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With Outbreaks, States Push Back On Anti-Vaccine Movement

Outbreaks of measles, whooping cough and more are growing, spreading because of the anti-vaccine movement. Now there’s pushback. We’ll check in.

In this Thursday, May 3, 2012 file photo, Nurses Fatima Guillen, left, and Fran Wendt, right, give Kimberly Magdeleno, 4, a whooping cough booster shot, as she is held by her mother, Claudia Solorio, at a health clinic in Tacoma, Wash. A government study offers a new theory on why the whooping cough vaccine doesn't seem to prevent outbreaks that well. In research involving baboons, researchers found that while the vaccine may keep people from getting sick, it fails to prevent the germ from spreading, said one of the researchers, Tod Merkel of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (AP)

In this Thursday, May 3, 2012 file photo, Nurses Fatima Guillen, left, and Fran Wendt, right, give Kimberly Magdeleno, 4, a whooping cough booster shot, as she is held by her mother, Claudia Solorio, at a health clinic in Tacoma, Wash. A government study offers a new theory on why the whooping cough vaccine doesn’t seem to prevent outbreaks that well. In research involving baboons, researchers found that while the vaccine may keep people from getting sick, it fails to prevent the germ from spreading, said one of the researchers, Tod Merkel of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (AP)

The last ten or fifteen years have been a rough road for childhood vaccines and vaccination.  After a century in which they became the great bulwark against all kinds of disease – smallpox, measles, mumps, whooping cough, polio, more – suddenly vaccines were tagged as a threat.  Blamed for autism and more.  The science says it’s not true.  But uncertain parents have turned away.  Now vaccination rates have fallen enough to cut into what’s called our “herd immunity.”  We’re vulnerable again to disease.  Now states are pushing back.  This hour On Point:  the anti-vaccine threat and reaction.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Michael Booth, health and medical reporter for The Denver Post. (@mboothDP)

Steven Salzberg, professor of medicine and bio-statistics at Johns Hopkins University. Blogs about pseudo-science and “bad medicine” for Forbes Magazine.

Paul Offit, chief of the division of infectious diseases and the director of the vaccine education center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Professor of vaccinology and pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Medicine. Author of “Do You Believe in Magic?: The Sense and Nonsense of Alternative Medicine,” “Deadly Choices: How The Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All,” “Vaccines and Your Child: Separating Fact From Fiction,” “Austism’s False Prophets: Bad Science, Risky Medicine and the Search For A Cure” and “Vaccinated: One Man’s Quest to Eradicate the World’s Deadliest Diseases.” (@DrPaulOffit)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal: A Booster Shot For Vaccines – “Amid national outbreaks of measles, whooping cough and other preventable diseases, Colorado officials might make it harder for parents to exempt children from vaccinations for school and day care. Colorado is one of 48 states that allow such exemptions for reasons of personal belief or religion—often requiring little more than a parental signature on a form. In the 2012-2013 school year, about 4.3%, or 2,900 children, were excused from required vaccinations, one of the highest percentages of kindergartners in the nation.”

The New Republic: I’ve Got Whooping Cough. Thanks a Lot, Jenny McCarthy. –”There’s a reason that we associate the whooping cough with the Dickensian: It is. The illness has, since the introduction of a pertussis vaccine in 1940, has been conquered in the developed world. For two or three generations, we’ve come to think of it as an ailment suffered in sub-Saharan Africa or in Brontë novels. And for two or three generations, it was.”

The Denver Post: Colorado vaccination policy needs a booster shot — “By law, kids who go to day care or public schools in Colorado are supposed to be vaccinated against serious diseases. But in practice, many of them aren’t. Too many. And that needs to change.”

Vaccine Exemption Rates Around The Country

(via Wall Street Journal / Center for Disease Control and Prevention)

(via Wall Street Journal / Center for Disease Control and Prevention)

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  • Sheryl

    The immune system is impacted by infection, genetics, and other medical conditions. A one size fits all vaccination program may make public health professionals feel better, but there are hidden risks that impact people on an individual level. Medicine should be personalized for the individual and we should never force vaccinations on people. Blanket statements against or for vaccinations are dangerous. The reality is much more grey.

    • Mike_Card

      So you’d rather believe a TV personality and a discredited British doctor. What color is the sky on your planet?

    • 1Brett1

      This “grey” reality should manifest itself in what way? Should we go to our children’s pediatricians and say, “doctor, we want the polio vaccine for our child, but not the small pox or measles vaccine; and we’re going to hold off on the mumps vaccine until our child is eight years old…” And should we say to school systems, “no, we are not going to immunize our children; they have good genes, have had some infections already so their systems are strong and immune, and they won’t get sick. We promise there won’t be any problems.”

      • Lisa

        Yes, we should say to our pediatrician that I want this vaccine but not that one. We should be able to say “I have not done anything to expose myself to Hep B while pregnant and therefore you will not be sticking my 2 day old baby with a needle just because it is standard protocol.”

        • 1Brett1

          “We should be able to say ‘I have not done anything to expose myself to Hep B while pregnant and therefore you will not be sticking my 2 day old baby with a needle just because it is standard protocol.’”

          No, what we should do is submit to a simple blood test that is no more harmful than a CBC to show we are not carriers of Hep. B. Then, there is no need to “stick” a 2-day-old baby.

          Also, you can’t be absolutely sure that you have not been exposed to Hep. B, at least not as sure as taking a simple blood test.

          Didn’t you say your request to not give your newborn a Hep. B vaccination was honored?

      • Lisa

        Yes, you should go to your child’s pediatrician and say we want this vaccine but not that one. While I believe that some vaccines are appropriate for my children, others are not. I should be able to, and did, tell my pediatrician that I had not engaged in risky behavior while pregnant and was tested early in pregnancy and therefore it was unnecessary to stick my day old babies with a needle to protect either of them from Hep B. It does not have to be all or nothing.

        • 1Brett1

          Hep B isn’t mandatory for newborns, only if mother is Hep B.

    • Don_B1

      So when your child introduces one of these diseases to a school and a child with an immune deficiency that precludes being vaccinated becomes ill with that disease with life-long consequences, what penalty are you willing to suffer for the rest of your life? 10% of your or your child’s income every year? And if not, why not? Will you even feel guilty?

      • Lisa

        “When” her child introduces a disease. As if her child will automatically get a disease becasue they are not vaccinated. Sheryl made a great point that blanket statements ON BOTH SIDES are dangerous, and that medicine should be personalized for the individual.

        • Don_B1

          It is not so much “when” because there will be some child that does introduce a disease because they were not vaccinated; the question then is will that child be yours, or will the child unnecessarily be one of many unvaccinated because of a movement that you supported?

  • Philip

    Penn and Teller made the point pretty well (profanity warning!): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfdZTZQvuCo

    • nkandersen

      Phillip – Thanks so much for the profanity warning! (And for the clip)

      nick andersen
      web producer | on point radio

    • hennorama

      Philip — if P&T would edit their profanity, their visual presentation could be used among a wider range of audiences.

      Thanks for presenting this very effective argument.

    • drrandy

      This video is ridiculous and does not stand up to scientific scrutiny. Their anger, profanity and simplistic black-and-white ideas have no place in a scientific discussion.
      It is based on the false assumption that the decrease in incidence and mortality from this diseases were due to vaccination when in fact most of these diseases had dramatically declined prior to the introduction of vaccines. See http://childhealthsafety.wordpress.com/graphs/
      There are many concerns about vaccine safety above and beyond autism- see http://healthimpactnews.com/2011/new-study-vaccinated-children-have-2-to-5-times-more-diseases-and-disorders-than-unvaccinated-children/

  • JGC

    We live in the era of globalization. Unless your kids never venture outside the bubble, they will be exposed to all the diseases mentioned above, and more. And it is a terrible and dangerous thing to come down with some of these for the first time when you are in your twenties or thirties.

    • hennorama

      JGC — even if “your kids never venture outside the bubble,” they might still be exposed, as evidenced by the measles outbreak in Texas late last summer:

      “Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. more than a decade ago. But in recent years, the highly infectious disease has cropped up in communities with low vaccination rates, most recently in North Texas.

      “There, 21 people — the majority of whom have not been immunized — have gotten the disease, which began at a vaccine-skeptical megachurch.

      “The outbreak began when a man who contracted the virus on a recent trip to Indonesia visited the Eagle Mountain International Church in Newark, about an hour and a half northwest of Dallas.”

      See:
      http://www.npr.org/2013/09/01/217746942/texas-megachurch-at-center-of-measles-outbreak

      Of course, it all depends on the size of “the bubble.”

      • Don_B1

        kerry Rausch has a post most relevant to your (and JGC’s) point elsewhere on this blog.

  • 1Brett1

    When a parent decides not to immunize their children, they are not just making decisions for their children but for other people’s children, as well. Not immunizing your child sets the stage for public health concerns that could potentially affect the health of whole communities.

    • J__o__h__n

      Was that the one Michele Bachmann claimed caused mental retardation?

      • Ray in VT

        I think so, although I think that she said that some mother told her that it caused her child to be mentally retarded. Perhaps more repeating a claim than making it, but still something that one should check on before saying.

      • 1Brett1

        Bachmann seems to embody the notion of ignorance, yes.

        I was going to quote Stevie Wonder in Superstition, but you get the idea…

  • donny_t

    1) vaccines don’t always work
    2)
    vaccine ingredients include aluminum, formaldehyde, mercury, msg, dead
    viruses/bacteria going into the blood: all extremely toxic
    3)”herd immunity” is bogus
    4)
    research and you’ll see vaccines were probably relevant at one point
    but now most of it is pharmaceutical companies trying more and more to
    get government to mandate their product
    5) adverse vaccine reactions occur regularly but rarely ever get reported
    6) no research has ever been conducted on long term safety of vaccines
    7) many of the infections vaccines prevent can now be easily treated
    8) the decline in diseases can be attributed to better hygiene and living conditions not vaccinations
    9) why are we giving newborns Hepatitis B vaccines when it’s primarily a blood transmitted disease?
    10)
    Did you know the CDC recently admitted to giving 98 million Americans
    polio vaccine contaminated with SV40 (a virus widely accepted as causing
    cancer) but removed the data from their website?

    10 reason why I will say no to vaccines, thank you very much.

    • 1Brett1

      1) Provide the data on how many vaccines do not work.

      2) There is truth in this statement, but these ingredients are in such trace amounts that they are absolutely NOT toxic. Your phrase, “extremely toxic” is a false notion.

      3) ? Provide proof of your statement (whatever it means).

      4) Proof?

      5) If they haven’t been reported, how do you know that they “regularly occur”? What kinds of reactions “regularly occur”?

      6) There are tons of research on the safety and efficacy of vaccines:

      a) http://www.health.ny.gov/prevention/immunization/vaccine_safety/science.htm

      b) http://www2.aap.org/immunization/families/faq/vaccinestudies.pdf

      c) http://www.omicsonline.org/vaccines-vaccination.php

      d) http://www.vaccinateyourbaby.org/safe/research.cfm

      (those barely scratch the surface of research out there).

      7) Explain how you treat polio and small pox without vaccines; even rubella will cause fetal malformation if contracted during pregnancy.

      8) Some diseases, yes; others, no.

      9) Newborns of parents who are carriers of Hep. B get the vaccine. Children also get it, yes…I guess you don’t think children ever get scrapes, scratches and cuts? DO you know the long-term effects of Hep. B? It ain’t pretty!

      10) Again, while true, you’ve presented information in a false manner. SV40 was found to be present in some polio vaccines prior to 1962 and the problem was rectified.

      Presumably, you are an adult, which means you got your vaccines long ago.

      • MOFYC

        Nice try. In some parts of the African Sahel, hyper-conservatives revolted against the push to vaccinate everyone against polio. The result is that polio, which was near extinction, has made a resurgence in the area. We westerners flatter ourselves into thinking only those ‘backward’ Africans believe in voodoo and magic but some of the anti-vaccine mysticism here shows otherwise.

        • 1Brett1

          I agree, whole-heartedly…I am just a tad mystified as to your opening statement of “nice try”?

          It is not surprising that diseases, such as polio, would see a resurgence in places where vaccines have NOT been administered.

        • Ray in VT

          I am currently reading a biography of Ethan Allen by Willard Sterne Randall, and in the book there is a description of how Allen, in defiance of local law, had himself immunized publicly. Immunization was outlawed in parts of Colonial America as defying the will of God.

          • Don_B1

            Yet another reason to honor Ethan Allen!

          • Ray in VT

            Indeed, although I like to joke that Vermont’s Ethan Allen Institute, a libertarian group, is dedicated to upholding the value of getting drunk and falling off of a wagon.

      • donny_t

        1)why have there been infectious diseases in highly vaccinated populations?
        2) mercury and aluminum even in extremely small doses is extremely toxic, use google
        3) research “herd immunity” then notice it doesn’t work even in 98% vaccinated populations
        4)Bro, do your research, Julie Gerberding former directer of the CDC now president of Merck Vaccine, one of many revolving doors, then google Merck-kickbacks-lawsuits
        5)David Kessler former head of the FDA admitted only 1-10% ever get reported
        6)there are tons of research on the dangers of vaccines, I suggest start here http://vactruth.com/
        7)google the treatments for those diseases
        8)-
        9)because scrapes and bruises cause blood to be transmitted between 2 people? day 1 vaccination is just ludicrous
        10)they thought it was safe then, oops guess they were wrong. I wonder what they have wrong now?

        • 1Brett1

          1)This is such a general statement, it’s difficult to know what your are talking about, specifically, but I don’t think anyone is claiming that vaccines are 100% effective or 100% safe.

          2) Define “extremely.” One probably will be exposed to much more mercury and aluminum in the general environment than from a vaccine. Mercury levels in the body are easy to test for, too, btw…yet, in any of these claims of mercury/aluminum toxicity through vaccination there hasn’t been any evidence of mercury toxicity (as I said, this is easily tested if someone makes such a claim). Mercury and aluminum will stay in the body for a long time, further making substantiating such claims even easier.

          3) You’ve provided nothing to support your claims (a link to legitimate data would be appropriate to making such claims).

          4) Bro, in large corporations, there is sometimes (even often) going to be such matters that smell fishy and are concerning; that, however, doesn’t translate into causation or even correlation.

          5) Please provide a link to what he actually said; it’s not a matter of taking your word for it/believing something based on your characterization of what you claim someone else said.

          6) This website isn’t a study; it’s a mish-mash/bits and pieces of opinion/flimsy anecdotal fear-mongering on an anti-vaccine website…not impressive.

          7) Google what treatments for what diseases? Are you saying that, say, polio or diphtheria are better treated with alternative medicine than prophylactically by vaccination?

          8) ?

          9) HepB vaccinations are NOT mandatory for all newborns.

          !0) You, in your original post, presented a problem that was over 50 years ago but left out that info and presented it as something currently happening; I pointed out that it happened 50 years ago…Again, because there have been problems in the past and there might very well be problems now and in future, this does NOT mean causation or correlation…there was a problem with Firestone tires several years ago that was pretty serious; people even died because of a particular model failing. So, we must not drive cars now because what else are tire manufacturers not telling us? Okay, then.

          • donny_t

            1-8) Seems like you’re deflecting and Google is your friend. Spend a week or two to do some research.
            9) If you don’t get many vaccines for your child, you will basically get blackballed by your medical institution.
            10) So my point stands. If you were discovered to be one of those people who got cancer from the vaccine, I’m sure you’d be singing a different tune. People probably won’t stop driving cars but they’d stop using Firestone.

          • 1Brett1

            1-8) Nope! I also knew of these things long before Goggle was invented, Bro!
            9) Show some statistics on doctors “blackballing whole groups of people based on their not getting their children vaccines. You can’t because this isn’t a common phenomenon, just more hyperbole and fear mongering on your part.
            10) No, your point does not “stand.” And, no, people don’t get cancer from vaccines.

            Did you get cancer from a vaccine? Is why you are “singing the tune” you are, as you suggest one would be?

          • donny_t

            1-8) You didn’t know what “herd immunity” was, you couldn’t Google David Kessler’s admittance, look up treatments for IE: rubella? Doesn’t seem like you’re doing your homework on the subject. Google effects of mercury and aluminum on the brain. Google is your friend.
            When clear evidence is presented and the rebuttal is along the lines of, “this doesn’t prove anything because it’s not in a peer reviewed journal I deem worthy,” that seems like deflecting to me :P
            9) Ask anyone who has refused vaccinations. You’ll often hear stories of condescendence and ridicule
            10) People get cancer from SV40, it’s well accepted. Guess what, that was in the polio vaccine.

          • 1Brett1

            1-8) I know full well what “herd immunity” means. You are continuing to build straw men.
            **You are deflecting AND you are putting words in my mouth.
            9) I know a lot of people who have decided not to vaccinate their children. While there may be ridicule and “condescendence” {I presume you mean CONDESCENSION), there isn’t any “blackballing” going on.
            10) You are still trying to raise an issue that was rectified over 50 years ago. You and I have already gone over that issue a couple of times.

            Bro, I’m done with you. You are going around circles.

          • donny_t

            Actually you typed this:
            “? Provide proof of your statement (whatever it means)” concerning 3. And yes CONDESCENSION and ridicule is a form or blackballing.
            10) It was never actually rectified. People still got the virus. Who knows how many people were sickened by it. Cancer rates in America are one of the highest in the world. We thought the science was right back then and we’re now only realizing it wasn’t. Here we are still thinking we have the science right. It’s a large scale experiment. I choose not to be part of that experiment. Many other educated out there see it the same way, which is why this debate is so vast.
            See, we have this mindset of trying to rid the human race of any kind of illness. That’s just not how humans work or evolved.

    • Roy-in-Boise

      Anecdotal evidence such as these ten reasons make it abundantly clear that parents who choose not vaccinate their children and cause harm to others should be, with no statute of limitations, be held criminally and financially accountable for their actions.

      • donny_t

        If you child is vaccinated, what are you worried about, right?
        I wish it were anecdotal, but sadly, do some research and you will find a very corrupt pharmaceutical industry brimming with kickbacks, revolving doors, and forged data.
        It doesn’t bother you that in the former director of the CDC Julie Gerberding is now president of Merck Vaccine?
        Type in Google, “Merck and kickbacks”
        Oh and I’ll give you the URL where they took a screenshot of the CDC infecting people with SV40.
        http://www.realfarmacy.com/cdc-admits-98-million-americans-received-polio-vaccine-contaminated-with-cancer-virus/

        With any information that’s too hard to swallow, skepticism is good. But there’s a difference between healthy skepticism and irrational skepticism. Do you own research. A truly informed decision is one that has heard both sides of the argument.

        • Don_B1

          The people who take the opposite view from you and the others posting similar comments are much more likely to have done a thorough job of research than you have done, at least from what you have shown.

          Where is your thorough response to 1Brett1′s post in response to your list of “claims”?

          • 1Brett1

            ‘Bro’?

      • donny_t

        What makes you so quick to write if off as anecdotal? I find that when it comes to jarring information, skepticism is healthy. However there’s a big difference between irrational skepticism.
        It’s clear there is a lot of studies and data for and against vaccinations by credible professionals and institutions. I assume you’re like most people and have only heard one side of the story.
        It doesn’t bother you that the former director of the CDC Julie Gerberding is now the president of Merck Vaccine?
        Just do a Google search for Merck and kickbacks.

        Oh and here’s a page where some folks actually cached that SV40 CDC page.
        http://www.realfarmacy.com/cdc-admits-98-million-americans-received-polio-vaccine-contaminated-with-cancer-virus/

    • Noelle paffett-lugassy

      Yes, sometimes vaccines don’t work. That is why MORE (MORE!!!!) people should be vaccinated to protect the rare individuals in which the immune system didn’t ‘learn’ the vaccine. That’s how our immune systems work, I’ve had the chicken pox twice because my immune system didn’t ‘learn’ it the first time.

      • Don_B1

        I think it is also why multiple shots are required for some vaccines for some diseases.

        The dosage and numbers of shots are based on statistical analyses of the results of test trials.

        • donny_t

          Bro, don’t “think.” Do some actual research.

          • Don_B1

            I will withdraw the “I think” part of my post.

            But I don’t expect that to make you happy.

            Also, to do research you have to know how to evaluate the sources of the information that you accept or reject.

            While the pharmaceutical companies a lot to answer for, their misdeeds do not immediately condemn them in every action they take. It is the panoply of suits that are subject to that is driving them, not to take risks in vaccine development, but to just get out of the business, for which all of society will suffer in the future. And that does not mean that they should be given a blank check, but it says that they are more likely to take extra care, which is expensive, in the development of the vaccines they do make.

          • donny_t

            Take extra care? You mean try harder not to get caught? I don’t care how hard or expensive it is to make drugs, they shouldn’t be forging data, and they ARE forging data.

  • John Cedar

    The pro vaccination side has lost a lot of credibility by attempting to mandate the HPV vaccination. Advocating that type of nonsense policy allows the anti vaccination whack jobs to gain momentum.

    • Noelle paffett-lugassy

      Why is preventing cervical cancer ‘nonsense’?

      • Thinking Mom

        the HPV vaccine only protects against a few types of cervical cancer and may provide false security, it also comes with risks. Pap smears are cheaper and more effective.

        • Don_B1

          Note that among those “few types” of HPV that cause cervical cancer, types 16 and 18 are responsible for 70% of those cases. See:

          http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/HPV

          An individual Pap smear is certainly cheaper than a vaccine shot, but Pap smears at least once a year and maybe more often with new partners, could easily exceed that vaccine cost.

          And Pap smears are not 100% either!

        • Noelle paffett-lugassy

          False sense of security about getting cervical cancer? I’m pretty sure women will continue to get pap smears as a detection method. False sense of security about getting STDs? I would hope that people would continue to have safe sex regardless of getting an HPV vaccine. Risks are pretty darn low for a big protective benefit.

        • JGC

          But a pap only detects precancerous cells. It does not actually prevent the infection like the vaccine will.

          BTW, oral cancers are increasing, also due in part to HPV infections. Boys can also benefit from the vaccination to possibly prevent those cancers when they are older.

          • Don_B1

            Apparently the actor Michael Douglas could have used the vaccine a few decades ago or so to prevent his throat cancer.

      • John Cedar

        In my opinion, preventing cervical cancer is not nonsense.
        Why do you think it is?
        Do you still beat your wife.

  • J__o__h__n

    I’ve never had chicken pox but I’m worried about adult onset autism so I haven’t had the vaccine.

  • J__o__h__n

    Schools shouldn’t allow children who aren’t vaccinated to attend. If the parents don’t want to contribute to the herd immunity, then they can’t join the herd.

    • Noelle paffett-lugassy

      YES! all of the non-vaccinated children can go live on an island, the rest of the herd can stay.

  • MOFYC

    It’s all part of the same thread. If people can reject climate science, then it surely won’t be long before we start hearing, “Measles is a hoax.”

  • Eric

    It’s sad that people like you so easily forget how many thousands of children and adults were killed by diseases that are now hardly present today. I guess all we need is a good ole fashioned meningitis outbreak to get you folks to wise up.

  • AliceOtter33

    We’ll get nowhere in the discussion by shaming or insulting parents who cannot resolve the cognitive dissonance that the probability of one’s unvaccinated child contracting or passing along these diseases is much higher than the probability of one’s child experiencing a negative reaction to the vaccines themselves.

    The anti-vaxxer movement is rooted in a very real fear that prevents parents from accepting the preponderance of evidence that vaccines are crucial for keeping a host of diseases at bay.

    Can’t we unpack what is behind the fear, instead of who is to blame?

    Check out i09′s article: 12 Cognitive Biases that Prevent You From Being Rational:

    http://io9.com/5974468/the-most-common-cognitive-biases-that-prevent-you-from-being-rational

  • Noelle paffett-lugassy

    I find it strange that people who want to ‘protect’ their kids from vaccines are more likely to make their kids really really sick as a result of not vaccinating them. I’m furious at the amount of alarmist anti-vaccine information rampant on the web that has zero scientific backing. I strongly feel this is a result of a general poor understanding of how our bodies work. If people understood the immune system they would not be scared of vaccines. This is a call for better early biology education! Thank you for having this discussion.

    • Thinking Mom

      please show us the study of vaccinated v unvaccinated children

      • jefe68

        Polio. Due of widespread vaccination, polio was eliminated from the Western Hemisphere in 1994

        • Thinking Mom

          were’s the study? It’s 2014 and we are talking about a vaccination schedule that includes polio, MMR, DPT, Hib, HepB, ,PCV,Varicella, influenza, HPV ,MCV comparison studies?

          • jefe68

            The study? Are you kidding?
            Polio was a common disease, now it’s not. So was smallpox and diphtheria.
            What’s wrong with you?

      • Noelle paffett-lugassy

        I’m not sure I understand your request. What is the question you are trying to answer? Whether vaccines are effective at preventing diseases?

        • Thinking Mom

          Noelle, you assert that not vaccinating children makes them “really sick”. Where is the longterm study comparing the unvaccinated to vaccinated children that shows us that they are “really sick.”

  • Ray in VT

    I think that part of what may be driving up Vermont’s rate is that we allow a philosophical exemption, in addition to medical or religious exemptions. Influence of a sort of New Age, or back to nature sort of belief may also be a factor here.

    • MarkVII88

      And from the fierce debate last legislative session in VT re: whether or not to keep the philosophical exemption, one of the major arguments those in favor of it put forth was that since so many other children were vaccinated that it would confer enough protection such that their own kids could opt-out.

      • Thinking Mom

        yes and no, when we parsed out the data, we learned that vaccination rates in Vermont are higher than ever and that what was being called a 30 percent exemption rate is relative to the classroom. For example, an entering kindergarten class of ten children with one child who has no vaccines, one with an exemption for chicken pox and one with an exemption for hep b and chicken pox is being referred to as a community with a 30 percent exemption rate. Well is it? Well yes among those ten children. But in the grand scheme, it is a tiny number. After the 2011 leg session when the conscientious/philo and religious exemption were debated in VT, the VT DoH changed the formatting of the school nurses data excel reports so it is no longer possible to see this at a glance. It’s there but one must dig around to get at the numbers. Instead the exemption rates are emphasized. So we have moved from a conceptual framework of supposed low vaccination rates (which was false) to now calling it “high exemption rates” which is also false and misleading when one looks more closely at the data.

      • ianway

        It’s an artifact of Vermont’s cultural make-up, part old-school Yankee “I don’t care what others do you can’t make me do it” anti-social independence, and part the ongoing legacy of counter-cultural mysticism interjected by the post-60′s diaspora. There’s a certain New Age anti-science puritanism that is epidemic in Vermont.

        • Ray in VT

          I don’t know if I would call it epidemic, but, aside from that, I think that you’re onto something there. Vermont is a strange place and so are its people. I don’t use the term strange as a negative in this case. I like the place being a little weird.

          • Labropotes

            Ray, do you find that Vermonters’ fierce independence is compromised by an excessive willingness to impose harsh restrictions on others? I do. Especially those likely to decline vaccines. I sometimes joke about our state being populated by jackbooted hippies.

          • Ray in VT

            I don’t know. Maybe in some ways, but maybe not in others. My late father could have cared less about gay marriage. Did you have any particular examples in mind? One would think that that would not be the case regarding vaccines, as our rate of non-totally vaccinated people is way higher, so to me that suggests that on this issue we’re fairly lenient.

          • Labropotes

            One example close to home for me is the biomass generating plant in Springfield. 1 of 3 houses in VT uses wood to heat, burning it much less cleaning than would the plant. The operation of the plant would add $25mm to local economy and save hundreds of thousands of gallons of diesel every year by not shipping pulpwood 2 hours further north. But the plant will likely not be able to operate because of pollution and truck traffic — in a town where the need for local economic activity is desperate. I read that as, “my right to live in a quiet town supersedes my duty to create a self-sustaining community, no matter the cost to others.”

          • Ray in VT

            There is some of that. The mother of one of my friends lives around Quechee on the family farmstead that has been in the family for over 200 years, and she definitely feels that there are those who are pushing to restrict what they can do with their land, but they perceive that as mostly being wealthy out of staters. When I was a kid in Shelburne we had a lot of people complaining about the noise and smell of our farm, but it was mostly people whom my father, at his least blue, flatlanders. I expect people to have some decorum, but as long as trucks aren’t shaking my house at 2:00am, then business ought to be able to run their vehicles, although I might not be too happy if something were to go up on my neighbors land that would keep me and my kids awake all night.

    • Thinking Mom

      Tom please tell us exactly what VT’s exemption rate is for the most recent year published and how that compares to past years.

    • jefe68

      There was a time when smallpox’s was common.
      While it is still around, it’s not very common.
      People have these romantic ideals about the past that are selective. People forget that in the 19th century child mortality in the US was akin to a third world country today.

      • Ray in VT

        Just like how people forget that there were towns in good old Puritan New England where perhaps 30% of brides were with child on their wedding day.

        A great deal of history is viewed through tinted glasses, which was why I was glad when they did the show with Bernard Bailyn.

  • Unterthurn

    The anti-vaccine crowd seems to be so informed. They act as if their knowledge is proven fact.
    Please address the statics of who these people are.
    Are they educated? And if so how well?
    Are they particularly religious?
    It always surprises me how many people in America don’t believe in evolution.
    Why are the anti-vaccine crowd so easily lead into these practices of not immunizing their children?

    • Thinking Mom

      there was a vaccine industry conference in France some years ago in which it was stated that the people who know most about vaccines are the developers and the parents who are questioning vaccines, if only these two groups could come together, we’d have better and safer vaccines

  • hennorama

    The “informed dissent” requirement idea being discussed sounds similar to pre-abortion “counseling” requirements in a large number of states. (As of Jan. 1, 2014, 35 states require that women receive counseling before an abortion is performed.)

