Disease is like terrorism and anti-vaccine parents are committing treason


Everyone is afraid of terrorism.

Terrorists strike without warning, often in the very places where we feel safest: cafes, concerts, and shopping malls. Terrorists kill and maim, leaving survivors with life long physical and psychological scars. The impact of terrorism is outsized. It only takes a few terrorist attacks for an entire population to feel vulnerable.

[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Refusing to vaccinate is the equivalent of insisting our police and soldiers should throw rocks at Islamic terrorists because that’s how we fought our foes in nature.[/pullquote]

Not surprisingly, we view with horror anyone who aids and abets terrorism. We abhor American citizens who swear allegiance to Islamic terror organizations. We are horrified when they share information with terrorists about suitable targets or if they buy and supply weapons and explosives. Not surprisingly, we consider them traitors.

Vaccine preventable disease has a lot in common with terrorism. It strikes without warning in the places where we feel safest: home, school and work. It kills and maims, leaving survivors with life long physical and psychological scars. The impact of disease is outsized. Bacteria and viruses, too small for the eye to see, can take down and kill a grown man in a matter of hours. As you might imagine such attacks are even more devastating for children.

We ought to view with horror anyone who aids and abets vaccine preventable disease. We should fear anti-vaccine parents who pledge allegiance to Nature, which creates and maintains these tiny terrorists, as if Nature cares whether we live or die. We should be horrified by anti-vaxxers who offer their own children as fodder for vaccine preventable illnesses and then let those children expose other innocents. In truth, they are traitors to the rest of us.

Anti-vaxxers like to consider themselves hard-nose realists, ever wary of the possibility of government abetted corporate terrorism. It is axiomatic to them that they have more to fear from corporations than from bacteria and viruses. But they aren’t hard-nosed realists; they are startlingly child-like. They have been so softened by their easy access to technology, that they actually believe that life without technology (“Nature”) is benign. It’s the intellectual equivalent of stubbornly insisting that ISIS and other Islamic terrorists truly have our best interests at heart. And they are committing Nature’s equivalent of treason.

Vaccines protect everyone, but they offer the most protection to the most vulnerable. Just like the guns and bullet proof vests that we give our police officers and soldiers allow them to stand in a defensive formation and protect us from terrorist, vaccines serves as guns and bullet proof vests we give our immune systems. Refusing to vaccinate and relying on “natural” immunity is the intellectual equivalent of stripping our police and soldiers of their weapons and protective equipment, and telling them to throw rocks at ISIS and Al Quaeda because that’s how we fought our foes in nature.

Each child who is unvaccinated is the equivalent of a soldier in the defensive formation stripped of his weapons and protective gear. Not only is that soldier extremely vulnerable, but everyone else is vulnerable, too. No doubt a large group of soldiers could still defend those behind them if only one or two were deprived of weapons, but if more than a very few soldiers are unarmed, the line would break and the vulnerable civilians would be killed. That’s precisely what happens when parents refuse to vaccinate their children; everyone is put at risk.

Anti-vaxxers attempt to excuse their actions by claiming that their ultimate responsibility is to their own children whom they believe might be harmed by vaccines. But traitors always put the welfare of themselves and their families before the greater good; that’s generally why they commit treason. Claiming that you have the right to refuse to vaccinate your children because your only responsibility is to your child is the equivalent of enabling your child to be a terrorist if that’s what makes him happy since his welfare is your only concern.

Disease is like terrorism. Parents who enable either are committing treason.