Aren’t you just clutching at straws here?

        • Young CC Prof

          The vast majority of people catching measles the past few years have been unvaccinated children and young adults. If the older generation’s vaccines had worn off, they’d be getting sick, too.

          The Canadian government pays for vaccines for the people, and pays the workers to administer them, and decides which vaccines to buy. It does not invent or manufacture them.

          Yes, the flu vaccine is not as effective as other vaccines, and this year’s flu vaccine was particularly ineffective. Last year, it was at least 50% effective. Still, it’s free, it’s easy, it might help. I don’t hear the down side. Do you stop listening to the weather forecast just because the weather man isn’t always 100% right?

        • canucklehead

          Wow. I haven’t read a single post that contains so much incorrect information in a very long time.

          As someone else stated, the measles outbreaks have been due to non-vaccinated children, NOT an ineffective measles vaccine.

          Also, as a Canadian, I think you’re completely misinformed about where vaccines come from. Canada has more affordable vaccines as the government places huge orders to protect the citizens of this country… purchased from pharmaceutical companies that make the vaccines. The government DOES NOT create the vaccines.

          As for measles strains, yes they exist. But it’s not like the flu where you get new strains annually. Measles have an extremely low rate of mutation and creating vaccines to fight measles is relatively easy.

          Barb, just where do you get your information from? If it’s from the Internet, I suggest perhaps you seek advice from the people who actually know. Going to the internet is akin to taking a poll of the general population for medical advice. It’s not a smart thing to do.

        • SuperGDZ

          Is this a variant of the different measles genotypes bullshit? All measles genotypes have the same serotype. That means that the measles vaccine is effective against all of them.

      • canucklehead

        Except, if someone don’t understand the science behind vaccinations, then choosing to not vaccinate his/her children is a decision based on fear and ignorance. The idea that some would look at the efficacy of the flu vaccine as a reason to not vaccinate a child against measles demonstrates a complete and utter lack of understanding. Flu and cold viruses are constantly mutating (changing) and thus have been extremely difficult to vaccinate against. You never get the same flu/cold twice because once you’re immune, you’re immune. Measles, on the other hand, has an extremely low rate of mutation and thus the vaccine against measles is very effective.

        As for distrust of government, doctors are not dictated to by the government. Doctors base their recommendations on the science that is obtained by research, not on what the government tells them. Fact is, the government itself is often ignorant of the science itself. What reputable doctor in his/her right mind would completely destroy his/her reputation by providing medical advice based on information provided to them by the government rather than science?

        The government doesn’t create vaccines. Pharmaceutical companies do. Should you distrust pharmaceutical companies? Possibly. They’ve often proven themselves to be untrustworthy. However, vaccines such as that for measles, chicken pox, etc. have been around for decades and have been proven extremely effective with extremely low incidents of harmful side effects (1 in millions).

        Anyone who chooses to disregard these facts in favour of their own incomplete knowledge is either very arrogant or very paranoid.

    • SuperGDZ

      You believe that all the governments, all the drug companies, and all the medical professionals in the WORLD are in on a vast conspiracy to poison your children?

  • Sheree Zielke

    Can you say, “Thalidomide?” Too bad for those babies, huh? ‘Cause it was a “safe” wonder drug prescribed by “authorities” in the know. I bet those babies wished their mothers would have balked against the popular belief that this medicine was a perfect solution. With no side effects. Wake up, sheeples! You are being fed a bill of goods by the authorities who want to make a buck. Check out the effectiveness of the modern flu “vaccines.” Parents have every right to be suspicious and then to resist the bellowing of the many who repeat like parrots what they have heard is the right thing to do. Cigarettes were also once lauded as a good thing for our health. Lemmings off a cliff…and more money into the pockets of the drug giants.

    • Wren

      Yes, the MMR that has been used for how many children now is exactly comparable to thalidomide.
      Comparing all drugs to thalidomide (and assuming no lessons have been learned) is like comparing all natural substances to arsenic.

    • fiftyfifty1

      I sure can say “Thalidomide”, the drug that the FDA refused to ever approve here in the United States. Thanks Dr. Frances Kelsey!

      • Young CC Prof

        They always cite thalidomide. They never believe it’s an own goal.

        The FDA in the United States never approved Thalidomide for pregnant women, because the company had not provided safety studies on pregnant animals. (It has since been approved for certain other uses in non-pregnant people.)

    • fiftyfifty1

      “Lemmings off a cliff…”

      Sheesh are you gullible! Do you really believe lemmings actually run off cliffs? It’s a total myth! Can’t you think for yourself insread of accepting Disney hook line and sinker?

      http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=wildlifenews.view_article&articles_id=56

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      Can you say, “Thalidomide?” Too bad for those babies, huh? ‘Cause it was a “safe” wonder drug prescribed by “authorities” in the know.

      Quick quiz: what authorities approved thalidomide?

      Cigarettes were also once lauded as a good thing for our health.

      By actors wearing white coats in TV commercials.

      Check out the effectiveness of the modern flu “vaccines.”

      When the strains match, they are very effective. When the strains don’t match, they aren’t as effective, but are still effective. And since there is very little downside, it’s still a complete win.

    • SporkParade

      Thalidomide – the Godwin’s Law of any discussion about medicine.

      And just because it bears saying, you realize that the FDA has an entire division dedicated to following drugs already on the market in order to look for side effects that are too rare to be measured during safety testing? And that they are quite willing to add new warnings to the packaging or even pull the drug off the market entirely if the situation warrants it (as happened with Vioxx and PhenFen)? But, you know, damn the authorities!

    • Guesty

      Thalidomide was available from 1957 to 1961, when after a few thousand doses it was determined to be causing hideous birth defects in babies whose pregnant mothers had taken it. Vaccines have been administered in the billions of doses for more than sixty years with an astonishing track record of safety and efficacy. Thalidomide is relevant to this discussion like the failure rate of wooden wagon axels is relevant to a conversation on transportation safety.

      • “Thalidomide is relevant to this discussion like the failure rate of wooden wagon axels is relevant to a conversation on transportation safety.”

        I love this.

    • Amazed

      I can even say Claritin, the drug that local doctors said could not cause drowsiness when it first appeared here. I was one of the first patients in my city to complain of this side effect. Or I might have been the very first one, I don’t know. I cannot say doctors took me all that seriously. They didn’t. But a few years later, drowsiness was officially listed as a possible side effect. Good enough for me, although my ego didn’t appreciate being told that it came with a package of overly active imagination.

      • fiftyfifty1

        Interesting. I learned right from the start that it could cause drowsiness, just that the rate of drowsiness was orders of magnitude lower than with the first generation antihistamines. Were you in the US?

        • Amazed

          Eastern Europe. Years behind any first world country. And while we were struggling to find out which doses of medicines for my allergy I could safely take (my driving instructor was the first one who realized something was wrong, BTW, and he told me that I should stop doing “it”, be it taking drugs or drugs (like in, drug addict) because no licensing body in their right mind would give me a driving license since my instincts were too slow), there were occasions where I struggled to stay awake in the university. Drug-induced drowsiness and a boring professor were NOT a good combination.

        • Kirsten Houseknecht

          claritin was marketed here in philadelphia as “non drowsy” and “will not cuase drowsiness like other anti histamines”

          that said? it was a new medicine. unlike the MMR vaccine which was established, and gone up against by the prfiteering bastrd who wanted to sell his “new/safer” vaccine.

    • Corey Firepony

      Thalidomide was the 50’s and 60’s. Medicine has advanced a long way since then. By the way, Thalidomide is still used in certain medical treatments, because science discovered that while terrible for developing babies, it still had many other important and practical medical uses. Dosage is also a factor.
      So…bollocks on you for not doing your research.

      I was going to respond more, but I’ve determined this to be more bollocks than I care to deal with for one day.

      • sdsures

        Thalidomide is still used in treatment of leprosy. See my response above.

        • Corey Firepony

          Also, it’s used in the treatment of meylomas as well.

          • sdsures

            Neat! How successful is it?

    • Corey Firepony

      http://www.cdc.gov/healthcommunication/ToolsTemplates/EntertainmentEd/Tips/Thalidomide.html

      Here are those “authorities” openly admitting the risks of thalidomide, and explaining it’s uses, who should and should not take it. Just like responsible authorities should, not to make a buck as you say, but because that’s responsible medicine.

    • YEAH! I mean look at all the people in America with Smallpox and Polio!

      Oh wait…

    • LibrarianSarah

      Yeah Thalidomide had awful side effects. It’s a good thing that the FDA refused to approve Thalidomide for marketing and distribution. Bet you didn’t know that did you? It wasn’t until 2006 that the FDA approved Thalidomide as a treatment for multiple myeloma which is a deadly and invasive form of blood cancer. Nowadays a person with muliple myeloma can live 5 years. When my grandfather got it they gave him 1 year to live. He made it four. Thalidomide could have given me 1 more year with him. Not such an “evil drug” is it now?

      You are not as smart as you think you are Sheree.

      • sdsures

        This is sad. A new generation of thalidomide babies in Brazil, as a result of the scientifically legitimate use of the drug to alleviate some of the symptoms of leprosy. If the patients are female and have children, there’s the problem. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-23418102

        • canucklehead

          Do you understand the chemistry behind the effects of Thalidomide? Look up isomer.

          In theory, Thalidomide can have beneficial applications if the harmful isomer can be eliminated.

          As for what’s happened in Brazil, it is definitely a good example of the damage that ignorance can cause.

          • sdsures

            I looked it up, but since I don’t have any background in chemistry, it’s very hard for me to understand. Please explain a bit more. For instance, how is the harmful isomer removed? Does thalidomide harm male patients (i.e. who can’t have babies)?

          • canucklehead

            A chemical can have what are called isomers. Imagine your mirror image in three dimensions. That’s what isomers are from a molecular standpoint. Identical in composition but exact mirror images. With Thalidomide, it turned out that one isomer (s-isomer) was the one causing the developmental defects while the other isomer (r-isomer) had the benefits with no side-effects. Very interesting actually but something that scientists had not considered when Thalidomide was first produced as a sedative to help with morning sickness.

            To understand how it can be that the body reacts to one isomer negatively and not the other has to do with how chemicals interact with your body. Best way to describe it is, your body has a set of locks that can be unlocked with keys. All the locks are identical but they keys have their notched half in one direction and half in the other. Only the “right” key can fit the lock. Using this analogy, one isomer of thalidomide “unlocked” the production of physical deformities and the other did not.

            In theory, if the r-thalidomide could be produced and used, then you get the benefits without the physical defects. Problem it seems is, once in the body, the r-thalidomide can convert to the s-thalidomide and thus cause the problems that particular isomer produces.

            As for Brazil, it’s simple stupidity and ignorance to place such risks on fetuses, knowing what we know about Thalidomide. Still, there are potential benefits to the drug if the r-thalidomide can be somehow stabilized and isolated.

          • sdsures

            Thanks for the info! 🙂

          • canucklehead

            Hope that made sense. 🙂

          • sdsures

            Yep!

          • Nick Sanders

            You’re confusing terms. What you are talking about are enantiomers, isomers is a much broader term. I don’t know about Thalidomide specifically, but there are a lot of medicines that have that problem. One enantiomer is medically useful, while the other is inert or even toxic. Unfortunately, separating them is often extremely difficult because their chemistry is very nearly identical.

          • canucklehead

            It’s been a while since university chemistry class so I wasn’t precise enough. I should have said stereoisomers rather than simply isomers. But a correction for you… an enantomer is one of the two stereoisomers. 🙂

          • Nick Sanders

            Well played…

            I believe the laws of the internet now require us to declare a blood feud and hound each other bitterly until the end of time. I wish it didn’t have to be this way, but it’s out of my hands.

          • canucklehead

            Well, can I just concede and accept defeat? You deserve the win just for that response. I bow to you sir.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            In theory, Thalidomide can have beneficial applications if the harmful isomer can be eliminated.

            But the problem with thalidomide is that it racemizes in the body, so you even if you start optically pure, that bad stereoisomer still shows up.

          • canucklehead

            True, which is why I said “in theory”. I do wonder if there are any negative effects when used on men or non-pregnant women. After all, it disrupts the normal developmental process in fetuses so eliminating factor, does the drug have potential? It does appear to have cancer fighting properties.

    • HipsLikeCinderella

      The only parrot here is you and people like you who like to be part of the “uber cool counterculture against us sheeples”. Cause ya know the majority is always wrong and should be looked at suspiciously.

      • Honestly, I try to take everyone’s opinions into account but if someone uses the term ‘sheeple’ seriously, then it’s pretty obvious that they’re not gonna even consider any other arguments and I tune them out. Well occasionally I mock them but I do feel a little bad about doing that.

        • Young CC Prof

          http://xkcd.com/1013/

          Remember, never wake the sheeple!

          • HOLY CRAP THAT WAS HILARIOUS!

            You win all the LOL’s today!

        • sdsures

          I only respect people’s opinions when they can back them up with science.

          • Take them into account, yes. Accept them as truth without verified data, no.

          • sdsures

            Are you really going to take into account someone’s opinion that there is a giant white rabbit in the corner of the room?

          • Yes. If they can validate the statement with empirical evidence.

          • sdsures

            Like anti-vaxxers, Elwood P. Dowd couldn’t quite manage that.

          • You know I actually had to look up Elwood P Dowd. I came up with the handle from a comic I drew in high school about an insane asylum patient tortured by a giant invisible anthropomorphic rabbit.

          • sdsures

            Be vewwy quiet…I’m hunting wabbits… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RsvYCid26Vk

          • ENK

            Richard Dawkins sums it up nicely: “When two opposite points of view are expressed with equal intensity, the truth does not necessarily lie exactly half way between. It is possible for one side simply to be wrong.”

    • canucklehead

      Really? You use Thalidomide as an example of why you shouldn’t vaccinate children from measles and chicken pox? Thalidomide was a drug. Our discussion is about vaccines. Let’s get that straight up front.

      First, yes, Thalidomide was a disaster. It was a failure in the understanding of how different isomers of the same molecule can have drastically catastrophic effects. The consequences of using Thalidomide were discovered within a couple of years once bables were born with genetic defects from mothers who took the drug. It was not a vaccine.

      Second, you cannot compare the flu vaccine with the measles vaccine. Why? If you don’t know the answer to this question, then you have no idea what you’re talking about. If you do know the answer, then you would never have used that as a supporting argument.

      Third, the measles (and similar vaccines) have been around since the early ’60s. It has proven effectiveness in protecting children from a disease that not only causes a lot of discomfort but can result in permanent debilitation and possibly death (at a rate significantly higher than any complications from vaccinations).

      Your understanding of the actual science appears either incomplete or altogether wrong. You seem to have gathered your information from the Internet and like to compare apples with electricity, making associations between things that are not at all similar.

      I fear for your children and for those who are exposed to your children.

