Wakefield and the MMR Jab

The Facts In The Case Of Dr. Andrew Wakefield. The MMR vaccine does NOT cause autism. If you think or fear that it does, at best you’re ignorant and at worst you’re being WILLFULLY STUPID.

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  1. Hold up though – I think that guy is a bit crooked, sure, but these most recent articles that have come out are pretty one-sided too. The same scare-tactic-rampant frenzy the anti-vaccine camp is putting behind its campaign exists behind the staunchly pro-vaccine side, too! (I think the fact that the media keeps publicizing the discrediting of this ONE guy is telling. We know already.) In the meantime, it’s absolutely valid for parents to question vaccines, but you must be very careful about what you’re reading, and be sure that whatever it is, you’re reading critically. It’s so difficult to find objective sources. Even our own gov’t here in the U.S. is heavily influenced by pharmaceutical companies. I don’t trust anyone, and I don’t think it’s ignorant to question what you’re blindly shooting into your kid. I split both kids’ MMR shots up. Some scientists, possibly quacks, possibly not, believe those combo vaccines are at the root of some problems. Who knows yet? But why risk anything for the convenience of not having to go into the doctor three different times for separate shots? And any parent who’s had some pediatrician try to rush four shots in one day onto their kid, including POLIO for freak’s sake, should be raising an eyebrow that something has been sacrificed here in the name of efficiency. Could it be some degree of safety? I think so. I’m pro-vaccine, thoughtfully and carefully.

  2. And a note…I knew what article this was referring to but hadn’t clicked on your link and read the comic (I just did, tho I didn’t get all the way to the bottom – breakfast time!) I’d be offended at some points if I were a parent of a kid with autism. They’re not all ignorant idiots…and the ignorant idiots alone aren’t making autism a global crisis, statistics are.

  3. But that’s basically giving in to OCD and voodoo. It’s magnetic bracelets and homeopathy and aura-cleansing. “Some scientists, possibly quacks, possibly not, believe these [x] are the root of some problems. Who knows yet? But why rick anything for the convenience of not doing [x]?” Don’t you see how dangerous that sentence is? Because you have to draw the line somewhere. Because everyone has to make compromises, and preying on the fears of parents in order to make money (which is what Wakefield did) is disgusting, predatory, and unethical.

    If you can honestly read the first three paragraphs here and still think there’s some link… then you’re in the Cloud Cuckoo Land of conspiracy theorists, Birthers, and people who carry the Enquirers’ Blue Dot in their purse.

  4. Sorry, I’ve had very little sleep. Rodd thinks I should qualify my original post a bit. I don’t BLAME people for being ignorant. Being ignorant doesn’t equal being stupid. It just means not knowing, or not having access to the facts. And I don’t think you are stupid or ignorant. I’m not saying you shouldn’t be a little skeptical when you hear claims about anything. But skepticism in the face of overwhelming evidence IS stupid, especially when it can harm others. Your kids are immunized; you’re not stupid. But what about people who haven’t done the research? What about people who only hear Wakefield’s discredited claims in the media and don’t have the time or skills to research further? What about parents who can’t afford the money or time to take their kids in for three separate injections instead of one? A lot of them are going to opt out entirely. And then we get measles outbreaks and people die. That sucks.

  5. I did draw the line: I got my kids their measles, mumps and rubella shots. I didn’t *not* do it, I just did it differently because I felt uncomfortable with the other two alternatives (not doing it at all, or doing it all at once) and not because I’m afraid of autism. I simply distrust that ALL vaccines are 100% safe for 100% of kids. And the almost violent defense of the vaccine program – the frantic marketing to get the numbers back up because of a few deaths and injuries in kids who weren’t vaccinated – somehow makes me distrust the system even more. Who’s to say pharmaceutical companies aren’t preying on parents’ fears to make money as well? And more importantly…why do you care?

    (There…done eatin’ your bait…) 😉

  6. Exactly! I’d like to see the breakdown though of complications as a result of *not* being vaccinated and complications as a result of *being* vaccinated. Which # is higher and/or more significant? The sheet they give you with the associated risks (many of which are minor, the worst of which are listed as “rare”) always makes me wonder.

    P.S. I’m just tryin’ to keep you from gettin’ flamed by the autism community!

  7. I’m not worried about getting flamed by the autism community. The problem is that you can’t compare those numbers. The number of kids who die from being not vaccinated is a given. That is known. (I have friends who are doctors in the UK who have firsthand knowledge of this.) The number of “complications” from not being vaccinated can never be known, because it’s all magical hand-waving. The anti-vax people want to count autism in there despite there being NO PROOF of any link (despite multiple studies). What if I personally think that vaccinations make your kids more likely to get run over by cars? You can’t argue with that. People with that deep a distrust of authority, science, and REALITY won’t ever be convinced by numbers.

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