    • Ray in VT

      I think that counseling is fine, as long as one is seeking to make sure that one has thought something fully through and is aware the potential consequences. Routing women to “pregnancy crisis centers” that have an agenda merely to discourage abortion is quite another.

      • hennorama

        Ray in (scarily under-vaccinated) VT — without voicing a view on the abortion topic, I simply found the similarity interesting.

        This similarity might be used as an argument for some cohorts:

        “If you agree with pre-abortion counseling, shouldn’t you also agree with an “informed dissent” requirement regarding vaccinations?” Etc.

        • J__o__h__n

          Adult women should have have control over decisions regarding their own bodies. Children don’t have the capacity to make their own decisions.

          • hennorama

            J__o__h__n — thank you for your response.

            Your points are well-taken, but I was not attempting to make an argument either for or against abortion. I simply found the similarity interesting, and perhaps a challenge to the consistency of some viewpoints.

          • J__o__h__n

            I thought it was a thought provoking question.

          • hennorama

            J__o__h__n — thank you for your kind words.

          • Thinking Mom

            and you are suggesting that parents need to be complaint with the medic/pharma industry rather than think for themselves?

          • jefe68

            I would say if you’re a parent and you don’t vaccinate your kids then you are putting them at risk to some diseases.
            Tetanus and measles are two that you would have to be an idiot not vaccinate against.

          • Don_B1

            It is absolutely true that everyone should “think for themselves.”

            But that thinking needs to be performed with the logical unemotional part of the mind, not the emotional side, and so much of the “thinking” being done by the anti-vaccine groups is emotional, at least somewhat disconnected from the ability to look at the studies and ask the right questions to sort out which studies are based on real facts and not biased.

            One thing might be to go back to the 1998 Wakefield MMR Lancet paper and try to read it and pick out things in it that would tip you off to its being the fraud that it has been shown to be. While the paper did fool a lot of reviewers (or, more likely not looked at closely enough). Maybe it is just that they accepted his (false) claim that he was reporting all his financial interests, which could have indicated the conflict of interest, though a conflict does not always mean faked research. In this case the lead author fooled even his coauthors/coworkers. But read the history of the case and see how easy or not that kind of a result can occur.

            Then also really look at the cases where a bad result from vaccinations is claimed. What are the full circumstances of that event? I admit that is hard without access to the medical data, and then you need to be able to trust those that do.

            And there is where those that want to establish and spread their false claims make ad hominem attacks on those defending, in this case vaccination, so that people will choose to believe those making the attacks, rather than the defenders.

            It is not easy, and the post elsewhere in this program blog (by a woman, but I can’t seem to find it now) provides a link to some studies of why people continue to believe in things when the basis for that belief has been empirically shown to be false which also might help you develop a deeper understanding of the problem everyone faces when trying to discern what is truth when faced with a lot of competing claims.

        • Thinking Mom

          hennorama, please tell us how the vaccination rates in Vermont are low? they are at an all time high, they are so high that the focus has shifted towards exaggerating the exemption rates and a change by the DoH in the formatting of the excel report that used to show very precise data. (it’s all on their website btw) it is easy to scare people with things like a 30 percent exemption rate but when that applies to a kindergarten classroom of ten, one child has no chicken pox vaccines, one has no hepatitis B and one has none at all, it becomes a broader picture of a 30 percent exemption rate.

          • hennorama

            Thinking Mom — thank you for your response.

            I was both making reference to the ‘Vaccine Exemption Rates Around The Country’ map above, as well as giving [Ray in VT] a gentle and playful nudge about his home state.

            As you are a new member of the forum, (Welcome, BTW!) the latter aspect would be both unknown and unexpected to you.

            If you have information that would add to the collective knowledge of this merry band, please share it freely, and please especially include links to your sources, for their convenience and confirmation aspects.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • Thinking Mom

            thank you hennorama. You can see the data for yourself and how vaccination coverage has risen on the VT DoH websiite http://healthvermont.gov/hc/imm/ImmSurv.aspx

            sine the DoH changed the formatting it takes more effort to parse out the numbers

            the media outlets continue to assert that vaccination coverage is down when it is not

            this leads parents to wonder why the push is so hard against parents who selectively use vaccines and to wonder why we have outbreaks of illness with such high vaccination coverage (all time) and to wonder if maybe the push is to remove the only check and balance for vaccinations _ the exemptions before it becomes clear that maybe the problem is with the vaccines themselves

            when my children ere young we were able to separate out the vaccines and have them administered singly, now there is no choice for parents. My guess is that more parents would use vaccines if they were able to have choice.

    • AliceOtter33

      I am in favor of vaccinations for kids, but the “informed dissent” requirement rubs me the wrong way, too. But I’m wondering what would be an alternative that would convince parents on both sides that their child’s right to be safe is being protected?

      • hennorama

        AliceOtter33 – thank you for your response.

        The unfortunate reality is that some parents are willing to latch onto small bits of information, either pro- or anti-vaccination, that they find persuasive, and to reject all other information out of hand. Part of this is out of their legitimate safety concerns, part is out of a “government can’t tell me what to do” attitude, and part of it is out of evidence-based belief.

        Regardless, there are legitimate societal concerns about infectious disease prevention that need to be addressed, and also the question of the individual’s responsibilities to society at large, versus their individual liberty.

    • Kathy

      It should just be banned. If you don’t want your kid to get vaccines, you’re not a fit parent. Take the kid away.

      • hennorama

        Kathy — thank you for your response.

        Your view is beyond the bounds of reasonableness, as it leaves no room for exception.

        Dissent in all its forms is perhaps the most American of values.

      • Don

        Do you mean, if you have children and you do hours and hours of research out of concern for your children, and come to the conclusion that vaccines are probably causing a great deal more harm than is allowed, then you don’t deserve to take care of your children? Or do you mean that if you don’t blindly obey the medical authorities and submit to any procedure they want to impose, then your children should be taken? Or do you mean that if you find that the notion that vaccines are responsible for the decline of infectious disease is not really true, then your children should be taken from you? Or do you just mean that if I disagree with you, then I should have my children taken from me?

        • Kathy

          Not vaccinating your child endangers their lives and the lives of others. If you endanger your children’s life, you’re not a fit parent.

          Your delusional beliefs about vaccines are no more valid than the delusion beliefs of someone who sacrifices their child on a bloody altar.

          • Don

            Kathy, I’m afraid you’re misinformed about vaccines. I’ve done my research– have you? I will quote the last sentence in Dr Suzanne Humphries book, “Dissolving Illusions.” This woman is an MD, and here’s what she says: “The reality … is that vaccinology, as presented to the public today, amounts to writing religion on the back of ignorance.” You believe that science and history back vaccines; they do not. Look objectively at the science, and look objectively at the history. The alternative is to accept only the purported “science” that the pharmaceutical companies, allied with the CDC, prepare for you. You assume that I’m endangering my children, but from my point of view, the people who are really endangering their children are the ones who submit blindly to vaccines, without questioning.

  • Ray in VT

    Could that pastor have sounded any more like the stereotype that many people have of a Bible Belt preacher?

  • Scott B

    I grew up with depression era parents who told me about friends, relatives (like my grandmother and 3 of her sisters) and many others, that died from TB, scarlet fever, etc.,even the flu. I watched some of my own peers get whooping cough, scarlet fever, and got mumps myself. So I have a sense of how it effects people, the public as well as family.

    It’s the young people today, that don’t have any memory of disease, or
    of having parents that had life experience with disease and it’s ravaging effects to the body and society ;and/or who’d rather
    believe misguided and uninformed celebrities or online conspiracy theories.

    But I also hear from peers and relatiives, how their kids’s medical providers are saying things, like that the flu shot probably isn’t necessary, which, to me, is just crazy, especially coming from doctors that literally has volumes of evidence at their fingertips!

  • RolloMartins

    As education is compulsory in the U.S. so too should vaccinations be compulsory. Prior to matriculation into a school (including home schooling) vaccination should be proved.

    • Don_B1

      It certainly was the case, and still is, in many places that vaccinations are compulsory for matriculation to public schools, but with a growing number of exceptions, or use of those exceptions.

      It would be interesting if there is a private school that accepts all students without vaccinations. And then I would like to see their insurance company’s response.

  • J__o__h__n

    Will the taxpayers have to pay for a lifetime of care for a child who gets polio due to having stupid parents?

    • Thinking Mom

      will they pay for a lifetime of care for a vaccine injured child?

      • 1Brett1

        They already do…in the form of human services. Most counties/cities/states have tax-funded human-service programs for people with disabilities incurred from all sorts of things, including rare, extreme reactions from vaccines.

      • jefe68

        Have you ever seen what polio, tetanus or smallpox did and still do to children?

  • Kathy

    It’s very simple. This is child abuse and should be treated as such. These children should be taken from their parents and their parents should face prosecution.

    • Lisa

      child abuse…really? I think you are overreaching here. I have immunized both of my children with all but one of the recommended vaccines but I did not do so without seriously considering not vaccinating them. Just because the “all knowing” medical community tells us that we must vaccinate does not mean that parents shouldn’t use critical thinking skills and make their own decisions based on what they think is best for their child.

    • Don

      Some of us would argue that the real abuse is the medical community’s denial of vaccine injuries– always coincidence, never causal. Always,.

      • Chris

        The medical community does not deny the very, very rare cases of vaccine injury. That’s why there’s a Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. No one claims that vaccines are 100% safe. There are rare cases of injury, but the benefits of vaccines far outweigh the occasional consequences.

        • Don

          At last that’s what they want us to believe. Is it true? Unfortunately it take a lot of research to find out.

  • J__o__h__n

    I doubt that a doctor said that.

    • Siuda

      Our doctor initially told us that the risk to our daughter was worth the protection of the general public. And since then, many, many people have told us that we should have accepted the sacrifice of our child’s health for the greater good. It’s hard to believe until you’ve heard it for yourself.

  • Siuda

    After our daughter’s severe reaction to the initial round of vaccinations we began to question why babies are required to have SO MANY at one time. We tried to find a doctor who would space them out or split up the MMR to no avail. After another round she suffered from febrile seizures and we discontinued all further shots. She has severe food and environmental allergies – and we can’t help but wonder if her health issues stem from those shots since we did everything else to protect her.

    • Chris

      It’s not about the number of shots given, it’s about the number of antigens in the shots, and that number has gone down considerably. This means that the current vaccination schedule is as safe as it’s ever been.

      • Don

        No, it’s about the aluminum, formaldehyde, mercury, and other toxic ingredients that may be in vaccines.

        • Chris

          The exposure to toxins in vaccines is much, much lower than the exposure to toxins every time you get in your car and drive to the grocery store. You are being exposed to toxins as you sit and read this response. The tiny trace amounts of toxins in vaccines are what make them work, and are at levels that are not dangerous.

          • Don

            Chris, those are assumptions, not facts.

  • AliceOtter33

    Yet is there any doubt as to how dangerous the diseases that have been rendered rare by vaccines really are?

    • jefe68

      No. If you do some research into the history of smallpox it’s pretty clear that the vaccine worked and eradicated a disease that was once as common as the flu.

  • jefe68

    This woman is so misinformed. It’s clear to me that despite her education she lacks critical thinking skills.

    I’m glad I never had to deal with this kind of parent when my kid was in school.

    • MarkVII88

      There will always be a couple parents of children at any school who, it seems, act as if their only job is to be a pain in your ass. You have to ask yourself sometimes…”What the hell else do these parents do?”

  • Scott B

    I can remember people were all up in arms about the swine flu vaccine having cause something like 7 deaths, but they “forget” (read “ingore”) that something like 70 million people safely got the vaccine. People take a bigger risk of death just getting in the shower in the morning.

  • ElliFrank

    Tom, I can’t believe you did a program like this without including credible speakers addressing some of the documented difficulties with vaccines. One of the reasons that more and more families are being driven away from vaccines is because there is not a balanced, informed, and mutually respectful opportunity for discussion about ALL the issues involved in vaccines.

    I am not anti-vaccine, but I do have problems with some vaccine-related issues, including overly aggressive scheduling of multiple vaccines at once (particularly for children with existing medical vulnerabilities), over-vaccination, inclusion of toxic and/or allergen-related ingredients in vaccinations, etc.

    You usually include a more balanced panel of speakers on topics you address. I hope you will do another show with several competent panelists who are asking important questions based on solid data.

    Continuing to silence reasonable concerns (backed up by data) of parents and professionals who have legitimate concerns will only continue to drive many families away from more balanced practices.

    • Kathy

      He is featuring all the critics of vaccines that are based on science. The fact that this number is zero isn’t the host’s fault. In fact, he should be commended for not engaging in the usual nonsense of pretending their are two sides to each story when science says there is only one.

      • Don

        There are two sides. There is science behind concern over vaccination. Any number of PhDs or MDs could have been consulted. Dr. Mayer Eisenstein, for example, or Brian Hooker, PhD, or Elizabeth Humphries, MD, or Boyd Haley, PhD. former head of the chemistry department at the University of Kentucky. There are many, many others.

    • jo_depaolo

      I guess every discussion on climate change deserves a denier as well. Sacrifice science for the sake of balance!

      • J__o__h__n

        Has Jenny McCarthy reached a verdict on that yet?

      • ElliFrank

        I’m not talking about sacrificing science. I’m talking about more open, mutually respectful conversations that address these issues using good research on both sides.

        By shaming and blaming parents and professionals who have legitimate concerns about vaccines, public health officials are driving many families away from vaccines.

        If the goal is to increase public safety, there needs to be a different, more open and respectful approach taken to this dialogue.

        • jo_depaolo

          I understand what you are saying. On some topics I would side with you. Unfortunately, when it puts lives at risk and scientific research only backs up one perspective, other sides ought not be given validation.

          • ElliFrank

            Hi Jo. Two points:

            One, there is clearly a growing population of people in the U.S. who have concerns about vaccines and are not vaccinating. If your goal (and the goal of public health officials) is to turn that trend around, then effective approaches need to be taken to changing that trend. Shame and blame ALWAYS drive people to more entrenched positions, so taking this approach to the dialogue is defeating the purpose that people such as yourself and public officials supposedly have.

            Two, the research is not one sided. Being willing to look at the research AND concerns on both sides is part of a mutually respectful conversation that has far greater potential to lead to positive change for everyone.

            There is not enough room here to post the many studies that raise concerns related to vaccines, but I’ll post just one at the end of this comment just as an example.

            There are also situations going on around the world in response to vaccine-related problems with either the vaccines themselves (e.g. Guardasil in Japan, where due to serious side effects such as paralysis & neurological problems, the government has stopped the mandatory vaccine program), or with the scheduling of multiple vaccines (e.g. in Italy, where a family was awarded damages for a hexavalent — a 6-fold or 6-way — vaccine causing the death of their 6-month old baby).

            It should not be this difficult to have a more reasoned, inclusive, and mutually respectful dialogue on this topic. Until that happens, the present trend will only continue.

            Here is the one recent example I mentioned of a research study that could raise concerns with parents. There are many others — about vaccine additives, specific vaccines, combining of vaccines, and aggressive vaccine scheduling — that we should be able to discuss without put downs and stigmatization.

            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24354891

            Transl
            Neurodegener. 2013 Dec
            19;2(1):25. [Epub ahead of print]

            A two-phase study evaluating the relationship between
            Thimerosal-containing vaccine administration and the risk for an autism spectrum
            disorder diagnosis in the United States.

            Geier
            DA, Hooker
            BS, Kern
            JK, King
            PG, Sykes
            LK, Geier
            MR.

            Abstract

            BACKGROUND:

            Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is defined by
            standardized criteria of qualitative impairments in social interaction,
            qualitative impairments in communication, and restricted and stereotyped
            patterns of behavior, interests, and activities. A significant number of
            children diagnosed with ASD suffer a loss of previously-acquired skills, which
            is suggestive of neurodegeneration or a type of progressive encephalopathy with
            an etiological pathogenic basis occurring after birth. To date, the etiology of
            ASD remains under debate, however, many studies suggest toxicity, especially
            from mercury (Hg), in individuals diagnosed with an ASD. The present study
            evaluated concerns about the toxic effects of organic-Hg exposure from
            Thimerosal (49.55% Hg by weight) in childhood vaccines by conducting a
            two-phased (hypothesis generating/hypothesis testing) study with documented
            exposure to varying levels of Thimerosal from vaccinations.

            METHODS:

            A hypothesis generating cohort study was
            undertaken to evaluate the relationship between exposure to organic-Hg from a
            Thimerosal-containing Diphtheria-Tetanus-acellular-Pertussis (DTaP) vaccine in
            comparison to a Thimerosal-free DTaP vaccine administered, from 1998 through
            2000, for the risk of ASD as reported in the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting
            System (VAERS) database (phase I). A hypothesis testing case-control study was
            undertaken to evaluate the relationship between organic-Hg exposure from
            Thimerosal-containing hepatitis B vaccines administered at specific intervals in
            the first six months of life among cases diagnosed with an ASD and controls born
            between 1991 through 1999 in the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD) database (phase
            II).

            RESULTS:

            In phase I, it was observed that there was a
            significantly increased risk ratio for the incidence of ASD reported following
            the Thimerosal-containing DTaP vaccine in comparison to the Thimerosal-free DTaP
            vaccine. In phase II, it was observed that cases diagnosed with an ASD were
            significantly more likely than controls to receive increased organic-Hg from
            Thimerosal-containing hepatitis B vaccine administered within the first, second,
            and sixth month of life.

            CONCLUSIONS:

            Routine childhood vaccination is an important
            public health tool to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with
            infectious diseases, but the present study provides new epidemiological evidence
            supporting an association between increasing organic-Hg exposure from
            Thimerosal-containing childhood vaccines and the subsequent risk of ASD
            diagnosis.

          • Thinking Mom

            who is funding research to compare the vaccinated and the unvaccinated for long term health?

          • Don

            No one. Dr Mayer Eisenstein claims that he has seen over 35,000 pediatric patients, does not vaccinate, and has no autism. Yet no one seems to bother with this fact, and even though bills have been introduced to study vaccinated vs unvaccinated populations, these attempts have so far never made it through committee. Those opposed to vaccinations heartily welcome such a study. Those endorsing vaccinations … well, they just don’t see the point, because they know the right answer, and Dr. Eisenstein is obviously giving the wrong answer.

          • jo_depaolo

            Elli,

            I am grateful that you wish to have this conversation, and I am sorry to sound dismissive. In the spirit of full disclosure, I am in the 5th year of my joint MD/PhD degree, and have read a great deal of vaccine-related literature. Of course I have not read every article out there, but suffice it to say that I am pretty well informed.

            I agree with your first point, in principle, on a person-to-person basis. No parent wants to feel like a doctor is messing with their child’s health. To that point, the caller this morning who said that she had been told by her pediatrician that some kids just need to be sacrificed for the greater good (I forget the exact words), well, that is simply pathetic. That physician obviously was not properly taught how to be a doctor, or lacks empathy entirely. Doctors should take plenty of time explaining to parents exactly what a vaccination is doing, and why it is far riskier to go through childhood unvaccinated. These individual conversations should occur always. However, I do not think scientifically dishonest positions should be given a bullhorn to drum up support in the public domain.

            To your point on research, I am absolutely open to reading and researching more. Even more to your points, there are certain risks with everything. Much as there is a risk of getting in a car or walking down a street, there is risk in getting an injection. Therefore, I accept that there have been instances of morbidity and even mortality due to vaccination (especially due to allergic reactions). But when analyzing risks versus benefits, we have to consider the alternative. No one wants their child to have a difficult allergic reaction, or, God forbid, die due to vaccination (which I venture to say will happen at least one more time between now and when I leave this Earth). However, the risks of morbidity and mortality when viruses such as polio, hepatitis B, mumps, measles, rubella, pertusis, etc… are running wild are thousands of times higher, maybe millions. These bugs are much more adept at killing than our vaccines. Though you may not wish to hear this, I sincerely believe that vaccines are the single greatest advancement in medicine that we have seen throughout human history.

            Finally, I did take a look at the article you sent me. I have two issues with it: First, all vaccines for children under 6 have been thimersol-free since 2001, yet autism diagnoses continue to climb (especially in children under 12, ie those born 2001 or later). Second, the amount of mercury (Hg) in thimersol is extraordinarily low. In contrast, the risk for mercury consumption is much greater in some seafood and shellfish. Banning seafood/shellfish consumption may be a better idea if one is interested in eradicating risk of mercury exposure (though I think that might be extreme as well).

            Finally, the article you sent me was authored by a Dr. Geier who has lost his license to practice medicine in every state in which he has tried to do so because of some seriously unethical experiments he performed (with his son who has no graduate degree of any kind, and who is also an author on this paper) on children suffering from autism using the drug Leuprolide (a very dangerous hormone agonist that has extreme side effects in developing children). I think there are probably better sources to make the case that vaccines are dangerous as this man has forfeited his credibility by these actions. Much as I read authors who write papers on how global warming does not exist, I will continue to read articles about how vaccinations cause more risks than benefits. However, I will look at both sets of article with an extremely skeptical eye because I have read enough scientifically legitimate articles that conclude vaccinations are great and healthy, and that global warming is indeed occurring and dangerous, and that is what I have come to believe in both instances.

            I hope this has been somewhat helpful in allowing you to see things from my perspective and perhaps even given you some evidence as to why I believe what I do.

          • Don_B1

            Thank you so much for taking the time to post this exposition of clear thinking about the risks of accepting the claims of either side, and showing exactly why you have come to the conclusion that vaccination is by far the safest choice, and that that choice is backed by real, confirmed data, while discounting the emotional component of so much of the contrarian claims depend on for their acceptance.

        • Siuda

          Elli, I agree, it is disappointing to hear the bullying and scare tactics instead of reasonable discussion. Apparently everyone is going to die, go blind or become parapalegics without vaccination – which isn’t supported by historical data in the reduction of morbidity and mortality prior to the advent of vaccinations.

  • Scott B

    The doctor, whose study Jennifer McCarthy used, lost his medical license and was prosecuted.

    • Don

      If you’re referring to Andrew Wakefield, you’re right and wrong. Wakefield was hounded by journalist Brian Deer, and the General Medical Council revoked his medical license in 2010. However, in 2012 the British High Court determined that the 1998 study in question was legitimate and Wakefield and his coauthors were wrongly accused of fraud, and that the General Medical Council and the Lancet uncritically accepted Brian Deer’s accusations.

      • jefe68

        Nope, he’s right. Wakefield has been thoroughly discredited.

        • Don

          Nope, you’re wrong, and just continually saying that Wakefield has been thoroughly discredited doesn’t make it so.

  • Thinking Mom

    Tom Ashbrook, Six Questions for you. 1) Please tell us what the CDC rates for vaccination for the basic childhood illnesses: polio, measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria and pertussis were in 1970, 1980, 1990, 2000, up until today and in this past decade in which you state there was a decline in vaccine coverage. 2) Please share with your listeners how the addition of new vaccines like Hepatitis B and chicken pox lower the aggregate numbers? 3) How much money have each of your guests received from the pharmaceutical industry including research funds, endowed chair, vaccine patent funds and such? 4) When you cite exemption rates for private schools in Malibu and LA, does a child whose family opts out of one type of vaccine like chicken pox count as an unvaccinated child? 5) Did you receive information in the form of a press release from a public interest group like Gray Media? 6) Please would you review for your listens the required vaccination schedule for 1960 as compared to 2013.

    • Thinking Mom

      how can you vote down a request for data and transparency?

      • hennorama

        Thinking Mom — try not to take the Votes down, or up, personally. There’s no rhyme or reason to them, especially to Votes down, and down voters never explain them.

        • Ray in VT

          I explain my ironic ones.

          • hennorama

            Ray in (scarily under-vaccinated) VT — your point is well-taken, and my comment will be appropriately edited.

          • Thinking Mom

            hennorama please tell us what the vaccination rates are in VT for 2013 compared to 2012, 2011, 2000, 1990, 1979 when school requirements were introduced in VT and show us the data for how they are now low. In fact if you look at the data from the school nurses, you will see that VT vaccination coverage is at an all time high. When we compare polio coverage in 2013 to polio coverage since 1979, it has risen steadily. Please explain your assertions.

          • Thinking Mom

            did you know that a public interest group called Gray Media seeded the media outlets in VT with distorted data on vaccination rates? If you look at their website, you will see PhRMA and Pfizer listed on their client page.

          • jefe68

            What this tells me is that vaccines should be developed by non-profits or institutions that do not have finical gain from vaccines. You’re twisting this to game your argument. Again I’ll point to polio which was developed in research university setting and funded by the government. It was not about profits, it was about public health.

          • Thinking Mom

            jefe68, Agreed. That would eliminate the profit motive. The polio vaccine was very complicated and brought up many moral and ethical questions. Did it eliminate polio, probably yes. Did the live virus version infect people and cause paralysis in some, probably yes. At what point did the risk outweigh the benefit? The polio conversation has many layers and is still being played out today. The issue here is that this conversation is based on the premise that vaccination rates have declined over the past decade and that the unvaccinated put the vaccinated at risk. It is illogical because the percent of unvaccinated children is at an all time low for the childhood illnesses of my generation: polio, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella. Look at the percent of first grade children entering school in the states with so called low vaccination rates and you will find rates that are higher than anything in the 60s, 70s, 80′s, 90′s, 2000′s until today. Vaccination rates are at an ll time high in the history of humanity. When vaccination rates for the newer vaccines like Hep B and chicken pox are added to the mix, yes, the rates go down. But the polio, diphtheria, pertussis, measles, mumps and rubella rates are higher than ever.

          • jefe68

            Polio, diphtheria, pertussis, measles, mumps and rubella rates are higher than ever? Really? Not in the US, in Syria ( due to a break down in the vaccine program from the war) and Afghanistan polio has been on the rise, but not in this country.

            If you want to be taken seriously I think you might want to get some stats on this. From what I’ve read about measles it’s a foreign strain that that has made it’s way into the US, however, fewer than 2 percent of the total measles cases reported in the US this year occurred in people who were fully vaccinated against the disease.

          • Labropotes

            I downvoted you just to make your point.

          • Ray in VT

            I almost downvoted yours as a show of solidarity.

          • Labropotes

            did it for you.

    • tbphkm33

      “ThinkingMom” – answer the questions yourself, don’t try to be coy about it… make an intelligent, informed and rational argument why your children should be exempted from vaccines. Put some “thinking” into it.

  • Ray in VT

    Why do people listen to celebrities like Jenny McCarthy on issues like this. Where is her M.D. from again?

    • J__o__h__n

      She is also pitching e-cigarettes.

      • Ray in VT

        Is she? Her best work was probably on the printed page and Singled Out.

  • tilliejupiter

    I have type 1 diabetes (along with 3 other autoimmune diseases), which puts my son at a high risk developing it. A study from Denmark (link below) concluded that immunizations increase risk of developing Type 1 diabetes significantly enough in children with a parent with type 1 diabetes that “it would be justifiable to abstain from immunization in this subgroup at present.”

    What would your guest suggest in my case?

    The Open Pediatric Medicine Journal, 2008, 2, 7-10
    http://www.benthamscience.com/open/topedj/articles/V002/7TOPEDJ.pdf

    • MeghJ

      You are the one that we are supposed to be protecting with herd immunity.

      • tilliejupiter

        But there’s no room for discussion about this as far as most doctors are concerned. It’s their way or the highway. I wish more doctors would be willing to have a nuanced, informed discussion about this with me. Instead they just refuse to accept my son as a patient unless I agree to go ahead with every vaccine.

        • MeghJ

          It looks like people have tried to replicate that study, even using the same dataset, and were unable to reproduce his findings. Unless the results are replicable, they are not considered valid. All anyone has to do is use accepted scientific methodology, and get the results he did. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._Bart_Classen

  • Noelle paffett-lugassy

    Can we get polio patients to start advocating for vaccinations?

  • ianway

    What happened? Post-modern anti-science relativism feeding age-old superstitions about contamination, and sheer ignorance inflamed by the internet and celebrity culture.

    • Don

      No. people with children do research and are very, very surprised at what they find.

      • Don_B1

        Do you still believe that cigarettes are not harmful?

        The cigarette industry financed a huge campaign that established the ways to confuse the public and beat the advocates of real science in the public “open debate.”

        Those methods are seen in the discussion of many issues today, from vaccinations to climate change to which is more important to the country’s economy, creating jobs or reducing the debt.

        From what I have read on your posts, I have to suspect that you are someone that, for some reason I cannot yet determine, has fallen into a trap, believing in false claims of excessive risk in being vaccinated.

        • Don

          Exactly. Much of the science passed off by the pharmaceutical industry is tobacco science. To paraphrase what you said, The pharmaceitical industry financed a huge campaign that established the ways to confuse the public and beat the advocates of real science in the public “open debate.”

      • Chris

        People without children do research too. Having children doesn’t make you a doctor or a scientist. “Do the research” is the most arbitrary phrase out there. It means nothing when you are including pseudoscience in your “research.”

  • MeghJ

    This is one of the best stories about the repercussions of not
    vaccinating out there:
    http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2013/06/06/3776327.htm

  • Annie Watson

    I am not against vaccines. However, I’ve heard about there being additives and preservatives in them that could cause problems for children. Can your guests please address this? Is anything being done to address this issue? — Ann, Vermont

    • RolloMartins

      Of course there are preservatives. Thank God! They have already been tested and tested and tested.