    • Sullivan ThePoop

      Thalidomide was never approved in the US. Also, no one knew anything about the chirality of molecules before thalidomide. Knowledge marches on.

      • Dr Kitty

        Thalidomide is a very useful, effective drug for Leprosy, and Multiple Myeloma and shows promise for Behcet’s syndrome, HIV and various cancers.
        It should not be taken by pregnant women, but that doesn’t mean it is useless.

        Also- drug testing and licensing has moved on somewhat since Thalidomide was introduced in the 1950s and 1960s, and doctors are much warier of giving medication of any kind to pregnant women.

  • Great article. Thank you Dr Tuteur. Unfortunately there are many people who just won’t trust the science or who give in to the hype.

  • Jhana

    Excellent.

  • Who?

    A sweet story of how a family ‘fell’ into not vaxxing, and how they changed their minds.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/02/02/i-didn-t-vaccinate-my-child-and-i-regret-it.html

    • KarenJJ

      And a not so sweet story of a family that also changed their minds.

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10855638

      Tetanus in a 7yo.. Not a risk most people want to take. Why people fear the rare adverse reactions over things like tetanus I’ve no idea.

      • Young CC Prof

        Because they don’t really get what tetanus is all about, or because they think it doesn’t happen anymore.

        Truth is, it is very rare nowadays, but ONLY due to vaccination. The bacteria lives naturally in soil and usually does not spread from person to person, so you can’t rely on herd immunity for tetanus. That’s why if you are injured and go to a doctor for stitches, you’ll be offered a tetanus booster as well.

      • Kirsten Houseknecht

        because so called “experts” insist that its ONLY found where there were horses… and you dont see any horses around where you live ? do you?
        never mind that 1. thats not true and 2 there dmn sure were horses in any area people lived previously.

      • canucklehead

        Wow. The Internet sure makes people ignorant. The arguments for both sides can be found on the Internet. That doesn’t make the arguments for the two sides equivalent.

        Just because you can find tons of stories of people being hit by lightning doesn’t mean people are being hit by lightning left, right, and center. It’s still a rare occurrence.

        • KarenJJ

          Which is why we send our kids outside to stand under trees and climb flag poles during electrical storms…

          • canucklehead

            Actually, assuming you mean to follow my analogy, vaccination = taking action to avoid being struck = avoiding trees and flagpoles. What you describe is akin to not vaccinating your kids – that despite all the evidence and expert advice, you do exactly the opposite and let your kids play on flagpoles during a lightning storm.

          • KarenJJ

            Yep you got me. I was kidding.

          • canucklehead

            I have to apologize. Totally misread what you were originally saying. My bad. #totalfail. Sigh

  • Mijnvoornaam Mijnachternaam

    “It’s not hard to argue that unflective acceptance of authority, whether that authority is the government or industry, is a bad thing. {…} Unreflective defiance is really no different from unreflective acceptance.”

    That is a very astute point indeed. It makes me wonder whether Stanley Milgram could have devised an experiment to support this very idea about the problems and mechanisms of unreflective defiance of authority.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milgram_experiment

  • Ectogwarb

    All doctors have the best part of a decade of schooling after high-school, specialists even more so, yet these people who think that because they’ve read a few studies that support that vaccines might have some harmful effects believe that they’ve educated themselves thoroughly on the subject. They ignore hundreds of studies and thousands of doctors that say that vaccinations are safe and beneficial and pick out the one or two that tell them what they want to hear. Worse, most of them haven’t even read the study, they’ve read a short article written by someone who read the study and then published an opinion piece designed to get people to buy the magazine or click on the link to get to the article, and “anti-vaccination” sentiment sells.

    • Andrew Lazarus

      If they had read the studies, they might learn something. They read wildly distorted or fabricated summaries on their pet web sites.

      • yugaya

        They do not even bother to read the text carefully. B1/B2 level students of English as foreign language have to exhibit better reading comprehension when tested.

        • Young CC Prof

          That’s something I’ve noticed about the extremist antivaxxers: They seriously can’t read. That article about the pediatrician whose baby and toddler with cancer were exposed to measles in a clinic? The antivaxxer comments had the basic facts of the story wrong. Not just the biology, but the sequence of events. Comments like, “How does he know how they were exposed? They could have been exposed anywhere!”

    • Bernard Dijkstra

      Hundreds of studies? Alright then start with this: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9481001

      Acute encephalopathy followed by permanent brain injury or death associated with further attenuated measles vaccines: a review of claims submitted to the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.

      • yugaya

        75 000 000 doses administered over twenty three years and eight children died.

        “In developed countries, death occurs in 1 to 2 cases of measles out of every 1,000.”

        Which of these killers should we as parents be more interested in keeping away from our children?

      • Young CC Prof

        OK, the authors found 48 cases over 23 years. The vaccine was given to somewhere on the order of 75 million children in the USA over that time period. That fits with the known and documented one-in-a-million incidence of severe side effects.

        Also note, the auto death rate in the USA is one death per million vehicle miles. So, getting vaccinated is less dangerous than driving 1 mile to the clinic and 1 mile home again.

        • Bernard Dijkstra

          Over 23 years nobody, included the unvaccinated, died of the disease. In contrast, 23 deaths have been observed linked to the vaccine.

          Therefore, for a given individual vaccinating poses a higher risk than foregoing the vaccine.

          • yugaya

            Nice logic. How many would have died over those same 23 years if there was no vaccine?

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            How many? You tell me! Nobody was already dying when the vaccine was introduced. What caused the decline previous to the vaccine, Einstein? the prospect of a vaccine? ha ha ha!

            https://d262ilb51hltx0.cloudfront.net/max/1136/1*1AQcxVe_IjKqZWpM9yhRvw.png

          • yugaya

            “Nobody was already dying when the vaccine was introduced.”

            OMG NOBODY!

            “Before 1963, approximately 500,000 cases and 500 deaths were reported annually, with epidemic cycles every 2–3 years. However, the actual number of cases was estimated at 3–4 million annually. Following licensure of vaccine in 1963, the incidence of measles decreased by more than 98%, and 2–3-year epidemic cycles no longer occurred.”

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            “…Before 1963, approximately 500,000 cases and 500 deaths were reported annually..:”

            That’s B.S because in the decade prior to 1963 the deaths per 100K were far below 1.

            http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=1OY0AAAAIBAJ&sjid=07UDAAAAIBAJ&pg=2352,6193167&dq=measles+mortality+rates+decline&hl=en

            http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=oP4wAAAAIBAJ&sjid=7uMFAAAAIBAJ&pg=1352,5474358&dq=measles+mortality+rates+decline&hl=en

            The drop in mortality was ALREADY a strong trend prior to the vaccine, so this medical treatment is superfluous to explain the trend. The correlation DOES NOT MEAN causation.

          • Young CC Prof

            Drop in mortality, yes. Increase access to medical care, improve nutrition, provide antibiotics, and deaths from almost all contagious diseases drop. There were still roughly 500 deaths per year from measles in the early 1960s. I would direct you to the CDC website, but you wouldn’t believe it.

            Ebola is 50-75% less fatal among people who get the best medical care available, compared to no care. Want Ebola?

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Ebola is 50-75% less fatal among people who get the best medical care available, compared to no care. Want Ebola?

            And this, too. The whole “it’s not deadly” is a complete red-herring. Things don’t have to kill you to be completely unwanted and avoided if at all possible.

          • Amazed

            I guess he’s a fine specimen of the oh so educated anti-vaxxers our new addition HCMedhi was gushing about.

          • yugaya

            Also the hypocrisy of: initiating the topic of documented vaccine related deaths while, at the same time, actively discarding 500 to 4000 dead people annually prior to vaccines as nobodies.

            Yes, mortality dropped due to overall improvements but it was never zero, which is both what that nice little suggestively put graph of his and he himself are saying here,

          • Samantha06

            I saw all this garbage on a link on the infamous “Dr. Wolf’s” website… great source! haha!

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            “..great source! haha!..”

            At least I have a source, what is yours? the one between your legs?

          • Nick Sanders

            That image cites no sources, and is therefore worthless.

          • KarenJJ

            I tried a search for it, but didn’t come up with anything – it looks incredibly convincing, but where do the numbers come from? And why is it looking at measles mortality, not incidences and not other issues like brain damage/hearing loss etc? We’ve gotten a lot better at medical care for the very sick between 1900 and 1960.

          • Young CC Prof

            Over those 23 years, 1970-1993, a couple hundred people total died of measles, many of them in the large outbreak of 1989-1990, caused by low vaccination rates.

          • Nick Sanders

            Nobody died? 7,000 people around the world died from it in 2013 alone.
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25530442

            (Full text, table 2)

          • Nick Sanders

            What 23 people died of the vaccine? The only death I can find linked to the vaccine since 1998 was someone who already had leukemia before being vaccinated.

          • http://jid.oxfordjournals.org/content/189/Supplement_1/S1.long

            No one died of the disease? That’s because people got the vaccine so they didn’t get the disease. From 1956-1970, ~450 people died per year of measles in the US, a death rate of ~1/1000. Even if you were correct that 1 person died per year from the measles vaccine, and I’m not saying that you are right, that’s still a whole lot better than 450 people dying per year of measles and 4000 cases of encephalitis per year.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            Correlation is not causation. Mortality had been steadily dropping since 1900. What factors were causing the drop? This implies the further post-vaccine drops in mortality are, by default, attributable to the same factors that were already working prior to the vaccine. Those who claim it’s not the case must provide extraordinary evidence. There’s not such proof. Full stop.

          • Um, actually, there is such evidence. The drop in measles cases after the introduction of the vaccine is such evidence. The reintroduction of measles as vaccination rates drop is more such evidence.

            Mortality had been dropping for many diseases since 1900, but the diseases were still being passed around. Do you understand that we went from hundreds of thousands of cases of measles per year to less than 100 cases per year, due solely to the measles vaccine? That is extraordinary evidence right there.

            Also, you misunderstand entirely what requires extraordinary evidence. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence; this quote refers in particular to claims of a creator deity that cares about humanity. The claim that exposing an immune system to weakened or dead versions of a virus will prepare it to combat real exposure is not an extraordinary claim.

        • Bernard Dijkstra

          “..getting vaccinated is less dangerous than driving..”

          Still more dangerous than being exposed to the disease.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Huh? The chicken pox, for pete’s sake, kills about 1 in 20 000 who get it. That is 50 times higher than the vaccine you mentioned above (and the CP vaccine is even safer than that)

            Considering that most people got the chicken pox before there was a vaccine, that’s a real killer.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            “…, kills about 1 in 20 000 who get it. That is 50 times higher than the vaccine..:”

            The 1:20,000 probability is CONDITIONAL since you must get the illness first. What are the chances of getting chicken pox without a vaccine? 1:100? then the chance of death by chicken pox for the unvaccinated is 1:2,000,000 and HALF that of dying from the vaccine.

          • Young CC Prof

            If nobody gets the vaccine, then the majority of people get chicken pox and get measles.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            The probability 1:20,000 applies to those that GET the disease, not to those that SKIP the vaccine. In order to calculate the latter you must multiply by the chances of getting the disease without a vaccine… what is it? 1:100? then your chances of dying are HALVED compared to the vaccine.

            Ignorance of probabilities is endemic in the vax-pusher community.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            The probability 1:20,000 applies to those that GET the disease, not to those that SKIP the vaccine.

            But like I said, before the vaccine, pretty much everyone got the chicken pox. Probably 90% of the population would get it.

            The only way the number of deaths matches is if the chance of getting the chicken pox not vaccinated is 50 times lower than the vaccination rate. Which it isn’t.

            I brought the chicken pox up on purpose, because it is something we’ve experienced. Before the vaccination, almost everyone got it. There would be whole classrooms of school kids who would be out at the same time with it. Hell, parents were exposing their kids to those who had it so that they could get it at a convenient time or to get it over with! Because pretty much everyone got it at one time or another.

            And when they did, 1/20000 died.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            “…But like I said, before the vaccine, pretty much everyone got the chicken pox…:”

            The case definition was restricted after introduction of the vaccine as follows:

            A) Before the vaccine: An acute illness with diffuse (generalized) maculo-papulovesicular rash.

            B) After the vaccine: same as (A) + Laboratory confirmation.

            By definition B <= A. Always! This re-definition accounts for the "drop" on its own, whether there's a vaccine or not, whether it is effective or not.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            You are claiming that kids are still getting the chicken pox? You are a moron.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            Here, find out who the moron really is: http://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications/Publications/varicella_report_2010_euvacnet.pdf

            2010, chicken pox in Europe: 592,681 cases and ZERO deaths.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            Here, find out who the real moron is: http://goo.gl/eL2SIe Year 2010: 592,681 chicken pox cases in Eurpe and zero deaths.

          • Young CC Prof

            That article did not say there were zero deaths. It didn’t count deaths at all. This paper says that 25 people die from chicken pox each year in the UK. http://www.bmj.com/content/323/7321/1091.abstract

          • yugaya

            That paper also states that only five countries provided information on complications.

            Five countries = All of Europe
            Five hundred people = Nobody

            I’m starting to see the pattern there but the head hurts from trying to follow the logic behind it. 🙂

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            Your paper is 20 years old, it looked at three years from 1995 to 1997.

            In contrast, my stats are from 2010. There’s a section under “Complications”. Is death a complication for you? well, no such complication was reported, therefore your assumption that deaths continue to occur has no factual base.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            Your paper is 20 years old, it looked at years 1995-1997. In contrast, my stats are from 2010.

            The report includes a “Complications” section. Is death a complication for you? then it should be reported there. No reference to deaths means your claim that people continue to die from chicken pox has no factual base.

          • Young CC Prof

            You are seriously advancing the claim that since one article about chicken pox doesn’t discuss deaths, no deaths occur.

            http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2588446/Harmless-No-chickenpox-killed-one-boys-left-stricken-years.html

            There. Proof that deaths are still occurring.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            That paper is 20 years old, it looked at years 1995-1997. In contrast, the stats I cited are from 2010.

            The report includes a “Complications” section. Is death a complication for you? then it should be reported there. No reference to deaths means your claim that people continue to die from chicken pox has no factual base.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            That paper is 20 years old, it looked at years 1995 to 1997. In contrast, the stats I cited are from 2010.

            The report includes a “Complications” section. Is death a complication for you? then it should be reported there. No reference to deaths means your claim that people continue to die from chicken pox has no factual base.

          • yugaya

            “That paper is 20 years old”

            So is the one that you pulled about vaccine related deaths and injuries – if you are going to try to discredit this reply based on that, then you have also successfully managed to discredit your initial post.

            Just sayin’.

          • Nick Sanders

            It didn’t elaborate at all on what the complications were. It very well could have included deaths.

          • Bernard Dijkstra

            “…And when they did, 1/20000 died…”

            How many die today among those with “unconfirmed chicken pox”? nobody even cares to count them?

