There is a certain Mythology of Vaccine proponents on the origins and growth of the “Anti-Vaxxer” movement. A creation myth, if you will. It goes something like this:
In 1998 an Anti-Vaccine Doctor published a study stating that the Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine was causing Autism. He lied and he and the study were discredited. He had his medical license removed because of this bullshit. Everyone knows he’s wrong. Eventually October 1993 playmate of the month joined the crusade of this crackpot because she couldn’t accept that her precious entitled child had autism so close to an MMR vaccination without there being a link. Autism is not on the rise there is just better diagnosis today and autism happens to appear, coincidentally, around the time a round of vaccines are administered. These people are marginalized people and no one believes them but due to the accursed internet everybody is a vaccine expert today from Google university. No “credible” research shows a link between autism and any vaccine. The “Anti-Vaccine” movement is made up of those two people as its leaders, some “anti-science” people, and some liberal hippy mothers.
The truth is a little shade greyer.
In February 1998, the Lancet published Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s case series of a group of autistic children with gastric problems, part of the patients’ story included regression after receiving the MMR vaccine. Dr. Wakefield was not an anti-vaccine doctor. His studies led him to believe that there were problems with the three-combo vaccine of measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR). He did not advise his patients to stop vaccinating, but instead to vaccinate for these three diseases with single vaccines, rather than the combo. Even his most ardent critic, journalist Brian Deer, accused Dr. Wakefield of trying to patent single doses of the MMR vaccine and not to push a campaign banning vaccines.
So Wakefield wasn’t “anti-vaccine” but was concerned with whether the three dose in one vaccine was in particular casually linked with regressive autism. He has never stated that he proved the MMR “caused” autism but that it may have been a factor in it. The fact that Wakefield was allegedly trying to patent single dose vaccines, while certainly raising legitimate concerns of conflict of interest (equally as legitimate concerns as any vaccine patent holder pushing their particular vaccine), should demolish the arguments that he is against vaccines. He is certainly for them, regardless of whether it is a financial or humanitarian interest.
1994 Playmate of the year Jenny McCarthy had followed the vaccine schedule on for her son Evan. Her son was hitting all his milestones but within a month of the MMR vaccine he was having seizures and eventually he was diagnosed with Autism. She stated, in a PBS article ironically titled “We’re Not An Anti-Vaccine Movement … We’re Pro-Safe Vaccine”, that a top neurologist who diagnosed her son effectively stated that he “had no direction for me. It was just: “I’m sorry, he has autism, and there’s not a lot you can do. There’s some therapies, behavior therapies, but I’m sorry.”
“So I clicked on Generation Rescue, and I found not just a guy who made the Web site, but this whole community of thousands of parents that were actually healing their child, recovering them from autism.”
There are your two devils of the Anti-Vaccine movement, a Gastroenterologist who was seeking an alternative to a particular vaccine and a woman who followed the schedule to a proverbial “T”, before noting, like thousands of other parents, that there may be some triggers in the MMR vaccine that lead to bowel disease and regressive autism.
The Vaccine proponents push the previously mentioned creation myth because marginalization is their strongest weapon. Saying one discredited Doctor was wrong in the late 20th century is less encumbering than looking at multiple studies since demonstrating a possible vaccination-autism link. It would require some serious heavy lifting to refute the story of thousands of parents telling a similar story (my child was healthy and reaching their milestones, they were vaccinated, they got very sick, and they went into a shell) so they pick an easy target (a blonde haired, big boobie celebrity who was considered “ditzy”) and make her the face of the movement. A movement she clearly joined and did not start.
“Anti-Vaxxer” is not so much a movement but label designed to alienate those who question orthodoxy and stifle debate before it begins. This was evident again at the recent republican presidential debate. Newspapers today were aghast that Republican front runner, Donald Trump, has joined the list of “Anti-Vaxxers”. What exactly did he say?
“I’m in favor of vaccines [but] do them over a longer period of time, same amount, but just in little sections. I think you’re going to have — I think you’re going to see a big impact on autism.”
