This is me, expressing sadness over an acquaintance’s decision to not vaccinate his child because of what he’s rightfully referred to as, media-fuelled skepticism.
Scratch sadness. Incredulity.
I’ve always been for representing both sides of an argument except when the arguments are, like Leonard Susskind would say, bogus. Case in point, intelligent design (an oxymoron if ever there was one). And now, you have a bunch of fringe lunatics promoting vaccine skepticism. Skepticism has never been a bad thing but misinterpreting reports and arriving at fallacious and often self-serving conclusions alway is.
To make matters worse, you have people like Oprah and Bill Maher giving a platform to anti-vaccine conspiracy theorists. Again, wouldn’t have been such a bad thing if the aforementioned celebrities did not wield such enormous power over the choices of a demography that include housewives and impressionable twenty somethings.
Thankfully, it’s not that hard to find scientific information, empirical data and responsible reporting when it comes to vaccines.
- How Safe Are Vaccines? – Time Magazine
- Michael Shermer’s Open Letter to Bill Maher
- How to Win Arguments About Vaccines – WIRED (Also, this)
- Drinking the Anti-Vaccine Kool-Aid – Neurologica Blog
I do get that the flames are mostly fanned by parents who’re genuinely scared for their children. But to quote Steven Novella, ”It’s not enough to mean well. You have to get the science right.”