          • Jason Roder

            Am you not from Bizzaro World?

      • Samantha06

        OBVIOUSLY, you have never seen measles up close and personal, like I have and many of my generation. The vaccine became available after I had it, otherwise my parents would have rushed me to the pediatrician rather than watch me suffer. A brain MRI I had in my 30s showed lesions consistent with residual encephalitis, so go to hell.

        • Bernard Dijkstra

          I had the measles myself, stupid. Want more personal than that?
          OBVIOUSLY you haven’t seen vaccine injury close and personal.
          I refuse to enter in emotional arguments with c.nts.

        • Bernard Dijkstra

          I’ve had the measles myself, need more personal that that? OBVIOUSLY, you have never seen vaccine injury up close and personal.
          I refuse to enter an emotional argumentation with an irrational female.

          • Samantha06

            I see you edited your lovely response.

          • Samantha06

            And just so everyone can see your original response:

            Bernard Dijkstra replied to you on What everyone gets wrong about anti-vaccine parents 28 minutes ago
            Samantha06 33 minutes agoOBVIOUSLY, you have never seen measles up close and personal, like I have and many of my generation. The vaccine became available after I had it, otherwise my parents would have rushed me to the pediatrician rather than watch me suffer. A brain MRI I had in my 30s showed lesions consistent with residual encephalitis, so go to hell.
            Bernard Dijkstra 28 minutes ago
            I had the measles myself, stupid. Want more personal than that?
            OBVIOUSLY you haven’t seen vaccine injury close and personal.
            I refuse to enter in emotional arguments with c.nts.

          • S

            It is obviously super relevant to him that you are female.

          • Samantha06

            Yes! Did you see his follow-up comment? It was even better!

          • Who?

            Well yes dropping the c-bomb makes him right and everyone else wrong….

            Lovely man.

          • Samantha06

            Yes, a real peach isn’t he? I can’t find the other comment, maybe it will show up later when disqus quits acting up, or maybe he deleted it. He posted a graph from a link off of Dr Wolf’s site and I said, (very snarkily), “oh that’s from Wolf’s site, what a great source!” And his response was something like, “what is your source, between your legs?”
            Gotta love a misogynist!

          • Who?

            Do you think he types from rage, and the sexist stuff is his go to insult, or he really thinks, as a woman, you can’t know better than him.

            Oh, actually, who cares? He’s making your point beautifully.

          • Samantha06

            You know, I wondered the same thing. If you look at his profile and browse through some of his comments on other sites, he seems to be an “equal opportunity” offender when it comes to insults and has a very angry tone. Although he got particularly vicious with me! Maybe a combination of sexist and misogynist?

          • yugaya

            I saw that too, that’s when I flagged those two comments. Glad to see them gone. This blog tolerates a lot and this is the first time in a year I flagged anything, so congrats to him on such an accomplishment in just a few hours of posting here.

          • Samantha06

            Thank you for doing that! You guys are all so great and supportive! I’m glad I didn’t respond to his crap other than to paste in his original comment. I wasn’t sure if anyone saw it, and I wanted to make sure it was out there. I don’t know how to do a screen shot, or I would have done it that way. Thanks again!

          • Who?

            It shows up lower down on my screen, I found it when I was looking to see what that other gem had to say after he ‘accused’ me of being Dr T in disguse.

            Very entertaining despite being so predictable.

          • Samantha06

            Oh, I didn’t know he did that! I’ll have to look for that comment.. I’m glad he was called out for his nonsense..

          • Amazed

            I haven’t seen the comment but it sounds lovely *snark*.

            By the way, glad to see more people taking my nickname for Wolfson! Dr Wolf fits him like a glove, doesn’t it?

          • Samantha06

            Absolutely! I was so blown away when I watched that interview, I was just slack-jawed. Then when I looked on his “natural cardiology” I wanted to vomit.. what is sad is because he is a physician, his word will be taken seriously..

        • sabelmouse

          you got very unlucky. most didn’t.

          • Samantha06

            I do wonder if there are more out there like me that don’t even know it. I didn’t. I had vague, neurological symptoms, migraines, numbness in my extremities. They thought it was early MS so they did the brain MRI and found the lesions. They weren’t typical MS lesions, just tiny areas. I don’t have any problems now, but I do think, wow, do other adults like me have residual affects they aren’t aware of?

          • Young CC Prof

            My uncle sometimes wonders if his learning disabilities had anything to do with an extremely high fever from measles at age 2. There’s no way to know.

            I do believe that the incidence of serious brain disorders is going down, due to vaccines, newborn screenings, etc. Tough to get good data, though.

          • Samantha06

            You’re right, there is no way to know. I know I have a few learning disabilities myself and my younger brother has ADHD and we both had measles. But is it from measles encephalitis? One can only speculate.

          • KarenJj

            I know that chronic inflammation can cause lesions on the brain due to pressure on the brain. Both my daughter and I had MRIs to look for this and didn’t find any, but I know of other patients that have had them.

          • KarenJJ

            Should add that this is high levels of chronic inflammation as verified by blood tests (eg CRP, ESR etc) not the sort of “chronic inflammation from eating donuts and chips” that “nutrition science” goes on about.

          • Who?

            There was an interesting talk the other day about how heartrate, and irregular heartbeat in particular, can cause damage to the smallest blood vessels in the brain, leading to tiny bleeds. Most adults are likely to have some, apparently, and be completely unaware. The thinking is that this could be implicated in at least some Alzheimers.

          • Samantha06

            Interesting! I bet there are so many things like this that are yet to be discovered.

        • sabelmouse

          i got an email notification about a reply from you but couldn’t get to the page,it’s not on my feed. did you delete or did something go wrong?

          • Samantha06

            Something must have gone wrong.. that’s strange! But disqus has been having issues the last couple of days.. I bet it will show up though..

          • sabelmouse

            we’ll see.

          • Samantha06

            I think everyone’s been having issue the last couple of days. I know Dr. Amy is working on it!

          • Samantha06

            Did that reply ever show up? I thought I’d copy and paste it into a new reply and hopefully it will come through.

            I do wonder if there are more out there like me that don’t even know it. I didn’t. I had vague, neurological symptoms, migraines, numbness in my extremities. They thought it was early MS so they did the brain MRI and found the lesions. They weren’t typical MS lesions, just tiny areas. I don’t have any problems now, but I do think, wow, do other adults like me have residual affects they aren’t aware of?

          • sabelmouse

            never, so thanks.

  • Catherine Novak

    We have to confront anti-vax parents where they live — in their egos. When refusing to vaccinate your children is widely viewed as selfish, irresponsible, and the hallmark of being UNeducated, anti-vax advocacy will lose its appeal.

    • SuperGDZ

      Quite. Anti-vax parents want to look cool and edgy. They don’t want to be social pariahs.

  • Gill

    You are one ignorant women. The letters beside your name may say MD but that does not mean you are intelligent. All that tells me is that you can read and memorize what some person teaches you. Such,
    such judgement is spewing from you in this article. BTW judgement comes from the EGO. So you must be full of EGO, just absolutely full of it. You must feel self important enough to write this inaccurate article. Go a head and say we are definant against authority but if you were intelligent you would see that we, and by we I mean society, has been lied to for so long from pharmaceutical companies, governments, and bull-shit study after bull-shit, yes this drug is safe to take, study that how can I trust any of the information they are trying to sell me. Especially when pharmaceutical companies do their own studies. There are too many drugs to count on t.v. nowadays that have been recalled and pulled from the shelf that are discovered unsafe. Yet, 6 months prior this drug was on t.v. advertising how safe and how wonderful it is. And I don’t trust you or many other doctors either, because you are bought and paid for by big pharma. How much more money do you make now that you are injecting 36 vaccines into a child’s body before 6 years is age instead of 7 like when I was young. Again, bought and paid for by big pharma.

    • Samantha06

      You are the ignorant one…

    • NGH

      Vaccines save lives. Since childhood I have suffered from deafness — thanks to measles. Scientists dedicated their lives to eradicating childhood diseases. Now — all those diseases — and the suffering of children — are coming back. Thanks to ignorant anti-vaxers.

    • KarenJJ

      I inject my 6yo daughter every single day (the little trooper does it herself now). I do it (and have done it forcibly when she was little) so that she can live a long and healthy life – better than what I’ve had as I was undiagnosed with this particular issue for so long.

      36 vaccines – and even less needles – over six years – doesn’t even rate on my radar. She does that almost that many in a month.

    • Lars Eighner

      You are the most repulsive thing on the face of the earth.

    • Phil Beebe

      One of the biggest problems with your position is that vaccines have been around for almost 500 years (there’s evidence it’s been a thing for over 1,000 years but let’s not quibble) long before big pharma even existed.

      In order for you to be right you must dismiss hundreds of years of research by hundreds of thousands of experts. That fact the “big pharma” is now part of the equation is completely irrelevant.

      BTW, if “big pharma” didn’t do the studies, who else would?

      http://www.historyofvaccines.org/content/timelines/all

      • Who?

        Gill will reject hundreds of years of research in the twinkling of an eye.

        Not authoritatively, but he’ll do it.

        • SporkParade

          Ooh, maybe we should market inoculation as Eastern Medicine since the Chinese practiced smallpox variolation since the 15th C. Oh, but the Sudanese did, too. Black people just don’t have the same cache as Asians when it comes to woo.

          • Andrew Lazarus

            Possibly linked by trade with the Ottomans on each end, who also had it.

    • Montserrat Blanco

      So when you have pneumonia you do not take antibiotics because they are developed by Big Pharma. Of course your cancer would not be treated, you would not take an inhaler for asthma, nor an aspirine in case of an infarct, etc, etc. All those things have been developed by Big Pharma. Most of my patients are really happy they can have chemotherapy when they get cancer in order to try to stay alive a little bit longer. Those that do not want chemo (very few) get their morphine and other opioids very happily, again developed by Big Pharma. I certainly wish you never have to use a Big Pharma drug in all your life, and that you do not need someone like me, really, I would happily go jobless because cancer had dissapeared. But the chances are that you happily had your vaccines as a child and that you happily take drugs when you need them and you gamble with someone else’s life… Your children’s. Not really very ethical in my opinion, and much less ethical than Big Pharma, in my opinion. And yes, my son is vaccinated. And no, I am not rich with the Big Pharma payments. I must be really dumb because I live at a rented flat and go to a discount supermarket for grocery shopping.

    • yugaya

      “BTW judgement comes from the EGO”

      The judgement in this article comes from knowledge and, as a subjective opinion, it is saying exactly the same thing as objective scientific census that is based on relevant scientific knowledge. Antivaxxers are wrong and if you can’t accept that I suggest you start examining your own EGO for reasons why that is so.

    • Wren

      Just out of curiosity, are doctors worldwide bought and paid for by big pharma? The UK runs a very different health service to the U.S. and I’m sure would be willing to stop vaccinating if it were a) proven vaccines are useless or detrimental and b) cheaper not to do it.

      The big Pharma argument has always confused me anyway. Drug companies make more money off treating illness than preventing it with a single or multiple doses of vaccines. I spent more on treatment for my son’s chicken pox than paying for the vaccine (not on the routine schedule here in the UK) would have cost me, and that’s without any complications requiring hospitalisation. Vaccines just don’t bring in the massive amounts anti-vaxers seem to believe and actually lead to reduced illness and therefore reduced use for pharma products in the future. It’s almost like the goal is reduced illness, not massive profit while destroying the health of the sheeple.

    • JillinNYC

      If you live your life in such a hysterical, polarized fear-based mindset you cannot expect to be respected or taken seriously. Too many drugs to count? Please do try will you? Life is filled with risk, why walk out the door? Get ahold of yourself.

      Anyone who gets in a car with their Little Darlings while refusing to vaccinate and hectoring on about the monsters under the bed that may “get” them somehow (big pharma, he big bad government etc) is not a logical human being and living in nameless fear. Its a living death.

      Perhaps see a shrink and find out what it exactly is that you’re afraid of – uncertainty? Welcome to reality.

    • 90Lew90

      Now wipe that spittle off your keyboard or the next person to use it might catch their death, since you’re vaccinated and they may not be.

    • Corey Firepony

      Well, M.D. means Medical Doctor. So, since that requires licensing, and rigorous education, training, clinical experience to acquire…I’m at least willing to wager that M.D. counts for something. I’ll be the first to acknowledge that being an M.D. doesn’t always make you an expert, but this doctor seems to have her i’s dotted and her t’s crossed.

      By the way, her position as a medical expert, and as a mother does not mean she is judging out of ego, it means that she is using her vast and extensive medical knowledge, combined with her knowledge as a parent to make an educated statement about a movement that poses a great danger to the world, informed by evidence, and not just discredited science and discredited anecdotes.

      Now, onto the meat of this bollocks you’re talking. Vaccines are not a drug, for starters. They are either a weakened or dead version of a pathogen injected into the body so that the body may develop immunity by contact. The advantage to vaccines/ inoculations are that the disease is less potent, meaning it poses far less risk of serious complication or full blown development of a disease, while giving your body a chance to experience and develop anti-bodies. This so that if you do experience the disease that’s full blown, you have significantly better chance of surviving the disease without significant injury, illness or complication.

      As to drug companies doing their own studies, I suggest you familiarize yourself with FDA accreditation Of course companies have to do their own studies, how else would they know adverse effects or side effects of the drugs the create. Once those studies are done, those same results must then be duplicated by independent research. By universities, by medical authorities in other countries. If you are suggesting that the pharmaceutical industry makes enough money to pay off researchers, universities (such as Harvard, Princeton, University of Michigan, Wayne State, Vanderbilt, Oxford, Cambridge) as well as the thousands of doctors, nurses, Paramedics, EMT’s world wide…than you show that you are clearly delusional. There is a reason why we as medical professionals advocate for vaccines. When you consider that they are low cost, highly effective, and have very minor side effects, its some of the safest medicine you can use.

      In terms of more dangerous drugs, again, going back to studies, the medical benefits outweigh the negatives. If you’re having a stroke, are you going to tell your doctor that you should take colloidal silver instead of tPA? If you have bacterial meningitis, are you going to suggest turmeric instead of Rocephin? Drugs that have been rigorously tested, and demonstrated to be highly effective? If you need pain medicine, are you gonna drink whiskey like in the old days, or get Dilaudid? Also, these companies are by law, required to set up trusts funds, so that if for some reason their drugs are proven unsafe or ineffective, they can pay out the damages. Because again, they are heavily regulated and constantly tested and improved upon.

      Shut your ignorant, fear-mongering mouth up and read more that Oz, and Tenpenny (That name just sounds villainous to us comic book fans).

    • Gill:
      Doctors are injecting more vaccines in children than they used to. More children are surviving into adulthood than used to.

      Gee, do ya think there *might* be a correlation!