So someone who is in favor in the scope and size of the vaccine schedule, just not the timing, is an anti-vaxxer?
Trump told us how he came to this conclusion:
“Autism has become an epidemic… Because you take a baby in, and I’ve seen it, and I’ve seen it, and I had my children taken care of, over a long period of time, over a two or three year period of time, same exact amount, but you take this little beautiful baby, and you pump — I mean, it looks just like it’s meant for a horse, not for a child, and we’ve had so many instances, people that work for me, just the other day, two-years-old, two-and-a-half-years-old, a child, a beautiful child went to have the vaccine, and came back, and a week later got a tremendous fever, got very, very sick, now is autistic.”
Now someone is going to follow up on this story because the media would love to catch Trump in a colossal lie and that there really isn’t “people that work for me, just the other day, two-years-old, two-and-a-half-years-old, a child, a beautiful child went to have the vaccine, and came back, and a week later got a tremendous fever, got very, very sick, now is autistic.” If Trump made that story up you will have exposes about how they can’t find the devastated employee.
Yet, for the time being, Headlines looked like this:
The media is trying to tie in the easily ridiculed Trump with a ridiculous idea. Of course we know that all “serious” doctors were upset but what did the two doctors that were actually sharing the stage with Trump have to stay?
“I’m all for vaccines, but I’m also for freedom. I’m concerned about how they’re bunched up… I ought to have the right to spread out the vaccines a little bit…” Dr. Rand Paul
Now that’s Rand Paul, he can be marginalized as a crazy libertarian. What did the other doctor have to say?
“Vaccines are very important. Certain ones. The ones that would prevent death or crippling,” he said. “There are others, a multitude of vaccines which probably don’t fit in that category and there should be some discretion in those cases…It is true that we are probably giving way too many in too short a period of time…A lot of pediatricians now recognize that and I think are cutting down on the number and the proximity in which those are done.” Dr. Ben Carson
But what does he know? Yes he is a pediatric surgeon but he is a Republican which means he is “anti-science” and probably one of those crazy anti-government liberty freaks.
“Although I strongly believe in individual rights and the rights of parents to raise their children as they see fit, I also recognize that public health and public safety are extremely important in our society. Certain communicable diseases have been largely eradicated by immunization policies in this country and we should not allow those diseases to return by foregoing safe immunization programs, for philosophical, religious, or other reasons when we have the means to eradicate them,” Ben Carson February 2015
Ben Carson is CLEARLY pro-vaccine. However type in “Ben Carson, vaccination” into the magic Google machine and click on the news tab to see how the media reported on his comments from the presidential debate:
“Vaccine skepticism” and “Pandering to Vaccine deniers.” The Pro-Vaccine movement has just excommunicated a pediatric neurosurgeon, banished forever to the “Anti-Vaxxer” camp, who has previously called for an end to vaccine exemptions. That guy isn’t even welcome anymore.
Its time we sat down the self-appointed leaders of the Pro-Vaccination camp and ask them a simple question:
What level of doctrinal purity does one require in their devotion to vaccination to avoid being expelled from your team in a Stalinistic Purge?
When the Pro-vaccination camp speaks of an “Anti-Vaxxer” it is speaking about someone who doesn’t agree 100% with the timing, volume and quantity of the ENTIRE CDC vaccination schedule. Which means that the only ones left are the CDC and the board of Merck, an increasingly difficult to distinguish lot due to the policy maker to lobbyist to policy maker revolving door circle jerk they have going on.
Dr. Andrew Wakefield who was working on what he believed was a safer vaccine? Didn’t make the cut.
Dr. Rand Paul who was photographed getting a flu shot? Not good enough.
Dr. Ben Carson who damn near called for mandatory vaccination? Fuck that guy.
They Join Donald Trump, Jenny McCarthy, thousands of parents of vaccine injured children, Dr. Carson’s pediatrician friends, Liberal Hippy Moms, conservative anti-government mandate activists, Google Cowboys, and most of the health agencies of the developed world that doesn’t follow the CDC schedule.
And probably you, now that you think about it…