      • Don

        No, they haven’t. Vaccines are often tested against placebos that contain other basic vaccine ingredients– do you call that science? Test them against real placebos. See Safeminds website.

    • Heather Wickings

      Science based medicine has a web page describing all ingredients and what the are for. Google it.

    • Don

      Many studies have demonstrated the neurotoxity of mercury– but curiously, studies backed by pharmaceutical companies show no problem, no problem at all, even if children get massive doses of mercury all at once, as used to be the case. Strange. A known neurotoxin, and you’re supposed to be careful of the methylmercury in fish, but it’s OK to inject ethylmercury? It’s still toxic. Aluminum is also a known neurotoxin and is found in vaccines, as is formaldehyde. See Safeminds website, or Regarding Caroline.

    • jefe68

      Do you not eat food that has ascorbic acid in it?

  • Unterthurn

    Ask the caller what does her well educated mean?

  • J__o__h__n

    Homeothopy? What utter nonsense!

  • MeghJ

    Nutrition will not help you against Polio. Franklin Roosevelt was fantastically well nourished and an avid outdoorsman, and yet got Polio as an adult.

    • jefe68

      In the 1916 polio epidemic.

  • John Collins

    Why not then just say that vaccines are 100% safe? This claim cannot be made give current research. Sure its a few percentage points, but that translates to thousands of deaths and side effects. Even if something is only a 0.1% chance of happening to a population, if it happens to you, that is 100% in your life.

    • Heather Wickings

      Yeah, like the flu I got that nearly killed me and did kill tens of thousands.

    • AliceOtter33

      Yes, but can you apply this same logic to the odd victim or a parent whose infant has suffered or died of pertussis or flu because he was too young to receive vaccines and was unwittingly exposed to *voluntarily unvaccinated* carriers of these diseases?

  • James Patrick Dwyer Jr.

    There is a name for some of these well educated people, they are educated idiots. We all know some of these people probably.

    • Don

      Perhaps. Perhaps they are just trying to make sense of a complicated topic.

    • jefe68

      Idiots, who happen to have college degrees.
      Groucho Marx once said: “He may look like an idiot, and act like an idiot, but don’t let that fool you, he really is an idiot.”

  • Thinking Mom

    Please tell us what year it was when we had higher vaccination rates for pertussis?

  • Noelle paffett-lugassy

    Is there a map that shows the incidence of vaccine diseases? Is it perhaps similar to the vaccine exemption rate map?

  • Jeff

    The anti-vaccine movement is part of the left wing, heath nut movement so it gets very little scrutiny, it’s very similar to GMO resistance which have never been proven in a peer reviewed, legitimate study to cause any health risks or problems when compared with non-GMO foods.

    • Ray in VT

      The left wingers like that Texas pastor that got played?

    • J__o__h__n

      I’m skeptical of the GMO foods mostly due to the food industry’s past products like transfats and all the antibiotics in meat production, and mostly their refusal to label the food as GMO. As long as the choice doesn’t harm others (like refusing vaccines), people should be free to make irrational choices.

    • jefe68

      Oh please, stop with your partisan memes.
      The show is about vaccines, not GMO’s.

      • Jeff

        It’s the same discussion…liberals denying science because “natural” is always better rather than looking at the facts.

        • jefe68

          The show is not about GMO’s.
          I’m not sure about them.
          But in this country they are in everything anyway so banning them would be almost impossible in some crops, such as corn and soybeans.

          I can say the same about right wingers being ignorant about so many subjects.

    • Heather Wickings

      The left that fears drug companies and modern medicine. The right that believes in FEMA camps and chem trails, both extreme ends have conspiracy nuts.

    • hennorama

      Jeff – Thank you for contributing to my ongoing series “Typos as Freudian slips that make me chuckle, Part 9″:

      “heath nut” vs. “health nut.”

      Is a “heath nut” someone who is enamored with the English countryside? Or perhaps a Tolkien/shire fan?

      Thanks again.

      • Ray in VT

        I didn’t even see that one. I vote that a heath nut is someone who loves Heath bars. Ergo I am a Heath nut.

        • Labropotes

          I love the novel Wuthering Heights — even visited the priory — making me an authentic heath nut.

        • 1Brett1

          Oh, man, Heath Bars™!!! Dental hygiene be damned! …if loving Heath Bars™ is wrong, I don’t wanna be right!

          • Ray in VT

            Agreed!!

      • 1Brett1

        hennorama, please make one of the options/questions ‘a lover of Heath Bars’? I implore you!

        • hennorama

          1Brett1 — done and done.

    • Scott B

      I know quite a few far right-wingers that don’t trust vaccines for the exact same reasons. This is an ignorance issue, not a left or right political issue.

      In fact the John Birch society doesn’t want water fluoridated, because they see it as mass medication from government intrusion, and some take it further, saying it’s a potential gateway to the gov’t having a way to deploy mind and birth control drugs.

    • Don

      Afraid not, Jeff. There’s a lot of science out there on the neurotoxicity of vaccine ingredients. There many studies in peer-reviewed journals. See “Vaccine Epidemic,” an excellent book by a lawyer, Mary Holland, for some references.

      • Jeff

        Yes, because a book by a lawyer will give us a great perspective on a medical issue.

        • Don

          Perhaps it will, if you’d take the trouble to read it. At least it would be logical if written by a lawyer, wouldn’t it? You’re not arguing facts. It’s called “ad hominen.”

  • RolloMartins

    Homeopathy is a religion, not a science. It is such bogus crap. This caller, saying nutrition and holistic doctrine is necessary, is the real danger to the rest of us. And the minute someone says, “I’m educated” and “holistic” or “homeopathy” you know they are indeed NOT educated.

    • Siuda

      Homeopathy is a standard medical practice around the world – American medicine is not the only form of health care, and is in many ways less effective in basic health promotion than systems in Europe (which use homeopathy as standard practice).

      • J__o__h__n

        It might be widespread, but it is still nonsense.

        • Lisa

          Nonsense based on what J_o_h_n?

          • J__o__h__n

            The patient is “treated” by substances (of dubious medical worth) that are diluted to such an extent that they are no longer present in the solution. And they claim that the water “remembers” the substance even though it no longer contains it. NIH: “A number of the key concepts of homeopathy are not consistent with fundamental concepts of chemistry and physics.”

          • Lisa

            WebMD: “Although these studies could not identify how homeopathic solutions work, there was evidence that homeopathic dilutions differ from placebos” I admit that I am not an expert on the subject of homeopathy but calling it nonsense, when even webmd (an entity that obviously has an interest in the system of medicine that we currently use) says that it works, for minor issues, is a little much. Also your quote from the NIH goes on to say (in the very next sentence) that “There are significant challenges in carrying out rigorous clinical research on homeopathic remedies” Source: http://nccam.nih.gov/health/homeopathy

        • Heather Wickings

          Good point. ..numbers doesn’t amount to truth.

      • Heather Wickings

        Appeal to popularity.

  • AliceOtter33

    We should put the focus on anti-vaxxer’s fear and turn that to empathy for kids and adults who are put at risk by unvaccinated children.

    • Thinking Mom

      isn’t this where evolution kicks in for those of us who believe in the theory?

  • Unterthurn

    One practice that is poor is giving a number of vaccines during one visit.
    In Germany you will only be vaccinated after you have been examined to be sure you are healthy. And then you are given only one vaccine at a time. You must return on other days for more vaccinations if necessary.

    • Siuda

      That sounds like a reasonable, measured approach. One-size-fits-all is not appropriate.

    • Ray in VT

      Perhaps one problem with doing that here is copays. If one has to go back every few days for different vaccines and have a co payment each time, then that can hurt for those who are cutting it close financially.

      • Siuda

        Since vaccines are a critical part of public health they should be made completely free of charge.

  • Scott B

    I wonder if the woman caller , who works in holistic medicine, has ever seen a peer or child devastated by disease?. I have, several times scarlet fever, polio (local Amish community), mumps, and even the flu; and now, since back when I was a kid and they didn’t have a shot for chicken pox,I have shingles to worry about. That’s why I made sure my child got all her shots.

    • Ray in VT

      Do the Amish get vaccinated. They are, it is my understanding, not against modern medicine. The Amish who live near my brother might be described as a somewhat liberal branch. The first time that I saw one of the guys on a cell phone it blew my mind.

      • jefe68

        Are you sure this chap was not a Mennonite?
        It seems that some do and some don’t.

        http://amishamerica.com/do-amish-vaccinate-their-children/

        • Ray in VT

          Yup. Pretty sure. None of them have called me English yet though. All of the guys that I have met have been very nice, and their families do some nice baking.

        • Scott B

          There are some Mennonite communities that seem more like an old order Amish sect, so it swings both ways.

          I have seen some Amish driving (should say “driving” (in quotes) vehicles, and I had good reason to give them a very wide berth.

      • Scott B

        It depends on what sect they belong to, and personal beliefs. Many Mennonites (a more mainstream version of the Amish, many drive cars, etc) tend to be vaccinated, and some more liberal Amish sects will, especially the ones where something like polio, whooping cough, (et al) went whipping around the local population and killed or crippled quite a few people.

        Each sect had it’s own set of rules as to what they can and can’t do. It does catch me as odd that they will ride a buggy (they they object to having lights or a orange triangle on) 40 miles to a job, in frigid weather, starting out at 4am, then take the tarp off the wagon and fire up the Honda generator to power up the compressor, power tools, and radio.

        Cell phones are common, but “only” for business. Funniest thing I saw were Amish in the local strip joint hanging with bikers.

        • Ray in VT

          That’s pretty funny. I hear that there is a great deal more variation within the larger community than most outsiders realize. The folks around my brother can’t be on the grid, but I think that they can have generators for limited purposes. They can have a tractor (usually hooked up to a blower to get feed into a silo) as long as it is immobile, and they can use things like jackhammers or whatever on other people’s property.

  • Paul Meade

    I have three completely vacinated children in their 30′s. My oldest and youngest are, I would have to say, strident anti-vaccinators. My son, the oldest, has two children who are not being vaccinated. I worry for my grandchildren but I have given up on any hope of convincing the parents of the fallacy of their beliefs.

    Good nutrition will keep you healthy but only good medicine (including vaccinations) will prevent certain diseases.

    I wish there was a cure for gullibility and sheer ignorance.

    • Jeanne

      Buy them the book, Trick or Treatment. It might change their minds…

    • Thinking Mom

      are you stating that your adult children are gullible and ignorant because they do not share your perspective?

      • jefe68

        Interesting how you parse comments to make it seem that people who are questioning this ill-conceived idea of not having children vaccinated are problematic. It’s disingenuous obvious what your game is.

        If vaccines are a problem then why is that polio has been eradicated in the Western hemisphere and is still scene in third world nations were the vaccine is not used? Why are diseases such as diphtheria, measles and tetanus common in nations that do not vaccinate while in ones that do they are rare?

  • John Collins

    So are they saying that vaccines are 100% safe?

    • Heather Wickings

      what people are saying is that vaccine deaths in reactions are extremely low compared to death from infectious diseases.

      • Lisa

        And therefore parents should not take them into consideration when deciding what is best for their child?

        • Heather Wickings

          of course they should, but unless you have any reason to believe your child may have more likelihood of having a reaction than any other child the answer should be to vaccinate. When you think some people died because their seat belt is on it doesn’t really deter you from putting on your seatbelt because of the numbers. However if you did have a heart condition or something you may decide not to wear seatbelt because you would be one of the ones put more at risk from using a seatbelt.

          • Lisa

            You make a good point

        • 1Brett1

          Straw man argument…You are painting a side different than yours as those who never question anything, the very absolute broad brush you accuse the opposing side of doing to those who believe what you do.

      • Don

        No: you assume that the reactions are extremely rare. That is the point. Many say they are more frequent than acknowledged, and that these adverse reactions are brushed aside as coincidence. You also assume that diseases were conquered by vaccines, but the historical evidence is that diseases began dramatic drops before the relevant vaccines came on board. Bubonic plaque, for example, is nearly gone, and there was never a vaccine for it. Same for scarlet fever.

  • Rebecca

    I hate the idea that if I vaccinated my kid, I am not as well educated as those who have chosen not to. I realize that among the more educated breastfeeding and cloth diapering is up, but I don’t think it makes sense to not vaccinate your child and leave them and everyone at risk. My uncle died of polio and I would do anything to prevent my children from suffering from preventable diseases.

  • JT

    What preservatives and other ingredients do vaccines contain? Aluminum or mercury? We can read the ingredients of our foods; we should know the ingredients of injections.

    • Heather Wickings

      right and if you learn what is in the vaccination you will learn that kind of mercury in vaccine is not the kind that you think. There is a difference between Ethyl and methyl. everything is in there is there for a reason and we are talking about relative risk we are not that taking a vaccine is like taking a piece of organic fruit.

      • Don

        ethyl or methyl. mercury is a known neurotoxin, and and to imply that this is safe to inject into children (or anyone) is absurd. There is no reason for mercury to be in flu shots– so why is it there? Why can they take it out of all other vaccines but leave it in flu vaccines?

  • RolloMartins

    Am I my brother’s keeper? Well, the Bible says Yes.

  • James Brian Canary

    Why should those vaccinated fear those who are not.

    • Scott B

      That’s so not the point, nor the issue. It’s that the non-vaccinated should fear the others that aren’t. That’s how these diseases work, you know?

      • James Brian Canary

        We discuss making these decisions ‘mandatory’ for what? Because we don’t like to see people suffer? It’s part of life. Some people will suffer. It is sad. I believe vaccinations are good. But they should not be mandatory. Only encouraged.

        • AliceOtter33

          However, I can’t believe anyone would argue that suffering and/or dying of a preventable disease is mandatory, either.

          Yet the decision not to vaccinate is the decision to make it mandatory for a known percentage of the population to put themselves at risk.

        • Scott B

          And when god-knows-what sweeps through one of the schools with 80%+ being non-vaccinated, those same parents that lauded personal choice against big gov’t and touting bad scientific studies, and/or thought that these diseases had been eradicated, or at least not a threat in our modern world, have children sicken and die, these same parents will be banging on the doors of governments big and small, asking “Why did this happen?” and a lot of other whys and hows.

          This is much the same argument that was made about mandatory seat-belt and child seat laws. There’s always some idiot that thinks not only is it his right to not wear a seat belt, but that in an accident, he’ll be better off by, somehow, being “thrown clear” of the wreck, no matter how many facts as set in front of him, and that they won’t be in a wreck anyway because they’re a good driver. My parents always told me that it’s not my driving I need to worry about if I am obeying the laws, and the lessons I learned; it’s the driving of all the idiots out on the road I have to worry about.

        • jefe68

          Well I guess you hate seatbelt and drunk driving laws then.

    • AliceOtter33

      Because they are the potential harbingers of physical suffering or death for our most vulnerable populations – other unvaccinated individuals, those already sick or with compromised immunity – the very young, the very elderly.

      These are known victims.

      But the unvaccinated are often invisible. Not even detected as victims themselves if they benefit from living surrounded by a mostly vaccinated population in a developed country.

      Imagine how scary it would be to live unvaccinated in war-torn Syria whose vaccination infrastructure has broken down to the point that polio is making a comeback.

  • AliceOtter33

    I agree with the caller who pointed out anti-vaxxer’s kids are benefiting by the “herd” of vaccinated people around them.

    If these parents lived in a developing country still struggling with these childhood diseases, would they change their minds?

  • tbphkm33

    The anti-vaccination ideologues do threaten the entire population with their inability to understand basic science. Still, lets remember, in an outbreak, it is their children that are at the greatest risk for ending up with smallpox, measles, mumps, whooping cough, polio, etc.

    At which point their tune will quickly change… and a few will probably try to file law suits against the government for not doing more to save them from themselves.

    • Marina Knight

      I really agree with you. Also, the argument that education somehow justifies the decision to not vaccinate your child says little for education. I live in VT where there are pockets of the population where the unvaccinated percentage ranges into the high 30s and 40s. This is insanity to me.
      It doesn’t take much of an education to see that the risk of NOT vaccinating your child in this situation is far greater than the opposite.

      • Don

        The people who have question vaccines have generally done an extraordinary amount of due diligence. Check out the Safeminds website.

    • AliceOtter33

      I agree. I don’t wish such an outbreak on anyone, but there is no substitute for the terror and despair of watching helplessly as your child or loved one struggles for his or her life.

      The cost-benefit analysis looks very different when you consider the *certainty* that these diseases will resurface due to decreased vaccinations vs. the *possibility* (but very slim probability) that one’s child may experience some negative reaction to any given vaccine.

      If we cannot appeal to anti-vaxxers’ empathy for those they put at risk, this basic logic could at least be reframed as a direct appeal to the sense of freedom and control over his or her child’s safety (i.e. EGO).

      • Don

        You assume that vaccines conquered diseases, and that without vaccines they would come back. This is a common misconception and the historical evidence does not support this view. Diseases started drastic declines before the relevant vaccine came into widespread use and some diseases, like scarlet fever and bubonic plague, nearly disappeared without any vaccine at all. However, all you hear about is “vaccine preventable diseases”– this is pure assumption and has no evidence to back it up. See Suzanne Humphries, “Dissolving Illusions.”

        • jefe68

          Bubonic plague is not virus it’s a bacteria. Also it’s still around. Scarlet fever is caused by an infection from a streptococcus bacteria and is not a viral disease. It is also still very much around.

          • Don

            Afraid not, jefe68. Yes there are very isolated cases of bubonic plague in the American southwest, but absolutely nothing like prior palgues. And scarlet fever is likewise not “very much around.”

        • AliceOtter33

          I agree that vaccines have not “conquered diseases”. Smallpox is currently the only vaccine-preventable disease that has been declared eradicated as the last instance was in Somalia in 1977 (http://www.historyofvaccines.org/content/articles/disease-eradication).

          Likewise, it is true developments other than vaccination, such as changes in hygiene and living conditions, have drastically reduced instances of many other diseases. Additionally, the development of antibiotics has greatly reduced their associated death rates.

          Why? Education and vigilance on the part of global civil society in keeping up with good hygiene and living conditions.

          However, as jet68 mentions below, bacterial diseases that have no vaccines (such as the black plague and scarlet fever) still persist worldwide – even in the United States. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/27/bubonic-plague-kills-thousands_n_4005495.html
          and http://www.cdc.gov/plague/maps/

          http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/18/10/pdfs/11-1900.pdf

          Why? A lapse in vigilance – in hospital hygiene, screening, antibiotic use & development.

          But cleanliness and overuse of antibiotics is another story for another discussion, right?

          Meanwhile, here’s an unfolding case study that illustrates the fact that a vaccine-preventable disease can spread quickly within a population whose vaccine regimen has been interrupted.

          After having been free of polio for 14 years, Syria had 22 cases diagnosed last November. Why? The UN estimated nearly half a million children had either not been vaccinated or had an interruption in the dosage of vaccine for polio.

          The WHO and Unicef acted swiftly to vaccinate refugees around the region, but worry that the disease will continue to spread. This is due to the fact that polio is highly contagious, but also often undetectable without testing due to it’s ability to be present without visible symptoms.

          Polio is still endemic in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and other developing countries in the region.

          http://www.nature.com/nmiddleeast/2013/131101/full/nmiddleeast.2013.201.html

          Polio is a virus that is no longer endemic in the U.S. because of vigilant vaccination policies.

          To choose to opt out of vaccine is to choose to opt oneself or one’s child out of demonstrated prevention of a demonstrated risk.

          But unlike the case of polio resurgence in Syria, this movement to opt out voluntarily risks the lives of those who find themselves ineligible for vaccination.

    • Don

      Disagree. Yes, there are some ideologues, but there are a lot of people with PhD and MD after their names who question vaccines. And a lot of them have written papers about the neurotoxicity of some vaccine ingredients. The real issue is that the science presented to us is largely backed by huge pharmaceutical money. This is fact. There is very little daylight between the CDC and the pharmaceutical industry; it’s a revolving door. And you probably know that there have been a number of outbreaks of measles, for example, in fully vaccinated populations.

  • Brian4000

    Great program. I have to say, I keep hearing callers say “I am educated” and “I am affluent”. These mostly seemed to be white, liberal, and college educated people. I really wish Tom had called them out and asked what degree they have that equips them to speak on issues of medical research and science, because I have a feeling these people are mostly holding BA and Masters degrees in the humanities. I myself am college educated and hold a degree in History. That in no way equipped me to navigate and understand serious medical research. I even went on to work at a medical journal as an editor, and it took a long time for me to just be able to edit medical papers (and I still didn’t know how to examine them critically the way a doctor would). Unless you hold a medical degree, you really shouldn’t assume your education somehow enables you to understand the complex geography of medical knowledge. Holding a masters in literature or critical theory, makes you no more suited to understand medicine than someone who holds a high school diploma.

    • MarkVII88

      I think those “educated” and “affluent” callers just don’t want to be taken for some evangelical, snake-handling, backwoods, drop-out, ignorant bumpkin right off the bat when they espouse their opinions against vaccinations since that’s probably what most people would assume.

      • Lisa

        Well you know what happens when you assume. I believe that there are educated and uneducated people on both sides of this issue. Generalizing all “anti-vaccine” parents as “backwoods” or “ignorant” distracts from a meaningful conversation and leads me to believe that your strategy is based more on name calling than evidence and debate

        • Brian4000

          But the problem is many in the anti-vaccine movement stress their level. F eduction and economic status vpbefore stating opinions that are unsupported by the science. I am not trying to be ant -education here, I am for education. But let us not politicize education. Let’s make more of an effort to understand a BA in philosophy does not give you authority on issues of science (just like a BS doesn’t make you an authority of medieval literature). These fields of study teach very different things. My experience going through a typical humanities program was there isn’t much in the way of science. I had to admit coming out of college, I was pretty ignorant of the sciences (though I learned to sound knowledgeable if I wanted, I really had very little understanding of how medicine and medical research operates). Learning about Ranke didn’t teach a thing about judging available medical literature on vaccine efficacy and safety.

          • Lisa

            I think that those in the anti-vaccine movement stress their level of education because they are going up against a system that is well intrenched in our society. As many comments here demonstrate, they are discounted as “ignorant” based only on their opinion on vaccines. So maybe their up front disclosure of their education level is an attempt to bypasss that argument and get to the substance of the debate. Obviously this is just my “educated” guess as a fellow humanities graduate ;)

        • MarkVII88

          I think the issue isn’t about name-calling, which I clearly did do. The issue is that those who don’t support vaccinations are fighting not only the majority opinion that it’s beneficial and for the public good but they’re also fighting against the decades of science and medical research and treatment. What are they fighting against this with? Mostly it’s anecdotal evidence, personal stories, and hard-held beliefs that are impossible to refute but also to prove true. That’s why I think many anti-vaccinators feel they have to be up front with the fact that they’ve been to college and are relatively financially secure.

          • Lisa

            Without the reasearch that I conducted on pregnancy and childbirth (when I was pregnant with my first child) I would never have known about the standard medical practices that were done over the decades that had very negative consequences (ex. x-raying women close to term to determine if their hips were fit for delivery which lead to increased cancer rates among children [which is why the practice was discontinued] or the pill that was prescribed to women suffering from nausia which lead to sever deformaties in their children–both examples could probably be googled for further research). With this information in hand it is difficult to believe that the medical community is all knowing and that they should be trusted without personal research–especially about issues regarding my childs health.
            And that is not even addressing the malicious practices that some in the medical community have engaged in during past decades

          • Sam Bisquit

            The argument that past “standard medical practices” have been deleterious misses the point. The fact that using X-rays or Thalidomide on pregnant women turned out to have negative consequences was ultimately established within the medical community by using evidenced based methods. It was the evidence of cause and effect that established these as being dangerous and unhealthy, not the opinions of celebrities and politicians, or google results. When valid evidence is presented of ineffective or injurious medical procedures then the medical and scientific communities are the first to accept things and move on. No amount of evidence can persuade the anti-vaccine proponents as things currently stand since the underlying causes of the conditions they fear (autism, Alzheimer’s, ADD, …) are unknown. When faced with the unknown then people will often fall back on superstition, anecdotal evidence, and the pronouncements of those celebrities they idolize and adopt as authoritative.

      • Brian4000

        I think they say they ae educated and affluent because that is velvet rope in our culture. But the truth is humanities degrees, while they can be great for philosophy, rhetoric, history, anthropology and history, don’t give you many tools for understanding science (in some cases they can diminish your understanding if science—for example critical theory and post modernism can sometimes undermine scientific reasoning in my opinion).

    • Lisa

      I disagree. Holding a college degree, even if it is in the humanities, develops critical thinking skills that are necessary for informed decision making. Not having a medical degree does not mean that parents can’t attempt to navigate all of the information that is out there regarding vaccines in an effort to do what is best for their child.

      • Brian4000

        I have to disagree lisa. A humanities degree teaches you how to examine things within the humanities critically, it does not equip you to examine science critically. In fact I find people with advanced degrees in the humanities often have a false sense of confidence in their ability to understand technical fields outside what they studied, and this frequently leads them to conclusions that seem correct but are mistaken—they become victims if their own sophistry. The fact that college educated and affluent people are more likely to buy into the anti-vaccine movement is evidence if this in my opinion. Sadly there are real world consequences for their “informed choices” that affect all of us.

        • Lisa

          “victims of their own sophistry” I like that, and I believe that there are instances where that is the case. But critical thinking skills, even if developed while examining subjects in the humanities category, can be applied elsewhere in life. At the very least it can teach you to look for credible sources and that not all information is true.

          • Brian4000

            Again, i think you are wrong. You say “critical thinking” like it is a magic bullet, but learning about marxist theory, the concepts of bell hooks, or braudel’s ideas about geography and history teach you nothing about the scientific method and statistics. Further, while you might learn how to identify good sources for the history of trade in Roman africa, you won’t learn the difference between a well conducted medical study and a poorly done one. The humanities and the sciences value very different things when it comes to research papers. This notion that because we studied a mix of philosophy, history, religion and literature, we are somehow better positioned than others to engage scientific topics is dangerous and i believe completely untrue. The humanities are great. They taught me a lot. But what hubris to think they prepare you for science.

          • Brian4000

            And i would add, i think the faith that some in the humanities have in their field’s ability to transfer into other fields is part of the problem here. I don’t think it is a coincidence these people keep mentioning how educate they are, even though they clearly have very little understandiny of science.

          • Lisa

            My BA is in Sociology, we learned a lot about how to conduct research, how to develop studies and how to interpret findings, and the dangers of overgeneralization–among other things. I am not saying that this gives me absolute knowledge of scientific or medical practices but it does give me a base of knowledge to draw from when evaluating information. It also gives me an understanding of how other societal factors including politics affect what studies are done and not done, who is invited to participate both as researchers and subjects, and how studies are communicated or not communicated to the larger public. We agree that the humaities are great but we disagree on how well they prepare you for understanding the larger world.

          • Brian4000

            In history we learn similar research methods in the final courses. Generally speaking a BA in the humanities gets you a ton of survery courses, some more focused courses, foreign language, courses in a handful of other disciplines, then it caps you off with two or three research and methods classes. I am sorry that wasn’t enough to equip me to really understand the vaccine issue. If anything gave me just enough knowledte of statistics to be dangerous in other fields. The fact that you point to things like how cultural factors effect studies, indicates a humanities viewpoint, a much more subjective attitude toard data than you find in the sciences. Subjectivity is great for undertanding other cultures and grasping history, but science is an objective field (this is why i said critical studies and postmodernism are harmful to scientific understanding).

            We are getting way off track here, but my feeling is a few research courses as part of a sociology degree are not sufficient prepration for understanding science. They are no match for actual medical degrees. And i think there is a reason people like us, who have just a taste of that level of research, seem to be the ones falling for the anti vaccine movement. I have good friends, very educated people, and they fall for this kind of thinking, because they feel their humanities degrees is enough and have serious blindspots when it comes to other fields.

            Even the language is different between sciences afd the humanities. The word theory means something different in the sciences than it does in the humanities and this is often a big source of misunderstafding between the two realms. What i don’t get is why scientists seem to accept their experience with science doesn’t give them much of advantage if they waft to pontificate on another subject, but poeple from the humanities (who are my people) walk around with this hubris about their understanding of fields they have never studied.

          • Lisa

            It might be the case that History and Sociology are very different. I believe that my general knowldge of scientific research methods and statistics has equiped me for a basic evaluation of scientific information, it taught me to look at the sample size and method, as well how the study was constructed–this is very important information to consider when determining the validity of a study. It also taught me that there are contradicitions between studies even in the medical and scientific community. I also learned that results do not PROVE hypothesis but only support them and that information not examined in the studies can have influences on the results that are not taken into account. History clearly did not give you the same information.
            With regards to your friends and their “blind spots”, anyone can have a blind spot when conducitng research and most do as a result of cognative dissonance.
            Not that it matters but I have not “fallen” for the “anti-vaccine movement”. My children have recieved most of their vaccines but I don’t believe that the answer is either complete vaccination or no vaccination. There is middle ground, and discouraging those without degrees in the scientific and medical fields from making informed decisions (to the best of their abilities) is rediculous.
            You have a unique perspective due to your work in the humanities and sciences but that does not make you an expert on the shortcomings of others (your people in the humanitites) and their abilities to evaluate information.

          • Brian4000

            I suspect our research training was quite similar actually, i just disagree on how well equipped this makes you or me to formulate informed scientific decisions beyond what doctors and experts into these fields recommend.

    • dust truck

      It could backfire though. I personally know an MD who is opposed to vaccines for her own children even while still recommending it to her patients. I don’t know if it’s hypocrisy or insanity or both.