      • Young CC Prof

        I need to make a graph of under-5 mortality versus number of vaccines on the standard childhood schedule. The negative correlation should be fairly strong. (Yes, there were other things going that also contributed, but vaccines were a big part, especially the DPT.)

        • I think Gill’s response would be something like:
          “You are one ignorant young professor! When I was a kid we didn’t have graphs and I’m STILL ALIVE. Prove that Big Graphs aren’t trying to kill me along with Big Gov and Big Everything Else.

          Except Big Guns. Big Guns are my friend. That’s the one industry standing up for me.”

          • Young CC Prof

            I don’t think anyone’s killed by big graphs. Big signs, possibly.

          • Amazed

            Possibly, yes. I swear, some of the informed parents who do their extensive research are unable to read a long word without having two lunch breaks.

    • fiftyfifty1

      Ok then, so why don’t you settle for a compromise and at least vaccinate against the 7 ones that were available when you were a kid? Measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis and polio. If all the antivax parents had been willing to do just “good ol’ shots”, this measles outbreak never would have happened.

      • Wren

        Varicella probably wasn’t available when Gill was a kid.

    • Guestll

      Congratulations, 8 fellow tin-foil hatters liked your comment!

    • Methinks

      Gill, if someone made a chemical weapon to spread disease because they don’t like a certain authority organisation you would call them a terrorist. By not vaccinating your children you’re turning them into a potential chemical weapon to spread disease because you don’t like a certain authority organisation, so what does that make you?

      • SuperGDZ

        Since the unvaccinated child itself is at the greatest risk, perhaps a comparison to suicide bombers is apt.

    • Samantha06

      Do you live in a house, drive a car, shop at the grocery store, have running water and electricity? Do you avail yourself of doctors and hospitals when it’s convenient for you? Do you take tylenol or ibuprofen for a headache? I’m guessing it’s a big, fat, yes to all of the above. But yet, you are an anti-vaxer and are OK exposing vulnerable people to life-threatening diseases because you think that “big government, pharma, medicine, whatever” is “out to get you.” Hypocrite.

    • Nick Sanders
      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        What a great illustration of the fact that, despite how much like vaccines, we are STILL always trying to make them even better!

        Far more efficient than in the past, while maintaining effectiveness and still minimizing risks.

        This is impressive.

        • Young CC Prof

          Every year, the CDC releases a revised vaccine schedule, based on what was learned the past year. Most of the time, the changes are small, like a slight change in timing to improve effectiveness.

    • Nick Sanders
  • This article says nothing about what people don’t understand about anti-vaxers. In fact, it doesn’t say much about anything. Like a horoscope reading, I could replace the word vaccines and anti-vaxers with any idea and group I disagree with and get just as much out of this article.

    • yugaya

      “I could replace the word vaccines and anti-vaxers with any idea and group I disagree with”

      Yeah but you know, even my average local neonazi bigots as the group I disagree the most with don’t carry this much potential to kill.

    • Who?

      Your point?

    • enoughAlready

      His point is this article was written by someone who believes the science they are reading is actually real science. Meanwhile, anyone who has insight into how “science” in our culture works knows that it is thoroughly compromised. His point is… you want to inject mercury into your childs viens… you should. The world needs less of your ignorance and your genetic line.

      • Alexa Fox

        From the CDC website:

        “Since 2001, with the exception of some influenza (flu) vaccines, thimerosal is not used as a preservative in routinely recommended childhood vaccines.

        Thimerosal is a mercury-containing preservative used in some vaccines and other products since the 1930’s. There is no convincing evidence of harm caused by the low doses of thimerosal in vaccines, except for minor reactions like redness and swelling at the injection site. However, in July 1999, the Public Health Service agencies, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and vaccine manufacturers agreed that thimerosal should be reduced or eliminated in vaccines as a precautionary measure.”

        If you’re going to be smug while calling other people ignorant, at least be right.

      • Who?

        As opposed to your special, real science.

        Do tell all about it.

        • yugaya

          The almighty “other ways of knowledge” at work again.

          • Who?

            Yup.

          • Amazed

            Well, his other ways of knowing led him to support Daviss of the study that murdered Mary Beth and the ignorants who caused the measles epidemics. I’m breathlessly awaiting the new strike of his brilliant intuition.

      • LibrarianSarah

        Yeah and the world needs more people like you? People who are so smug that they think everyone who disagrees with them should be wiped from the planet but are too dumb to know how vaccines are administered. News flash vaccines aren’t given interveinously dumbass. Also they for the most part, don’t contain mercury and they never contained the kind that was harmful to humans.

      • fiftyfifty1

        Ooooh, the next time I give a vaccination I will try to inject it right into a “vien” instead of SQ or IM in your honor!

        Gosh you are dumb.

      • Nick Sanders

        What mercury?

        • Jason Roder

          The mercury in enoughAlready’s fevered imagination, of course.

      • Ellzee Mason

        So… you don’t trust “science” in our culture – yet somehow you trust the scientists that tell you vaccines are unsafe and unnecessary. Could you explain to us how that works? What makes someone like Dr. Weston A. Price more trustworthy than the Dr who wrote this article?

    • My point is that this article was not written to “inform” but rather to “inflame” as it relies entirely on empty arguments designed to trigger and stroke the ego’s of those that agree with it.

      • Who?

        I think there’s a bit of both at play. Certainly the bare facts around the damage reactive vaccine refusal causes are pretty inflammatory on their own.

        Dr T’s interest seems to lie mainly around the damage that the spread of ignorance causes. In the case of homebirth, the misinformation pushed by midwives and others seeking to satisfy their own enthusiasm for being around pregnant and delivering women causes death and serious injury which could otherwise be avoided.

        As others have pointed out, one unvaccinated child can kill or injure even more people than a homebirth midwife, and what’s more, do it long after their parents have lost interest in the subject. Some of these parents don’t care, some identify as libertarians who won’t be told what to do, and still others think they are more educated than medical and science professionals.

        There’s not much inflaming needed where that kind of behaviour is concerned.

        • There are far better ways to educate anti-vaxers about vaccines and this author clearly has no desire to do so. She’s just looking for hits and has clearly set herself on a path to be on one side of the argument only to help her get on talk shows, sell books and other media. She’s an inflamer, not an informer. She’s loving it so much she just wrote another pro-vaccine article today, just two days after this one. I doubt her research is very thorough.

          • Who?

            What are those better methods? Love to hear them to better encourage anti-vaxxers to change their minds.

          • A good way to start is by addressing they’re actual concerns and not by calling them names, placing labels or promoting prejudices. Unfortunately nobody has the guts to do this because the actual concerns are very complex and difficult to address without opening a can of worms that nobody in pharma wants anybody to do. The funny thing is that mental illness and autism has nothing to do with what’s on antivaxers minds. I’m guessing that’s just a made up concern or perhaps one held by a minority that’s been given a prominent stage because of how easily it is to refute. Most antivaxers I’ve come into contact with are worried about much more subtle issues.

          • Who?

            Okay-so there is a constructive and effective way to communicate significant issues to some or all people who choose to not vaccinate their children.

            You know what those ways are but think they are too complex and difficult to address without upsetting big pharma, who those who don’t use vaccines don’t respect anyway. Can I ask why you care about upsetting big pharma?

            You know what is on the minds of those who choose to not vaccinate their children, but won’t share those subtle and nuanced issues.

            Without wishing to be rude, doesn’t all that make you part of the problem?

          • I came to this article hoping to learn more about these nuanced issues (I’m assuming you did as well?). So you shouldn’t be asking me to enlighten you on the matter, you should be asking the MD that authored this article. That is, of course, if you still think she’s qualified to do so.

          • SporkParade

            What nuanced issues? Vaccines are extremely safe and effective. This is not a two-sided issue where the truth is somewhere in the middle. The problem is that the hardcore anti-vaxxers CAN’T be swayed. There have been studies done to see what kinds of information are most persuasive, and the answer is, no matter the type of information or how it is presented, being challenged just makes them dig their heels in harder.

            The question is how we deal with those sitting on the fence, the kinds of people who ran to get their children vaccinated once the Disneyland outbreak came to light. The anti-vaxxers win them over by stroking their egos. “Oh, you’re too smart to blindly do what the doctor says. No doctor knows your child or cares about your child as much as you. You are the only one who can stop them from injecting your precious baby with scary chemicals and diseases.” Dr. Amy’s opinion is therefore that we also need to appeal to ego so that the choice to not vaccinate or to use an alternate schedule is seen as dangerous and selfish rather than good parents not following a one-size-fits-all approach imposed by authorities.

          • Who?

            Absolutely, those on the fence are vulnerable to exploitation by anti-vaxxers.

            On a personal note, I live in hope that one of these days someone will say something original in answer to the question: What do you object to about vaccines?

            Same tired old nonsense, and in the meantime the vulnerable continue to suffer.

          • Just to give you a sense for how nuanced some people’s stance is on vaccination: I’ve met people that oppose vaccines and still believe they work and are a good idea and are totally on board with the technology. Is that enough nuance for you? Yes indeed, many anti vax parents are for some vaccines and not others. They don’t disagree with the technology, sometimes they simply disagree an individual vaccine, the dosage, the frequency, the timing, etc. The situation is very nuanced (and again this author clearly has no clue and is looking only to inflame not inform).

            Putting vaccines up on a pedestal as if they are infallible heavenly manna descending from heaven is an equally dangerous and flawed perspective in my view.

          • Wren

            Who puts vaccines on a pedestal? I don’t know, in real life or online, anyone who would say “New vaccine? No studies? Awesome. Inject me and my kid.”
            Antivaxers who believe vaccines work, are a good idea and are totally on board with the technology while still opposing vaccines seem, at best, confused. Refusing specific vaccines without medical reason makes no sense either. Personally I find selective vaccination without medical reason and delayed schedules to be in some ways far less sensible than the straight out antivaxer. At least the latter has a logical argument, though from a flawed premise. The former does not.

          • Who?

            Having a bet each way, I think is what those guys are doing. If it all goes perfectly, as it is overwhelmingly likely it will, it was because they were so thoughtful/wise/whatever.

          • Sue

            “HCMehdi” seems to assume that the thinking behind the vaccine schedule somehow isn’t “nuanced”.

            What do all those immunologists and pediatricians do on those committees? I suppose they just drink coffee and discuss their travels, but don’t think carefully about what they are recommending for millions of children?

          • Who?

            Curious isn’t it how he and he only is capable of clear sight on this issue?

          • Amazed

            They disagree an individual vaccine? The ignorants DISAGREE?

            How many of them wise disagreers are scientists who have extended knowledge in the field of biology, chemistry, vaccine making and approval? Not many, right? They read some scary-sounding ingredients, failed to think what the scary names might mean, listened to some anti-vaxxers stroking their egos that they were the enlightened parents making this wise choice and bingo! they disagree.

            So they can take their ignorant disagreement and shove it up their you know what.

            Typhoid Mary also disagreed that she was dangerous. I suppose you think she was entitled on acting on her disagreement as well?

          • I’ve found the anti vax community to be very literate on the subject. I’m always impressed by the extent to which they research. Reminds me of those crazies that read everything on the food label and know all about how our food supply chain works. Gets to be a little much sometimes but ignorant and uninformed is definitely not a description I would expect unless coming from a bigot.

          • KarenJJ

            You mean like the poster below that gave us a list of vaccine ingredients but no context nor any idea of what they were? You were impressed by that?

          • I’m referring to people I interact with face to face. Not sure what poster you’re talking about.

          • KarenJJ

            So what sort of research do you believe to be “good research”? The sort of research where someone doing their shopping reads a bunch of ingredients when deciding to buy food, or the research where someone cultures a strange slow-growing bacteria in a lab and present their findings to other scientists for them to pick apart the results.

          • Amazed

            Well, he was impressed by Jo Ann Daviss of the Daviss “let’s hide the actual years of the hospital births we used!” study, so…

          • Amazed

            That speaks volumes about how gullible you are, in addition to you being so impressed by Jo Ann Daviss who lied in her study but appealed to you on camera. It says nothing about the actual level of knowledge. The anti-vax community is so very literate on the subject yet anti-vaxxers don’t know that the mercury in SOME vaccines isn’t the same as mercury in the old thermometers.

            I am very literate in the matters of repairing my household appliances. I like reading about it and in theory, I know a lot. You’re welcome to grovel at my feet admiring my knowledge, despite the fact that I will never try to repair my cooker on my own. I don’t want the short circuit that will be the inevitable result of my efforts.

          • fiftyfifty1

            “Reminds me of those crazies that read everything on the food label and know all about how our food supply chain works.”

            This is actually my area of clinical concentration. I treat the often profound malnutrition associated with “orthorexia” and other eating disorders. These people may spend all day reading food labels, but it doesn’t keep them healthy. Quite the opposite–it can be deadly.

          • That’s very interesting! In your experience what nutrition are these label-readers depriving themselves from? I would have thought most were checking for additives, colorants, preservatives, etc. Curious what your experience shows.

          • fiftyfifty1

            Mainly the macronutrients but often phos as well.

          • Curious though, why someone paying too much attention to the labels would lead to these deficiencies? Are you perhaps referring to people that are obsessed with “fat-free” and “sugar-free” products? I’m actually referring to people that try to stay away from preservatives, GMO’s etc. and opt for organic, locally grown, etc. Maybe you’re talking about a different crowd than I am.

          • Young CC Prof

            Oh, that’s also orthorexia, and can be taken to truly dangerous extremes.

          • Who?

            Great way to hide an eating disorder.

            Reading the labels doesn’t make you a food and nutrition expert, just someone who reads labels.

            By the time they ‘do their research’ about food and add a sprinkling of their own beliefs they are living on organic salad leaves grown on an east facing slope, ‘lifestyle’ drinks and the odd piece of organic, no sugar, no gluten no dairy carrot cake (icing on the side, thanks) at the local boutique de pretentious food. With a decaf soy chai latte-low fat, of course-on the side.

            All while making gourmet meals for their families to have, and nibbling their ‘healthy’ dinner at the same time. Sad.

          • Samantha06

            “boutique de pretentious ”

            I love it!!! Can I use that one at work?

          • Who?

            Delighted if you do.

          • Samantha06

            In fact, I love the entire description.. it’s perfect!

          • Ellzee Mason

            If someone “believes they work and are a good idea and are totally on board with the technology” yet they oppose vaccines – that isn’t nuanced, it’s just insanity. They aren’t opposed on grounds of efficacy, or ideology or technology, so what grounds ARE they opposed on?
            You aren’t answering the question at all.

            You are being asked, quite clearly and earnestly, why the anti-vaxxers oppose vaccines, yet you just keep mumbling about “nuance.” If they disagree about a single vaccine, don’t get that one! If they disagree about the timing, follow a different time table! My own daughter-in-law did this – she had them give her daughter the vaccines one at a time, with plenty of “rest” between, so that if one caused a reaction she would know which one. But that is far different than refusing ALL vaccinations altogether.

