Do you want to make decisions based on fear, or do you want to take action on something within your power to control?
I understand why there would be a fear of the potentially detrimental effects of vaccination. I also understand why there is a fear of GMOs, and of chemical pesticides. I have had and still do have some of these concerns myself.
However, the recent outbreak of measles in Disneyland and elsewhere, have brought an important point to the surface. The report that linked vaccines to autism in 1998 was debunked and discredited by the scientific community. That is what peer review does. But the time-gap between the original publication of the claim, and the discrediting of it, allowed the now de-bunked claim to enter into mainstream culture, and therefore become a widespread fear.
Imagine a scenario where a parent is speaking to a scientist or a physician, expressing concern that if they vaccinate their child, he or she will become autistic. Imagine that scientist or physician responds, “we have no evidence that links vaccines to the cause of autism.” It is no wonder the parent sitting in that room would then respond, “not yet.” There is no evidence yet, but that does not mean there is absolutely never any link between the two. That doesn’t mean that this thing that is supposed to be increasing the safety of my child won’t jeopardize my child’s health.
Well, this seems to be an issue of scientific vernacular. There is not really one-hundred-percent certainty. As my chemistry professor explained, to prove a hypothesis is to come up with a scientific law. That does not mean the law can never be broken or discredited. But it means that the scientific community trusts it enough to continue building upon it. Imagine if we lived our lives distrusting every scientific law? It would certainly be destabilizing, just as it is to question the scientific community on vaccines, when public policy, not to mention social scrutiny, tells us we need to vaccinate our children.
But, as my father (Thomas Redner, MD) pointed out, there are doctors on both sides of the “argument”. These are people of a medical background who say no, don’t vaccinate, and yes, vaccinate. If the doctors are contradicting the scientists, and the general public is much more likely to sit down with a doctor than a scientist, well….this will get confusing. And scary.
Then, there is another, middle-of-the-road perspective. It comes from Dr. Natasha McBride, author of Gut and Psychology Syndrome, who says that vaccines do not cause autism, but that vaccines can be harmful to those who already have a compromised immune system.
So, maybe the question we need to be asking our doctors, homeopaths, nutritionists, etc., is, what can I do to support the building of a strong immune system in my child? Not, can I please get an exemption from vaccination? Because, as the measles and whooping cough outbreaks our showing, not vaccinating is a public health risk, and we have a responsibility to take care of our own children, and one another’s children.
Article and video:
GAPS Gut and Psychology Syndrome, by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, MMedSci (neurology), MMedSci (nutrition)