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View Diary: Parents choosing not to immunize: Nevada County, CA (87 comments)

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  •  I despise vaccine paranoia (22+ / 0-)

    There was an outbreak of Measles in Salina, Kansas.   They quarantined the community and it was serious news.

    I'm also the father of an autistic child who shakes my fist every time I hear the "vaccine myth", in part because the man who put it forward did unscientific tests using children, and in part because his completely falsified results have hurt options for real research.

    When we deny the scientific method and we use fear and fame to push ideas into people, we are creating real harm.

    Not just for kids who aren't getting vaccines which have never been linked anywhere in the world to anything, but also we harm the people we're trying to protect.

    I'm sick of my child and others being trotted out as poster children for "the results of vaccines" when (a) it's completely bogus and (b) they become victims a second time by giving the public an easy scapegoat instead of putting real resources behind helping those of us in need.

    Our first obligation in science is THE TRUTH.

    (CNN) -- A now-retracted British study that linked autism to childhood vaccines was an "elaborate fraud" that has done long-lasting damage to public health, a leading medical publication reported Wednesday.

    An investigation published by the British medical journal BMJ concludes the study's author, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, misrepresented or altered the medical histories of all 12 of the patients whose cases formed the basis of the 1998 study -- and that there was "no doubt" Wakefield was responsible.

    Dr. Wakefield, you didn't just harm kids who didn't get vaccines.  You harmed my kid.  You put scientists on a goose chase for years by defrauding the scientific community.

    As far as I'm concerned, you and Jenny McCarthy - who still spews this crap, again slowing real help - can go jump in a lake.

    Having Hope and using action to give people hope are different things. Make a difference for someone.

    by Chris Reeves on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 09:51:33 AM PDT

    •  Andrew Wakefield has a lot to answer for. (15+ / 0-)

      Thousands  of cases of vaccine preventable disease can be laid right at his doorstep.

    •  I have this friend... (9+ / 0-)

      an otherwise brilliant woman, whose life now revolves around her war against vaccines and an increasing number of other medical and scientific bugaboos. Full-scale fire-breathing fanatic. Posting her crazy Wakefield-Is-God paranoid crap all over my facebook, etc.

      I finally gave up on her. I told her that although her son's vaccination did not make her son autistic,  by some bizarre process her son's vaccination had made her insane.

      "In America racism is a misdemeanor. Noticing racism is a felony" -- Max Minton

      by teachme2night on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 11:06:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The problem with the autism/vaccine link (6+ / 0-)

        Is that the way autism changes a parents life is serious.  It is one of those things that is mentally hard to deal with.  And it's hard to explain to outsiders.   Other members of the community will look at you wrong.  They will ask you questions "Why does your kid keep clapping his hands or flapping?"  

        A lot of parents feel persecuted.. and there is an immense level of guilt.   "Is this my fault?"

        It's really hard for some people to deal with.   Too hard, because right now funding is being slashed all over the place and real support for them is shrinking.

        When Wakefield proposed the vaccine link - which was a total fraud - he prayed on the desire of the desperately thirsty for a drink of water.

        Those parents had been out in the desert, on their own, with little help for a long time.  They felt the ridicule of their families "Can't you do something"  "Have you tried spankings"  .. feelings of their own personal inadequacies.

        Dr. Wakefield rose to instant fame preying on their desperation to find something in their life they could latch onto, that they could say "see, it's not my fault"

        The problem is, Autism really -isn't- their fault, for the most part, at least nothing we think they could control.   But Wakefield basically took complete advantage of their desperation.

        He used it to sell them a fraud.  And now, they can't let it go.

        I run into it often.   Even knowing he fictionlized all of his results doesn't help them.   Because they were so desperate for an oasis that even if it's sand, it's easier to want it to be water then to admit it's only sand.

        Having Hope and using action to give people hope are different things. Make a difference for someone.

        by Chris Reeves on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 11:12:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I've worked with autistic kids and I know (4+ / 0-)

          how nightmarish things can be for parents. But in my friend's case, the demands of her child ( Asperger's) are apparently not so great as to get her off the frikkin' internet for 16 hours a day. I have no idea who's taking care of the kids while she's spending all her time crusading for Wakefield's vindication.

          "In America racism is a misdemeanor. Noticing racism is a felony" -- Max Minton

          by teachme2night on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 11:18:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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