          • What are your thoughts as to why some people (and quite a large number btw) oppose vaccines? I can’t speak for everyone but I’m definitely disappointed with this article and the deceiving title as it did absolutely nothing to answer the question.

          • Just to be clear, are you asking me to explain all the various reasons people either resist, are moderate, oppose or question vaccines? Is that what you’re asking me to expound on? If so, then tell me a little bit about your thoughts on vaccination so I can get a sense for where you’re coming from. I’m assuming, for instance that you’re pro-vaccines meaning that you’re on schedule, correct?

          • Who?

            Just the facts, HCM. Tell us facts. Don’t spin, don’t assume we want nuance. Facts. Surely there are some?

            Who cares what we think? We care about what you know about what others think. What has a super-communicator such as yourself learnt from people who choose to not vax?

            Simple sentences would be most helpful.

          • Facts? Oh goodness. So much. Where to start. Ok. First off, are you aware of the relationship between immunity/immunization and inoculation? Just want to get a sense for how much vocabulary I might need to explain because there’s no point in blurting out facts if they can’t be understood by the listener. Again. I need to know where you’re coming from but you are not being forthcoming of your own ideas, views and background.

          • Who?

            What on earth do my ideas, views and background have to do with all this knowledge you supposedly have? Just spell it out. If it’s actual science, my beliefs are irrelevant, the knowledge and facts will be there.

            And if I don’t get it there are plenty of very capable scientists, medics and others on this site who will have no trouble with it.

            And where is that list of PhDs?

          • I see. So again, you have no interest in learning it seems. I’m beginning to wonder if you’re the author of this article disguising herself under another account (perhaps multiple) to simply stoke the flames that her threads produce. And just in case you are, hear me out and please do the world a favor and publish articles with actual substance in them next time rather than daily rants. As a doctor you’re doing the world a disservice by publishing more empty calories. Your articles are like the fast food of the internet and are a cancer to the information age. I’ve given up on you WHO?.

          • Who?

            Just the science you have, just the facts you have. If they are as good as you say, they will be written in language scientists understand. Please share all this science, all the work from these PhDs, that will help me be wiser.

            How about you provide some substance if you’re concerned about what you perceive as a lack of substance here?

            I won’t bother denying to be Dr T, just thank you for mistaking me for someone so brave and knowledgeable.

            This post of yours is definitive proof that your butterfly has shown up, btw.

          • Stacy48918

            “I’m beginning to wonder if you’re the author of this article disguising herself under another account (perhaps multiple) to simply stoke the flames that her threads produce.”

            Has anyone else said it? BINGO!!!!!

            If it’s not on the board, it should be. 😛

          • Who?

            Yup.

            My personal favourite though is:

            ‘Facts? Oh goodness. So much. Where to start.’

            These guys are the gift that keeps on giving.

          • Who?

            Hang on, you claimed unique insight which I asked you to share. You shared are old, tired and discredited tropes, rejected by everyone except by the tinfoil hat brigade.

            Another grandiose anti-vaxxer: since you have nothing original, why would I pay any further attention to you at all?

          • Guest

            oh blast. just another troll. Can’t believe I took the bait.

          • Who?

            I live in hope that one day one of them will have something of value or interest to say.

            Not today, apparently.

          • Wren

            Troll? I clearly missed something here or disqus is acting up. Who has repeatedly asked you to share your insights, insights you apparently lack while claiming others should have them. The troll label seems to apply to you.

          • Who?

            I was seeing Guest, so Disqus is playing up, and I’m now thinking is HCM. He is a troll, no question.

            Disappointing as always.

          • HipsLikeCinderella

            I’m gonna go out on a limb here and state the obvious that she is certainly more qualified than you.

          • Which is why I was hoping for some substance but all I got from the article was empty calories.

          • SuperGDZ

            Then why are you wasting your time here instead of finding something more to your taste?

          • KarenJJ

            Why would you take anything here as fact? I don’t. I enjoy the discussion here and Dr Amy makes some very interesting points, but facts about vaccines etc or anything that actually affects my own health I always verify with my own doctor and specialists.

            Only anti-vaccinationists are happy to rely on medical information they find on the internet, in defiance of any experts they come across in real life.

          • No they usually talk to experts too. In fact there are many PhD’s out there with compelling evidence on both sides of the fence. I doubt, however, that you would acknowledge any point of view other than your own, even if from an expert.

          • Who?

            Awesome-can you share the names and quals of some of these PhDs?

          • KarenJJ

            Are you sure these PhDs with “both sides of the fence” actually perform peer-reviewed research in immunology and vaccines and have clinical experience with a wide variety of immune system issues?

            Because funny enough I have had vaccine and immune system discussions with a few now. My Immunologist was also a vaccine researcher in a past job prior to clinical practise (he has a PhD and medicine degree). He asked me about adverse reactions to vaccines. I actually hadn’t had any which surprised him as theoretically I should have (due to my underlying immune system problem).

            After our discussion, I took a look at adverse vaccine reactions and found all sorts of terrible horror stories and “won’t someone think of the children!” on the internet – but no real data and no real match for what I was trying to find with what I had. It doesn’t mean that the issues my immunologist was looking for don’t happen – because I’ve found a lot of discussion amongst patient support groups with similar issues to mine. Other’s seem to line up with the immunology theory better than I do.

            But how can I speak to expert immunologists (I’ve moved again and see another different batch of immunologists) and get frank and open discussion about vaccines, vaccine reactions and underlying immune system conditions and others still see some sort of conspiracy. They can’t be talking to the same people. The immunologists I’ve encountered are generally consistent with their knowledge and the advice can differ (as it did when discussing whether my daughter would receive the MMR) – but they explain why they differ in opinion etc such that I understand. The bits I’ve read on the internet are largely fear mongering and scare stories. Unless you’ve got links to something better than what I’ve read that I could discuss with my doctors.. I was open to the idea of not vaccinating my kids if they needed to forgo it. But they didn’t and despite the issues are fully vaccinated.

          • Who?

            Yes we’ll see how many names appear-my feeling is either they are all camera shy or will have PhDs from mail order universities.

            Of course it would be great if I’m wrong so there is actually someone to engage with.

          • Your kids will need to take close to thirty vaccines by the time they reach the age of 18 and another twenty in subsequent years. Do you keep yourself on schedule? Or choose to opt out of certain ones?

          • correction..thirty different shots, not thirty different types of shots.

          • KarenJJ

            meh – like I said earlier – my 5yo gives herself 30 shots in a month…. Are you sure it’s not needle phobia you’re dealing with? Not necessarily a problem of protecting people via a controlled introduction of disabled antigens more so a phobia of the delivery mechanism?

          • woah 30 shots! and your five year old does it herself. Please share this story. I’m fascinated!

          • Amazed

            Fascinated with a child’s medical condition? Wow.

          • Must be a sad place… your brain. How many different user accounts do you have on this page?

          • Amazed

            935823. Other questions?

          • KarenJJ

            You shouldn’t be surprised to see many people in agreement here. The majority of parents vaccinate their kids.

          • PrimaryCareDoc

            You’ve never heard of diabetes?

          • Oh yes I have but those aren’t vaccines, those are just insulin shots so I’m assuming KarenJJ is talking about something else. Let’s wait and see what she responds, unless you’re her with yet another account.

          • KarenJJ

            I don’t divulge the actual name because it could be identifying due to it’s relative rarity, but she injects a relatively recent biologics drug to control chronic inflammation. Needles are methods to get medication where it’s needed. If you’re regularly in discussions with Immunologists with PhDs you should be able to ask about the sorts of things kids with rare immune system issues need to do to keep themselves healthy.

            And what’s with the paranoia over posters here logging in with different names – firstly Dr Amy typically warns people if they are from the same IP address and secondly many of us in this discussion are long-termers. I’ve discussed stuff like this here previously and am consistent with what I say, albeit a bit evasive on the actual name.

          • Who?

            Sorry about that for your daughter. It’s a lot for her to take on.

            And btw I am the queen pretender since according to HCM I am Dr T in a not very cunning disguise. It’s a little flattering, I won’t deny it, but does speak to a certain need to have very limited numbers disagreeing with him rather than lots of individuals piling on.

            In any event that makes the rest of you not Dr T in disguise, unless you all are, of course….

          • Samantha06

            “And btw I am the queen pretender since according to HCM I am Dr T in a not very cunning disguise.”

            I’m thinking of that song by The Who…

            “Who are you? Who who, who who?….I really want to know….

          • Who?

            Hint-definitely not Dr T!!!!

          • Samantha06

            Ah ha! The truth comes out! Don’t you know HCM is so disappointed… 😉

          • Who?

            He won’t believe me anyway…all my protestations only fuel his conviction, I’m sure.

          • KarenJJ

            She’s good 🙂 but honestly – this “close to thirty vaccines” – is that meant to scare me or reassure me? I can’t decide whether to run for the hills or kowtow to big pharma?

          • KarenJJ

            You say “close to thirty vaccines” like it’s a bad thing?

          • I said “close to thirty vaccines” not sure where you got the bad thing part.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            n fact there are many PhD’s out there with compelling evidence on both sides of the fence. I doubt, however, that you would acknowledge any point of view other than your own, even if from an expert.

            Who are all these PhDs with “compelling evidence” on the other side of the fence? There are like two “usual suspects” that always get mentioned in a sea of immunologists, and they are, far and away, considered to be well outside the mainstream of the field. So just finding a PhD, even in a related field, who opposes vaccination is about as legitimate as the fact that there are people with PhDs who are creationists. That doesn’t mean they have “compelling evidence.”

            And don’t even get started on people without relevant PhDs, like Mayim Bialik or the ilk, because their opinion means about as much as mine (I also have a PhD in an unrelated area).

            So bring it on. Let’s hear the compelling evidence from PhDs on the other side of the fence.

          • Gosh where to start! Ok first off, just to give me a sense for where you’re coming from. Are you completely up to date on your vaccine schedule or are you selective? From your post I’m guessing you you’r over the age of 18 so you should have about 30 shots by now. You all caught up?

          • KarenJJ

            He just asked for a couple of names, you shouldn’t need a medical history for that.

          • Somewhereinthemiddle

            That’s an odd question to ask… Why should it matter “where he is coming from”? Or what a person’s vax status is. You either have support for your claims about PhDs and their evidence or you don’t. That is a rather amusing and novel deflection though.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            I have to say, I always am amused at the morons who think they are going to prove a point by coming here and over to Orac’s blog and challenge the readers, “Are you up to date on your shots?”

            Watching them try to scramble when everyone responds with, “Of course” is very entertaining.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Hey, dumbass, YOU were the one who claimed these immunology PhDs with compelling evidence. So why does it matter where I am coming from?

            Seriously, what does my vaccination status have to do with you claim? Nothing. Why don’t you just answer the fucking question?

          • Nick Sanders

            So, are you ever going to provide these PhDs and their amazing evidence, or do you plan to keep going off on sidetracks?

          • Unfortunately I just found this video of her being interviewed on FOX news and if you watch it carefully, it seems to illustrate she has no desire to listen or be constructive. The woman on the left also gives a really good example of how an issue can be completely warped by how studies are conducted and framed.
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L01V08y2Ui4

            This dr is looking more and more like a mouth-piece to me so I’m afraid you won’t get answers from her either. Maybe you should talk to some anti-vaccine people.

          • Who?

            Thing is, I’m interested.

            Will you tell me, since I am asking to engage? If not, okay, but I am sincerely interested in understanding the perspectives you describe.

            I talk to anti-vaccine people all the time, they are of the ‘we know more than doctors because of all our research on the internet’ persuasion, which I find unpersuasive and arrogant. Perhaps you know another kind?

          • My sense is that you’re not listening carefully enough (unless your encounter with these “people” is limited to forum posts) because most anti vaccine people I encounter (face to face) seem to be very level headed and anything but arrogant or self-entitled. They’re usually very caring people and very concerned about their community and family’s well-being. From my experience in talking with them, there are legitimate quality control and trust issues ranging all the way from research, development to deployment to final delivery, and yes, some are concerned about side effects but these seem to be less of a concern. There are also philosophical concerns, some which stem from religion and others from well founded reason (ingestion vs injection, etc). So, like I said, concerns vary from person to person and to really dive into the subject in any fair way it would require a serious study and debate. Far be it from me to be a mouth piece for everyone concerned about vaccines.

          • Who?

            I post on very few forums, so most of my no vax people are in my social circle.

            I”m sorry you don’t think I’m a good and careful listener. There are no ‘legitimate’ concerns about quality control or trust, in the sense that these things are the subject of high levels of care and regulation, and damage caused by quality control is effectively non-existent. So those concerns are there, and the people involved ‘know’ things they can’t describe or show evidence of, which is pretty unsatisfactory.

            Religion, okay, though I’m unaware of any in my part of the world that discourage vaccination.

            Concerns about mode of delivery again have no basis in fact, and those who feel them don’t want to hear or understand why they could think differently.

            So far just some of the usual tired excuses. Very disappointing.

          • Corey Firepony

            I call bollocks on this.

            If they had those concerns, here’s a list of people who they could ask

            Chemist (for the chemicals involved in vaccine synthesis)
            Biochemist (Interaction of same chemicals and the human body)
            Biologist(basic understanding of how biological life works)
            Immunologist (Works specifically with vaccine and vaccine research)
            General Practitioner (Medical Doctor)
            E.R. Doctor (Again, Medical Doctor)
            Nurse (Medical Professional)
            Pathologist (studies disease and the cause of disease)
            Paramedic (Medical professional)
            EMT (Medical Professional)
            Pharmacist (usually requires masters or doctoral in Chemistry, medical professional)

            University Schools (research institutions where people are competing for recognition, participate in double and triple blind medical testing, a commitment to the passing on of knowledge )

            FDA (Food and Drug Administration)
            CDC (Center for Disease Control)
            NHS (National Health Service- Britain)
            AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics)
            AMA (American Medical Association)

            Drug manufacturer

            The problem is that they don’t have a legitimate concern, because if they did, there are plenty of places they could go to find the information, the studies, any controversy/concern. The real problem is that they don’t trust these people, because they believe they are pharmaceutical shills

          • yugaya

            We are not looking at same video apparently. What I saw:

            – dr Tuteur in response whether homebirth is safe underline how all studies and data up to this point proves that homebirth at least triples the chances of a baby dying.

            – CNM Davis being deliberately misleading in her response by saying that the single most important risk lowering factor is having a skilled birth attendant (true) without acknowledging the fact that that is by far NOT the case in the majority of US homebirths, and that lay midwives such as CPMs, DMs or LMs would not be considered skilled enough to attend births in any other developed country.