      • Brian4000

        This is why i mentioned cherry picking. You know one doctor against vaccines, against how many that are in favor? It is anout medical consensus. There are always going to be outliers and a small number who dispute the consensus, but the overwhelming number of medical doctors and research support vaccination. Look, i can probably find a mechanic who supports questionable repair advice, that doesn’t make me right.

  • Maria Leon

    These diseases nearly disappeared because of vaccination. Lives have been saved with them. To think that you can avoid contracting them by eating a certain way and providing your children with a healthy positive environment is nonsense. I hope the people that do not vaccinate never have contact with a pregnant woman. or people with compromised immune systems. Are they mentally prepared to face the consequences of their choice if they cause the death of another or serious birth defects in an unborn child? So selfish and careless.

    • Don

      Actually Dr. Elizabeth Humphries’ book, “Dissolving Illusions,” demonstrates how the role of vaccines in the disappearance of diseases has been vastly overrated. We forget how bad living conditions were among the poor in the 19th century. Think overcrowding, no sanitation, no running water, no refrigeration, poor food supplies including milk. Yet public health measures are given absolutely no credit for the conquest of diseases; it’s all supposed to be because of vaccines. This is an illusion.

  • arydberg

    There is a lot more to this picture. Public health officials need to answer for many many occurrences of poor public health in today’s culture.

    The first of these is the increase in autism from 1 case in 5000 to 1 case in 88.

    Another is the charges that the HFCS in our diet significantly contributes to obesity. And we are suffering from an epidemic of obesity.

    Also we are suffering from an epidemic of lyme and the CDC does nothing.

    There are many researchers questioning the overdose of folic acid we are administrating to the elderly.

    And then of course there is the bean counters use of combining various vaccines to save pennies per dose. This policy goes against common sense.

    Lastly every vaccine has the ability to cause a very small number of diseases it is trying to cure.

    An acquaintance of mine received a flue shot and died horribly as a result. Needless to say i am not a fan of flue shots.

    Both the FDA and the CDC need to clean up their acts.

    • tbphkm33

      “The first of these is the increase in autism”
      … hmm, largely due to increased awareness, better screening and a formal medical definition that encompasses a larger population.

      No conspiracy, just reality. Pickup a book on critical thinking, maybe the universe will start to make more sense.

    • tilliejupiter

      Yes, Merck discontinuing the separate mmr vaccines is directly contributing to people opting out. They hold the worldwide patent for the single rubella vaccine so no other manufacturer can make it. It all comes down to greed.

      • arydberg

        Could someone please explain to me why, when I go to pub med advanced search, and click on completion date under “all fields” and search for childhood cancer between 1900 and 1965 there are zero entries. Yet dates after 1965 show many entries. What happened to bring about childhood cancer? Is it possible it was the introduction of mmr vaccine?

  • Heather Wickings

    In 2009, I was put on life support for three weeks for h1n1. You never think it will happen to you when you are 37 and healthy. “Too much, too soon” isn’t true. Your baby is bombarded by germs from day one all at once. Also, breastfeeding doesn’t protect forever for the caller who may think it does. I vaccinate my daughter and recently read a debate in Reason magazine about the idea to make a person liable for harm if an infection can be traced. What b of all you holistically educated people are making a huge mistake? And it is a mistake. Thanks NPR for this piece.

  • jefe68

    Proving that vaccination is not 100% effective and nothing else.

  • jefe68

    And yet polio is now eradicated in the Western Hemisphere due to vaccination. You left that part out.

  • kerry Rausch

    I am a mother of 3 and a nurse practitioner. My youngest son contracted whooping cough when he was 6 weeks old (first vaccine occurs at 8 weeks of age). As far as we can conclude my oldest son ( who was 8 yrs old at the time) contracted pertussis at a sleep away camp. My husband and I got it and then it was passed to the baby. After seeing this disease in true form (baby turning blue and 5 days of hospitalization) I no longer have any doubt about benefit vs. risk of vaccines. The benefit truly outweighs any risk. We live in a society where we rarely see these horrible infectious diseases. If we don’t all do our part to prevent them we will end up with some very unhappy children and parents!
    I believe in a holistic view of health including nutrition, exercise and emotional well being and MODERN MEDICINE! One is missing a big piece by dismissing years of research and successful decreases in these killer diseases.
    PS Luckily my son is a thriving 14 yr. old at this time. He overcame some big odds to recover from such a serious disease at 6 weeks of age.

    • J__o__h__n

      This illustrates the necessity of the herd immunity to protect infants who are not yet old enough to vaccinate but are still susceptible to the disease.

    • Siuda

      How can an immunized family infect an infant?

      • kerry Rausch

        The immunity to pertussis wears off as one ages…probably around 20 yrs of age (not as dangerous of a disease in adulthood, therefore there is no booster after age 13 (TD not DPT after age 13) that is how my husband and I contracted the disease. My older son who was immunized got a mild version of pertussis (he had a strange cough and threw up from it). We did not think much of it at the time. It all came to light when the baby was diagnosed. Another thing…when we first went to the hospital the interns thought it was “just a virus”. The doctor who finally diagnosed him and ordered the test was an older man who had seen the disease earlier in his practice. All the newbies were not familiar with it!!!

        • Don_B1

          And that unfamiliarity, which is really common, makes the lack of immunization even more dangerous.

          Also, as you point out, vaccines are never perfect and often only diminish the disease, not prevent it.

          It is only through the “herd effect” that the disease gets cut off from new victims and over a long time is eradicated.

      • Heather Wickings

        is large enough pockets of disease flourish, they can mutate and become a strain that we don’t have protection from. Many people would die well we worked on another vaccine.

    • hennorama

      kerry Rausch — thank you for sharing your harrowing story, and I’m glad your son and family recovered.

  • Don_B1

    So change “when” to “if”; the risk is still there and what would YOU do in answering my questions?

    While I don’t agree that the statements for vaccination are all “blanket statements” as none that have any weight demand uniform vaccinations, particularly with exemptions for immunologically deficient people.

    But you have used a minor point to avoid answering the real questions of the responsibility of those who refuse to support the whole society in providing at least “herd immunity” for these diseases. And that is denying your responsibility.

    Please read kerry Rauch’s post elsewhere on this blog.

  • Amanda Collazo

    I am so disappointed at how one sided this discussion was. I have three sons, all whom were vaccinated. However, there was much thought and anxiety making each of these decisions. There is a lack of honesty and information about risk to vaccination. I concluded that the risk for my boys was greater to not be vaccinated, but I thank god everyday that they did not suffer any complications due to their vaccinations. The tax on the vaccines pays for lawsuits for those injured by said vaccines. I have known people who have gotten Guillian Barre syndrome, meningitis and severe allergic reactions as a result of being vaccinate. This is just in my personal community. However, I ultimately decided to vaccinate my children. Every parent should have ALL the information (including the not so great stuff about vaccines) to make an informed decision.

    • kerry Rausch

      You should thank mankind everyday that you did vaccinate and vaccines were invented so you did not have to witness the effects of horrible diseases such as polio, small pox, etc. The chances your children would have died because of the diseases is much greater than the side effects of the vaccinations. I do believe in full exposure of the risks and benefits. It is hard to see the benefits when this generation has not seen the disease risks. As with taking any medication one must assess the personal risk and benefit of the drug. Immunizations must be looked at using this philosophy on a community level.

      • Amanda Collazo

        I should thank mankind that I did vaccinate? Do you mean I should thank mankind made vaccines available? Sure, I am thankful for that, and that I was given a choice, but mankind did not force me to vaccinate.

        • kerry Rausch

          mankind for making the vaccines…

          • Amanda Collazo

            Yes, I am thankful for that. But, would I be saying that should my child had faced a complication from the vaccination, I don’t know. I did not have to walk down that road and I am also thankful. It is not one side or the other.

    • Don_B1

      I hope you can revisit the cases of diseases that you think were caused by vaccination.

      For Guillain-Barre syndrome, it occurs in less than 1 in 100,000 people and has been shown in a 12-year retrospective study to not be caused by vaccines:

      http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/27/study-finds-no-vaccine-link-to-guillain-barr/?_r=0

      Meningitis is caused by bacterial infections, which are typically prevented by vaccination. That does not mean that a vaccination may not protect particular individual from one of those infections. The problem that you or anyone else would have in investigating the particular case(s) you say you know of is getting the specifics of the case and not just an anti-vaccination advocate’s interpretation of that data, sometimes at more than one level of removal.

      Every vaccination has potential risks of adverse reactions due to individual allergies, etc. That is the reason for being asked about egg allergies before receiving a flu shot (future flu shots will not use eggs in their incubation stage so that problem has gone away).

      But those risks are tiny for the vast majority of people, and once the known factors that make a vaccination more risky are eliminated, the answer should be vaccination.

      • Amanda Collazo

        Yes, meningitis is caused by bacteria. Due possible human error, something in that shot should not have been there. This was NOT an anti vaccine advocate. This was a parent. And a close friend. Who was previously pro vaccine (hence the giving her 4 month old baby vaccines on schedule). As for the egg allergy, my oldest son has one. We were told it is perfectly safe, because of the small amount. My son did not react, however another parent (also a friend-not some “advocate”) had her son have a bad reaction even though she was told the same thing.

        • Don_B1

          Did you investigate the possibility that it was just a coincidence that the shot and the meningitis occurred concurrently? And how concurrently?

          Also, what was the doctor’s diagnosis? Did the doctor blame the vaccination?

          • Amanda Collazo

            I am sure it is a possibility. However, how many coincidences must one ignore? The doctor that my friend’s child saw sent her home and said he was just reacting with fever to the vaccination. (a mild and typical occurance.) Her son later became lethargic and she took him to the local Children’s Hospital. He was able to pull through, thank God. They no longer saw the original Doctor, but the Emergency Dept. Doctor agreed with said friend.

          • Don_B1

            Agreed with the hypothesis that there was contamination in the shot? Or introduced by the doctor that gave the shot? Did the ER doctor cite other cases of shot contamination? Why was the ER doctor agreeing with the patient’s hypothesis instead of presenting one of his own?

            There are many reasons why time-pressed and overstressed doctors do not pursue a discussion, but where did the original hypothesis of contamination come from? That is one likely reason why ER patients don’t get as good medical advice as they could from a primary care doctor.

            And doctors are notorious for being unwilling to speak ill of another doctor; they have seen big suits or the threat of them and they don’t want to get involved.

          • Amanda Collazo

            Agreed a the high probability that there was contamination in the shot. They did not directly blame the nurse who gave the shot, which is understandable and would be difficult to prove 100%. I do not know why the Dr. did not give his own hypothesis, unless it happened to be the same as my friend’s. She didn’t really have a choice to receive care from anyone other than the Children’s emergency department. The primary care doctor sent her away earlier that day.

          • Amanda Collazo

            Also, I do not recall her saying the doctor ever spoke ill of the other doctor.

      • Amanda Collazo
      • Heather Wickings

        As for Gullian Barre, they aren’t even sure what causes it. It could be a prior surgery or any kind of infection. And sometimes it even reverse itself. the caller who thinks we should do double-blind trials on children must not realize that would be considered very unethical.

    • Amanda Collazo
  • jefe68

    Vaccines have eradicated smallpox, polio, measles, diphtheria and a deadly form of bacterial meningitis has been virtually eliminated among children.

  • MassTL

    I am a parent of two. I have a PhD in Operations Research. My wife is a Pediatrician. I also coach multiple youth sports and I’m around kids all the time. I am not particularly religious. My kids are vaccinated, but chicken pox was given at an older age than recommended and we avoid the flu shot unless it is forced on us in order to keep our job. Believe that our family is very well informed regarding the vaccination issue.

    It’s pretty simple. Parents today are more worried about their children getting long term diseases such as autism, asthma, allergies, type 1 diabetes, etc. than they are of getting Chicken Pox or the flu. They see these long term diseases in their own kids and the kids around them – and they don’t see the health care system solving them. Instead, they see a lot of folks making a lot of money on an ever increasing number of vaccines for diseases that mean less and less to them.

    It is clear to me that many of the doctors who specialize in infectious disease have gone from being scientific to being evangelistic. They have become religious about their way of thinking instead of maintaining critical doubt about their efforts. They have been focused on a small set of criteria regarding the population (because it is their job) and now, for some reason, these doctors are using fear to try to make everyone follow their way of thinking (similar to the way preachers use hell fire to get you to go to church).

    A growing percentage of the population seems to be going against the vaccines. Let them! And start figuring out the problems that really matter to the population. If you do, then you probably won’t have any problem selling it.

    • J__o__h__n

      Children who don’t make it to adulthood are much less likely to develop long term diseases.

    • Don_B1

      It has been convincingly shown that autism is NOT the result of vaccinations:

      http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/07/130716-autism-vaccines-mccarthy-view-medicine-science/

      I suspect that the other diseases you fear are similarly not caused by vaccines; I would hope that you might revisit the sources of you information and then search out the contradicting evidence. You certainly have the intelligence to do that objectively, but there is a lot of new research on why people stick by discredited theories (really only hypotheses at best) instead of accepting strong new data. I know I don’t like giving up a neat hypothesis, but I have found that I can do it.

      • Amanda Collazo

        He didn’t say vaccines cause autism. I think that is one myth from the skeptical community, that their only concern is autism. Autism wasn’t even in my consideration when I was contemplating vaccinating my kids.

        • Don_B1

          I am glad to learn that you were/are not a member of the vaccination-causes-autism group.

          But when MassTL says that parents are more worried about their children getting autism (etc.) than chicken pox, etc., it does not seem even a little leap to infer that he gives the association a causal one.

          Sorry, but your continuing picking at small points to deflect the discussion rather than deal with the problem of increasing numbers of unvaccinated individuals and the future costs to society only confirms my initial thought that you are acting emotionally on little real scientific evidence but accepting a lot of unfounded pseudoscientific claims.

          • Amanda Collazo

            I don’t think they are small points. This is his direct quote ” Parents today are more worried about their children getting long term diseases such as autism, asthma, allergies, type 1 diabetes, etc. than they are of getting Chicken Pox or the flu. They see these long term diseases in their own kids and the kids around them – and they don’t see the health care system solving them. Instead, they see a lot of folks making a lot of money on an ever increasing number of vaccines for diseases that mean less and less to them.” I think, correct me if I am wrong, he was saying there is less attention being paid to these diseases, rather than that they are being caused by vaccinations.

          • MassTL

            Actually, I’m not making any statement about the relationship between vaccines and autism. Instead, I am making a statement about parents’ perception. Parents’ perception seems to be changing about vaccines. I’m proposing the “cause” of this may be due to the large increase in vaccines. In particular, the flu and Chicken Pox vaccines seem to be turning points. Parents have actually dealt with these sicknesses all their lives. From their experience, a couple of days out of school or work is not worth the possible consequences, if those consequences may be the long term illnesses on the rise. Parents seem to be saying: “Hey, slow down! Tell me what has caused the increase in autism, asthma, allergies, and diabetes before you go injecting more stuff into my baby.”

    • d clark

      You say parents see the long term diseases in their own kids. I guess their problem is they haven’t seen polio and smallpox in their kids. But then that would be a lesson too late, wouldn’t it.

    • jefe68

      Oh boy. Your comment gives credence that even seemingly rational educated people can be delusional and make uneducated and ill-rational choices.

    • Siuda

      Thank you for bringing up the trend away from critical thought to evangelism. When I hear arguements that won’t even allow a critical word against what is ‘true’ (sounds like religion to me) I know something is deeply amiss.

    • 1Brett1

      Autism is a “disease”? …ugh-boy…

  • John_Hamilton

    One of the vulnerabilities of a mass society is mass hysteria, described in “Extraordinary Popular Delusions And The Madness Of Crowds” in 1841. People are fair game for emotion-based, anti-establishment movements.

    Part of the problem is that the establishment is a comprehensive overstructure that includes the NSA, the Congress, the executive branch, and the judiciary. It also includes the corporate behemoth that provides goods and services, which are often harmful.

    If there is corruption and dysfunction in part of the establishment, its credibility in other parts is diminished. Why believe doctors when so many of them are merchants of the pharmaceutical companies? Why believe the Centers for Disease Control when government officials lie about spying on us?

    It is almost amusing that the movement against vaccination is led by a woman who became a celebrity for revealing details of her naked body. I saw her on a talk show a few years ago where she said she wore a bra when having sex because she was embarrassed about her post-partum sagging breasts. Somehow this person has the credibility to convince many to stop vaccinating their children. Extraordinary.

    • jefe68

      Truly.

    • Heather Wickings

      As a libertarian, I hear you. I still I think that distrusting everything to do with government and big companies is just as blind as trusting everything. It takes time to sort through each thing and each group of people, school of thought, etcetera

    • Lisa

      The movement against vaccines is not led by Jenny McCarthy. There are many credible sources with information that suggests that vaccines have harmful side-effects and that our system of administering them is flawed and should be reworked or scraped all together. The opinions differ depending on the sources.
      I agree with your point that corruption and dysfunction within the medical community have contributed to people’s mistrust of vaccines.

      • Brian4000

        Prove it.

      • Siuda

        Lisa, I agree – those of us interested in an open discussion and critical thought will read the research. Those that prefer not to question wouldn’t read it if you put it in front of them. Science is being turned into an evangelical movement and how dare anyone read the heretical work of researchers and scientists that haven’t been bought.

  • Amanda Collazo

    I am so sorry for you and your daughter. Unfortunately, many in the ride or die vax community will not believe what you know to be true. I believe in science, but I also believe in a mother’s intuition.

    • Georgina

      Thank you, Amanda.

  • Amanda Collazo

    I think another issue is that many do not want to “doubt medicine”. However, there are many mistakes made. Antibiotics were overused, now we are facing resistant bugs. Think off all the drugs that have caused harm. Bladder meshes, etc. Things that were thought safe, but weren’t. It is okay to ask questions about these things with out getting heated.

    • Heather Wickings

      well also you must balance short term risk vs long term Risk. when I was hospitalized with swine flu I was given 25 x rays and CT scan with exposed me to A greater chance of breast cancer because of radiation perhaps. However, it was totally necessary because of my near death situation.

      • Amanda Collazo

        Agreed, but it all should be able to be discussed without arrogance from either position.

        • Brian4000

          I am sorry but this is informed idiocy in my opinion and highlights why a little bit of learning and research (plus the internet can be a dangerous thing if it isn’t aware of it’s own limitations). And no one would seriously concude just because antibiotics are overused, they ought to be abandoned (as the anti vaccine movement is doing). Yes science has made mistakes and there have been unforseen onsequences from overuse of antibiotics, that doesn’t mean you should ignore the scientific consensus and not vaccinate your children. All you have to do is look at the history of what it was like prior to vaccines. All i am hearing from the anti vaccine people is “trust me i am informed, educated and affluent.” Well, so what? You don’t hold a medical degree, you don’t practice medicine,and you have ano understanding of the medical literature. You are free to have your opinions, but people shouldf’t listen to you anymore than they isten to global warming skeptics. The anti vaccine philosophy is a product of cherry picking and specious argumentation at it’s worst and poses a real danger to our society.

          • Amanda Collazo

            I think you are mistaken, I never said I was anti-vaccine. In fact, if you read, I did vaccinate my children. However, I have personal friends, NOT some strangers on the internet who have experienced issues when their children got vaccinated. Should I just ignore their experiences and enjoy a sheep mentality?? I don’t have to be a medical doctor to ask questions about things. And gasp! I don’t give my children antibiotics for ear infections unless they are in pain with my pediatrician’s blessing! I never said “trust me, I am informed”. Don’t know where you got that from.

          • J__o__h__n

            It is a herd mentality not a flock mentality.

          • Amanda Collazo

            lol. thanks for that clarification.

          • Brian4000

            If you are not opposed to vaccines what are you saying then. You should make your decisions based on science, not anecdotes. The science doesn’t support your position at all. You are a parent, not a doctor. By all means question your physician, but let’s not fall into the sheep mentality plagueing the affluent when it comes to fad diets, pseudo-science and hysteria over vaccines. I don’t think you folks understand this will have far reaching consequences if vaccine rates fall too low.

          • Amanda Collazo

            I am saying that the full truth is not out there. Those who think they have/had experienced a reaction caused by a vaccination are usually bullied into “believing” it was not caused by such. Why can’t their be an open discussion? Is it because people are afraid more folks won’t vaccinate? That is a valid point, but is it a fair one? I don’t know if hiding the truth is fair. Yes, I am a parent, not a doctor. Does that mean I should never question anything my/our Dr’s recommend? No, I don’t believe in that. There’s no hysteria here. Just belief in an open honest conversation. Not one sided.

          • Brian4000

            I am very much in favor of analyzing patient reactions more thoroughly and having stringent safety requirements but i am also not in favor of allowing potentially dangrous movements that are unsupported by the science to flourish.

          • Brian4000

            Show us some evidence of systematic bullying here. Everything in medicine has risks, and some drugs do turn out to be harmful. But the consensus on vaccines is clear and the link to autism has been explored thoroughly and debunked. We are talking about the possibiliy of things like pollio re-emerging. This is very serious stuff, and I think the anti-vaccine movement is driven largely by arrogance and a false belief that a college degree and the internet equips you to understand the complex world of medical research.

    • Lisa

      Yes, thank you. And there may not be one right or wrong answer for everyone. Name calling and attempts to diminish the opinions of others by attacking their character are counter productive.

  • Heather Wickings

    as a person who seriously was ill and nearly died from the flu I can tell you that I greatly over estimated the threat of vaccines and greatly greatly underestimated the threat of flu. I hope you never find out the way I did, how wrong I was. modern medicine sent me home twice when I was dying of influenza, but a team of international doctors and lots and lots of Big Pharma drugs saved my life, specifically massive doses of intravenous steroids. I would not be here today without the technology and the drugs that saved me. When you are on life support, you have very little choice what they put in your body. And like the doctor said if your child does get sick they may be subjected to many more invasive tests to save thier life. it may be open minded to question pharmaceutical companies and medicine, but if you can’t sort out the good from the bad, then you might as well just have your mind shut. it is Not so black and white.

    • sharkgirl7

      There’s other ways of building up your immune system without having to inject the disease/infection, live or otherwise, into your body. Wow, I haven’t had the flu since I stopped getting the flu shot….and started these methods as well.

  • Siuda

    Or even efforts to make vaccines flexible and not one-size-fits-all. I would have loved to have had options with regard to the schedule or combinations. My daughter suffered terrible reactions and no one would consider changes to allow her to tolerate them better and still have their protections.

  • Nick Geer

    Vaccines are given around the time you can first see signs of autism during a child’s development and that is the real reason this has become such an issue no one wants their child to have a such a handicap without someone to blame.

    • Don

      This is a common assumption– that parents of autistic children want someone to blame, so that’s why they blame vaccines. In actuality, they are not motivated to research until they begin to question what happened. See Safeminds website.

      • Don_B1

        And then they are past the time to carefully document the event, so simple correlations can be given cause and effect, to the detriment of developing a real understanding of the effects of vaccines.

  • d clark

    Let me tell you of your “degree” in photography. You are STUPID, STUPID, STUPID!

    • sharkgirl7

      Yes, lets resort to name calling instead of providing research. That’ll get you far in life.

  • d clark

    They (the anti-vacciners) are terrorists who are endagering us all!They should be imprisoned and their children taken from them and vaccinated.

    • Don

      I doubt it. We have simply done research. We have questions, and we believe the CDC has not been on the level about this. We’re not necessarily anti-vaccine, but believe that there’s a lot of science out there that supports neurotoxicity of some vaccine ingredients. But you’ll never hear about this: it’s drowned out by pharmaceutical money.

  • Nick Geer

    Kailia if I may be so blunt as to suggest something to you. You are not making a GOOD or INFORMED choice if you don’t vaccinate unless for specific medical reasons. Your endangering the millions of people and babies who’s immune systems can’t handle vaccinations as well as your children. Nothing and I mean nothing the anti-vax community has ever come up with as a reason not to vaccinate your children has ever been shown to have more risk than a single one of the diseases that they prevent against

    • Don

      Actually Nick, you’re wrong. On every point.

      • jefe68

        This from a guy who does not know the difference between a bacterial based disease and a viral one. I beg to differ.

        • Don

          jefe68 why do you keep bringing that up, I never said that and it’s largely irrelevant.

  • Vanessa

    Tom, I really wish this conversation had included more nuanced discussion about delayed and selective vaccination schedules, as well as a basic understanding of how immunity is developed and works and how vaccines support it. I think every parent wants to do right by their child and instead of positioning it in such black-and-white terms, it would have been a real public service to break it all down for us to help improve our understanding. While I vaccinate my child, I have my concerns about their safety, and would have really appreciated an honest discussion about the trade-offs one makes when they choose to vaccinate, and the limitations and risks of those vaccines.

    • Chris

      But why? The current vaccination schedule has been proven safe and effective. Delayed and selective vaccination disrupts herd immunity, which we need to keep our most vulnerable safe. Providing air time to the idea that we should delay or select vaccines would validate an idea that isn’t valid, and that is actually dangerous. As for the risks, they discussed those, and they are rare and minimal.

      • Vanessa

        I see your point. I also think more people are open to listening and considering vaccinating if their approaches are addressed. If you just ignore it, then people are left with the same concerns, and it’s doubtful they’ll make the leap to the full vax schedule. But if you meet them where they are, then we can talk about why those alternate approaches are dangerous.

      • Siuda

        There is ample evidence that vaccines hurt children, not the least of which is the need for the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Fund. Those of us with children who cannot tolerate bulk vaccinations would have preferred to vaccinate our children in small, spaced out doses. But our one-size-fits-all program forces us to choose all or nothing. It doesn’t have to be that way – it shouldn’t be that way.

        • Chris

          Yes, vaccines have hurt a very, very small minority of people. And yes, that’s what the court is for. Those who can not tolerate vaccinations, or have children who can not tolerate vaccinations (and let me stress that this number of people is very, very small), need the rest of us to vaccinate on time and regularly in order to keep those people safe. As for your all or nothing comment….that’s NOT what is happening. People are choosing their own schedules, which is what the show was about. Doctors can recommend. The government can recommend. But at the end of the day you still get to choose.

        • Chris

          Also, if you have a child with a compromised immune system and your doctor still expects you to vaccinate with no questions asked, then I guess what you need is a new doctor.

      • sharkgirl7

        OMG no it HAS NOT! They are CONSTANTLY changing it!! The schedule my daughter followed is VASTLY DIFFERENT than my son! And there’s only 8 years difference between them! Guess what? My new daughter is arriving any day now and HER SCHEDULE is even different! I’m sorry, but I’m not going to blindly follow this schedule that’s been so tested until it’s been around, and kept the same, for AT LEAST 10 years!!! No one can prove the long term affects!

  • Brian4000

    It is truly disheartening to read these comments. I really thought NPR listeners were smarter than this and wouldn’t fall so readily to the anti-vaccine movement’s unscientific position. I guess in this day of internet research people really do feel they are entitled to their own facts. I will say this, it is very easy to construct a specious argument that you want to believe, and it often takes time to show where specious arguments break down. But in the meantime, what you folks are proposing, could radically affect the health of our society, and lead to a resurgence in diseases we havev’t experienced in decades.

    • Amanda Collazo

      Do you believe vaccines are 100% safe? What comment do you have on the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program?

      • Brian4000

        Nothing is a 100% safe. Why just drawing blood comes with the risk of infection. But the research is clear that on the whole vaccines are safe and the benefits FAR outway the dangers. Again, just look at how things were before vaccines. Do you really want another pollio epidemic? That is what you will get if kids are vaccinated.

        • wbsurfver

          millions of dollars have been awarded to people injured by vaccines ..

          http://www.nvic.org/injury-compensation.aspx

          http://www.thelibertybeacon.com/2013/07/12/cdc-admits-as-many-as-30-million-americans-could-be-at-risk-for-cancer-due-to-polio-vaccine/

          Listening to NPR doesn’t make you an expert on science. Paul Offit here says you can take thousands of vaccines and you will be fine. I would like to challenge anyone to go ahead and try that if that’s what they believe ..

          • Brian4000

            Court rooms are not labs

          • wbsurfver

            many scientific studies are flawed because there is alot of money involved. Some of the kids injured are hard to disprove. The kid was fine, recieved a vacine and hours later they where brain dead practically

          • Brian4000

            I don’t think you understand how scientific research works. Look, if you want to buy into this stuff because it thinks it makes you an inpedentend thinker or something be my guest. Byt there will be a cost to this anti-vaccine hysteria and we are already seeing outbreaksf as a result. Ask yourslf at a deep level, do you really think thisis true, or do you just want it to be true. We know what it was like before vaccine. Just like we know what it was like teore anti-biotics. I do not think you undrsand what you are inviting here. You guys have clever arguments, links to articles, etc. That all takes a long time for knopwledgeable people to respond to (just like it takes a while to respond to claims that the world is run by a secret cabal of snake people). Look before you leap.

    • J__o__h__n

      I think the sample is not representative. Frequently when there is a topic that is some people’s obsession, there are posts from people who only tune in to that particular program. I suspect that an internet community informs their members that the show will be featuring that topic and people who aren’t regular listeners or posters tune in for the day.

      • Brian4000

        I certainly hope you are right. Sometimes i think the level of ignorance on the left is just as great as the right, but it simply emerges in different places (the left believes in global warming, which is supported by the scientific consensus, but fears vaccines, even though the scientific consensus supports their use). I just wish the same rigor and understanding being applied to evolution and global warming were applied here as well.

        • J__o__h__n

          The right doesn’t have a great record on vaccines – example: the hysteria over the HPV vaccine.

