Keep in mind, the original impetus for the anti-vaccine movement was concern over child-brain development and substances found in common vaccines given to kids. It was well worth investigating, the stakes were enormous. But after many studies, so far, the onset of childhood autism remains a medical mystery. Anti-vaxxars have been so discredited at this point that they've fallen back on a tactic familiar to anyone who follows anti-science bullshit artists
Ah, yes. The old “I’m not ‘anti-vaccine’; I’m a vaccine safety advocate” gambit! No doubt many antivaccinationists believe that they really are vaccine safety advocates. They can delude themselves to believe they are virtually anything, but that doesn’t make it so, any more than I could turn myself into a major league pitcher by believing I’m a great baseball player. For instance, on the MOMV website, there is a story of Brynn Fischer,who in a divorce battle is fighting the father, who, quite reasonably, wants their children vaccinated. There’s a FAQ that asks the question, “Isn’t it really dangerous if a person, especially a child, gets any of these communicable diseases, like whooping cough, diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, and polio?” and answers it, “No,” citing the ultimate in intellectually dishonest antivaccine talking points, the claim that death rates for these diseases were falling before the introduction of vaccines.
There are plenty of ugly scams and scammers in the world. But one that exploits the worst fears of any concerned parent while immediately putting every man, woman, and child at greater risk of preventable tragedy has to rank right up there.
- We knew Van de Waals force was good for Gecko's sticking to anything, now it appears it may help hold Near Earth Objects together.
- Her name is LUCA and we're starting to know about her.
- The Field's Medal is the Nobel Prize of mathematics, except it's only awarded every four years. This time, finally, it went to a woman.
- Whiz kids changing the face of medical research
- It's hard to believe this actually has to be said in this technological age: police in Ferguson—and everywhere else—there is no way you are going to shut down cameras in crowded public places. There are over 100 million hand-held, wireless video cameras streaming live to a worldwide network in the US alone. Just telling us not to record you is like roller skating onto the set of Tosh.0 in a Wile E. Coyote costume wearing a homemade jetpack and thinking no one with a camera will notice.
- Speaking of scams and charlatans, it looks like Ken Ham's creationist scheme may soon have some competition:
According to Lutz, the most compelling pieces in the museum are Ica stones from the Aeronautical Museum of Lima, Peru: smooth andesite stones etched with images of humans and dinosaurs interacting. Since Ica Stones suggest the cohabitation of humans and extinct animals, they've been used by creationists as evidence that dinosaurs became extinct far more recently than the 65 million years agreed upon by modern science.