            -CNM Davis further indicating that the studies are wrong because they do not differentiate between CNM (real) midwife) attended planned OOH births (which would be the ones that have proper risking out and transfer plans that according to her make homebirth safe) and all other quack midwife homebirths. Since 95% of CNM attended births happen in hospitals, and since in Oregon’s hideous study out of 1 995 PLANNED OOH births exactly
            1 235 were PLANNED to be attended by quackos what she is saying is nonsense – the impact of a few percent of regulated ethical and safe practitioners with these numbers does not make up for the rest of homebirths which are attended by unregulated, unethical and unsafe charlatans or make OOH birth in general any bit safer.

            – some airhead asking a stupid nonsequential question about whether despite all of that it is still just a matter of choice. In response dr Tuteur is able to only repeat that it is a choice that must be based on informed consent, and that the information that needs to go out there that you need to know before you consent is that despite the flaws in the studies they ALL show that for your baby homebirth is at least three times deadlier than a hospital birth.

            “The woman on the left also gives a really good example of how an issue can be completely warped by how studies are framed.”

            There, fixed that for ya.

          • Amazed

            The woman on the left you so admire is responsible for the death of at least one baby (that I know of). Mary Beth Chapman, Whose mother believed the liar you admire and her joke of a “study” “proving” the safety of homebirth. The bitch on the left knew her own “study” proved no such thing, so she warped it into deluding expectant mothers that it did.

            Anti-vaxxers have long ago lost the right to be treated like human beings. They are fucking pigs whose concerns (My child is pure, you keep your leukemia survivor child at home and she caught leukemia from her vaccines anyway, per Dr Jack (Wolf) Wolfson) should be mocked and ostracized. You want to find common ground with them? Good luck to you. For myself, if I ever find myself alone in a room with this doctor or the bitches who bleat about their precious pure snowflakes never being touched by ebil vaccines but when their homeopathy doesn’t work rush to their pediatrician carrying their little disease vector because stupid pediatrician suddenly knows best and infecting innocent people who just had the bad luck of being there… well, I won’t be able to keep myself from telling them what I think of them and their “concerns”. As Jennifer Margulis said, she wouldn’t feel any guilt if her decision not to vaccinate killed someone else’s child. You think this is a belief that should be treated respectfully? A woman deserving respect because she popped out some Very Special Snowflakes?

            We tried persuading them into reason and it brought us to epidemics, Dr Wolfson the Wolf being fearless in expressing his terrifying beliefs and Dr Bob lamenting the fact that we cruelly interfered with the natural order because hey, diseases were here long before us!

            You want to argue with people who endorse such beliefs? Good luck. It’s been proven not to work. Maybe ostracism will, who knows?

          • yugaya

            I didn’t know it was her. I reached out to Bambi after reading her blog and if you want to hear a woman who is an inspiration in courage, ability to grow and learn and better herself through most unimaginable pain go over there and read it.

            It’s easy to not trust the lies if you are like me, early on inflicted with reason and science and pro chess-playing uncles and their personal libraries, not prone to too much religion or direct influence of beliefs of others around me. It takes a mountain of strength more to travel the road Bambi has traveled in the name of her beautiful daughter.

          • KarenJJ

            Wasn’t she the one that blocked their car in the driveway to get them to the hospital and left her to go and play soccer?

          • Amazed

            No, that was Bomb’s story, I believe. Bambi gor a midwife who missed the birth by an hour, looked at the baby, proclaimed her healthy, sent the EMTs away, and a few hours later Mary died.

          • Amazed

            Indeed. I remember Bambi mentioning that she was shown the study Daviss and her husband did and it helped convince her that homebirth was just as safe. She didn’t have the scientific education that would have enabled her to notice that the two groups in the study were by no way equal, with the hospital birth one extending back to 1960s.

            I was stricken by Liz Paparella’s account of her journey to homebirth. When she found her way to our favourite nest of vipers, she was your average mom, not thrilled with her hospital births, maybe crunchier than most, but the thought of turning her back on the hospital had never crossed her mind until she was sucked, slowly, deep into the empowering, loving, and whatnot swamp of “safe or safer!”

            Those were ordinary women who just took the comforts and good outcomes in their lives for granted (as most of us do nowadays, myself included. I mean, rationally I know there’s always a danger and I take precautions but I absolutely don’t believe it will happen to me or mine). And they were exploited by homebirth midwives and self-called researchers, both represented by the woman in the video.

          • Samantha06

            I loved what Bombshellrisa said about her aunt wanting to chase down an anti-vaxxer in her scooter and hit them with her cane…

          • HipsLikeCinderella

            Well I would take your advice and talk with anti vaccine people, but I prefer not to talk to idiots 😉

          • What I’ve learned from talking to the anti vax community is that they are incredibly literate on the subject, not arrogant or on some sort of ivory tower. I’m kind of mind blown actually when I find out the extent to which they research. Reminds me of those crazies that read everything on the food label and know everything about how our food is made. Gets to be a little much sometimes but ignorant and uninformed is definitely not a description I would expect unless coming from a bigot.

          • Amy Tuteur, MD

            You’re confused. The anti-vax community is not scientifically literate; they are PSEUDO-literate.

            To be scientifically literate involves reading the scientific papers (the whole papers, not the abstracts) across the breadth of the particularly area. It does NOT mean sharing a bibilography salad of outdated, tangential and discredited studies cut and pasted from anti-vax websites.

          • I’m referring to immunologists with PhD’s. Is that literate enough for you? Btw Ms Tuteur, get your terms right. Immunity is different from immunization in that being immunized is different from being immune (referring to your posts on this website). As a doctor you might want to consult with immunologists before writing about the subject.

          • KarenJJ

            You got a name for an Immunologist with a PhD that recommends against vaccinating? Want to share a few links to their research for us to have a read and open our minds to the possibility that vaccines are a serious health problem?

          • I could I guess, but given your responses so far my sense is you only want names of such people so you can crucify them. Your mind is clearly very closed.

          • Furthermore, it’s not like they’re that hard to find. Just do a little research.

          • KarenJJ

            So why are you trying to hide their names on here? If their position is already publicly identifiable?

          • Because you and everyone else on this thread strike me as the kind of people who don’t like ideas that differ from their own. So I’m trying to do you the favor by letting you do your own investigation. You should find quite a bit of consensus among the PhD community on the science used to back their claims against vaccination. Prove to me that you have become familiar with these ideas by posting them here and your arguments against them. Heck, I could even point you to pro-vaccine PhD authors that have published some startling research. But you have no desire to be educated by me, so take some time to see what you can find and report back.

          • Who?

            Show me one line that suggests anyone here doesn’t like ideas different from their own. One line.

            Please post these consensus building papers. You assert they exist, you prove it.

            Are you a PhD in immunology? If not, I have no wish to be educated by you on this topic, but happy to look at anything you put up by people with those qualifications.

          • Nope, I don’t have a PhD in immunology, so there you have it. You said it yourself, “you have no desire to learn from me on the subject” Therefore go off and research. More importantly, talk to your friends that are anti vax and see if, in fact, this author properly reflects their point of view.

          • Who?

            I have, she does.

            They are in my world, not friends, and I spend a lot of time listening. When I start talking, just as I have with you, gently challenging, probing, asking more questions, they, like you, turn all mysterious and belligerent. They too can never quite find the amazing articles by all these talented scientists that will totally change my mind. And they can never quite resist coming back for more.

          • Wait.. you have a PhD in immunology?

          • Who?

            No. Your point?

            Do you think I need one to expose shallow thinking?

            Being an expert in an altogether different area I have respect for training, education and experience. So bring on your PhDs, people on here will love to read them and are more than qualified to tell someone like me whether or not it is something I need to take seriously.

            I think you don’t have a respectable PhD to bring to the table. Go on, prove me wrong.

          • KarenJJ

            You misunderstand. We don’t want to learn from YOU we want to learn from those people that you found so convincing – I’d like to see the research that convinced you of your opinions on vaccines beyond WHO and all the other groups out there.

            These people with PhDs in Immunology that have information so readily publicly available obviously have something they want to add to the conversation. They’re proper scientists, aren’t they? So they’d be used to being questioned? They’d be used to arguing over scientific details? They’d have defended their thesis to a group of other experts in their field.

            What exactly are you trying to protect them from? I’ve “researched” anti-vaccination websites in the past and been unimpressed. But maybe there’s more about these days that’s more convincing. You judge us as close minded the more we push for the information.. What are we to make of that? Are you embarrassed that the information won’t hold up?
            Or perhaps you’ve checked and the PhD was in something like neurobiology and ‘oops’ wrong field and you’d rather attack us than admit you’ve got nothing…

          • KarenJJ

            That’s a very convenient position to take. If they have a PhD they also have publicised research. If you want to bring up all these Immunologists with PhDs that support your argument that you talk to regularly you should be able to point us towards them so that we can evaluate what they have to say – or in my case run the ideas past an immunologist with a PhD the next time I see one. You seem to be asking me to just take your word for it. It’s a funny way to try and win in a disagreement.

          • Oh I definitely can, but you can easily find them online and what I’ve learned from our little exchange here is that you have no desire to have your mind changed by someone else. So take some time to learn on your own by doing a little research. I think you’ll find the knowledge you gain this way to be more effective.

          • Kq

            Again, typical. “Oh, I can’t actually source my claims or back up anything I say, YOU go find this mysterious yet 100% accurate and relevant information that Have I have.”

            I’ve gone through so many bingo cards on this thread.

          • Give me your list of requirements for legitimate sources and I’ll see if I can find something that suits your palate.

          • Wren

            Peer reviewed published research. Actual papers, rather than just abstracts.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            “Oh, I can’t actually source my claims or back up anything I say, YOU
            go find this mysterious yet 100% accurate and relevant information that
            Have I have.”

            Yeah, it is so typical.

            The next step is for her to get all pissed off and give in, doing a quick google search of their own and post the first thing they find that looks halfway close to what they are claiming, although, in fact, it won’t actually say what they originally claimed.

            But they have to throw a bunch of links in there

          • Who?

            Oh, secret immunological work. Right. So secret you can quote it but not post the material.

            Professionals disagree with each other all the time, I’m sure your people are pretty robust.

            No doubt their thorough work will speak for itself-it’s a shame to deprive the world of the benefit of it just to spare a few hurt feelings, surely.

          • Ah yes, the more words you place in my mouth the more it becomes increasingly evident you have no desire to converse. I feel sorry for you.

          • Who?

            Thanks, it’s doing me so much good already…

          • Kq

            Typical parachuter. They have sources but can’t be bothered to share them because reasons.

          • KarenJJ

            Image over substance. It goes back to the ego thing again. Are you feeling flattered that you are smarter and nicer than the rest of the “sheeple” because you just *know* something really special? Well, maybe you don’t know what you think you know. Maybe others know better. Maybe the nice, chatty, charismatic person is not the image they’ve created. How do their actions match their words?

          • Wren

            You do realise that many, many people have tried to address the actual concerns of anti-vaxers and countless studies have been done to do just that thing. It’s an ever-shifting goal. If the concern is the MMR causing autism (a long standing one, thanks Wakefield), studies are done to show it does not. Oh wait, now it’s mercury. Take that out and do loads more studies. Oh wait, now it’s too many, too soon. Now the concern is not autism, but some unspecified subtle and nuanced issues. Find a way to refute those and it will just morph into a new concern.

          • I’m guessing it’s not people’s concerns that change, it’s simply that their concerns are varied and complex. Media just likes picking the clown that’s easiest to poke fun at by giving that one a platform when it suits them. Would you at least agree that this article fails miserably at addressing any concerns by antivaxers?

          • Who?

            Your first couple of remarks are broadly accurate in my opinion. And the media has a huge and shame-filled part in all this.

            I don’t think the article is aimed at reducing their concerns, which the author, who will correct me if I understate it, finds moronic.

            It’s a call to arms about the author’s perceptions. If you believe those are inaccurate, and there are constructive ways to engage with those who choose to not vaccinate their children, let’s hear them. Most regulars on this thread would love to have an effective way to do that.

          • Young CC Prof

            Actual anti-vaxxers, people who are out there politically fighting vaccines, are extremely difficult to reach with things like facts or logic. “Vaccine-hesitant” parents are more common and they generally ARE reachable, although the message has to be targeted to the individual. Media campaigns probably won’t work as well as one-on-one conversations.

          • Wren

            My statements of concerns that have been high on the list come not from the media but from anti-vax statements in their own forums and in refutation to pro-vax sites.
            The goal of this particular article is not to address any concerns of the antivaxers at all. Not addressing those concerns is a failure in the same way that not making any baskets in a football game is a failure.

          • Corey Firepony

            Please, feel free to message me. If I have the knowledge, I will address any anti-vax concerns you have. If I cant, I will refer you to people who can.

          • Guesty

            When she refuses to wear socks to school, my child is worried about subtle and nuanced issues, too. The socks don’t match her dress. She can’t get the purple stripes lined up evenly and it makes her insane. Lots of nuance, lots of subtly. Unfortunately, it’s 20 below outside and her concerns about stripes lining up — while of deep significance to her — are completely irrelevant in the face of frostbite. I can be sorry she’s having a frustrating morning without allowing her to think that the line of her stripes is of equivalent importance to having her feet properly covered.

          • Samantha06

            “Most antivaxers I’ve come into contact with are worried about much more subtle and nuanced issues.”

            What “subtle and nuanced issues” are you referring to? I’ll just echo what I’ve already said in a previous comment. All of these issues have been ADDRESSED, on this blog, very respectfully and FAILED. Unfortunately, anti-vaxxers are not interested in learning real science. They’ve proven time and time again, they are more willing to believe celebrities, lay people and snake oil salesman. If you can come up with a better way to “get through to them” please share it!

          • Samantha, I’m afraid that you are misinformed. The nuanced concerns have not been addressed. Farm from it, in fact. More concerns keep arising from the lack of response by the medical community. And when any PhD happens to disclose new findings that would help shed some light on these concerns, the medical community revokes their license. Doesn’t sound like a place that welcomes new science. By all means, let’s just keep basing our medicine on discoveries from the 1920’s.

          • Samantha06

            So I will ask again, what exactly are the nuanced concerns that haven’t been addressed?

          • I’d be happy to, but to better understand where you’re coming from please explain your point of view regarding vaccines, why there is no reason to argue their validity and so on.

          • Samantha06

            So, like so many others who parachute in here, you make a claim, you are asked for examples to support it, and instead of answering the question, you turn it around and ask me to “explain my point of view.” Good try, but I don’t play that game.

          • That’s what I expected. Like everyone else on this thread you have no desire to hear an opinion other than your own. Before imparting ideas one must always understand their listener first. Sorry you don’t wish to learn.

          • Guest

            That’s what I thought. Just like everyone else on this thread you have no desire to hear any opinion other than your own. In order to impart knowledge one must always understand the capacity of the listener first. Sorry you have no desire to learn.

