Vaccination. What’s the big deal?

My son is now just a few months shy of turning three years old and he’s a happy, boisterously healthy, young chap. When it came to his vaccinations I didn’t hesitate for a moment, I’d done my research based on wanting to know more about the rampant fear mongering among the alternative media crowd and soon realised it’s all just the usual white noise.

Whenever I’ve approached this topic I’m always presented with very similar ‘evidence’ that vaccinations are essentially the devil’s tool.

1) Drug companies are evil ergo vaccinations are poison.

Well, I do agree to a certain degree when  it comes to drug companies. They do indeed vastly overcharge for certain drugs, they do have less than ideal business practices (understatement alert!), and I can’t ever shake off the idea they’d rather have a treatment over a cure any day of the week but that doesn’t mean what they sell is automatically evil. How many people’s lives are vastly improved because of medicines? Think about it.

2) Child A died / developed autism after inoculation.

There is absolutely no credible proof that vaccinations are linked to autism, none whatsoever. At best there is anecdotal evidence from understandably distraught parents but nothing substantial. Think about the numbers involved here. If two children die following complications related to a reaction to the contents of a vaccine but millions don’t the numbers might logically suggest it’s not a direct cause we should all be alarmed by.

3) Being ill builds up a child’s immune system. It’s against nature to vaccinate.

I’ve often said a child comes out of Polio vastly improved, wouldn’t you agree? It’s also ‘against nature’ to live the life you do but that doesn’t stop you. Get off your computer and get out there hunting down a mammoth with your spear in order to support your family, it’s the natural way. Of course, polio might make it tricky but you’re okay with that I imagine.

One recent article was linked to a Dr Sherri Tenpenny who is experiencing some difficulty in being allowed to lecture on the harm vaccines do down in Australia. My initial response is that it seems odd a doctor would be barred from talking about such things. Naturally it turns out this ‘Doctor’ is actually an osteopath, in other words a quack. Now, I’m sure an osteopath can make for a good placebo if you’ve got a sore neck but do you really want them giving advice on protecting your children from disease? If you answered ‘yes’ you probably shouldn’t breed. Of course I don’t actually think they should block her from speaking, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but it should be framed as the opinion of someone who is not – IN ANY WAY – a qualified physician with medical experience of vaccines or their contents.

I’m not saying vaccines are 100% safe because very few things are (I was going to suggest knitting but I’m sure a Google search would provide some bizarre knitting related death for me to read about). There are margins for safety and a one in several million chance of an adverse reaction far outweighs the possibility of a child catching TB or the like. Refusing to vaccinate your children is your right I suppose but it’s generally bloody ignorant.

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