Yet another totally unfounded mass delusion has reached epidemic proportions.

Lamentably, the afflicted are not looking to be cured but are doing their best to spread their highly contagious delusion far and wide. To that end they have created a menacingly influential movement based on ignorance, superstition, sincere naivete, fear-mongering, quackery, media complicity, and celebrity power. All combined in a toxic, ideological stew with the goal of undermining public confidence in the most beneficial achievement of medical science to date. Here’s the lowdown.

Of course I’m talking about the evidence-challenged but menacingly effective anti-vaccination movement, which has caused a tragic and potentially catastrophic increase in preventable disease and death, worldwide. It marches under the banner of its high-profile, well-funded organization, Age of Autism.

And to what purpose? To avoid entirely fictitious dangers falsely attributed to vaccines. People, alas, are easily frightened and manipulated by charlatans, and in this case the price of quackery is the health and the lives of children across the globe.

Of course vaccines have occasional, well-understood side-effects, as does every medical intervention. But that is entirely different from the manufactured hysteria that got its traction from the deceitful conduct of a British doctor, one Andrew Wakefield, who would be behind bars in a sane world. That is, a world populated by rational, rather than human, beings.

So now we are witnessing a worldwide epidemic of unnecessary disease and death being inflicted on the children of the anti-vaxers and other people’s children as well. And for no better reason than stupid human nature once again asserting primitive instincts.

As much as I’d like to, I can’t pin this on conservatives. They only share the blame for this particular instance of collective insanity that probably won’t go away for a long time.

Here’s the article that inspired this rant:

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About SJ

I'm an older married guy, a former college psychology instructor and editor at a national magazine. Every stage of my very full life has been dominated by a passionate interest – from chess to distance running to photography (my current interest). I write under a pseudonym because the opinions I express, particularly about religion, might very well cause problems for my wife and me. I plan to "come out" after she retires. In the meantime, I'll do my best to defend and promote science and reason and to help keep power out of the hands of the proto-fascists who have declared war on just about everything I value.

One thought on “Yet another totally unfounded mass delusion has reached epidemic proportions.

  1. I’m sure an advocate for vaccination but I often wonder whether it would be best to space some of them out when administered to infants – or even delay some of them, particularly if the risk is low.

    Maybe it’s not good to over-stress young immune systems. Certainly that’s what I advised my daughter to do for her two little fellas. She spaced their MMR vaccinations out over three months.

    I’d like to know why more doctors don’t space some of these injections out. That may take the wind out of the sails of the autism anti-vaxers.

    The other concern I have – and it may be completely unfounded – is that the ‘extremely deadly’ risk of some diseases may in fact be quite low and that it may be better for most children to have a dose. I think a lot of people my age contracted measles, mumps and chicken pox as children and it didn’t seem to do them much harm. Certainly they didn’t do me much harm.

    When my own children – girls – were young, as soon as another girl contacted German measles there seemed to be more concern to ‘enable’ other young girls to get it, rather than avoid it. Girls getting German measles when they were young seemed to be a popular medical strategy.

    I know there is a theory that getting these infections and warding them off oneself may in fact strengthen the immune system. It could, of course be baloney.

    In primary school we received a polio vaccination and one for TB. 30 years ago if you travelled overseas you went though a course of injections for the deadly serious diseases. Now it doesn’t seem to matter. More recently I”ve had a whooping cough vax, after seeing what it did to a mate of mine.

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