          • That’s what I expected. Like everyone else on this thread you have no desire to hear an opinion other than your own. Before imparting ideas one must always understand their listener first. Sorry you don’t wish to learn.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            What “subtle and nuanced issues” are you referring to?

            “But my baby is a precious snowflake who is different from everyone else.”

            That’s the “nuance” and it’s not all that subtle. And, unfortunately, they don’t listen to the answer: OK, and no, she isn’t.

          • Samantha06

            Yes, and once you address their supposed “concerns” they all of a sudden have another “concern.” It’s never ending. And they deny the actual science by saying the science has been “manipulated.” Good grief…

          • Ellzee Mason

            I think she made the point that we have been trying to educate anti-vaxers about the SCIENCE for a long time, and they just aren’t believing it. So she moved on from that to trying to ascertain WHY they won’t believe the massive amount of science in front of them.
            And I think she just may have some very valid points.

  • Lars Eighner

    Just tossing out something that I’ve been mulling over for a few days: It seems to me there are parallels between anorexia and being anti-vax. All three of your points lead me to think there might be something to that.

    • KarenJJ

      I think there’s some parallels between the desire to control the uncontrollable in anorexia and the clean eating/anxiety about chemicals/attachment parenting etc etc. But that’s purely speculation from someone that has no expertise in anorexia or mental health issues.

      • Lars Eighner

        Some people may know I had some experience with homelessness. When I got off the street, my partner’s brother gave us a TV. One of the first things I saw on TV was a special about agoraphobia. They visited a woman who had not left her house in some large number of years. The house was a mansion, in the top ten homes I have ever seen, in spite of my going to school with people who lived in the River Oaks section of Houston and visiting many of their homes. I could only think two things: If I had a home like that, I would never leave it either, and How come I never met anyone living on the streets who had agoraphobia?

        So, I kind of wonder, are their anorexics among people where the availability of food is really an issue. If you go to village where all the kids are starving, are any of them anorexic and glad not to have food forced on them? Or is anorexia a disease of privilege?

        So, anti-vax seems to me to be a disease of privilege. My great grandmother was a survivor of a family that lost 7 children under the age of ten to diphtheria in two waves in Illinois. The first wave took all four children under ten, the second wave came seven years later and took the three children born in the mean time. People would have been glad to take a vaccine even if the vaccination had a mortality rate of 30%. It is only from a position of privilege that people refuse vaccines with adverse event rates of less than 1 in 100,000.

        ..

        • Who?

          Lars so happy to hear your voice. What a tragic story of your great-grandmother.

  • Kq

    An observation – when someone below commented simply that they’re scared about vaccinations because a friend’s baby had a reaction… The meeen terrible provax people here… were sympathetic and kind, validating that it’s ok to be scared and politely sharing resources to help counter the fear.

    Funny, isn’t it? How commenters saying “I’m not antivax BUT (long list of standard antivax tropes)” get owned, but commenters expressing actual concerns get…support, kindness and actual information? It’s almost like we want people to actually learn, but are unwilling to tolerate antivax propaganda shills!

    ETA: I used the word actually and it’s variants way too many times, but I don’t have time to correct!

    • yugaya

      I for one will always try to talk to people about fears associated with being a parent and being scared of vaccines. Parroting, automated, antivaxx script spewing advocates on the other hand…you really cannot talk to THAT.

      • KarenJJ

        Yeah, I see anti-vax advocates similar to people that egg on suicidal people that are looking ready to jump from a height. Instead of trying to talk someone down from their irrational fears and mental processes, anti-vax advocates are shouting “jump”.

        Eg, the “pathogen corpses” from wayyy below. If someone is anxious and fearful, let’s go and make it worse…

  • Amazed

    Hey, Dr Amy, is there a problem with the site? There were a few comments by a guest who wanted to tell us that vaccines were evil because the doses were the same for adults and children. I can’t see them now. I mean, I know we’re all deadly afraid of our Big Pharma loyalties being exposed but I swear, the posts were neither long nor too inspiring. They were no danger to our checks.

    Or is it Disqus acting up on me again?

    • Who?

      I can still see them but can’t respond-I tried-because they apparently are not active.

      • KarenJJ

        Saw that too, but can’t see it now.. It’s not normally that sort of thing Dr Amy might delete and considering how long winded this discussion has become I’m presuming disqus is struggling to cope.

        • Amazed

          Probably. I mean, if my “fucking animal” still stands, what’s the chance of such posts being deleted?

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      I haven’t deleted anything, so I’m not sure why that’s happenng.

    • Cobalt

      There was one earlier that their comment kept changing every time someone responded to it. Also, the areas with a “reply to a reply to a reply” chain that is 40 replies (or more) wide are getting a little goofy. Disqus just isn’t up to the task.

  • 90Lew90

    What a brilliant post! I’m not often struck by blog posts but I take my hat off to you. Keep up the good work.

    Best Wishes,

    Lew

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      Thanks!!

  • LeanPocket
    • Samantha06

      haha! Love it!!

  • JillinNYC

    This is a refreshing addition to this dialogue, much needed. I think this may differ depending on region. My experience has been a bit different in that the area I live in – New York City – does not have a pocket of privileged people (that I know of anyway) that are anti-vaxxers. No way, it’s the opposite here,

    The anti-vaxxers I know from the Northeast occupy a corner of the spiritual community and from what I’ve seen with this group, it’s the opposite of the California issue – its class warfare.

    It’s all the same issues discussed so well in this article, especially ego and unreflective rebellion. But what stands out to me is an unconscious desire to give the finger to expertise and the white color educated professionals who seem to have what they don’t – privilege, higher education from well known colleges, intellectual and cultural sophistication. They have a way to call them sheeple, robots, to look down on them and feel empowered. So throw in class resentment to this mix and its especially hopeless. They will never budge.

    • Samantha06

      How sad.. they are cutting off their noses to spite their faces..

    • SporkParade

      Unfortunately, NYC does have a pocket of anti-vaxxers. That’s why there was a measles outbreak on the UWS last year. The good news is that the rest of the city won’t put up with is, which is why the schools have some of the most stringent vaccination requirements in the country (no personal belief exemptions, mandatory vaccines sometimes includes the flu shot).

  • aharne

    This. Is. Amazing. Thank you for stating what I have been thinking in such a clear and coherent fashion.

  • alex

    I’m afraid of a bad reaction from a vaccine. A friend of mine’s baby was hospitalized from a vaccine reaction and that was scary. I’m not privileged or anti authoritarian, I’m just worried.

    • Who?

      I’m sorry the baby had a reaction, and hope he or she is well now.

      Worried is fine, and reasonable with that experience. If you’ve got kids coming up to vax time, perhaps talk to your doctor about what happened, how often it happens, and what the diseases being vaccinated against look like.

      It’s hard to make a decision that hurts your child, when the option of doing nothing seems to have no consequences. But being unvaxxed is bad for your child and bad for your community.

    • Amazed

      Quite understandable. I hope and trust the baby recovered since you didn’t mention any lasting consequences.

      I’ll still say that you should be afraid of death more than a bad reaction. I’m quite sure my greatgrandmother would have given the world for having her TWO children hospitalized after a vaccine reaction than having them die from VPDs in their teens which is what happened. She started with three children, ended up with one. My other greatgrandmother started with three children and lost her son. THAT scares me more. Just like Olivia Dahl’s story does. And the story of those two teens that took place nowadays. I wonder how their pediatrician felt when two of his or her own patients met their agonizing death solely because he or she was their pediatrician – and also the pediatrician of anti-vaxxers.

      http://www.thelocal.de/20130614/50305

      Talk to your pediatrician. And keep in mind that being hospitalized usually ends up with staying alive. Unlike dying from a VPD.

    • Siri

      Fair enough. But you’re a parent. You owe it to your child to deal with that fear rationally and make a responsible choice. If you allow your fear to paralyse you, you’re not doing your job properly.

    • yugaya

      And that is ok. I am afraid of bad reactions from vaccines too. I go nuts whenever my kids are vaccinated, the irrational side takes over and I watch like an insane person for every tiniest sign that something went wrong. I’ve read all those adverse reactions warnings and they scare me senseless. Please talk to qualified medical professionals about your fears because they are the ones who can help you address them in a rational manner, something that I as a parent am often unable to do. Knowing someone whose baby suffered a severe vaccine reaction increases your fear, and I think it would help to talk about that specifically as well.

      • Who?

        There was a dad at the doc yesterday having a very little baby vaxxed, and she was Most Seriously Displeased about it. He came out on the verge of tears himself. We’ve all been there, and it is hard. Even harder to my mind when they are a bit older and looking at you with such trust as the needle goes in.

        But for the best, absolutely.

        • Julia

          That reminds me of my daughter’s 3 month vaccine when the nurse said to hold her leg between my leg while she got the shot – then told me to stop gripping so hard with my leg because I was hurting her leg because I was so tense and scared! It makes me laugh now. And my daughter is completely unafraid of shots now despite my anxieties for her. 🙂

    • JillinNYC

      That happened to my baby – he’s now a strapping ten year old boy who plays soccer and eats me out of house and home. He was fine after a couple of hours. Incidents do occur, but they are very rare and the odds are very much with you. Life does have risks and certainly no medical intervention is 100 percent effective ever.

      Think of it this way: its like getting on an airplane. Yes, something could happen and sadly things do happen. But there are 50,000 flights a day in this world, literally – and around 1400 people a year die in plane crashes. That doesn’t mean we won’t travel, we certainly cannot live in fear that way, that’s a living death. The odds are with you always on an airplane – or getting a vaccine.

      Driving our cars every day is much more dangerous, appx 10,000 times more dangerous than getting a vaccine. Don’t let people scare you with junk science, just think of that airplane.

      I remember taking my baby in for his vaccines and just cringing because of that crazy needle. The visuals of the process don’t help. But it’s over quickly and so much harder on Mom, lol. They waaaa and then its over. Then they won’t get some horrible diseases!

    • Samantha06

      Understandable. I’m of the generation who had all the diseases and I need to get the shingles vaccine. I’m a little scared about that too, but I’d rather take that risk than get shingles. And I can tell you from experience, you don’t want your little ones to get measles or any of the other diseases. I (and all my siblings) were VERY ill with them and I am pretty sure I had mild encephalitis. My mom told me she was always scared to death one of us was going to die. And I know for a fact that if those vaccines had been available when I was a kid, my parents would have rushed us to the doctor to get them. Those reactions are rare, but the diseases themselves are worse. Maybe talk to your doctor about your fears?

    • Guesty

      Totally understandable. With all the nonsense out there about vaccines being dangerous, it can feel safer to do the passive thing (nothing) than the active thing (take your kid for a shot a lot of people are telling you is dangerous.)

      Bad vaccine reactions do happen — but they are infinitely less common than bad car accidents, drownings, and household accidents. You expose your child to more danger on the drive to and from the pediatrician than you do in getting the shot. A certain amount of risk is just part of life. In this case, the active thing (vaccinating) is far less risky than the passive thing (leaving your child vulnerable to devastating diseases.)

    • I think it can be scary. I’m a nurse, am probably over-vaccinated myself (if that’s possible!), vaccinated my daughter, and will vaccinate the new kid arriving in July. But yes, when you hear about legitimate vaccine horror stories – medical mysteries – it is scary. A documentary that really, really helped me – even as a pro-vaccine peep – was NOVA: Calling the Shots. It talks about how the immune response can activate a variety of problems that these children would eventually be exposed to down the line…whenever their first fever occurred. I’m not explaining this well. Here is the link: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/body/vaccines-calling-shots.html

      Hope it helps!

      • KarenJJ

        Yes – vaccines can cause a flare of an underlying condition for me and my eldest. But so can regular illness and injury (oddly enough injury more so than illness – someone that knows more about inflammatory response might guess at why that is better than me).

        • Exactly. There are numerous types of inflammation….at one point, probably back in nursing school, I knew them all. Not so much anymore. They are all part of our bodies’ normal and natural response…and protect us and help us heal on several levels.

    • Phil Beebe

      Some, very very few, people have bad reactions to certain vaccines. Usually because they have a, previously unknown, allergy to one of the components in the vaccine. For instance, people with egg allergies have a bad reaction to flu shots, people who have a yeast allergy have a bad reaction to the Hep B shots. But, even then, the bad reaction is seldom as bad as the problems faced by contracting the disease itself.

      Being worried is okay, but – as others have said – talk to your doctor about your concerns.

    • Julia

      I can understand your fear – I had a lot of fears about vaccines after my baby had an anaphalactic (I think I spelled that wrong) reaction to penicillin. It was such an awful experience that I was terrified to put any more chemicals in her body. But with lots of support from my pediatrician and the nurses and my mom (who is a retired pediatric nurse) she received all of her vaccines and has had to take a different antibiotic later on and was fine and is now a healthy, happy tween. Rest assured, just because my daughter could die if she took certain antibiotics, doesn’t mean your child will die if he/she needs and takes antibiotics. The same with vaccines. It is much easier to deal with hospitalization from a reaction to a life saving drug or vaccine than the even more awful possibility of hospitalization from a deadly disease. Trust your pediatrician and hang in there and know others know how you feel!

    • Wren

      I do understand that, and felt some of it myself. However, some of my earliest memories include my baby sister in the hospital with whooping cough, and that was after she had had the first vaccine in that series. I worried about a reaction, but was terrified of my baby getting whopping cough and vaccinated the day they were old enough with both of my kids.

  • moonshin

    if an unvaccinated kid gets sick his parents should be charged with child neglect

  • A very well-written, thought-provoking article. However, I think you are missing one key factor in why many parents distrust vaccines: because they are promoted by government. The conservative movement has spent the past three decades and more spreading the propaganda that government cannot do anything right, that it cannot be trusted, that it needs to be curtailed. This, coupled with scandals such as Watergate, Iran-contra, the infamous Tuskegee experiments and more, lead to an instinctive suspicion of any government initiative, no matter how benign it may seem to the rest of us. When people at the CDC and their public school (the latter of which many see as godless indoctrination centers anyhow) tell them they need to vaccinate their kids, is it any wonder they balk?

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      When people at the CDC and their public school (the latter of which many see as godless indoctrination centers anyhow) tell them they need to vaccinate their kids, is it any wonder they balk?

      Well, no, it’s no wonder they balk, but that’s because they are clueless gits.

      The CDC Is not “the government” in any way (see my comment from a couple days ago). The CDC itself has lots of hired scientists on staff in adminstrative positions to a large extent. The science carried out for the CDC, including things like the recommended vaccination schedule, is done by private contractors, who are chosen on the basis of their expertise in the field. The committee that makes the vaccination schedule is made up by people in positions like “Chair of Pediatric Immunology at LSU Medical School.”

      As I said, I have done consulting work with the NSF. That doesn’t make me “The government” at all.

