Vaccinate Your Effing Kids

08.27.12

Donald Trump believes that posting a visual of the rise of autism and the rise of vaccines from 1983 to 2008 make him a scientist.

Maybe he went to one of Jenny McCarthy’s conferences and learned about her scientific method?

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present you with the idocracy.

 

 

If you want advice on how to select breast implants Jenny McCarthy is your lady. If you’re looking for advice on how to emerge from bankruptcy and rebuild an empire your father left you then Trump is your man. If you are looking for advice on vaccinating your child your pediatrician is the person you need. Unless you go to that wacko Jay Gordon where all the helicopter moms converge.

One reason so many parents have been able to be lackadaisical about vaccines and vaccine schedules is because the rest of the country was vaccinating their children and the risk of exposure was lower. Unlike Polio, Pertussis (whooping cough or the 100 day cough) is alive and well in the US. There have been pertussis outbreaks and deaths countrywide and Washington reported an epidemic just a few short months ago.

This is what a Whooping Cough sounds like. Remember they call this the 100 day cough because it tends to actually last that long. Would you deny your child this vaccine? One hundred days of gasping for air day and night.

There is no scientific link between autism and vaccines. Children may show signs of autism near the times they have vaccines but adult women also tend to go through menopause shortly after starting Botox. Did Botox take their hormones away? It sounds ludicrous doesn’t it?

I can’t answer the autism questions effectively. I’m not a scientist and the scientists are somewhat befuddled. I can tell you with certainty that in 1983 and prior a good number of the kids I went to school with (and I’ll admit to being in the gifted classes) could have been diagnosed as being on the autistic spectrum. What didn’t happen until more recently was that kids with ASDs (Autism Spectrum Disorders) would get therapies without harsh judgement and without missing other important parts of the school day. In 1972 if your quirky kid didn’t look someone in the eye there wasn’t a whole lot anyone would do except offer discipline. Those quirky kids grew up and now they’re on twitter, Facebook and G+ (or more likely building something new).

My assumption is that my readers are smart. My assumption is that you’ve read the headlines about the MMR Vaccine Controversy and the discredited Dr. Wakefield.

What I’m asking you as literate and intelligent people is to stop ignoring the Donald Trumps and the Jenny McCarthys of the world. Since they have TV picking up their stories they have tremendous influence and their thoughtlessness leads to very real public health issues. When you see the anti vaxxers spouting lies on social media channels please interrupt them. The facts simply aren’t there.

Vaccinate your children, update your own vaccines and encourage others to do the same. You know who can’t have vaccines? Premature babies, cancer patients, the elderly, some with allergies and the infirm. When you vaccinate yourself and your children you’re helping those people stay safe.

It’s time to speak up against misinformation. Celebrities are deliberately putting misinformation out there that is hazardous to everyone’s health. When you see stupid call it stupid. Please. Our collective health depends on it.

 

EDITED TO ADD: For everyone who thinks that their Dr. Sears approved modified schedule is a good idea please read this… don’t scan it, read it. I know most of you won’t so here’s how it ends:

At the heart of the problem with Sears’ schedules is the fact that, at the very least, they will increase the time during which children are susceptible to vaccine-preventable diseases. If more parents insist on Sears’ vaccine schedules, then fewer children will be protected, with the inevitable consequence of continued or worsening outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases. In an effort to protect children from harm, Sears’ book will likely put more in harm’s way.

The Taliban Supports the Anti Vaccine Movement… Naturally

06.20.12

Parents in my neighborhood don’t know much about the effects of Polio. Some of our older friend or our parent’s friends might have a slight limp or even a more debilitating one but for the most part Polio is something that’s been gone from the US for a number of decades.

You know what’s back in the US? Whooping Cough. Yeah, Whooping Cough was “that thing” that our parents worried about. It was unheard of in my generation but a group of self-important parents who have decided that Vaccines will give their children autism because of a single fraudulent study that was retracted several years ago (see the shamed researcher here) or perhaps because of anecdotal evidence provided by a Playboy Centerfold.

Interestingly the Taliban is currently not allowing 140,000 children to get the Polio Vaccine. They say they’re doing it because the US had used a physician as a spy and they believe that could happen again. This will likely be considered one of the worst war crimes of our lifetime. Time magazine states, “Using children as medical poker chips is indefensible under any circumstances…”

But wait? What about the parents who choose to not vaccinate in my neighborhood. They’re like local heros… you know… debunking science and all that. They’re so counter culture, they’re pro-kid, they’re like martyrs. What about the kids in Oregon whose parents wanted them on a “different schedule”.

Both Washington and Oregon have seen an increase in pertussis (whooping cough) diagnoses in recent years. In 2002, the Washington State Department of Health reported fewer than 600 cases. During a 2005 outbreak, more than 1,000 cases were reported. The number fell below 300 in 2009, but climbed again to almost 1,000 cases in 2011. So far this year, 2,092 cases have been reported in that state. A similar trend was reported by the Oregon Health Authority: There were fewer than 200 cases in 2002, increasing to more than 600 per year from 2005 to 2007. Pertussis cases dropped to around 100 the following year, and steadily increased to 320 cases in 2011. As of June 2012, 338 cases have been reported in the state of Oregon – almost three times as many as were reported at the same time last year.

— Jessica Stoller-Conrad

Anti Vaxxers what is the matter with your thinking? Is it not enough that you don’t care that your children could become critically ill? Do you really have to put everyone else’s kids at risk? The arrogance is astounding and every time I hear a parent say “I didn’t vaccinate” or “I didn’t vaccinate yet” I think to myself, “There goes a really bad parent.”