          • Brian4000

            Sure, they freaked because “sex!!!”. But the left is witnessing growth of similar ignorance (except it is rooted in other things). Glass houses. Stones.

    • tbphkm33

      Keep in mind, some shows, like this one, word will go out on other forums for people to post comments – individuals who may or may not be NPR listeners. Sometimes this discussion board is flooded by ideologues who otherwise would never be on this site.

      • kmrotterdam

        Exactly!!!

    • kmrotterdam

      I assume these anti-vaccination groups have jumped on discussions like this to further their viewpoints, giving an exaggerated representation of their ideas.

    • The poster formerly known as t

      I think that this show proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the majority of NPR listeners are just as irrational and dumb as the readers of the National Inquirer.

  • tbphkm33

    Lets see, 2-3 years ago two international travelers returned to Eugene, OR – one of the epicenters of the anti-vaccination camp. These individuals returned from their trip infected with some serious bug that kids in “normal” cities are vaccinated against, but not in Eugene. Many of the anti-vaccination people had to clean their underwear upon that news. I do believe vaccination rates have since risen in Eugene. Most interesting, a vocal minority of the anti-vaccination group turned on the local and state health authorities. Not for that their kids not being vaccinated, but how they could have allowed these two residents to return home infected with this “exotic” foreign illness.

    Bottom line, the anti-vaccination crowd is just waiting for an outbreak to bring it to its knees. See how “smart” it feels at that point in time.

    Also, the Eugene group is apparently driven by a mom, who’s name escapes me, but she is often introduced as a “PhD” without indicating what her degree is in. Turns out her degree is in English. Nice, these ideologues are following high school educated Hollywood stars and English majors from some two-bit school.

    • kmrotterdam

      That’s the solution — when the chickens come home to roost.

  • drrandy

    I am a Family Physician who is listening to this program right now (it is currently being broadcast on my local NPR station in Santa Cruz). Clearly this is a complex and controversial issue with people who are passionate on both sides of the issue. The bottom line- not all vaccines are created equal. They are not all bad or all good. There is legitimate reason for concern about the safety and effectiveness of many vaccines. I have written an essay with many references on my blog at http://drrandybaker.com/2012/05/04/the-vaccination-debate-7/
    Also, here is an apropos column from the1/6 Huffington Post:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/lawrence-solomon/vaccine-skeptics_b_4548510.html

    • Brian4000

      Randy, obviously as a physician, you can beat us laymen in a debate on vaccines. But every physician I speak to, disagrees with what you say here quite strongly. I think it is fair to say you hold a minority view in the medical community.

      • drrandy

        Yes Brian, I am undoubtedly in the minority of physicians who have significant concerns about vaccine safety and effectiveness, though many other physicians do share my concerns. I believe the reason that most doctors don’t question this is that doctors are products of their medical education and in medical school they are taught that vaccines are safe and effective and that anyone who questions this is simply wrong and misguided. They are given no exposure to the science that gives legitimate support to those who have concerns. I believe this is largely because the pharmaceutical companies that make literally billions of dollars selling vaccines have an undue influence over what is and is not taught in medical schools.

      • SilentRiver

        Physicians are not infallible.
        When the public started to question the health risks of cigarette smoking, tobacco companies responded by doing their own medical studies and ad campaigns featuring doctors. During this time many physicians still doubted that there was a wide-spread connection between smoking and disease. We know better now, don’t we. History tends to repeat itself……

        • Brian4000

          No one said they were infallible. But it is a huge leap from “physicians are fallible” to “vaccines are dangerous and kids shouldn’t get them”. The science just doesn’t support your conclusion. However the science does support the conclusion that failling to maintain vaccine levels will erode herd immunity and lead to new outbreaks of serious disease. This idea has huge consequences. It isn’t like choosing to eat grass fed beef or going vegan. You are literally going to set us up fir huge outbreaks of dangerous diseases because if stuff you found on the internet. There is a website to support virtually any position, but the science does not back this one up.

    • Jeff Nathan

      Randy, what is the most recent literature review you or your practice have undertaken?

      What longitudinal studies (clinical or otherwise) have you or your practice have participated in?

      My point that, despite being a physician, you do not appear to be abreast of the strength and depth of the scientific consensus.

      • drrandy

        Jeff, I do my best to stay abreast of the current literature but, to the best of the knowledge, the type of studies that are needed (studies comparing in long-term outcomes in large groups of vaccinated vs unvaccinated populations with similar genetics and socioeconomic status) to scientifically answer the questions about long-term outcome are not being done.
        I am well-aware of the scientific consensus but do not believe it is based on sound science. The few studies that have been done show considerably higher incidences in auto-immune and other chronic illnesses in vaccinated populations- see http://healthimpactnews.com/2011/new-study-vaccinated-children-have-2-to-5-times-more-diseases-and-disorders-than-unvaccinated-children/
        Until those who hold the “consensus” view can show me long-term studies demonstrating that vaccinated populations are healthier in the long-run than unvaccinated populations they do not have the science to support their views and thus their views are based on hypothesis and not sound science.

  • CaCoast

    When I was a kid in the ’50s, polio was active and crippling & killing children and adults. After we all had polio shots (and later the sugar cube vaccines), polio went away. If these vaccinephobes lived through polio outbreaks, they would shut-up and get their kids vaccinated.

    • wbsurfver

      the instance of polio seemed to mirror the use of DDT exactly. Polio is a modern disease and there was never any polio prior to the last 100 years or so. In addition, some polio vaccines where contaminated and had to be discontinued after many people where injured .. The media tends to not report such things ..

      • jefe68

        Not true, polio was first recognized as a distinct condition by Jakob Heine in 1840. The first recoded epidemics of it were around 1910.

        DDT did not start to be used until WW2.

        • wbsurfver

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_poliomyelitis#Epidemics

          “Major polio epidemics were unknown before the 20th century; localized paralytic polio epidemics began to appear in Europe and the United States around 1900.[1] The first report of multiple polio cases was published in 1843 and described an 1841 outbreak in Louisiana. A fifty-year gap occurs before the next U.S. report—a cluster of 26 cases in Boston in 1893.[1] The first recognized U.S. polio epidemic occurred the following year in Vermont with 132 total cases (18 deaths), including several cases in adults.[10] Numerous epidemics of varying magnitude began to appear throughout the country; by 1907 approximately 2,500 cases of poliomyelitis were reported in New York City.[11]

          http://www.naturalnews.com/036290_polio_DDT_pesticide_exposure.html

          • Brian4000

            Wbsurfer, did you even read the wikipedia article you linked. It doesn’t exactly probe your case.

          • wbsurfver

            those earlier outbreaks where very small .. the larger outbreaks seem to follow the pattern of DDT

          • jefe68

            You know it’s interesting how you want so much for the data to back up your claim and yet there were large polio outbreaks decades before DDT was being used.
            Which in my opinion pretty much makes your thesis moot.

            In 1916 there were over 27,000 cases and more than 6,000 deaths due to polio in the United States, with over 2,000 deaths in New York City. By the 40′s and into the 50′s these outbreaks became larger.

          • wbsurfver

            Graph here shows chemicals related to DDT where used after WW I, 1915 etc ..

            http://www.vaclib.org/sites/harpub/pol_all.htm

          • jefe68

            Except that it was not used in a wide verity of commercial uses until after WW2 which your graph clearly shows.

            You are really grasping at straws here.

          • wbsurfver

            that is not what the article says, chlorobenzene production began in 1915

          • jefe68

            So? What does that have to do with the polio virus or any virus for that matter?

            You said there was direct link between the use of DDT and polio in the late 40′s and 50′s. By the way, I was reading about similar claim made about arsenic-based pesticides that sounds exactly like the one you are making. It is also bogus. Why? Because polio has been around for centuries and while pesticides can cause neurological problems, they are not the same as polio.

          • wbsurfver

            In most all cases, the incidence of all these diseases where in decline before vaccines where introduced. The medical establishment just wants to take credit for situations where sanitation and the like resulted in a decline in disease. There are so many areas in history, medicine and the like where the establishment gets it wrong or lies

            http://www.sott.net/article/184789-Swine-Flu-Swindle-Mass-Vaccination

          • Brian4000

            I just want to point that wbsurfver is consistently drawing on unreliable sources, conspiracy theory websites, and forming highly questionable conclusions from the data he does manage to get right. This guy is spamming the page with links to knon frauds and conspiracy theorists. Again, experts can’t debunk these guys fast enough, but it is sad to see how we’ve returned to a stage where people fall for the claims of pseudo-science and paranoid conspiracy theory (it is only a short step from there to “the world is secretly controlled by lizard people” or the protocols of the elders of zion

          • jefe68

            I know that. I’m not falling for anything.
            What I see here is snake oil salesman.

          • Jeff Nathan

            It’s just more of the Gish Gallop.

          • wbsurfver
          • wbsurfver

            People in cities ate food grown on farms ? I don’t know, trying to do your own research not supported by drug company propaganda could be dangerous

          • jefe68

            I did. First off the kind of nerve damage that pesticides would cause, and by the way what you are advocating for would mean one would have to be exposed to a lot of DDT to be poisoned. Now, if they did have a reaction to the DDT it would not be polio.

        • wbsurfver
    • sharkgirl7

      Pretty sure it was polio that was decreasing before vaccines were introduced….it was one of these ‘life threatening’ diseases that everyone says vaccines ‘cured’ *rolls eyes*

  • wbsurfver

    If you think the internet has no useful info, then you basically believe that the govt, media, establishment, and corporations have all the answers and everyone else on the planet is brain dead. Look at this guy Paul Offit, he claims you should be able to take thousands of vaciniations and no need to worry about any side effects. He has also come out in favor of regulating vitamins by the FDA when vitamins are pretty much harmless. There’s abundant evidence that many of these diseases where in sharp decline before vaccines even where invented .. NPR has enough industry spokesmen over time from banking and other sectors that you are just getting that particular slant of whatever it is they are trying to push. There’s no end to the propaganda fro flu vaccines at drugstores these days. Plenty of nurses don’t want to be vaccinated, that should tell you something but I doubt those nurses will end up on NPR because that’s not how the game is played ..

    • jefe68

      Really? Plenty of evidence of what diseases exactly?

      By the way vitamins are not harmless. If you take to much vitamin A it can poison you.

      • 1Brett1

        Yes, and vitamin E…and any of the non-soluble vitamins have the potential to be toxic at certain doses. AND, don’t even get me started on “herbals.” Many of those are unsafe.

    • Jeff Nathan

      Growing up, we’re given a pretty poor education in science and the scientific method. Unless you enter a field that’s a hard science, this pattern of being uneducated or under educated in science continues into adulthood. Within science, the scientific method is a methodology by which ideas are tested. Theories must be falsifiable (i.e. there must be a condition or set of conditions under which they can be proven false). Theories are never proven, only failed to be disproved over time. Theories also have gaps and progress is measured when those gaps shrink.

      Scientific consensus is the mechanism by which people trained in and working within a discipline come to agreement on a theory or set of theories after research, publication, peer review and criticism, and continuous revision. There will always be people outside of the scientific consensus. Some are actually scientists trained in and working in the field of any particular consensus. Many are not. Many times the arguments repeated over and over again outside the scientific consensus were disproved a long long time ago.

      We don’t listen to just one expert in any field nor should credence be given to an argument just because one important person said so (refer to the logical fallacy argument from authority). Just as you don’t rely on a single voice, you don’t rely on a single study. Science encourages vigorous debate and only when studies have been replicated and validated might they even be considered to become part of the consensus. Not every study is valid or of even mediocre quality.

      This leads to my final point. In the area of political and ideological views on vaccination there is great disagreement. Amongst those scientists trained in and working in epidemiology and infectious diseases there is overwhelming scientific consensus that vaccines are necessary and critical in keeping populations healthy and alive.

      The only controversy is political or ideological, there is no scientific controversy.

      I’m a layman in that I am neither educated in nor working in the fields of epidemiology and infectious diseases. It would be incredibly naive of me to assume that I could begin to understand the complex intricacies of the field (or any other hard science) and therefore I rely on the scientific consensus to know what’s what.

      As I already mentioned, science and the scientific method is a mechanism by which ideas are tested and where views change over time based on observations. Science isn’t dogma; it’s measurable, testable, and repeatable.

    • Brian4000

      Wbsurfer, the internet has good info, but also a lot of bad information, incomplete niformatino and misleading information.

    • SilentRiver

      Not only does Dr. Paul Offit believe that a child’s immune system could handle 10,000 vaccines, he is also a patent holder for the new rotavirus vaccine which was recently added to the immunization schedules.

      Read about his voting pattern on the rotavirus vaccine when he sat on the ACIP committee: http://www.putchildrenfirst.org/media/3.5.pdf

      Paul is so biased, it’s not even funny.

  • wbsurfver
  • Lisa

    Oh Tom….you are a sellout too? darnit, sad to see on such an important topic. you will be one of the many partly responsible for many more children suffering in pain from vaccine injury or death. anyway, i found your panel to be pathetic. you could have done much better, but they wouldn’t have paid you off, so I can see why you didn’t put legitimate people on your show. really, paul profit…i mean offit, is a vaccine maker, therefore making millions off of them and he just *might* have a conflict of interest. why don’t you put paul up against Dr. Russell Blaylock or Dr. Sherry Tenpenny or Dr. Suzanne Humphries….come on, get a valid panel…Jeez. Now, since you didn’t do your homework, I have provided several links for yourself and listeners. Please, take a look at the real science and lets put an end to the suffering of babies without a voice and choice. However, the sad reality is that the most legit study has been completed…..on innocent people and babies. Millions suffer or are dead. Austism (blanket term for vaccine injury) is an epidemic- 1 in 50 for girls and 1 in 36 for boys. Wake up people.

    http://www.vaccinationcouncil.org/2012/02/18/the-deadly-impossibility-of-herd-immunity-through-vaccination-by-dr-russell-blaylock/

    VIDEO***Neurosurgeon DR. RUSSEL BLAYLOCK (different video than first one): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9zt9T-aQ4Q

    VIDEO http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1m3TjokVU4

    VIDEO***LISTEN TO THIS PEDIATRICIAN (STUDIES 35K UNVAXXED KIDS)- NO VACCINES, NO AUTISM

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Ql9LkGf6ok (Preview)

    DR. TENPENNY. This video breaks down a lot about vaccines, like how they really don’t work, because they only engage on part of the immune system and damage all of the immune system. ALSO, Her site drtenpenny.com has a ton of info. about vaccines there.

    Dr. Sherri Tenpenny http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAJb01ZiJNk (Preview)

    DTAP: known to be major trigger of allergies, a major danger to females, highly linked to SIDS, and the pertussis vaccine is a huge failure. Also, high dose of vitamin C has been treating whooping cough since early 1900′s and has people getting through it with relatively no problems in about 10 days (I’ll provide the treatment in a link below).

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1579134/pdf/clinexpimmunol00336-0106.pdf

    http://insidevaccines.com/wordpress/2012/07/26/whooping-cough-lies-damn-lies-and-statistics/

    http://www.naturalnews.com/035466_whooping_cough_vaccines_outbreaks.html

    Watch this youtube VIDEO. This is an expert scientist and he knows that science doesn’t support that vaccines are not dangerous. Watch first three minutes and then minute 11:20 through minute 32. He explains a lot about how dangerous vaccines are.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03K2ONrFiYc&feature=related

    ROBERT F KENNEDY JR EXPOSING THAT VACCINES CAUSE AUTISM http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d–3q9PP3mA&feature=share

    HISTORICAL FACTS EXPOSING THE DANGERS AND INEFFECTIVENESS OF VACCINES http://vaclib.org/sites/debate/web2.html

    SIDS- JAPANESE AND SIDS: http://www.whale.to/vaccines/scheibner1.html

    Another good article on SIDS: http://www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com/vaccine_sids.htm

    ALUMINUM IN VACCINES: http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/can-we-continue-justify-injecting-aluminum-children

    KIDNEY DAMAGE FROM VACCINES http://www.vaccinationcouncil.org/2012/03/09/common-vaccine-ingredient-implicated-in-nejm-article-as-causative-in-serious-type-of-kidney-disease-by-suzanne-humphries-md/

    DTAP: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10714532

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2025848/#reference-sec

    TYPE 1 DIABETES AND THE HIB VACCINE http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1116914/

    VIDEO***Let’s start with DR. TENPENNY. This video is awesome and breaks down a lot about vaccines, like how they really don’t work, because they only engage on part of the immune system and damage all of the immune system. This is a MUST watch. ALSO, Her site drtenpenny.com has a ton of info. about vaccines there.

    Dr. Sherri Tenpenny http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAJb01ZiJNk (Preview) (Preview)

    ***VIEW this blog and then READ the PubMed links below the blog- COMPELLING EVIDENCE http://www.regardingcaroline.com/pubmed

    The US HAS NOT DONE EVEN ONE STUDY OF VAXXED VS UNVAXXED (which is unethical and unheard of when doing ‘real’ science). Germany and Africa just did and found this

    http://healthfreedoms.org/2011/10/14/big-study-vaccinated-kids-2-5-more-diseases-than-unvaccinated/

    also these three regarding VAXXED VS UNVAXXED:http://www.vaccineinjury.info/vaccinations-in-general/health-unvaccinated-children/survey-results-illnesses.html

    http://www.ias.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/IAS1992study.pdf

    THE GREAT DANGER OF ALUMINUM, WHICH IS IN ALL VACCINES:

    http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/can-we-continue-justify-injecting-aluminum-children

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/9119528/Is-aluminium-really-a-silent-killer.html

    VACCINE SUCCESS THEORY PROVEN WRONG- THEY DON’T WORK AND HERE IS WHY:

    http://gaia-health.com/gaia-blog/2012-07-04/vaccine-theory-proven-wrong-study-by-nih/

    VACCINES STILL CONTAIN MERCURY: http://www.naturalnews.com/035432_vaccines_mercury_court_case.html

    BABY MONKEYS GIVEN OUR VACCINES DEVELOPED AUTISM,: http://www.naturalnews.com/035787_vaccines_autism_monkeys.html

    http://vran.org/in-the-news/infant-monkeys-given-standard-doses-of-vaccines-develop-autism-symptoms/

    ALUMINUM HYDROXIDE AND MOTOR DEFICITS: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2819810/?tool=pubmed

    SOME GREAT INFO ON TETANUS

    http://guggiedaly.blogspot.co.uk/2010/05/one-thing-that-has-frequently-come-up.html?m=1

    FIRST YEAR SHOTS DON’T EVEN PRODUCE ATIBODIES, but Dr.’s push them anyway ‘to get parents in the routine of wellness check-ups’…http://gaetacommunications.com/site/?p=1092

    RISKS WITH THE DTAP-

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10714532

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2025848/#reference-sec

    straight from the govt’s CDC (center for disease control)…disease DECLINE BEFORE vaccines were introduced- vaccines DID NOT save us

    http://theatlasoflife.com/2010/06/08/natural-disease-decline-immunization-effectiveness-and-immunization-dangers/

    While reading this stuff, keep in mind that humans lived through scurvy, typhiod, scarlet fever and other illnesses without vaccines. You’ll also see that the vaccines were introduced after many diseases were at a 95% decline on their own.

    TWO CENTURIES OF CHARTS PROVING THAT VACCINES DID NOT SAVE US!

    http://childhealthsafety.wordpress.com/graphs/

    http://www.wakingtimes.com/2013/04/25/gut-flora-accounts-for-up-to-80-of-immunity-not-vaccinations/

    http://www.vaccinationinformationnetwork.com/vaccines-cause-autism-supporting-evidence/

    http://www.thedailysheeple.com/study-proves-vaccines-not-vaccine-refusers-are-behind-whooping-cough-outbreaks_112013

    http://avn.org.au/2013/08/studies-supporting-vaccineautism-causation/

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23387884

    http://jcn.sagepub.com/content/22/11/1308.abstract

    http://www.vaccinationcouncil.org/2013/11/27/a-shot-never-worth-taking-the-flu-vaccine-by-kelly-brogan-md/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+vaccinationcouncil+%28International+Medical+Council+on+Vaccination%29

    http://naturalsociety.com/publicized-study-vaccination-schedule-bombshell/

    • tbphkm33

      WOW Lisa – develop your own abilities to write an informed and educated comment instead of posting whatever Google spat out at you.

      • Don

        No, tbphkm33, you’d be quite surprised at what you’d find if you did the research instead of just swallowing what the pharmaceutical companies want us to think.

  • tbphkm33

    Does make you wonder what these anti-vaccine people are going to tell their children when the kids get to be 18… “oh, by the way, best if you never travel to 3/4 of the worlds countries and even better if you become a hypochondriac – as we never had you vaccinated… don’t get vaccinated now, its too late for some of the vaccines.”

    • donny_t

      Personally, I’ll stay home if it means I avoid the risk of dying or being permanently paralyzed with intense pain. See there’s hypochondria and then there’s “informed decisions.”

      http://www.fromthetrenchesworldreport.com/deadly-vaccine-kills-8-infants-drug-maker-says-deaths-coincidental/70337

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRcZZROphLM

      • Jeff Nathan

        My position is simply that the methodology and processes of science have attempted to prove vaccines are unsafe and have failed. There is overwhelming evidence of this failure to prove them unsafe. Conversely, there is overwhelming scientific census that vaccines are necessary and safe.

        Where is the peer reviewed, validated and replicated evidence from the anti-vaccination camp.

        A plethora of anecdotes is not evidence.

        • donny_t

          How about these on the flu vaccine? Fairly recent too.
          Cochrane Collaboration, British Medical Journal, Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy all say the flu vaccine is worthless, may even reduce protection if you get it two years in a row.
          Another study shows children who get the flu vaccine are 5.5 times more likely to get respiratory illnesses (double blind, placebo controlled)
          http://cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/03/13/cid.cis307

          • Jeff Nathan

            This is also a logical fallacy, this time the non-sequitur. The conclusion does not follow the reasoning of the argument.

            Pretending for a moment that the above studies have been validated, which they may or may not have been, what does either one have to do with autism?

          • donny_t

            see, now you’re just trying to dodge the fact that vaccines aren’t all they’re cracked up to be :P

          • Jeff Nathan

            This is also a logical fallacy. Ad-hominem.

            Donny, you appear to have difficulty organizing your argument(s).

          • donny_t

            Bro, I’m replying to different comments on different posts, lol. See, this original post is about vaccinations in general, not Dr. Wakefield or autism. I gave several respected sources which say contrary to what this On Point episode touted: that flu vaccinations are efficacious and you seem to pick and choose what you want to believe.

  • wbsurfver

    Doctor wakefield was pronounced a fraud by the medical establishment, but he has never once admitted to fraud and in fact has been fighting against such claims all along along with numerous others. Wakefield stands behind his study as do others. How convienient to just ignore all that ..

    What is the cause of autism then ? I don’t think a satisfactory answer was given on NPR. The answer given seemed very poor

    http://www.thelibertybeacon.com/2013/06/21/new-published-study-verifies-andrew-wakefields-research-on-autism-again-mmr-vaccine-causes-autism/

    http://www.wesupportandywakefield.com/

    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/01/24/new-evidence-refutes-fraud-findings-in-dr-wakefield-case.aspx

    • donny_t

      I always chuckle when I hear “experts” say autism is not caused by vaccines when they don’t know what causes autism.
      And I don’t completely believe Brian Deer’s story.
      http://www.ageofautism.com/2011/01/keeping-anderson-cooper-honest-is-brian-deer-the-fraud.html

      • wbsurfver

        yea, just ignore that little inconvenient question about autism. My mother claims it’s caused by old sperm, people having kids late in life .. I guess anybody could have made that one up and even the vaccine industry guys on NPR didn’t want to try that one on us.

        • Don

          In 2013 Wakefield’s study was found not fraudulent by the British High Court

          • donny_t

            His study was never fraudulent because he never claimed anything. He only suggested it needs further study which is what leading scientists in their field are supposed to do. Unfortunately, the media got a hold of it, the public woke up and he took the fall. Kind of sad really.

          • Jeff Nathan

            He acted unethically and was punished for doing so. When you write the above you do a disservice to science and the scientific process.

            I think you should read more primary sources and less “underground” anti-vaccination sites reporting of the subject.

          • donny_t

            So your definition of unethical is never question anything?
            If you went with the so-called “primary” sources 100 years ago you’d be believing that the world was flat :P

          • Jeff Nathan

            Science is a repeatable methodology for answering questions, it isn’t the answers to the questions themselves. Some people may have believed the earth was flat 600 years ago. Both scientific experiments and real world experience have disproven that hypothesis.

            Your statement makes absolutely no sense in the context of science requiring validation of results.

          • donny_t

            The scientific method was exactly what Dr. Wakefield used in determining to the best of his knowledge the circumstances of those children at the time. Keep in mind he was one of the top in his field. Never actually said autism was caused by vaccines, only said there may be a possible link and needs further study. That is the scientific method. There is nothing unethical about that.

          • donny_t

            That’s exactly what Dr. Wakefield did. He used the scientific method to the best of his ability (keep in mind he was one of the top in his field) to diagnose those children, never claimed vaccines cause autism, only said there may be a possible link and needs further study. If we’re going to hold scientists accountable for saying things need further study, we may as well go back to the dark ages.

          • donny_t

            That’s exactly what Dr. Wakefield did. He used the scientific method to the best of his ability (keep in mind he was one of the top of his field) to assess the circumstances of those children. Never actually said vaccines caused autism, but said there may be a link and needs further study. So if we’re going to vilify scientists for saying things need further study, we may as well go back to the dark ages.

          • donny_t

            Jeff, in response to your below comment, because this forum is limited:
            That’s exactly what Dr. Wakefield did. He used the scientific method to
            the best of his ability (keep in mind he was one of the top of his
            field) to assess the circumstances of those children. Never actually
            said vaccines caused autism, but said there may be a link and needs
            further study. So if we’re going to vilify scientists for saying things
            need further study, we may as well go back to the dark ages.

          • 1Brett1

            No, Wakefield’s “study” was NEVER on trial. A colleague of his was cleared of fraud charges in his role; which, his role was different than Wakefiled’s. Wakefield was NEVER cleared of any fraud charges, nor was his “study.”

      • 1Brett1

        You are making a false equivalency…yes, it is not known what causes autism; however, a lot is known about what does NOT cause autism. For example, say, dirty car seats do NOT cause autism. Just because it is not known what causes autism doesn’t mean intelligent people should spend time speculating that dirty car seats–to continue that absurd example–do cause autism.

        • donny_t

          You do know your reasoning is a little off? What if one day they discovered that the dirt in dirty seats actually did cause autism? You cannot make claims about what does and does not cause something if you don’t know what causes it.

          • 1Brett1

            That is nonsense; but, hey, if you want to believe that autism might be caused by dirty car seats or fruit juice or whole wheat bread or Tupperware or anything else, that’s your prerogative. Not knowing what causes something and knowing what does not cause something are two very different things, yet they are not mutually exclusive, but to each his own. We don’t know exactly how the earth was created, but we do know it wasn’t created by fairies mixing pudding pops with creme soda. Should we give the ‘fairies mixing pudding pops with creme soda’ idea the same consideration as the big bang theory? So, it your “reasoning” that is a little off, Bro.

      • 1Brett1

        Here’s an interesting quote from the “article.”

        “His [Brian Deer's] most recent hit piece was funded by the British Medical Association, who has many reasons to shut Wakefield up…”

        Yeah, because Wakefield is a discredited fraud who falsified data. Wakefield admitted that HE was actually working for lawyers (when he conducted his “research”) who were representing parents who were suing vaccine manufacturers. Wakefield also admitted to throwing out data that didn’t fit his/the lawyers/the parents narrative…Sounds as though Wakefield had MANY reasons for drawing the conclusions in his “research” that he did.

        • donny_t

          Bro, Wakefield’s report was proven to be NON FRAUDULENT by BMJ and the British High Courts. He’s actually now suing Brian Deer for defamation.

          Oh, here’s another good link between autism and vaccines. I’d also check the sources.
          http://www.naturalnews.com/041897_mmr_vaccines_autism_court_ruling.html

          • 1Brett1

            Bro, you are just plain wrong.

            As far as NaturalNews…that is a propaganda site started by a GUY, and he has no credentials to support the opinions expressed on his website. I’ve read the section on “vaccines and autism”: there’s a lot of puffery and opinion, but no facts.

          • donny_t

            Check the sources.

    • cycle3man

      Dr Wakefield, gastroenterologist, treated 12 children brought to him by the parents of these 12 children, each with severe stomach pain. After much study Dr Wakefeild found the measles strain of the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) attacking the stomach lining and the cause of the severe pain. In his paper he speculated that there MAY be a connection to the cause of Autism in these children and recommended that a study be done. He DIDNOT perform a study he treated these children and suggest a study be done.
      These vaccine pushing doctors omit the fact that Dr. Wakefield examined and treated these children and did NOT perform a study. In addition, he did suggest a study be done to determine whether there was a relationship with the Measles part of the MMR causing Autism in some children. Until such a study is done he suggested that individual vaccines measles, mumps and rubella be given to children, spaced in time.
      I have little or no respect for these vaccine pushing doctors who have NOT spent much time getting to the meat of the subject but spout their Pediatrician’s Organization Party line. I have been studying this subject daily for 19 years.
      Cycle3man, Paul S Grandpa to a vaccine damaged grandson. No conflicts of interest!!!!

      • Jeff Nathan

        There is no situation in which a sample size of 12 would be sufficient to draw any conclusion.

        Theses vaccine pushing doctors, as you refer to them, exceed the sum total of your medical knowledge in their first semester of medical school.