      • Justin Crosser

        So your saying the CDC is an independent organization and they are not part of the government?

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          They are not “the government”

          They don’t govern. They are a center set up by the government to determine the best health practices for the country. The people they use to make those determinations are not CDC staff, but are the top experts in the country in the area of infectious disease.

        • Neya

          The top experts in the country COMPETE for CDC funding to do their research. Then, results are published in peer-reviewed journals. Many of the publishers of peer-reviewed journals are not even based in the US. Elsevier is in the Netherlands, for example.

        • Wren

          Even if the CDC were a part of the US government, all the other equivalent organisations in other countries around the world are not. If one cared to posit a worldwide conspiracy in which all of these governments and millions of scientists and doctors are all wrong about vaccines I suppose one could, but it totally undermines any further argument.

          • Young CC Prof

            Do conspiracies of some sort exist? Yes. But whether or not a conspiracy is plausible depends on how many people would have to be involved, and whether they have diverse financial incentives.

            There are many thousands of genuine experts who tell us that vaccines are safe and beneficial, quite a few of whom do not work for either a pharmaceutical company or a government. They get vaccines for themselves and their families. Conspiracy is wildly implausible.

          • Wren

            Exactly.

          • Who?

            I think a capacity to believe in conspiracy theories displays a kind of naivete that would in other circumstances be rather sweet.

            Conspiracies are notoriously difficult to get going and in these days in particular, practically impossible to keep secret. Perhaps this should be a threshold test for a certain sort of anti-vaxxer: anyone who can’t see and appreciate that worldwide conspiracies aren’t real perhaps lacks the intellectual firepower to manage the basic understanding required for vaccines.

    • Teri Coley Adams

      A rabid fear of anything that has to do with the government is not logical. Example: The government supports seat belt laws. Seat belts save lives. They are not evil simply because the government supports them. This is just one small example. Do I totally trust that everything my government supports is in my best interest? No, but I also do not lean to the other extreme and denigrate all the good that our government and laws provide.

    • Lars Eighner

      I don’t think the bulk of the problem is the home-schooled by Mom/Sis types with old washing machines in the yard. That is thrust of point 1 in the article. It is the master of fine arts, tree-hugging, elite “natural food” shoppers. They have never faced a real hardship in their lives, they were no good at math, and if they were history majors they did not learn anything about the history of disease except 1665. These are the people who are demanding gluten-free when they do not have a real gluten sensitivity. They are not completely immune to science: they believe in climate change; and they are not opposed to government when it seems to be doing something about climate change. They think marijuana is medicine but vaccinations are not.

      • Daniel Delgado

        hey now, I am a scientist with a B.S. in chemical engineering and both I and my wife are granola swilling, tree hugging, natural food eating, fine art lovers and we vaccinate our kids. In fact everyone in my circle of friends, who have like habits and interests, vaccinate without a moment’s trepidation. I also happen to think marijuana is medicine and there are plenty of peer reviewed studies to prove it. I don’t partake personally but then, I don’t have a medical need. My wife is also on a gluten free diet, albeit by doctors order for complications of Hashimoto’s disease(hypothyroidism). Point being, don’t lump us all together. We can love fine arts and science, they are not mutually exclusive. Just ask DaVinci.

        • Who?

          Probably many regulars who post here share a similar profile with you. We don’t all bang on about it though, as I imagine you don’t, having other more valuable things to do with our time than try to big-note ourselves one consumer product or experience at a time.

          For my money, when lifestyle becomes identity is when the trouble starts. There’s a whole row at my recently renovated supermarket for ‘lifestyle’ drinks. I have no idea what that means and am studiously avoiding it. Have never seen anyone in that aisle come to think of it, so it will likely be gone soon.

          • Young CC Prof

            “Lifestyle drinks.”

            That gives me a mental image of a fashionable cocktail with a frilly umbrella, but that’s probably not what they’re selling.

          • Who?

            No booze at the supermarket here, not that a slug or two wouldn’t go down well. I loathe the supermarket.

            It’s more likely to be weird concoctions involving coconut water, that green slime all the exercise nuts seem to be drinking, and water with either vitamins, or ‘twists’ of flavours, or both.

            It is seriously no wonder half the world is obese when you see the crap that passes for food. We need a word for things you can eat, that sort of pass for nutrition and won’t kill you today, but which really are not much good.

  • Guest

    No, this is not what “everyone gets wrong about anti-vaccine parents”. What they get wrong is they belittle them and ridicule them with such vehemence that they cannot possibly want to hear your side of it. Please don’t tell me that you’ve tried. Do you, as a doctor, give up that easily? But they need discussion, not arrogance and conceit. Listen to their fears. They are not all ‘priviledged’. They are concerned for the health of their children. Some of them are doubtless conceited and arrogant and unpleasant, but they are human, after all. You’ll win them over with transparency, with an attitude of helping people, not looking down on them, and by listening to them. The level of ignorance in the comments and in this article is stomach churning. Is this really how people want to treat one another in the 21st century? Parents are concerned that vaccines are developed by businesses with an eye on profit, not on health; they are concerned about the government, the businesses and medical professions’ intentions and priorities; they are concerned about a history of deception and failings in the medical profession, much of which comes from their own experiences of bad healthcare. They are concerned that the number of vaccines and the contents of them are not as well tested as other drugs, and that the ingredients in vaccines are unnecessary and often impossible to uncover, except for the odd, often untrustworthy leak. If vaccines are safe, why the secrecy? Why not be transparent? What is there to fear as a doctor, as a pharmaceutical company, as a medical professional, by telling the truth and being open and honest? Very few parents would take these decisions about their child’s health lightly, and many will spend months agonising about the decision anyway. If you want to ridicule and belittle people, go to the YouTube comments section with the rest of them. But please don’t do it in the name of science or medicine.

    • Life Tip

      Literally every single one of these concerns has been addressed. Respectfully. So many times. Since that’s the case, what is left to do but assume willful ignorance?

    • Amy Tuteur, MD

      You’ve missed the whole point of the piece.

      Anti-vax is NOT about parents concerned about their children, it’s about parents concerned with the EGOs.

      It takes an extraordinary amount of self-deception to imagine that you are somehow more knowledgeable about the risks and benefits of vaccines than immunologists, pediatricians and public health officials combined.

      It takes an extraordinary amount of hysterical conspiracy mongering to imagine that all the doctors, scientists and public health officials IN THE WORLD are engaged in a giant conspiracy to hide the dangers of vaccines.

      And it take a stunning lack of logical thinking to imagine that those same doctors, scientists and public health officials are willing to expose their own children to the “secret” risks of vaccines in order to perpetuate that conspiracy.

      Children and their well being have nothing to do any of that.

      • Roadstergal

        I tried being rational with my anti-vax cousin. I was nice, I addressed every one of her concerns in a non-judgmental, kind tone (and this is kinda my area). Did fuck-all to change her mind. Now she’s going nuts about fluoride in the water supply.

        • Andrew Lazarus

          Non-trivial chance she lives in a part of the USA where natural fluoride in the water is higher than what they add elsewhere.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            Actually, pretty trivial chance that that is what she is worried about.

          • Roadstergal

            I do get what Andrew was trying to get at – the benefits of fluoride in water became very clear when comparing the dental outcomes of children who grew up where the water supply naturally contained a high level of fluoride, vs those where it didn’t. The optimal concentration (maximum benefit vs minimum risk – I think the only risk that’s worth worrying about at the levels we’re talking is tooth discoloration) is still being tweaked, I’m sure, but is far less than the natural level in many parts of the US. So if you’re hard on the ‘natural’ bent, you’ll find yourself ingesting a lot more fluoride than is in the municipal water supply in a lot of places in the US.

            This was also a datum that went in one of her ears and out the other. Purity of Essence, and all.

          • The Bofa on the Sofa

            But places that have high natural levels of fluoride are not fluoridating, so I don’t see why the person would be complaining about that. So what is she complaining about? That the natural fluoride level is too high? I don’t think that’s it. Anti-fluoridation folks don’t complain about the natural fluoride levels, even when it it is too high.

    • Cobalt

      Vaccine risks, ingredients, side effects, effectiveness, etc. is widely known and available. Anytime a vaccine is given in the U.S., it comes with a printed handout detailing this information. Also, many areas have or have had vaccination rates of upwards of 95%, physically demonstrating safety for the anecdotally minded.

      Who convinced parents that the evidence of studies, the expertise of doctors, and the experience of their own eyes, was untrustworthy?

      • grandma jones

        Good question, Cobalt. I saw there are some books written about the anti vax movement. I believe it is anti vax parents who are convincing other parents not to vaccinate. It’s not enough for them to assert their personal beliefs and right not to vaccinate. They have to convince others to believe the same — that way they do feel a little bit smug about their decision. They want to pressure others to make the choice they made. I guess maybe people don’t want their kids (even if they are vaccinated) playing with the unvaccinated kids — what if the disease is brought home to younger siblings, neighbors or cousins? Maybe the anti-vaxxers are feeling left out and lonely.

      • DT

        And here’s the thing: even if every (EVERY!) case of autism EVER was because of a vaccine, we’d STILL be way ahead of the curve, because these diseases kill WAAAAAYY more people than that.

      • Roadstergal

        I have to recommend, as I often do, The Panic Virus – it does a very nice job of documenting the anti-vaccine movement (I hadn’t realized how old it was) and the face it bears today.

    • laineypc

      I agree. The problem is not so much with privilege, but paranoia- that’s my uneducated take- parents who refuse are irrationally paranoid. But what does the evidence say about vaccine refusal reasons? I think this article is an informed speculation.

      • Cobalt

        Where does this paranoia come from? Why are vaccines worth paranoia?

        • The Bofa on the Sofa

          As Paul Offit says, the problem is that it is really hard to “unscare” someone. That’s why education and rational discussion doesn’t work, and why anti-vaxxers can be successful. All you have to do is to create the question, and it will never go away.

        • EmbraceYourInnerCrone

          Some of it is part of the “all natural/organic movement that thinks that “toxins” and “checmicals” are in everything and if they just eat the right things and stay “pure” their chicldren will be healthy, awesome and brilliant.
          From a recent Ny times article(careful you may roll your eyes clean out of your head)
          http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/31/us/vaccine-critics-turn-defensive-over-measles.html?_r=0

          “In San Geronimo, Calif., a mostly rural community of rolling hills and oak trees about 30 miles north of San Francisco, 40 percent of the students walking into Lagunitas Elementary School have not been inoculated against measles, according to the school’s figures. Twenty-five percent have not been vaccinated for polio. In all, the state says that 58 percent of Lagunitas kindergartners do not have up-to-date vaccine records.A lot of people here have personal beliefs that are faith based, said John Carroll, the school superintendent, who sent a letter home to parents last week encouraging them to vaccinate their children. The faith, Mr. Carroll said, is not so much religious as it is a belief that “they raise their children in a natural, organic environment” and are suspicious of pharmaceutical companies and big business.”
          25% have not been vaccinated against polio..just let that sink in a minute…

      • Life Tip

        Privilege allows people to be paranoid about inconsequential things.

        • Justin Crosser

          Or they have access to the CDC’s site.

          Severe Problems (Very Rare)

          Serious allergic reaction (less than 1 out of a million doses)

          Several other severe problems have been reported after a child gets MMR vaccine, including:

          Deafness

          Long-term seizures, coma, or lowered consciousness

          Permanent brain damage

          These are so rare that it is hard to tell whether they are caused by the vaccine.

          • Bombshellrisa

            The handouts they give at the doctor’s office lists all those things. It’s not like you have to even access a website to hear it

          • Andrew Lazarus

            So why bring back the days when parents were much more concerned because all these problems are more common from wild measles!?

          • Samantha06

            Because the AVers think “it just won’t be that bad” and besides, nothing like that will happen to Special Snowflake!

          • Phil Beebe

            I’ve actually seen AV nutjobs claim that they’d prefer their children to develop immunity the “natural way”.

          • Samantha06

            Pretty dumb for sure! I got my immunity “the natural way” as I had all the diseases before the vaccines were developed, and it’s obvious they have NO clue what they are talking about. These folks only seem to learn from personal experience, and even then they still sometimes don’t get it. So, when their child gets chicken pox “naturally” they can then announce to them that they may have “natural” shingles to look forward to when they get older! I’m sure their children will be real happy with them when they find out they could have gotten a vaccine and avoided it..

        • Bombshellrisa

          Reminds me of the Rob Lowe commercial-guess we need to drill our cheese looking for listening devices

    • Amazed

      Doctors tried being nice and educating. The result? A measles epidemic.

      What is there to fear? A measles epidemic perhaps?

      Those who could be won over by being nice and educational keep getting won over in their own doctors’ offices. The ones who don’t are the diehard anti-vaxxers. Like yourself, I gather?

      Being nice and respectful doesn’t work and that’s proven, so get off your high horse and keep hiding in the herd happily but don’t try to push your infantile irritation with us. And take Ann, Kate, and Dr “I don’t care for your cancer survivor child” Wolf with you.

      Like it or not, we’re creating the immunity that lets you stay alive, so the least you can do is keep silent and take a little flak for stealing from society without giving anything back.

      • Samantha06

        Well said..

      • HipsLikeCinderella

        Obviously I don’t want anyone’s kid to get the measles etc., but I have wondered what the anti vax crowd is gonna say when/if their kids get an illness that could have been prevented by a simple vaccine. Will they reverse their stance? Or will they say that their child is still better off having a disease as opposed to a vaccine?

        • Young CC Prof

          Most of them do reverse course once they see that most VPDs are a lot worse that the normal “bugs” all children pick up. A few continue to say that getting the disease is better, but they tend to be those who are most religious about it.

        • Wren

          It depends a lot on the outcome. If the child is OK, well then, vaccines are pointless, right? If not, most will change their minds but not all.

    • Samantha06

      Transparency has been tried.. and failed. Discussion (and RATIONAL at that) has been tried… and failed. Presenting SCIENTIFIC FACTS has been tried… and failed. All the things you list have been debunked. Another commentator listed all the actual ingredients in vaccines along with what they do in the body. Appeals to their sense of morality has been tried.. and failed. What else would you suggest? They are risking people’s lives. If they are so ignorant to believe the internet and a bunch of lay people, well, there isn’t really much more to say, is there? When, and only when, they PERSONALLY see the effects of not vaccinating, ie- DEATH and permanent injury and/or disability, will they (maybe) start getting it..

    • Guestll

      Yes, they’re concerned for the health of their children, they have questions, they have and fears. Yet what happens when those concerns are addressed, those questions are answered, those fears met with explanations and reassurance and science?

      What happens, let’s say, when 107 worldwide studies fail to find a link between MMR and autism?

      If you gave me a package insert list of ingredients, and I went through every single one with you and explained why it’s there, what it does, what would happen then?

      You tell me, I’d like to hear it in your words.