Monday, July 21, 2014

One More Time on Vaccinations

Another report this month reinforces the need for and safety of vaccinations - as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been telling us for years.  It clearly states:  “Serious complications related to vaccines are very rare, and there is no evidence that immunizations cause autism, according to an analysis of 67 research studies.”  You can’t get much clearer, much more definitive than that, yet people will continue to resist and some of those people, and especially their children, will continue to needlessly suffer – or possibly die.

Like any drug, vaccines can have serious side effects, but for some reason they are singled out.  We read stories about over-use and abuse of pain relievers and other drugs with little or no reaction from the public, but the airwaves are filled with warnings against vaccinations while reports of measles epidemics in the UK and US make the news.

The key is two-fold.  “With the rise of the Internet and the decline of print journalism, anyone can put anything on the Internet."  And they do.  The second factor is that the general public and sometimes scientists themselves act in a very unscientific manner.  Instead of holding a belief until credible and repeated tests disprove the belief, which is a key to the scientific method, they disregard any evidence contrary to their beliefs, no matter how strong and reliable, and seek out and cling to any evidence that reinforces their current stance, no matter how biased or questionable their sources.  Despite the fact that the original study linking autism to MMR vaccinations has been disproved, shown to contain falsified data and had its author banned from practicing medicine, a certain faction still holds to this myth.  Despite the fact that all reputable medical sources recommend annual flu shots for the majority of the population, there are still adamant resisters who will litter the Internet and Facebook with misinformation.

It’s enough to make critical thinkers, people who care enough about their health and that of their families to do a little quality research, look at the rest and quote Pete Seeger:  “When will they ever learn?”

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