    • Jeff Nathan

      You do realize Wakefield was entirely rebuked by his peers and his research entirely refuted by both the scientific method and the process of ongoing scientific research. He was also stripped of his license to practice medicine.

      Moreover, you keep committing the conceit of falling victim to the logical fallacy argument from authority. Your argument isn’t strengthened because just one or two people you think are important made it. In fact, your argument is weakened because the individuals you refer to have been shown to be unethical, their motives entirely suspect (as in the case of Mercola whose site exists in no small part to sell his products) and Wakefield.

      These authorities you keep citing are outliers and not part of the scientific consensus.

      • 1Brett1

        Well said…also Wakefield was paid for his “research” by a lawyer representing parents who were bringing lawsuits against vaccine manufacturers (hardly unbiased, to be kind). He admitted to throwing out findings that didn’t fit his desired narrative, and he admitted to fabricating certain findings that did fit his narrative.

        • Don

          You know, don’t you, that the British High Court determined in 2012 that Wakefield’s study was legitimate, and that Wakefield was the victim of wild accusations by journalist Brian Deer, which the General Medical Council swallowed whole?

          • 1Brett1

            Prove that a legitimate medical journal is now saying Wakefield’s “research” is legitimate. I know that Wakefield himself admitted to falsifying data and to working for lawyers who represented those 12 children he “studied.” I doubt that in light of that any medical body would deem his work “legitimate.”

          • Don

            I did not say a medical journal is now saying that Wakefield’s research is legitimate. I said that the British High Court found that the charges against the study were unfounded– in other words, that the charges of fraudulence were in themselves fraudulent. And no, you don’t know that Wakefield himself admitted to falsifying data– now it’s your turn to “prove it.” And by the way Wakefield’s results have been duplicated:
            [i] Clinical Presentation and Histologic Findings at Ileocolonoscopy in Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Chronic Gastrointestinal Symptoms, Arthur Krigsman, MD, et al, New York University School of Medicine, Autism Insights, 27 Jan 2010
            [ii] Endoscopic and Histological Characteristics of the Digestive Mucosa in Autistic Children with gastro-Intestinal Symptoms.Gonzalez L, et al. ArchVenez Pueric Pediatr, 2005;69:19-25.
            [iii] Panenteric IBD-like disease in a patient with regressive autism shown for the first time by wireless capsulenteroscopy: Another piece in the jig-saw of the gut-brain syndrome? Balzola F, et al. American Journal of Gastroenterology. 2005. 100(4):979-981.
            [iv] Childhood autism and eosinophilic colitis. Chen B, Girgis S, El-Matary W.. Digestion. 2010;81:127-9. Epub 2010 Jan 9].

          • 1Brett1

            While I’m not inclined to spend a lot of time with your ilk, I refer you to the first entry on Goggle regarding Wakefield, specifically in the section titled: “other concerns” also in the section “fraud and conflict of interest allegations”:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Wakefield

            I’m may be incorrect in any self-admission on Wakefield’s part, it may be his research lab that admitted to his shabby techniques.

            If you look at the section titled “Wakefield’s Response,” he lied and said he received no compensation for his “research.” He did, however, receive handsome compensation. See “Aftermath and initial controversy.” He also stood to benefit monetarily in a number of other ways (which he would have if he hadn’t been proven a fraud. He also made a number of false statements and claims in his research, which have since been verified (read the whole page).

            I also would refer you to many other links to Wakefield’s fraudulence, but I doubt you’re interested, as you seem intent on defending him. He’s a charlatan who conducted shoddy research as a result of being paid by lawyers representing parents of children who received the MMR vaccines; it’s really that simple.

            Now, it is your turn to fully disclose what is meant by the finding of the British High Court; I suspect if there is anything at all to it, it has something to do with a libel suit and nothing else.

            You’ve provided no links to the research of the studies you site, so it is impossible to comment on them and to associate them in the way you intimate. Provide the links and I’ll look at them and see if they have indeed been able to replicate Wakefield’s findings; I suspect they haven’t.

          • Don

            So far as the links go, you can Google the articles yourself, so it is indeed possible for you to comment on them if you wish. As for the British High Court decision, it is summarized here:

            http://www.prweb.com/releases/2012/3/prweb9262180.htm

            A much lengthier article here:

            http://childhealthsafety.wordpress.com/2012/03/07/english-court-exonerates-mmrautism-doctor-uk-general-medical-given-sound-thrashing/

            I find the Wikipedia article interesting– no mention of the 2012 decision. Very curious, don’t you think? And the word “fraudulent” in the very first sentence? Any bias there?

            And what, exactly, is my “ilk,” as you put it? Someone who asks honest questions? Someone who disagrees with the established view? Someone who has spent countless hours researching? Or simply someone who dares to contradict you?

          • 1Brett1

            It is disingenuous of you to say you are just asking questions.

          • 1Brett1

            Ah, you presented incorrect information. Wakefield was not exonerated, a colleague of his was.

          • Don

            Exactly. John Walker-Smith brought the lawsuit. The judgement says specifically that the allegations of fraudulence based on the 1998 study that Walker-Smith, Wakefield, and others co-authored were without substance. As a result, the court ordered that Walker-Smith have his medical license reinstated. All the controversy about Wakefield centers on this supposedly “fraudulent” 1998 study.

          • 1Brett1

            NO, not “exactly.” JOhn Walker-Smith’s role was much different than Wakefield’s. Smith’s role was found to be not fraudulent on appeal. He was on trial, not the study itself.

          • 1Brett1

            Your first link doesn’t support your claim that Wakefield was exonerated; it states that a colleague of his was exonerated.

            Your second link starts with the phrase “witch hunt” in its opener…no bias there, I guess [sarcasm].

          • Don

            Right. I’m not just asking questions, I’m trying to show how the point of view that questions vaccines makes a lot of sense.
            And I just noticed the comment by “superior2″ below, a physician. I like it.

  • wbsurfver

    FDA Pertussis Vaccine Study Shatters Illusion of Vaccine-Induced Immunity

    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/12/10/whooping-cough-pertussis-vaccine.aspx

  • Don

    Tom, how about some real vaccine critics, like Dr. Eisenstein who continually claims he has had 35,000 pediatric patients with no vaccines and no autism, or Dr Suzanne Humphries, or Professor Boyd Haley, who has done extensive research into mercury, or Lyn Redwood, head of Safeminds? How about the other side?

  • Brian4000

    Like with so many things these days, much of the problem seems to be the experts in the field can’t offer counterpoints to the rampant conspiracy theories, half-truths and specious analysis fast enough to stiffle the growth of things like the anti-vaccine movements. Seriously, this thriving ignorance butressed on partial understandings is exactly how you end up with non-sense like the protocols of the elders of zion. Forget vaccines for disease, we need vaccines to protect peoples’ minds from seductive but untrue reasoning. The internet+distrust if institutions+just enough intelligence=a dangerous situation indeed.

    • kmrotterdam

      I wish there was a way to separate those people from the rest of us.

    • wbsurfver

      there’s no conspiracies, so why is the western world coming apart economically, loss of freedom, endless wars ? Please list all the lies in the following docs about unenthical medical experiments ..

      http://www.NaturalNews.com/019189.html

      http://www.naturalnews.com/019187_human_medical_experimentation_ethics.html

    • Jeff Nathan

      Scientists generally avoid stooping to the level of conspiracy theories based upon logical fallacies. Largest of which is that there is no evidence which could possibly convince you that your anti-vaccination position is wrong.

      Every scientist who has validated other peer-reviewed research is part of the conspiracy. In the face of evidence, you just expand the conspiracy.

      The anti-vaccination crowd cannot enter into an intellectually honest discussion if they cannot say that their position is X and they only require Y to abandon their position if there is no Y in their mind.

      • Brian4000

        I am pro vaccine jeff. I was just saying the problem is, because if the speed with which these conspiracy theories formulate, experts can’t stomp them out fast enough, so they flourish. It is one of the ironies of our age: as knwledge snd information expands, ignorance seems to grow as well.

  • Brian4000

    You know, if you new a little more about science you would know the reason, and you would also understand it has nothing to do with vaccines being dangerous.

  • donny_t

    It doesn’t bother anyone that Jule Gerberding, the former director of the CDC is now president of Merck Vaccine? One of MANY revolving doors.
    Do a Google search Merck and kickbacks.
    98 million Americans infected with cancer causing SV40 virus with Polio Vaccine – http://www.realfarmacy.com/cdc-admits-98-million-americans-received-polio-vaccine-contaminated-with-cancer-virus/

  • Don

    Brady, no. The major claims have not been refuted. They’ve been “spun” by studies largely connected in one form or another with pharmaceutical money. Most people would be surprised that there’s a great deal of science out there on the neurotoxicity of some vaccine ingredients, mercury in particular. Doesn’t it seem odd that the CDC says that injecting mercury, a known neurotoxin (whether methylmercury or ethylmercury), into our children is OK?

  • cycle3man

    @ Markie, If you believe that vaccines are effective, I suggest that you vaccinate your children. Then they will have immunity and you will not have to worry. Please donot impose your value system on others!!!!!

    • jefe68

      One could say the same to you. Why should I or anyone else have to put up with you not wanting to vaccinate your children?

    • Molly

      cycle3man,

      If you don’t vaccinate your child, you are putting children who *are* vaccinated at risk. The reason is that vaccinations work through herd immunity. Not every child who gets vaccinated actually develops immunity towards the disease. Most do, but there are always a few whose bodies don’t properly develop immunity from the vaccine. If everybody in the community gets vaccinated, it doesn’t matter for those kids because there are enough people who do have immunity to stop the spread of the disease. Then there aren’t enough susceptible people for the disease to spread and it just dies away. But if the percentage of people who aren’t immune grows, then the disease can spread, even to people who were vaccinated, but didn’t properly develop antibodies. So if you don’t vaccinate your kid, you are putting those kids at risk (and it’s not known which kids who got vaccinated didn’t develop antibodies) and the kids who couldn’t get vaccinated because of medical reasons at risk too.

    • Clareita

      And what about those who have children with health issues that prevent them from receiving vaccines? What about parents with newborns who are not old enough to receive vaccines? These people depend on herd immunity, which parents who choose to leave there children unvaccinated are weakening. When you abandon the protection that vaccines offer, you are in fact imposing your moral values on others.

  • zeus elbstein

    There is science and then there is belief – and they don’t mix. This country is loosing its grip on science and one of the dire consequences is the re-emergence of preventable infectious disease.

    • Brian4000

      You have nailed it. There is a fundamental lack of scientific understanding in this country.

  • Tadd Maffucci

    if there is an auto immune issue in the family how do we prove the vaccines caused your daughter’s issues. A simple rule we learn in statistics is “correlation does not prove causation”. That is just because things happen at the same time doesn’t PROVE they caused each other. It may suggest it and I agree the vaccination should have stopped but… to tell people this proves something is mathmatically and scientifically wrong.

  • Don

    Joe, don’t you know that even injected mercury is completely safe, even in huge amounts? No really, they have the science to prove it! Ethylmercury will kill nerve tissue at very low concentrations in the lab, but if you inject it into children, it’s OK! It’s amazing but true! They have the science to prove it.

  • pete18

    Anytime you want to confirm the importance of vaccines go look at an old cemetery and see how many children are buried there. The infant mortality rate dropped precipitously after the widespread introductions of vaccines.

    • Chelle Cat Ryland

      Exactly! You can see entire families, with as many as 4 or 5 children being wiped out in the space of a week from diphtheria.

    • sharkgirl7

      Not true, some diseases were already on a steep decline before vaccines were introduced.

  • donny_t

    If your kid is vaccinated then why are you worrying?

  • wbsurfver

    also, adjuvants derived from aluminum:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adjuvant#Types_of_adjuvants

    • Steve Littler

      OK, vaccine apologists, let’s have your studies and explanations for the need for these kinds of additives and how they don’t cause potential harm. Just saying.

      • Brian4000

        Experts have explained this. ,any, many times. You just don’t want to listen

  • donny_t
  • Jeff Nathan

    They have trace elements in them as part of the manufacturing process. You do realize that many things you eat also break down into a small trace amount of formaldehyde during the digestive process, don’t you?

  • donny_t

    I almost choked on my coffee laughing when he said, “vaccines provide that love.”

    • Stacy21629

      ” as if it was already decided that vaccinations will save the world.”

      News flash – vaccines HAVE already saved the world. Clean water and vaccinations are the 2 greatest medical advancements in history.

      • donny_t

        Not the flu vaccine. Yet people are starting to lose their jobs over it. We’re moving into a state where vaccines no matter how ineffective they’re proven to be will be forced onto the public.

        • 1Brett1

          What state is that? And has that state put into law mandatory flu vaccinations for ALL people? …I find that hard to believe.

          It makes sense for health practitioners to get flu shots.

          To borrow your “advice”: Goggle the epidemics/casualties that occurred regarding influenza before vaccines were developed.

          • donny_t

            Why would some health practitioners choose to lose their job rather than take the flu shot? LOL they know they don’t work and they’ve probably seen some of the dangers first hand.
            This is potentially only the beginning. IE: what if you were required to get an AIDS vaccination to make someone’s coffee at Starbucks?

          • 1Brett1

            LOL, you, as in all of your replies, have not actually replied to my question. Where does this mythological state exist where you are moving?

            There are a few “health care practitioners” who have refused the shot (and have decided to politicize the issue) and those are folks are in non-clinical roles…You know, not everyone who takes your pulse, blood pressure or body temperature is knowledgeable and could be trusted to do more than the aforementioned, as they have limited knowledge.

          • donny_t

            State: the condition of a person or thing, as with respect to circumstances or attributes: a state of health.

          • 1Brett1

            Bro, sorry, I thought you were actually moving somewhere where ALL vaccines were mandatory for ALL people. I guess you aren’t. Why, because that place, whether metaphorically, figuratively or literally, does not exist; it’s just more straw man building.

            You are slippery sloping your argument, now…ah, I see.

  • David Sligar

    As others have noted, a very one-sided discussion. In my view, there are too many “fundamentalist” scientists who still fail to understand that a given moment in history doesn’t contain Truth, and that some (not all) who disagree with the current mainstream are in fact ahead of the curve. The question “Do vaccines NEVER cause permanent harm?” was not asked. Why? Don’t be calling parents out without answering that question.

    I will mention two points, one heard on the air, the other not. First, the issue of multiple vaccines in one administration. On the face of it, that’s questionable. What are the interactions? How much stress does that cause? Any studies? Just for convenience? I don’t like it.
    Second, toxic substances, e.g. mercury compounds, in vaccines. (Mentioned by Steve just below.) As a preservative? Sounds so much like money is the issue here, not good medical (scientific) practice.

    • Dust8024

      I know mercury gets mentioned a lot in these discussions, but people need to be aware that many vaccines also use aluminum as an adjuvant.

    • Don_B1

      And how do you judge when a scientist is a “fundamentalist,” however you define that (which I would like to know)?

      I doesn’t seem like you make objective decisions in this area?

      On multiple vaccines in a single administration:

      1) There are some drugs that cannot be given at the same time as others, but that is not true for all combinations.

      2) Vaccines are given only after extensive testing and when they are given together with other vaccines, those combinations have also been extensively tested.

      3) No procedure, or lack of procedure is totally safe; but the use of vaccines has been shown to have much less risk than not using them.

      • David Sligar

        Sorry! “Fundamentalist” is something of a code word, I admit. More specifically, I’m speaking of scientists and others who accept axioms on authority, without having done the investigation themselves, who present theories as fact. Science properly is the unbiased examination of data and repeatable experimental results, and drawing the best possible conclusions from them — and crucially, the recognition that those conclusions are probably less than absolute truth and subject to revision in future. An appropriate humility is incongruent with fundamentalism.

        Thank you for noting that no (medical) procedure is totally safe — not stated unambiguously in the on-air discussion. In this case, safety is a statistical matter, and therefore open to question and choice in individual cases.

        Extensive testing means nothing unless the testers are absolutely disinterested parties.
        Money has entered this arena almost universally, and destroyed scientific integrity more often than not. Case in point, fluoridation of public water supplies. This has been studied hundreds of times by reputable academics, and the absolute toxicity of fluorine compounds in the body has been clearly established. Some studies have shown there is very little real benefit re: tooth decay. Yet, the mainstream dental community continues to proclaim fluoride as God’s gift.

        How about the Big Bang? Accepted by most astronomers and cosmologists, exemplified by Stephen Hawking’s statement that “the universe can and will create itself from nothing.” This is not science, it’s conjecture, philosophy, maybe religion. That statement is clearly not susceptible to tests or replication — it’s an inference, period. In this instance, Hawking is not speaking as a scientist. And yet, because of his stature, the remark / idea will be given more weight than its due.

  • Dust8024

    Girl severely debilitated by HPV vaccine:
    http://www.naturalnews.com/042046_Gardasil_vaccine_damage_HPV_vaccinations.html

    Teens crippled after receiving HPV vaccine:
    http://www.whiteoutpress.com/articles/q32013/crippled-teens-want-hpv-vaccine-victims-to-come-forward/

    More than a half million vials of Gardasil recalled for containing glass particles:
    http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2013/s1220-gardasil-vaccine.html

    Gardasil developer admits it is dangerous and useless:
    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/gardasil-researcher-speaks-out/

    Japan withdraws support for HPV vaccines:
    http://www.tokyotimes.com/2013/hpv-vaccine-seen-differently-by-japan-and-the-u-s/

    • Brian4000

      Natural news is a conspiracy website that has also rejected basic science regarding HIV and AIDs. It should be a huge red flag that so many of the posters here are linking to it to defend their fear of vaccines.

      • 1Brett1

        Many posers are also referring people to the ‘Safeminds’ website for the [clears throat] “truth.”

        If anyone goes to ‘Safeminds’ they will notice a lot of opinion, anecdote, claims and speculation with no supporting back up…Just the subsection titled “vaccines and autism” alone is filled with so much propaganda, straw-man building and exaggeration it makes one wonder of critical thinking is completely absent among these folks.

  • Lin Sleboda

    These guests are experts on the topic. All experts on the topic know the science, including observable measurable behavior and correlated outcomes (vaccines prevent specific diseases, alternative approaches do not).
    When a question or concern arises, don’t we want to consult experts? Do we seek the opinion of the man on the street for our electrical work? Do we go to social worker for our gardening tips? No and no. So why would we put our children’s health in the care of entertainment celebrities other nonexperts? Even health care practitioners who have not extensively reviewed the literature or conducted their own truly scientific studies are simply not qualified to assert an opinion. I might be a pediatrician but if I haven’t studied in depth a specific domain of my field, I defer to someone who has – a pediatric specialist. There is endless information available to almost everyone (though many scientific journals are not accessible free of charge to the general public); it is a full-time job to sift through and critically evaluate it in order to identify its quality and accuracy, a job that requires specific training in research methods and understanding of jargon.
    We need to accept the facts that are arrived at rationally rather than through trends that disseminate fear and entrenched belief in spite of available objective information.

    • wbsurfver

      lots of people die or are harmed by prescription drugs and yet these experts are pushing such things. Did you know that the World Health Organization claims that GMO foods are safe ? There is your experts apparently .. Paul Offit has been on NPR before claiming essentially that vitamin supplements are unnecessary. Cancer treatment is another area where expert advise may seem questionable.

      =========================

      http://www.who.int/foodsafety/publications/biotech/20questions/en/

      Q8. Are GM foods safe?

      “GM foods currently available on the international market have passed risk assessments and are not likely to present risks for human health”

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=32606540 Brian Belgard

        So this information indicates that vaccines and GMO’s are safe? Sounds like you’ve found great resources that present cogent fact-based arguments for the safety of health and agricultural tools.

        Great work!

        PS, the weight of evidence on supplements is overwhelming that they’re ineffective and quickly closing in on serious harm for certain varieties, so yes Paul Offit has spoken out against them. Well thought out public statements like those made on the show today (as well as his work on the Roto Virus vaccine) have made him a bit of a hero for those of us in the “fact based community”.

      • Lawrence

        Then why are they illegal in the EU??

        Yeah right, just like the FDA approved Aspartame when they knew full well the harms it causes.
        DO NOT BELIEVE GOVERNMENT , HAVE COMMON SENSE

      • Lawrence

        Yes, so many are on anti-psychotic drugs and most of the shootings, including Columbine, many think are related. This included Sandy Hook and most of the others.

        • 1Brett1

          Adam Lanza was not on any psychotropic medication.

          These shootings were not committed by mentally healthy people suffering from some dangerous reaction to psychotropic medication.

          If one wishes to have an intelligent discussion about the over-prescribing of psychotropic drugs, fine, but to suggest that these shootings were the result of unwanted effects from medication is frivolous and intimating causation where there most likely isn’t any. (We at least know that there is no causal relationship in the Sandy Hook shootings.)

    • Lawrence

      True,, but many “experts” are paid to stretch the truth or outright lie. As Rick Perry demonstrated by forcing school girls to get the HPV vaccine, this is big money for the drug companies who contributed to his campaign. AND the actual developer of this vaccine came out and finally told the truth. that the vaccine does not work and it very dangerous.

      READ!!!!

  • jscia2

    A statistically insignificant amount of people also die because of wearing a seat-belt. Would anyone be foolish enough not to buckle up their 5 year old? I am befuddled that this is an argument.

    • tbphkm33

      As the doctor from Nashville pointed out on the show, the anti-vaccination camp is driven by emotion and not logic. Emotion can be a dangerous thing.

  • Brian4000

    No, it was biased in favor of the truth. Both sides are not equal in these debates. The pro vaccine side has research and scientific consensus on its side, the anti-vaccine side has speculation, questionable sources and a small number of experts who agree with them (while the vast majority of experts agree with the pro vaccine side). It like global warming, just because a few people refuse to acknowledge the scientific consensus, that dioesn’t mean they get to insist it is an unresolved debate and both sides should be treated equally.

  • LeanFellix

    …—goo.gl/aed3JV (Home more)

  • Jeanne
  • Vax_Choice_Human_Right

    This propaganda piece is missing balance and fails to present key facts. #1, with 52 shots by age 18 and more on the way, parents are understandably questioning the government and pharma industry recommendations. #2, vaccines are pharmaceutical products that come with risks of temporary or permanent side effects, but carry no liability for doctors, public health officials or manufacturers.

    • tbphkm33

      Oh, no risks at all of catching any number of communicable diseases for which we have ready stock of vaccination against. Therefore, condemning your child for life to a 100% guaranteed risk of severe illness and/or death.

    • Chelle Cat Ryland

      To provide anti-vax ‘balance’ is to provide false balance. There are not two sides to this argument. Vaccines have proven time and time again to be safe and effective in preventing disease. There is a small risk of certain side effects but autism is not one of them.

      • Lawrence

        If you really want to be informed, just go to Youtube some of the actual testimonials. Do a search and you will be amazed.

        • Chris

          Wow…I’ve never seen someone actually suggest to another person that they should search YouTube for vaccine facts, except maybe Jenny McCarthy. And this, of course, is the problem. YouTube is not where you go to learn about the safety and risks associated with vaccines. Did you know that you can also find Bigfoot footage on YouTube?

  • Jeanne

    In this world TODAY, there will be approximately 18 deaths per HOUR from the measles (over 400 deaths by the end of the day). Every single mother who loses her child today will have wished her child had been vaccinated. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs286/en/

    • Lawrence

      Scare tactic!

      • Jeanne

        No. Fact.

  • O’Bryan

    First of all, you should be worried about kids in your child’s class not being vaccinated, because they still pose a risk to your child. Vaccines do not prevent 100% of children from getting the disease. That is why we need herd immunity, so that there are less places for diseases to grow, which protects everyone. Second, there is absolutely no evidence that spacing vaccinations out over a longer time period is any safer than if you got them on the recommended schedule. NUMEROUS scientific studies by many parties have proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that vaccines are safe and effective in the doses given, and on the recommended timeline that they are supposed to be given on. Not one single scientific study has ever found the vaccines we currently give our children to be harmful to them, except in the extremely rare case that the child has an allergic reaction to an ingredient in the vaccine.

    • sharkgirl7

      The reason why not one study has ever found them to be harmful is because they haven’t been around for very long. Use your brain.

      • O’Bryan

        Vaccines have been around for about 200 years. How about you use a history book?

  • O’Bryan

    This is problem number one in the vaccine “debate”. People think that their side has something of value to say, when the fact is that they don’t. Immunologists go to school for a long time and digest hundreds of scientific papers every year, and keyboard warriors with an opinion think that their 20 minutes of googling a day makes them smarter than someone who actually knows what they are talking about. As For “Doctor” Mercola, he doesn’t actually believe in the slightest that vaccines are harmful. What he does is create fear, and then he asks for donations, or sells you a product (products which have absolutely no efficacy), and now he lives in a MANSION, which was built on the backs of the people he has conned (You).

  • tbphkm33

    Lets just keep in mind that one of the leading voices in the anti-vaccination camp is Jenny McCarthy, who’s educational achievements cumulated in attending Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School. … sorry folks, no education beyond 12th grade.

    In essence, the average sub-Saharan African bush witch doctor has more observational medical experience than Jenny McCarthy. —- Although, I have to agree that McCarthy gave a good anatomy lesson when posing nude for Playboy.

    Bottom line, the anti-vaccination camp is following some esteemed nut cases.

  • Jerry Otto

    Where is the hard evidence? Where is the hard scientific evidence that the medical establishment’s vaccine approach to health is even as good as the evidence supporting the effectiveness and safety of pursuing a health-oriented holistic life style which is focused on building and maximizing our natural immune systems in order to ward off viruses, diseases etc? Seems to me that there is way too much feeble speculation out there on both sides of this debate! Look at your own position, and then ask yourself what real hard scientific evidence, data, and research you can come up with to back up your opinions ! Opinions, opinions, opinions,…………Where is your evidence? Let’s here more about facts. Show me your hard evidence……..please.

    • tbphkm33

      The freaking evidence against holistic quackery having any affect against viruses and germs is in millions of years of human evolution – until vaccines came along, we had only one way to achieve immunity, namely catch the disease and survive (most actually died).

      You can’t eat and wish yourself to immunity. ITS NOT HOW BIOLOGY WORKS. Don’t you understand? Is anything sinking in???

      • SilentRiver

        What people like you don’t realize is, vaccines do not offer the same kind of immunity as catching the disease naturally. I’d rather NOT ignore medical reports documenting the fact that vaccines have been known to cause brain inflammation, seizures, nervous system dysfunction, vaccine strain viral infections, shock and sometimes death.

        Our bodies are smarter than that… do you really think injecting vaccines containing lab altered bacteria, viruses, chemicals and other ingredients in our muscles will replicate exact immune responses as those who naturally encounter the same virus? Do you really think there won’t be any long term affects on the health of those who insist on vaccinating?

        • tbphkm33

          By that logic you really should head out to the wilderness of Alaska and find a giant rock to live under. Do you really think living in any modern city is not having serious health ramifications?

          • Woolflove

            I think in any basic logic course you would learn that this is called a “false analogy”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_analogy

          • Woolflove

            But for some reason it seems you are invested in what you already believe and not interested in a thoughtful look at the issues here. So I guess it doesn’t matter.

    • Chelle Cat Ryland

      Here’s a large chunk of hard evidence for you. Over forty studies looking into links between vaccines and autism and the safety of Thimerosal and the general safety of many of the scheduled childhood vaccinations. This article contains a summary of each study but also includes hyperlinks to the original paper if you prefer to read the science yourself.

      http://www2.aap.org/immunization/families/faq/vaccinestudies.pdf
      Enjoy Jerry.

    • Chris

      Jerry, the only reason you’re privileged enough to even have this debate, is because so many people have embraced vaccination. There’s your evidence.

    • jefe68

      Smallpox, diphtheria, tetanus, polio, measles, rubella, are a few deadly viral diseases that have been eradicated or controlled. You want evidence, read up on the history os smallpox which killed millions around the world before the vaccine was developed. The hard evidence is smallpox is now unheard of.

      Speaking of hard evidence I don’t see you producing any to back up your position. From what I’ve seen from the anti-vaccine groups is nothing but a lot of false information and bogus studies.

  • markbres

    listening to the podcast it is striking how the callers who take pains to state how “well educated” they are will then spout non-scientific, irrational “evidence”

  • maljacobs

    I have been hesitant to join the comments about this subject but after reading all of the comments I feel I must.
    First I am one of the last polio survivors in America. That is something we should all be proud of.
    My family is from a small dairy farm and during my upbringing I saw Tetanus (lockjaw) on a neighbors mink farm. She didn’t get vaccinated.

    My mother lost two sisters to diptheria and my Mom suffered her entire life with a rheumatic heart.

    It is obvious that most if not aall of the people against vaccinating their children are well meaning and extremely concerned about this subject and are very concerned for their own child’s safety.
    Unfortunately , or in my opinion ,fortunately,they have never seen the effects of these diseases. Including chicken pox and measles. I have. to say though after doing much research on the subject the autism fear is simply bogus. I realize people want an answer to everything. WHY does my child or more children have it . Does not mean vaccination is the answer. Especially since the supposed culprit was eliminated from vaccines and the amount of sufferers continues to rise.

    Conspiracy theories are self continuing if people wish to believe them little can be said to dissuade them.

    However there is a point reached where the commonweal would be threatened. That is pregnant women , and newborns .

    Having unvaccinated and potential “typhoid Mary’s ” in the presence of these people is dangerous and irresponsible.If Freedom means not inflicting your belief on others it also carries responsibilty to the group. By not having your children vaccinated you put others and their children in harms way.

    The answer is a requirement that to attend school a child maust be vaccinated and that all pediatricians require their patients to be vaccinated.

    Unfortunately There may be some children who have problems. The point is however that society as a whole will survive. The common weal is what we should all be concerend about.

    • sharkgirl7

      As a pregnant woman, I will NEVER get the flu shot. Why? Cause it’s NEVER been approved for us! Yes, you will say “Oh the CDC says it’s safe” ya, THEY say its safe but if you go to the manufacturers and read their inserts they clearly say 1-they’ve NEVER been tested on pregnant women, 2-they should NEVER be administered to pregnant women an 3-if for whatever reason a pregnant woman needs it (job requires it for one example) it should ONLY be administered in the 3rd trimester. And documented so the manufacturer can follow along to see side affects.

      • Lawrence

        Yes. the FDA is a joke. The “experts” that make up the FDA and CDC are all from BIG Phama.

        Even Clarence Thomas worked at Monsantos!

        • Woolflove

          The more I learn about all of the conflicts of interest in the agencies that are supposed to be representing us, the more overwhelmed I feel. This stuff is pretty darn scary, and disheartening at best.

  • Jerry Otto

    Chris…………..Overly simplistic thinking on your part I am afraid……..but thanks anyway for your view………..I do realize that from a historical viewpoint, there have been and are vaccines that have worked………..that is not my point however……….I am referring to our present day circumstances and the fact that human knowledge about how to maintain health has grown so vastly in many, many ways that it may just be possible that in the future, it will not be as necessary for the human race to be as dependent on vaccines etc. as it has been…………..too optimistic?……..maybe, but maybe not as we are learning so much about how to live healthy lives that was never even thought about in earlier times…………..also, I have intended my comments to be aimed quite specifically at the state of the art (or science) as far as the development of present day vaccines for influenza……..for which there does seem to be considerable evidence that to a very significant extent, they do not work very well at all………..quite ineffective in many instances, and when you weigh that in along with the potential downside of potential risks and adverse side effects whether short term, or the largely unknown potential for longer term negative side effects, well, you probably get my point, the jury really is still out on today’s influenza vaccines………..anyway, if you know of specific scientific experiments that have proven a satisfactory level of effectiveness and safety, I would welcome being referred to those sources……….Thanks again for your involvement and viewpoint………..

    • Chris

      I’m not talking about a historical viewpoint. I’m talking about right now, today, you are privileged to live in a country where enough people vaccinate that you don’t have to. Not every place in the world is so lucky, and without herd immunity, we could very easily join them.

    • donny_t

      Well said.

  • Woolflove

    Chelle Cat Ryan, and others who tout that vaccine safety is confirmed by science, thank you for the link to the studies. I have taken a look at the studies – - my university server allows me to view the complete studies and these studies all include notations explaining who funded them. I’ve listed the first five studies followed by their notations on funding (I don’t have time to look at all of them now, but I suspect the pattern may continue), as well as some of the responses to the articles published in the same journals:

    “Increasing exposure to antibody stimulating proteins and polysaccharides in vaccines is not associated with risk of autism”
    Disclosure: Center for Disease Control, ABT Corp

    “On-time Vaccine Receipt in the First Year Does Not Adversely Affect Neuropsychological Outcomes”
    Disclosure:”Drs Smith and Woods are or have been unfunded subinvestigators for cross-coverage purposes on vaccine clinical trials for which their colleagues receive funding from Wyeth, Sanofi Pasteur, GSK, MedImmune, and Novartis; and Dr Woods has received honoraria for speaking engagements from Merck, Sanofi Pasteur, Pfizer, and MedImmune and hasreceived research funding from Wyeth and Sanofi Pasteur”

    Editorial responses in journal titled, “Conflicts of Interest and Numbers Do Not Add Up” and “Concerns on Study Methodology””

    “Evaluation of Immunization Rates and Safety Among Children With Inborn Errors of Metabolism”
    In addition to funding from the CDC and Kaiser Permanente, disclaimer: “FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE: Nicola P. Klein and Roger Baxter have received research support from Merck and Co, Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer and
    Sanofi-Pasteur.”

    Measles-Containing Vaccines and Febrile Seizures in Children Age 4 to 6 Years
    “FINANCIAL DISCLOSURES: Drs Klein and Baxter reports
    research support from Merck & Co, Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer, and Sanofi-Pasteur; DrJackson reports research support from Novartis Vaccines, Sanofi-Pasteur, and Pfizer; Dr Belongia receives reports research support from MedImmune; the other authors have indicated they have no financial relationships relevant to this article to disclose.”

    No Evidence for Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Vaccine Associated Inflammatory Bowel Disease or Autism in a 14-year Prospective Study
    “We thank Tapio Kurki, Olli P Heinonen, Kari Cantell, and Viena Karanko, and Irja Davidkin for their contribution. The study was partly funded by a grant by Merck Research Laboratories, West Point,PA, USA.”

    We all know the importance of conflict of interest in scientific studies, I’m sure.

    • 1Brett1

      Considering some of the claims that come from the anti-vaccine movement, isn’t at least reasonable to consider that at least some of the studies sponsored by the CDC and pharmaceutical companies have been done in response (to investigate) the many claims made by the anti-vaccine movement and to separate reasonable concerns with propaganda?

      Should a reasonable person “follow-the-money”/”motivation,” as it were, in looking at the CDC, for example (and draw a facile conclusion where there may not be any corruption) but ignore any “motivation”/corruption that may exist in the anti-vaccine movement?

      • Woolflove

        I am not so naive to presume there is no corruption on the anti-vax side. I do not think anyone should ignore anything. The fact is here that those with the
        most financial interest in vaccines being safe are the same ones funding the
        studies. And they have the deepest pockets and most power.

        This obviously is a problem if we are going to take these
        studies seriously and make conclusions based on them. External, impartial investigations are necessary here – and
        unfortunately, they don’t really exist and if they do, they are few and
        far between. Because the anti-vax groups and individuals do not have as much power (via access to the peer-reviewed, often pharma-dependent mechanism of scientific research), they easily get discredited as
        wishy-washy holistics or irrational parents. The scales aren’t balanced here at all.

        There is some evidence in these journals that the issue here is not as simple as pro and anti vax. For example, multiple studies have shown that breastfeeding for a certain duration protects children from hib infection as well as the vaccine. Here is one: “Protective effect of breastfeeding on invasive Haemophilus influenzae
        infection: a case-control study in Swedish preschool
        children.” The protective benefits here come without the potential side effects and
        without the proliferation of sometimes stronger strains of the
        bacteria which both the Hib and Prevnar vaccines have caused.

        This study shows that different children have varying likelihoods of contracting (and spreading)
        any of these diseases depending on multiple factors – whether or not their
        mothers have breastfed longer than six months, whether or not they attend
        daycare, whether they live in crowded, impoverished conditions, whether they
        have good access to healthcare and treatment, etc. The vaccine schedule does
        not reflect these scientifically-demonstrated factors. It is my opinion that promoting this type of information would cause a multitude of complicated, disruptive issues, particularly loss of profits, and also potential class divide and discord. We can already see this happening.

    • David Sligar

      Thank you, Woolflove — One of my points, exactly. Perhaps some of the worst culprits along these lines are the makers of chemotherapy agents. A large percentage of oncologists say they would not take these drugs themselves.

  • 1Brett1

    You do know that Mercola is a quack, right? “Balanced” debate doesn’t mean allowing a mouthpiece to every quack with a view in which you believe.

    There’s nothing wrong with treating wellness through holistic means…however, “holistic” doesn’t mean ignoring basic biology.

    All of the proper diet/exercise/immune building, etc., in the world isn’t going to protect someone from polio, smallpox, diphtheria, etc., if exposed to these diseases without being immunized…Yeah, you might get lucky, but relying on luck isn’t good for a healthy society.

  • Lawrence

    Vaccines can be dangerous and that is the fact that never gets mentioned.

    Gardasil is a case in point. The drug that teenage girls were forced to take by his “order”. The developer came out and warned of it’s dangers. It was also discovered that Rick Perry received huge money from these drug companies that he was helping out. Ever hear the word KICKBACK?

    This is but one website that tells just one story: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/01/24/hpv-vaccine-victim-sues-merck.aspx

    • Lawrence

      OH, and Dr. Diane Harper, the lead developer came out at a news conference saying her companies vaccine, that Rick Perry forced girls to take, was not tested, doesn’t work and is dangerous.

      http://investmentwatchblog.com/the-lead-vaccine-developer-comes-clean-so-she-can-sleep-at-night-gardasil-and-cervarix-dont-work-are-dangerous-and-werent-tested/

      • FoxieJD

        She never said it wasn’t tested or that the vaccine itself doesn’t work/is dangerous. What she actually said was that it may not work as long as initially thought (more than five years), and if it doesn’t work forever, it could be potentially dangerous to people who think that they’re protected against HPV but aren’t. The actual interview is on CBS’s website. Finally, if it wasn’t tested, the FDA/CDC could never have allowed its use. Not to say that american government agencies are constantly in the right, but on this front, they are. There haven’t been any reliable, peer-reviewed, replicated studies to prove that the vaccine is dangerous. A handful of anecdotal evidence does not mean a vaccine is killing scores of people and does no good.

        • Lawrence

          According to that CBS report, the “treatment” is worse than the disease.
          That same CBS article lists a case of a serious neurological disease, ALS and it also lists 32 females that died after the vaccination. Of course they won’t admit causality.

          READ ON:” She also says that enough
          serious side effects have been reported after Gardasil use that the
          vaccine could prove riskier than the cervical cancer it purports to
          prevent. Cervical cancer is usually entirely curable when detected early
          through normal Pap screenings.

          • Woolflove

            Yes, this is all true. But insurance companies and the government would prefer a preventative vaccine, even a riskier one, over treatment, because it is much cheaper to inject something into someone that to treat, especially with a disease like cancer. Sadly, it all comes down to money here and not the best interest of the individual.

    • tbphkm33

      “Vaccines can be dangerous and that is the fact that never gets mentioned.”

      — Yep, they sure are – what is it, a .0001% chance of an adverse reaction like redness at the injection site.

      Any rational human being will know that crossing the street carries a greater risk than getting a vaccine. Lets not mention the risk taken in driving to the doctors office for the vaccine.

      • Lawrence

        Just where did you pick that .0001% figure from? Out of the air? Seems you are not interested in actual facts.

        Do your home work. Intelligent persons research the opposing argument and make informed decisions.

        I’m not against vaccines. I am against propaganda campaigns that mislead people like you into believing they work, and do so without serious side effects that many suffer from.

      • Woolflove

        You totally don’t know what you’re talking about. Just check out the inserts to the vaccines themselves.

        • tbphkm33

          Look up the mortality rates between driving and getting a vaccine shot… seems like I do know what I’m talking about.

          • Woolflove

            No silly – - I was responding to this comment: “Yep, they sure are – what is it, a .0001% chance of an adverse reaction like redness at the injection site.” Duh.

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      Mercola? LMFAO. That’s a good one. Nice that you can find real science to support your belief system.

  • donny_t

    Not sure why he’s spouting this nonsense about the flu vaccine. Cochrane Collaboration, British Medical Journal, Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy all say the flu vaccine is worthless, may even reduce protection if you get it two years in a row.
    Another study shows children who get the flu vaccine are 5.5 times more likely to get respiratory illnesses (double blind, placebo controlled)
    http://cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/03/13/cid.cis307

    Folks, these are not anti-vaccine radicals. These are unbiased professional institutions. Vaccines are not all they’re cracked up to be. Do some research.

    • Lawrence

      Well said. So many people believe in the propaganda. There are 2 legitimate sides to this situation. But having the government force these on people is this LAND OF THE FREE is unconstitutional, especially in light of the dangerous side effects.

    • 1Brett1

      You really think you’ve got something with the study mentioned in the oxford journal; do you even know what it was you read in your link? Or were you blinded by the title?…all it is saying is that within nine months after being given the flu vaccine (keep in mind that the flu vaccine is only protective against viruses formulated in the vaccine and not other viruses AND it is only effective against viruses in the formulation for a few months, even at that) that in this “experimental study” of 115 there was an increased risk of non-flu respiratory infections within the following nine months among those who received the flu vaccine.

      This is not some gotcha moment, Bro; it is actually a comment phenomenon. This is also why people who get the flu shot might later contract another strain of the flu not in the formulation they received.

      Also, among those who don’t get any flu shot and get the flu, they are more likely to get secondary respiratory bacterial infections as a result of contracting the flu. If not getting a flu shot makes one more likely to get flu AND developing a secondary bacterial infection, I’d say that is a good reason to get a flu shot.

      • donny_t

        So then it’s agreed. The flu shot is basically worthless and potentially harmful.

        • 1Brett1

          Yeah, that’s fresh…

          No, the flu “season” only lasts around four months, so the shot only needs to be effective for a small window of time. People need to get it every year because: 1) Last year’s shot is no longer effective and 2) there are different strains of the flu each year that need to be addressed. (If there truly were some corrupt conspiracy afoot among manufacturers and clinicians, they’d recommend a shot three times a year!)

          If you truly believe the shot is not effective, that’s your prerogative. If you think the shot is “worthless” based on how it is used and what it actually defends against, then you are ignorant of how it works. If you think it is harmful, than you believe in nonsense.

          The shots in general use are dead antibodies (they are added to a person’s system to increase his/her number of antibodies should a a flu virus enter their system). So, the person has more antibodies surrounding the flu virus to attack it (to put it in simple terms you can understand). The antibodies only become active in one’s system when/if they get the flu virus in their system.

          You can only get sick from the flu shot if you already have the active flu virus in your system or you have an allergy to the foundation of the ingredients, namely to eggs. The latter will be in the form of an actual allergic reaction (acute respiratory problems, rash, etc.); the former would be actually having the flu. Anything else is in the imagination of a few (such as you). There are very rare cases where a person has a severe reaction. Do you know what percentage of cases that is? Sounds like you don’t.

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      As opposed to you, I actually read these journals. And though I am a big proponent the Cochrane collaboration, that article was written by an avowed anti-vaccination, biased, unscientific liar. It happens. Cochrane has published articles that say acupuncture works. And when you read the actual article, review what they accepted and didn’t accept as valid data makes a huge case for observation and confirmation bias from the flu research and acupuncture reviewers. It happens.

      • donny_t

        You can show me all sorts of data for pro vaccines, I can show all sorts of data for anti vaccines. To each his own then. Just don’t force others to take it.

        • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

          Actually, you can’t. You can cherry pick. You can find bad science that you think supports your point. There isn’t a scientific debate about vaccines. There is a solid consensus, and unless you have world-class data that refutes the consensus, you really are just inventing stuff. It’s all right. Narcissists like you always think they know more than actually educated people. One day, science will create a medication to help you.

          • donny_t

            Lol, this doesn’t even warrant a response

  • pete18

    “I am the ’70s child of a health nut. I wasn’t vaccinated.
    I was brought up on an incredibly healthy diet: no sugar till I was 1, breastfed for over a year, organic homegrown vegetables, raw milk, no MSG, no additives, no aspartame. My mother used homeopathy, aromatherapy, osteopathy; we took daily supplements of vitamin C, echinacea, cod liver oil.

    I had an outdoor lifestyle; I grew up next to a farm in England’s Lake District, walked everywhere, did sports and danced twice a week, drank plenty of water. I wasn’t even allowed pop; even my fresh juice was watered down to protect my
    teeth, and I would’ve killed for white, shop-bought bread in my lunchbox once in a while and biscuits instead of fruit, like all the other kids.

    We ate (organic local) meat maybe once or twice a week, and my mother and father cooked everything from scratch—I have yet to taste a Findus crispy pancake, and oven chips (“fries,” to Americans) were reserved for those nights when Mum and Dad had friends over and we got a “treat.”

    As healthy as my lifestyle seemed, I contracted measles, mumps, rubella, a type of viral meningitis, scarlatina, whooping cough, yearly tonsillitis, and chickenpox. In my 20s I got precancerous HPV and spent six months of my life wondering how I was going to tell my two children under the age of 7 that Mummy might have cancer before it was safely removed.”

    http://www.slate.com/articles/life/family/2014/01/growing_up_unvaccinated_a_healthy_lifestyle_couldn_t_prevent_many_childhood.html

  • Doctor Red Beard

    It is unfortunate that there is so much distrust of vaccines amongst the general population since they are one of the things that modern medicine has to offer to protect children from deadly diseases. Although, I can fully understand why this has happened because of the dishonestly of the pharmaceutical industry and because of the fact the medicine in this country has become such a hideous business over the last two decades. For those of you who have thrown your faith into alternative medicine, you need to wake up and realize that that is a hideous business too.

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      It’s because people are intellectually lazy. They think that by taking 20 minutes to read inflammatory ideas via google they have the same education and knowledge of biomedical sciences as someone who went to college, and got top grades to, get into medical school, and perform the best, to get the best residency, to be a great physician. Or alternatively, go to graduate school, spend 4 years of your life doing really hard work, which means every thing you consider is criticized harshly by your equals and superiors, then researching for 10 years to come up with a ideas that contribute to the scientific consensus.

      These people who hate vaccines have little education and no intellect. They suffer from the Dunning Kruger effect. It’s sad really.

  • Vax_Choice_Human_Right

    “There are few topics in public health that are as controversial or attention-grabbing as the ongoing debate over vaccination rates and vaccine policy.” BALANCED. REPORTING. Dear NPR: no more vacciganda from the Denver Post’s Mr. Woods (the new Brian Deer?). You are not helping the vaccine industry cause.

    • Woolflove

      NPR – and their Global Health section – is heavily funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which is invested heavily in vaccine production and dissemination globally.

    • tbphkm33

      NPR – please, MORE reporting on the anti-vaccination agenda and the peril these misguided individuals places the entire population in. The arrogance of the few should not threaten the many.

      • Woolflove

        You’re view is overly simplistic – - even in characterizing the “movement” as one that is anti-vax. Most people I know are advocating for less vaccinations, vaccinations on a more reasonable schedule (why vax a newborn with hep B, contracted as an STD and by IV drug use, within a few hours of their birth?), and a schedule that reflects differences in each child’s likelihood of contracting and spreading diseases. And why continue to have any studies on safety funded by the companies who have financial interest in the vaccinations? Why not establish an outside, impartial agency? These are all important, complicated issues that are not being addressing either by the CDC or NPR’s reporting here.

        • 1Brett1

          It is NOT mandatory that newborns be vaccinated against HepB, only those whose mothers have HepB already, and there is a genuine risk of the mother imparting HepB to the newborn in those cases in the birthing process.

          • Woolflove

            This is not true at all. It is on the recommended CDC schedule and it is pushed by pediatricians like all other vaccines are. There is no differentiation btw mothers who have it or don’t. I know this because I was a very unprepared (Heb B-free) mother last year when I gave birth to my first son. I allowed my son to receive the first dose of the Hep B vaccine because I trusted that the recommended vaccines on the schedule were necessary and the nurses told me everyone else does it. When I went in for my son’s 2-month appointment and I questioned my pediatrician about the Heb B vaccine, he advised me that I should “make it stick” – meaning the purported immunity conferred by the vaccine – and give him the second dose. This experience is what has made me research and question the entire vaccine schedule, which I have found to be similarly excessive, especially considering my son is not in daycare and has none of the risk factors for almost any of the diseases the vaccines are supposed to protect against.

          • 1Brett1

            Some key words/phrases in your comment: “recommended,” “I was very unprepared,” and “I trusted.”

            I stated that HepB vaccines are not MANDATORY and I am correct, as reinforced by what you say and others on this forum who are questioning the vaccine (Lisa, for example, said she refused to get her child immunized against HepB).

            While it makes sense that the vaccine for HepB is not mandatory, it also makes sense that certain vaccines are mandatory before children attend public schools. You can also not get your child vaccinated in most sates, if that is your prerogative, but you are expected to comply if your child is going to attend daycare or any formal public setting.

            There’s nothing wrong with questioning the medical community or governmental agencies, and it is true that they can’t always be trusted, but it behooves anyone (especially those who either have children or intend to have children) to have a lot of information in talking to their pediatricians/health-care providers, etc.

          • Woolflove

            Yes, but most parents walk into their doctors’ offices and hospitals like I did. And I am a PhD student at an elite university and my husband is a veterinarian. There is very little effort to educate patients and most patients aren’t equipped the way I am with easy access to peer-reviewed research and very high level research and critical thinking and reading skills. (I’m not bragging – I am just very aware of my privilege here.) In addition, as the current debate is going, no one acknowledges nuances between those who are and are not attending public school or daycare. For example, even though I am not mandated to get my son the vaccines that are required for daycare (because he is not in daycare), and I did not get all of them, my pediatrician has refused to continue serving me as a patient.

          • 1Brett1

            Most people have access to the Internet, from which information about mandatory vaccine schedules is readily available. One doesn’t need to be a PhD student at an elite university with access to peer-reviewed studies to be an informed parent. While you are not bragging, there is a kind of inherent elitism in saying others don’t have the “privilege” of information acquisition. It would be all parents’ duty to educate themselves about all sorts of information pertaining to parenting, whether or not they have your “privilege.”

            Also, some pediatricians are jerks; anytime one’s doctor is not listening to the patient/patient’s advocate (you, in your child’s case) it behooves that person to GET ANOTHER DOCTOR. Otherwise, and considering you gave no specific reason why your doctor has refused to serve you, I can’t speak to your specific problem with that doctor.

          • Woolflove

            Information acquisition is certainly a privilege. It costs the university millions of dollars to subscribe to the databases they do and not everyone even knows how to read what’s in there because of vocabulary and necessary discourse knowledge. (Not a debate for this forum so whatever you think, you think.)

            Anyway, doctor denied services because we were not following Recommended CDC Schedule. We are not naturalists or anything like that. Just conservative with vaccine administration.

            Sister-in-law and her husband just had a baby. Reluctant to question vaccine schedule at all. Decided not to do Heb B vaccine at birth because I asked them to just look into it. Went to first doctor’s appt where they were told their son might get bitten on the playground by a kid with Heb B. (Likelihood of this happening is virtually zero, esp when moms with Heb B are getting screened and having their children vax’d, as you suggest is occurring.) Anyway, they decided to get it. They are Mormons and have had only one sex partner each (each other). Absurd.

            Sadly, most doctors will turn patients away if they are not following the recommended schedule even though the vaccines are “not mandated” for those not in daycare or public school. Being mandated legally and de facto mandating are the same (or close) to me. We are in a small town with only a few practices.

            But, based on some of your comments above, I think I may be wasting my time here, as you’ve said that there really is no discussion or debate necessary related to the vax issue.

          • 1Brett1

            Your first paragraph is so bloated and off the conversation…but one doesn’t needed the kind of privilege and access you have to be a well-informed parent.

            “…moms with Heb B are getting screened and having their children vax’d, as you suggest is occurring.”

            I almost stopped reading altogether; I have suggested nothing of what you said. Prove that this is a common practice of doctors refusing to see patients that have not vaccinated their children against HepB; that is nonsense and something made up (more fear-mongering).

            It is arrogant of you to think you are spending time here educating people (as you have now decided that you are wasting time because I disagree with the anti-vacciners).

            If all you people are doing is trying to allow for questioning/conversation about vaccines and to have some personal choice, it doesn’t sound like it. One piece of evidence is the false way the HepB vaccine and its administration have been presented on this forum.

            You have a choice to have your child vaccinated; and, if that choice has some consequences, all choices have consequences. I don’t think society can allow choices without consequences.

            It seems every pro-vaccine comment on this forum has been met with some flimsy and distorted reply from those in the anti-vaccine movement…not much of a conversation to begin with.

          • 1Brett1

            Directed to “Woolflove”: if you read above, my first reply to you was to say that the HepB vaccine is NOT mandatory. You said I was wrong but I was not (and you even made a statement supporting my understanding that the HepB vaccine is NOT mandatory). You side-stepped that and began trying to pull needles out of haystacks, so it is I who is wasting my time, not because you have an opposing viewpoint but because you are not indicating any genuine critical thinking.

          • Woolflove

            - – you both seem upset. Definitely want choice. And thoughtful conversation. Don’t want to discourage that.

            1Brett1, I wasn’t really arguing with you about anything being mandatory. My point is is that people take the CDC’s recommended schedule and assume that it is what is or should be mandatory for everyone. Even parents themselves. I’d like to see multiple recommended schedules that reflect differences in children’s likelihood of contracting and spreading disease.

            Another issue I see is how vaccines keep getting added to the schedule. Maybe it’s not “too many” – and we can look at this from a philosophical standpoint, a medical standpoint, a social standpoint, what-have-you – but when is too many? They are developing vaccines for everything and pills for everything – - you might have noticed a similar story on NPR about a pill for “brain youth.” I didn’t read it, but it demonstrates the trend I’m describing.

            Anyway, didn’t mean to upset anyone. Just felt discouraged by comments above conceding that there wasn’t a real discussion to be had. I thought maybe it was time I moved on if that was the sentiment here. We are all so busy – - and I’m tired.

          • 1Brett1

            Well, I won’t disagree on concerns about the increasing number of vaccines and medical practices, especially the proliferation of over-prescribing medication (and perhaps the HepB vaccine IS excessive in some circumstances?); I do know that the HepB vaccine is only mandatory in cases where the mother is a HepB carrier, which seems prudent.

            I know a lot of medical doctors and have spent almost 40 years as a mental health counselor and as a case manager. I have direct experience with vaccines on a grand societal level; I also have considerable experience with autism, including a lot of experience with newborns and autism.

            I don’t find doctors “blackballing” patients because of the patients’ vaccine beliefs to be a common phenomenon.

            I also know that children with autism will show some behavioral signs as early as 4-6 months (a flat affect when they had smiled, giggled, and responded to the facial expressions of their mothers only weeks before, and those early signs seem to show up almost overnight ). Those same children will show full symptoms by two years of age (severe language delays, no eye contact, “finger” gazing, flapping/flailing, intolerance to external stimuli, a lot of self-stimulation, etc.

            My dear friend (I am 59) whom lived with me in a commune with her husband in the ’70s had an autistic daughter. It was the saddest of experiences to watch that child develop normally then have an abrupt change…I recognized the signs early and had had experience even at that stage of my life (I feared what the parents denied for a brief time). I also saw the parents feel guilty and have regrets that they didn’t need to have. The little girl had meningitis at 9 months (she showed marked signs of autism long before that to the trained eye but not to young parents with no experience with autism). Both parents felt that the meningitis also contributed to the girl’s autism. Of course, we can’t know for sure, but I was there when the girl first showed symptoms (high fever, blood-curdling screams, etc.) they rushed her to the hospital within 30 minutes of the symptoms and there was nothing more that they could have done. I have spent so much time reassuring them that they did everything right as parents. I could tell you a few stories, both personally and professionally, that have the similar tone of that sad story…

            I guess what I want to say is that the anti-vaccine movement has caused a proliferation of so much fear, anxiety, distrust and risky behavior from parents that it has no good use in my view. It hasn’t exposed any truths, nor has it had any positive effect.

            We can all agree that vaccines are not 100% safe and effective and that sometimes the most routine medical procedures can go terribly wrong. There is a reason practicing medicine is called “practicing.” I also know a few less than exemplary doctors. I know many, many doctors too who are amazing practitioners and care very much that they disseminate good information while putting all of the skills and knowledge into serving patients the best anyone can hope for.

          • Woolflove

            I have found it frustrating that both “sides” – and I don’t think the polarization is necessary – have resorted to rhetoric appealing to fear and designed to incite panic and outrage. (I think this NPR article is an example of an article touting this kind of rhetoric.) But, I don’t blame NPR or anyone else. All of this is the product of such larger issues – - the issues of how advocacy works in the U.S., the challenges of greed in a capitalist society (I value some of the benefits of capitalism, but we can all see how it can exploit greediness in each of us, I think), and issues related to democracy, access to healthcare, and poverty. I think this kind of rhetoric is a form of desperation, at best, and open-eyed manipulation, at worst. But, sometimes, in the recesses of these comment sections, we can have some meaningful conversation. And I appreciate all of your insight you share. Especially of your experience with parents of children with autism and other brain damage. My nephew, a healthy, strong 13-year old now, who is already 6″3!, has some form of Asperger’s. My sister doesn’t talk about it. But it’s heart-breaking, and it does seem like he has been damaged in some way. I think we will all know more in the future, but these are uncertain times. And the verdict certainly isn’t out on the safety of vaccines, and especially the safety of administering multiple vaccines at once. Some research says yes, some says no. In this circumstance, we have decided to take a measured risk, not vaccinate our son anymore, and compensate this risk by breast-feeding and keeping him out of daycare for now. When he becomes school-aged and it’s time to look at vaccines again, we will re-evaluate. He will be older and stronger and I will be able to tell more if he has a reaction to a specific vaccine. The stakes will be higher because he will be in school with other children. And, maybe we will know more by then. Thanks again for your conversation.

          • 1Brett1

            Thanks, Woolflove, and you speak well toward the larger issues of greed and capitalism.

            I am a practical person, and while some vaccines seem prudent, others (e.g., chicken pox, HepB) seem excessive.

            Your approach to your own child is based on decisions only you can make (I say “you” but I am generalizing that to all parents). My hope is that all parents make informed decisions.

            It is not unreasonable to assess/revisit the idea of certain vaccines needed for one’s children as that need arises and not just because there is a protocol of ‘best practices’ out there (we know they change all the time, just as the previous ones were touted THE BEST ONES).

            I wish you and your family well, and I wish your nephew well. The key to his success is that he have highly-trained and caring teachers; and (and this is even more important), he will have good supports to navigate through that crucial time when he makes the transition out of high school and into the working/adult world. My experience with students similar to the way you describe your nephew is that if they make a good transition to adulthood and find their niche, as it were, they become successful in their bid to self-actualize/self-realize.

          • Thinking Mom

            Hep B is mandatory for childcare attendance and school entry. Why are you denying that? This vaccine is mandated by law for childcare or school entry. Do you want to argue about what a mandate is? Let’s make it simple and change the word. It is REQUIRED. Do you want to argue about that?

          • 1Brett1

            I was referring to NEWBORNS.

            Who’s arguing about what the word mandate means?

          • Thinking Mom

            when was the last time you looked at requirements for child care entry and school attendance in the states? Hep B is required for childcare and school entry and Hep A is now being added to the requirements in many states. if you have ever worked in the hospital you might hear the phrase “if you got em, stick em” applied to vaccination of Hep B. These parents had their baby taken away from them at birth for QUESTIONING Hep B. http://kellythekitchenkop.com/2012/12/newborn-taken-from-parents-who-refuse-hepatitis-b-vaccine-and-ask-too-many-questions.html

          • 1Brett1

            As I said, I was referring to the vaccine not being mandatory for newborns (except where the mother is a HepB carrier, which is prudent)…also, if you were to read my other comments throughout this thread, I question the HepB vaccine and think a long look should be taken at that one and chicken pox as perhaps being excessive.

            While HepB is a contagious disease, it is not spread very easily.

  • Vax_Choice_Human_Right

    Since when did it become socially acceptable to bully and discriminate so freely? Get a conscience. Might want to try to get off those psych meds, too.

    • 1Brett1

      “Get a conscience. Might want to try to get off those psych meds, too.”

      Such a mean comment…and you accuse Spif of bullying? Are you aware of the concept of hypocrisy?

  • thevaccinemachine

    Forced vaccination has no place in a free society. It is clear that we should be attacking these un-American compulsory vaccination laws, not the parents who are wise enough to spare their children a lifetime of painful, risky and unnecessary injections.

    • 1Brett1

      People aren’t being committed to “a lifetime of painful, risky and unnecessary injections.” That is such a hyperbolic statement.

      …Perhaps your views would be worthy of serious discussion if you were more reasonable in your straw-man building…

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      The Supreme Court has ruled twice that compulsory vaccinations are legal. So, provide real evidence that vaccines are anything BUT safe and effective, or just admit that you’re an anti-science, child hating fascist.

      • thevaccinemachine

        Courts don’t decide morality

    • Zack Smith

      Sadly we are no longer in a free society. Most NPR listeners are statist elitists that want to force the rest of the country to live their way.

  • 1Brett1

    If the anti-vaccine movement prompted manufacturers and health organizations to investigate possible problems with vaccines through more testing/more studies and to prompt manufacturers to produce better methods for storing and administering vaccines only, I’d say: Right on! The industry and government have produced many studies and have improved immunization methods over the years; many improvements and investigations came before this anti-vaccine movement even started.

    But, what this movement has done is to spread a lot of misinformation and to dismiss any studies, as corrupt and invalid, that are done by any manufacturers or governmental health organizations. It has also prompted whole swaths of parents to be unduly afraid of vaccines, and to prompt parents not to vaccinate their children out of that fear.

    The movement has also promulgated a lot of ideas that have caused parents of autistic children to blame vaccinations and to feel guilty that they themselves have participated in their child’s autism, perhaps the most insidious result of this movement. Parents of children with autism need to devote their energies to early intervention and therapy for their children, a full-time job that requires a lot of energy and focus. Because of this movement, parents are feeling guilty, chasing after phantoms and are devoting their energies to a charlatan cause.

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      Actually, because of the anti-science basis of the vaccine deniers whining, vaccines have gotten worse. The change from the whole cell to acellular pertussis vaccine has lead to a lower rate of effectiveness. The whole cell version had more side effects, but none were dangerous nor were they as frequent as whooping cough itself.

      The removal of thiomersal was a strawman that had nothing to do with anything. Thiomersal is safe in the amounts given and is quickly cleared from the bloodstream, so it cannot and will not accumulate in the tiny amounts that are given. However, because we cannot put preservatives in vaccines anymore, it has become more expensive and harder to handle. That was a big change for the worse.

      You presume that the vaccine deniers have some scientific basis for their lies. They actually don’t. There is no debate, there is one side with science, and the other side who, through their massive Dunning-Kruger brain cramps, harm children based on 0 evidence.

      But your latter points are prescient. This ignorance from the antivaccination gangsters has lead to much more harm than we could have ever imagined.

      • 1Brett1

        I agree…I was referring to vaccines overall since their being first developed; for example, there were improvements/problems were ameliorated in the polio vaccine. Also, manufacturers have found better stabilization/storage methods since the 50s. (The removal of certain stabilizers in recent years is certainly problematic and makes vaccines less safe.)

        The anti-vaccine movement has served to cause a lot of problems…I haven’t seen any upside. Perhaps I didn’t articulate my thoughts well in my first paragraph, but I see any improvements/the amelioration of any legitimate concerns as happening before the anti-vaccine movement.

        I am presuming nothing of the kind in your statement that I am saying anything about there being a scientific basis for the anti-vaccine movement.

        I don’t recognize any “debate”; as you say, there is none.

        • Don

          If you’re really open to the evidence then you should go to the “Dissolving Illusions” website and look at the graphs that show how infectious disease were in steep decline before vaccines came into being. So how can vaccines be the cause of the decline if they are just part of the decline and had very little effect thereafter? Now, this is fact, and it can be debatable, and frankly should be. On this point the people who question vaccines are on very firm footing; only denial of the historical evidence can stifle debate on this point. But isn’t it funny how absolutely no credit is given to refrigeration, running water, sanitation, public health measures, food inspection, etc. in eliminating infectious diseases, and absolutely all of the credit is given to vaccines?

          • 1Brett1

            There is a lot of credit given to things like better sanitation, clean running water, public health measures, etc., in controlling diseases, but do build your straw man.

            “Dissolving Illusions” is a book written by a very controversial doctor who has been discredited in certain circles. It isn’t research in and of itself. It only gets any mention on anti-vaccine propagandist websites.

            I wasn’t able to access this graph you speak of, so I can’t comment on that.

          • Don

            http://www.dissolvingillusions.com/graphs/#26

            Here is the link to the graphs so others may see. The graphs don’t have to reference sanitation,etc. They only have to show that vaccination was not causal in the decline of infectious diseases, which they do quite graphically.

      • Don

        Skeptical Raptor, your bit about thimerosal is nonsense. First of all, it used to be given not in safe amounts but when many shots were given at once, well beyond the safe limits for methylmercury, which was the only standard available . It is not necessarily cleared from the bloodstream; some children can’t clear it so easily and it accumulates. And are we talking about injecting mercury? Does this make any sense at all? Let’s use some common sense here, Why is a known neurotoxin something we inject into children, in any amount? Wake up, people.

        • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

          Your answer would not be nonsense, except it’s clear you flunked chemistry and all aspects of science. Thiomersal is ethyl mercury, and it quickly clears the bloodstream. You may think your lies and ignorance passes for intellect, but you should face the facts that it doesn’t. No sense trying to have a reasonable science discussion with such an ignorant fool.

          • Don

            Obviously you didn’t read carefully. Notice that I said “methylmercury, which was the only standard available.” Although I didn’t state it explicitly, yes, I do know that thimerosal contains ethylmercury. Thimerosal is 49% ethylmercury, I believe, but this is off the top of my head. As I said, some children can;t eliminate mercury as rapidly as others. And thanks for keeping it civil.

    • Don

      OK 1Brett1, here’s a specific study for you:

      Increasing Exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Proteins and Polysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism, DeStefano et al 2013

      http://www.jpeds.com/article/S0022-3476(13)00144-3/abstract

      Now if you look at this study, what are they doing? They are taking children who follow the vaccination schedule and assessing whether there is more incidence of ASD with increasing numbers of antigens. They find that “increasing exposure to antibody-stimulating proteins and polysaccharides in vaccines during the first 2 years of life was not related to the risk of developing an ASD.” So that’s good science, right? And the anti-vaccine crowd should just go away, right? But wait just a second. Who are the controls? The controls are children that follow the vaccination schedule. So let’s make some substitutions and see how this argument pans out. Let’s say that instead of exposure to antigens, we say exposure to cigarette smoke, and instead of ASD, we say lung cancer. So now we have a study that finds that there is no difference in exposure to smoke between those who have lung cancer and those who don’t. Good study, right? You have to admit that the study is true, the findings are correct. What’s the problem? The problem is that there are no controls: in our real study, the controls should have been the non-vaccinated, and in our substitution, the controls should have been non-smokers. And it’s not true that there are no populations of non-vaccinated to use for controls: there are many parents who refuse to vaccinate, and Dr. Mayer Eisenstein claims to have seen over 35,000 pediatric patients with no vaccines, and no autism. So you have real controls available. So why, we wonder, isn’t real science done? Why is it so hard to use real controls in these purportedly scientific studies?

      • 1Brett1

        There is so much wrong, sorry, with your inane comment that I don’t even know where to begin.

        First, your ridiculous comparison to some hypothetical study on cigarette smoking and cancer is laughable.

        The real study you cite about vaccines was controlling for very specific information about vaccine schedule placement, so the control would NOT have been children who did not get vaccinated vs. children who did; it was children who received their vaccines all at once vs. children who had their vaccines spaced out in incremental doses, to put it in simple terms that you might actually understand. The analogy of smokers vs. non-smokers is, well, ridiculously off the mark.

        Did you even read the study you cited? The concern being explored in this real study on vaccines was that large amounts of thimerosal (like what a child might have received through an all-at-once MMR vaccination) and larger amounts of active viruses (like what a child would receive through an all-at-once MMR vaccine) were responsible for increased rates of autism. The study found no difference in autism rates between lower doses of vaccine spaced out over time and larger doses given all at once.

        The study you cited was very specific to one aspect of a correlation between autism and vaccines; it set out to determine if there was any correlation between autism and increased antigen exposure through vaccinations…there was no correlation found in the study.

        Also, this Dr. Eisenstein you mention is the very epitome of a quack. Here’s one link (of many) that questions his expertise and motivation:

        http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-autism-doctor-eisenstein-may22,0,3826791.story

        • Don

          Did you read the study? If so, then you’d know that wasn’t about thimerosal at all, as you say, but rather about the number of antibody-stimulating protein and polysaccharide antigens children received. It also did not just look at bolus doses, but also at total doses in the respective age groups. So you did not summarize the article correctly, although I’m sure that instead of reading it and correcting your comments, you’ll resort to some sort of name-calling instead.

          I’m not arguing about the findings. I’m arguing about their relevance, and the analogy to smoking and lung cancer is quite appropriate.

          However, instead of actually reading the science and getting your facts straight, you chose to attack me and, as you put it, my “inane” comments.
          As for Dr. Eisenstein, again, you resort to an ad hominem attack. Instead of arguing facts, you cite a newspaper article that attacks Dr Eisenstein, unjustly, I believe. In any case, my point is that there are unvaccinated populations out there, and if we really wanted to study vaccine safety, we’d compare the health of vaccinated vs unvaccinated. Attacking Dr. Eisenstein is irrelevant to that point, and since you pretend to be so well versed in scientific analysis, you should know that.
          Anyhow, there’s no point in arguing with you, as you are intent on throwing up whatever smokescreen you can rather than argue relevant facts. In responding to you, my hope is that some readers will see your arguments for what they are; but I admit that I have better things to do then to argue with someone who only pretends to use logic and facts, and whose favorite argument seems some form of ad hominem. Good riddance.

          • 1Brett1

            Dude,as I said, the study was about schedules of how a vaccine is given and amounts of antigen. The CONCERN that prompted the study was about Thimerosal levels AND vaccines being given all at once. Read more than the abstract..

            You know, it is absolutely clear that you know absolutely nothing of what you are talking about. You are copying phrases from the study with no understanding of what they really mean.

            You criticized the study to begin with because you said they set the control group wrong. Which, you were absolutely wrong. Were weren’t arguing about findings but scientific methodology.

            If you were arguing about the relevance of the findings, as to their magnitude to lung cancer/cigarette smoking (which, you weren’t, you were comparing a hypothetical study to criticize the way the study was conducted), you were even more wrong. INjuries from vaccines are nothing compared to rates of lung cancer from cigarette smoking.

            No, Dr. Eisinstein is a proven quack, that is a fact…you don’t even know what an ad hominem attack is. A spade is a spade. There are quack doctors out there and he fits the definition. If you are going to revere someone like him, there’s nothing tat can be done for your thinking.

          • Don

            Nice job! Lots of assumptions.
            So then I assume that it’s OK with you if we had studied the relationship of cigarette smoking to lung cancer using only cigarette smokers as controls?
            No, 1Brett1, I think you know full well that I read and understood the study,and anyone can see that a proper study– that is, any study setting out to dispel the concern about childhood vaccinations and autism– would have used proper controls. Regardless of what you think of Dr. Eisenstein, you know as well as I that non-vaccinated controls are available. So why don’t they do the science and really prove no connection between vaccines and autism, instead of continually using controls that are vaccinated? Because they know damn well what they’ll find. So let them prove me wrong and do the proper studies.

            That’s it for me. I’m sure you’ll have choice refutations, more smokescreens, more name-calling. Have at it, Oh and by the way, I am not “Dude.”

          • 1Brett1

            You are making a lot of general statements that you clearly have not properly supported (and I’m being kind.)

            You said you were done before (LOL). Now, you are making more generalities when the subject was the study you linked to. If the research team had set the controls the way you suggest they should’ have, they wouldn’t have been able to make any determinations about the research for which they were studying.

            You contradict yourself about this Dr. Eisenstein. You keep bringing him up, though. a) He had nothing to do with the study you question and b) (and this is the important part); listen up: The study wasn’t determining anything other than whether there is any correlation between autism and the schedule of how the MMR vaccine is administered. Period. The researchers had no need for a control group of non-vaccinated children; they were testing children who had the vaccine all at once vs. children who had it stretched out over time (to make it simple enough for anyone to understand)…Either you don’t understand this or are just being disingenuous; I suspect it’s a little of both, considering your initial comment and replies.

            And, yes, you are a ‘dude’ and a piece of work.

  • yankeegirl1

    Here’s the other side of the story that no one wants to hear.

    Watch this news report: “Exclusive: Government paid out Millions to Vaccine injured Kids.”

    http://youtu.be/tXp4hM3eQuI

  • Martin

    I appreciate coverage of this
    important issue, but thought the report shallow in its portrayal of people who don’t “fully vaccinate”. Definitions of “fully”
    vary, but the report never mentioned that. Worthy of discussion is that requirements and recommendations of state health departments, the CDC, the WHO, and other health authorities are not uniform. Nor was there mention that mass vaccination of children against varicella (chickenpox) increases the risk of shingles among adults who had
    chickenpox as children. Would you call the National Health Service in the UK “anti-vaccine” because it doesn’t recommend mass vaccination of children against chicken pox like the CDC? Is the CDC anti-vaccine because it doesn’t recommend mass vaccination of children with the BCG tuberculosis vaccine? I’m as bothered as anyone about people opting out of MMR vaccination because they eat plenty of kale and think vaccines cause autism. Those arguments can be discredited quickly, and are no excuse for the lack of nuance and
    explanation in this report.

    • Woolflove

      Oh, thank God someone said this better than I could. Thanks Martin. The report was so very disappointing in its lack of nuance – - you bring up great points here, especially in the varying definitions of “fully vaccinated.”

  • Brian4000

    Jesus wept!

  • superior2

    As a family physician, I had my immune system wiped out for 2 weeks after receiving the TdaP and flu vaccine at the same time 3 years ago. One of my patients developed thrombocytopenia after the zoster vaccine. Flu vaccines are only about 60% at most effective at preventing the flu. But I also know of middle-school aged kids who came down with pertussis when not vaccinated. I also have seen that kids vaccinated for varicella still got the disease. There are risks either way. I am not anti-vaccine, but we don’t know where these vaccines are being produced and what contaminants are in them. I am unaware of studies done on children receiving multiple vaccines and what impact this has on their immune systems. This area deserves more study and scrutiny. Yes, pertussis, measles, mumps, etc. will increase if kids aren’t vaccinated. But the varicella vaccine has actually shifted the disease burden to an older age group. This vaccine was developed to decrease parents taking time off work. But the disease is far more deadly in adolescents and adults. Hepatitis B vaccine does not need to be given to newborns. It can be given at a later age. Hepatitis A is not necessary for all to receive unless in an endemic area or traveling to one. Not all vaccines are created equally. People should question everything because medicine is not an exact science. There is much still to be determined.
    I would agree with Martin that this issue was covered inadequately and recommendations for vaccines vary among medical organizations. I found some of the comments made by the guest physicians to be rather condescending when responding to some intelligent callers. Asking for information about vaccines does not make these callers stupid or ignorant. It makes them smart enough to know that not all is right about demanding that we follow one another like sheep to the slaughter. Some of us would like answers. As I recall, the first rotavirus vaccine was taken off the market because it had frequent serious adverse reactions.

    • tbphkm33

      Family physician?

      First of all, “immune system wiped out for 2 weeks”??? In medical terms, where does “wiped out” fit in? Plus, any physician worth their salt would know the contraindications for simultaneous TdaP and flu vaccine.

      We actually do know where these vaccines are being produced – it is highly regulated. Facilities outside of the U.S., most in western Europe, are continuously inspected by the U.S. FDA. Locations are also listed on the labels.

      Sounds to me that “superior2″ is from the anti-vaccine camp, but trying to masquerade as a family physician. Sorry, to me, your language and logic just does not add up. Even a lousy physician would not sound like this.

      If you are indeed a physician, I sure would not want to go to your office.

  • http://hammernews.com/ hammermann

    Fascinating- the upscale people in Oregon or Vermont with the highest rates of non-immunization are dangerous fools- they think they are being cautious, careful, or holistic, but they’re just being stupid. Essentially, being weak or dead viruses or bacteria, or parts of them – the immunity conferred by vaccines is usually no different than getting the real disease. The difference is with the real disease, you can have lasting damage to organs or brain, permanent susceptibility to other diseases, even death.

    I don’t think the medical establishment is beyond reproach or should be blindly obeyed- note the 40 year mistaken campaign to promote unsaturated fats, or the current crazy propaganda against sugar and soda- you gonna buy 10x more expensive juice for parents once you ban the soda, and you want kids to consume huge quantities or artificial sweeteners?

    But I would have liked these know-it-all opt-outers to be treated much more harshly, and shouted down, because their message is wrong, dishonest, and can kill. Maybe 1 in a million have serious allergic reactions or complications from the vaccine, whereas 1 in 100 will get that from the easily preventable disease. And become a spreader to other unimmunized.

    • Thinking Mom

      um, Vermont and Oregon have all time high rates of vaccination, in the 90th percentiles. Compare those to the rates of 1970s, 80s, 90s, 2000s and you will see ALL TIME HIGH vaccination rates. The new emphasis is on the so called “high exemption” rates which are only relative when compared to other states, because 1 state of 50 will be highest and 1 state of 50 will be lowest.

    • Thinking Mom

      btw hammermann, vaccination does not prevent transmission of childhood illnesses. Live virus vaccines “shed” and are transmittable, found in fecal material and people who are fully vaccinated for pertussis can be reservoirs and transmit whooping cough to others. So you be barking up the wrong tree in your shout out or shout down or whatever you are advocating.

  • Mrs D

    Why was nobody from the National Vaccine Information Center asked to be on this panel? Why is Tom’s reading list so one-sided?

    • tbphkm33

      Because the NVIC is not impartial, they are squarely on the side of anti-vaccine. They are heavily invested in misinformation and propaganda. Their non-profit status should be investigated.

      From Wikipedia:
      The National Vaccine Information Center is a public charity
      anti-vaccination advocacy group which questions the safety and efficacy
      of commonly used vaccines

      • Mrs D

        But if we are going to have a debate about the issue, shouldn’t we have some people in the discussion that bring a different view point? I’m not going to trust Wikipedia for my info, no offense. And there are plenty of other scientists and doctors out there who do question vaccines. Would it not be healthy to bring them into the debate? Otherwise, there is no debate. It is propaganda.

        • 1Brett1

          Would you agree that the NVIC is an anti-vaccine movement advocacy group? They identify themselves as such.

          “Would it not be healthy to bring them into the debate? Otherwise, there is no debate. It is propaganda.”

          What? If all opposing viewpoints are not always equally represented, then by definition the discussion is propaganda? Okay…

          The NVIC has spread a lot of questionable and even false information since their inception…should the hour have been filled with information of such dubious origin and validity?

          • Mrs D

            No, I do not see the NVIC as anti-vaccine or pro-vaccine. I see them as a group that is critical. They want parents to be educated and make their own decisions. That is how I read their material. Many of my friends pick and choose which vaccines they want to give their children, and they take care to work out a schedule with their pediatrician. I personally searched to find a pediatrician that would work together with me instead of bully me. The NVIC is a great resource to help us make these decisions. Much of their info comes from the CDC and PubMed.gov anyway – they just help make it more accessible. I believe their slogan is something like “Show us the science, give us the choice.” I personally believe in personal freedom, which includes the ability to choose what medicine goes into my body or my child’s body. I feel this right is sacred. When the government takes that right away, it is a scary day for America.

            Re: dubious information
            I am certain that a spokesperson from the NVIC could have conducted the interview using information solely from the US Gov’t (Court records, the CDC, PubMed.gov). There is plenty of information out there worth discussing from credible sources. I do think that the NVIC would have brought value to the conversation. And you know as well as I do that they would not have dominated the discussion. Tom would have moderated it so that all sides had equal attention. After reading his resource list, he probably would have given the pro-vaccine camp more time. I highly doubt he would have let NVIC dominate the discussion.

            And finally, re: Propaganda
            It does seem to me that when a news station like NPR does a story on something that is obviously so controversial (just look at how many comments it has generated), and they only represent one side of the subject, I suspect that there is an agenda. NPR’s news agenda should be to tell the whole story. Why do I have to read the comments to find the real story? The show seemed more like and advertisement for vaccines than a news report. That is why I likened it to propaganda.

            You don’t have to agree with me, as I do not have to agree with you. But I love the dialog and I wish it would have been captured on the air waves rather than left for the comments.

          • 1Brett1

            “I personally believe in personal freedom, which includes the ability to choose what medicine goes into my body or my child’s body. I feel this right is sacred.”

            That is all well and good, unless that “personal freedom” has the potential to interfere with the health and well-being of others.

            Secondly, your paragraph, in the one that begins, “Re: dubious information,” you are offering an opinion about an imaginary show that didn’t happen, as if you know how it would have been broadcast…frankly, that sort of certainty in thinking about something that doesn’t exist seems a bit scary, if you want to talk about scary.

            I have been listening to On Point and commenting on their forum for six years. They often present topics of a controversial nature; they want people to listen in and they want a lot of commentary on their web page. They haven’t any agenda about vaccines beyond that. Do you any evidence otherwise that would support your “suspicion”?

            The show also is often just a starting point toward discourse of a topic, and the dialogue on this forum is a continuation of the show in a sense…On Point has even had commercials about the “ongoing conversation that never ends…” with the show, etc.

            Was there something in particular that you felt was disseminated as inaccurate information, about vaccines, during the show to render the show propaganda?

        • donny_t

          Anyone claiming that the NVIC spreads disinformation: prove it.

    • Zack Smith

      This is standard operating procedure for Tom’s show. It’s a mouthpiece for the establishment.

    • Brian4000

      Because the facts are pretty one sided. You guys are wrong. Your propoganda outfits are wrong. You guys just need to stop spreading your specious theories and cherry picked evidence.

  • Andrew Page

    Anytime there’s a show about Vaccines you get a collection of self aggrandizing individual on the show, “Well, I [the most marvelous parent in the universe] didn’t vaccinate my kids and I fed them a proper diet and they never got sick.”

  • yankeegirl1

    It’s the approach to vaccinating most parents have issues with, clustering of shots, no prescreening for family history of autoimmune or neurodegenerative disease, lack of safety testing on the shots in total as in the culmulative effect The fact that many kids with autism were found to have an underlying mitochondrial dysfunction is a sign that something about their immune systems is off. Why is there no prescreening of babies who may be at greater risk for adverse reaction? This is totally irresponsible.

    • 1Brett1

      The idea of developing a pre-screening protocol is not unreasonable, no matter on which side of the issue one falls, particularly the family history of autoimmune diseases.

      • yankeegirl1

        Thank you Bret. According to experts, mItochondrial disease is at the core of many common diseases so to me it’s a no brainer to screen babies for a family history of mitochondrial related diseases such as diabetes, MS, ALS, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and autism as these kids may be at greater risk for serious adverse reaction.

  • yankeegirl1

    I disagree. If your kid is vaccinated then what’s your concern about other parents choices? Noone should be forced to inject something into their own bodies. this isn’t Nazi Germany.

    • Emily68

      Your child can be vaccinated and still get whooping cough. It happened to my niece when she was 10 or 12. But if everybody gets vaccinated, enough people will get full immunity so those whose shots were duds won’t get sick.

  • donny_t

    Bottom line for me: there’s vaccination, then there’s over vaccination. Probably the only two vaccines in which the benefit outweigh the risks are polio and tetanus. The rest are junk. I choose not to pump myself or any developing infant full of aluminum, mercury, msg, formaldehyde, etc.

    Below is a schedule for vaccinations from the CDC website and its treatment which anyone can get on the internet. Really? We need vaccinations for diseases most of which are treated with bed rest?

    Hep B – primarily blood transmitted. The fear is that a mother
    can pass it on to her newborn child, however it is easily diagnosed in
    the mother, but doctors rarely ever ask. They would rather give the
    vaccine to the child.

    Rotavirus – There is no specific treatment for rotavirus. For
    people with healthy immune systems, rotavirus infection of the bowel
    (gastroenteritis) is a self-limited illness, lasting for only a few days

    HIP – occurs mainly in children under 5- Most strains of H. influenzae are opportunistic pathogens; that
    is, they usually live in their host without causing disease, but cause
    problems only when other factors (such as a viral infection, reduced
    immune function or chronically inflamed tissues, e.g. from allergies)
    create an opportunity. They infect the host by sticking to the host cell
    using Trimeric Autotransporter Adhesins (TAA).

    PPSV23 (pneumonia) bacterial infection of which the vaccine is non effective because it mutates rapidly – A
    report by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) revealed
    that the presence of certain types of bacteria in cases of upper
    respiratory tract infections has “markedly increased” since the
    widespread use of pneumonia vaccines

    Influenza (flu) – In most healthy people,
    influenza (flu) will go away in 5 to 7 days. The worst
    symptoms usually last 3 to 4 days. Home treatment to ease symptoms and prevent
    complications is usually all that is needed.

    MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) (from WebMD)

    measles – Measles usually gets better with home care. Take medicines to lower your fever. Also, get plenty of rest and drink lots of
    fluids. Stay away from other people as much as you can so that you don’t spread
    the disease. If your child has measles, keep him or her out of school
    until at least 4 days after the rash first appeared. Keep your child out longer if he
    or she is not feeling well. Your doctor may suggest vitamin A supplements if your child has measles.

    mumps – In most cases, people recover
    from mumps with rest and care at home. In complicated cases, a hospital stay
    may be required.
    rubella -

    Rubella – usually gets better with home care.

    Varicella (chickenpox) – Most healthy children and
    adults need only home treatment for chickenpox. Home treatment includes resting
    and taking medicines to reduce fever and itching. You also can soak in oatmeal
    baths to help with itching.

    Hep A – Hepatitis A is a virus that can infect the liver. In most cases, the
    infection goes away on its own and doesn’t lead to long-term liver
    problems.
    Rarely, it can be more serious.

    HPV2 (genital warts) – an STD

    Once you get a disease naturally, you develop a natural lifelong immunity. No need for vaccines. We have this mentality of never ever getting sick, that’s just not how humans have evolved for tens of thousands of years. When you take away the sickness, you compromise the immunity.

    “Give me a fever, and I can cure any illness” — Hippocrates

    • yankeegirl1

      “The dose makes the poison” holds true when giving a baby 24+ vaccines which is essentially poisoning their system. The approach is not safety tested and dangerous. Too many, too soon. It’s that simple.

      • donny_t

        Sudden Infant Death Syndrome comes to mind. We have one of the highest qualities in medical care in the world yet our infant death rates are equal to that of a third world country. Why is that?

        • yankeegirl1

          genocide

  • Mrs D

    Please share the science that proves unvaccinated people put vaccinated people at risk. I have been looking for this, as it is a common statement. But I have not seen any science. Do you have access to private medical journals? Perhaps you could at least post the abstract… That would be greatly appreciated

  • Ben Harry

    Hi BB28, being a fence sitter is a difficult place to be, but all you have to do is do something about it, reading discussion boards about whether or not to vaccinate is not really going to help you. There are thousands of journal articles which support the idea of vaccination through validated research. If you are concerned that all the scientists are only supporting each other as some sort of conspiracy, do some study into science and do some of your own research. Scientists are actually more likely to try to disprove each other, if you are familiar with the ‘null hypothesis’ terminology this is where a scientist comes up with an idea and then tries to prove it wrong, i.e. if I inject an animal with virus that has been heated, it will have no effect on the animals immunity to the disease. You then gather information to show this does not work if enough people can repeat the experiment and maintain results then it is accepted, it is not disproved by someone who noticed that their kid got sick after they had a vaccination, which is what usually starts people who are against vaccination.

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