Herd Immunity

Dismantling Vaccine Propaganda

Once in a while something shared on the internet comes my way that I feel moved to write about. The below is one such internet gem, a meme shared on Facebook that is frankly, an angry, misinformed rant.

On the surface the meme can seem convincing, but if you spend a little time trying to find studies to back up these statements, you'll soon find it falls flat.

So piece by piece I’m going to break it down so that by the end of it, we’ll all have learned some valuable scientific information about vaccines, and understand why the above meme constitutes bogus, manipulative, propaganda.

“The diseases haven’t gone away. They are just held in check because sensible people vax their kids.” Despite extremely high and stable vaccination rates, death from infection has actually increased dramatically since the 1970’s – an era when we received over 4 times less vaccines [1-5].

“Some people aren’t sensible; they don’t vax their kids. Yes, I’m looking at you, sunshine – you with the Ph.D from Google U and the post-doc from Whale.to.” Vaccines have the ability to cause severe, permanent injury, and death [6-8]. While some screening is recommended, infants commonly receive vaccines without any testing and minimal to no screening to verify whether they will react badly. The CDC recommends administering ALL the vaccines a child is eligible for at the same doctors visit – up to 9 vaccines at once [9,10]. This practice has never been studied for safety [11]. This is NOT sensible, it is reckless.

“Because your little cherubs are un-vaxed they are far more likely to catch the diseases. 23 times more likely for whooping cough, 35 times more measles for example.” The correct phrasing would be: vaccinated individuals are 23 times less likely to show symptoms of whooping, and 35 times less likely to show symptoms of measles – but they will likely still become infected and pass on the infection to those around them [12].

“Your kidlets are much more likely to be exposed to the diseases, because anti-vaxers like yourself hang around with other anti-vaxers.” Again, vaccinated individuals are still likely to contract diseases, likely from other vaccinated individuals, because when exposed they usually still become infected and pass on the infection – albeit with minimal or no symptoms [12].

“Your little darlings then spread their vile viruses and bacteria to innocent children who are too young to be vaxed.” Those who suffer from “vile viruses and bacteria” are more likely to be vaccinated. Many outbreaks of disease occur almost or entirely exclusively in vaccinated populations [12]. Vaccinated kids are a danger to vulnerable individuals, just as unvaccinated kids are.

“Those innocent children get sick with killer diseases spread by people silly enough not to vax – like yourself.” Vaccinated kids are still likely to contract and pass on infections to vulnerable individuals such as the elderly and newborns because they still contract and spread infection when exposed [12]. Additionally, they can spread disease when shedding vaccine viruses after being vaccinated with live vaccines [12].

“No vaccine is 100% effective; some vaxed kids will also catch your revolting diseases. We need high vax rates for herd immunity.” Most vaccines have not been proven to stop infection at all, only reduce symptoms. So most vaccinated kids will still harbour and spread their “revolting diseases” like unvaccinated kids [12]. We have had extremely high and stable vaccination rates for over a decade, it has not stopped epidemics [1,2]. Conversely, as mentioned earlier, death from infectious disease has increased dramatically since the 1970’s – an era when we received over 4 times less vaccines.

“Infect enough children and some of them will die, more of them will suffer permanent disability, and all of them will have experienced an unnecessary and unpleasant disease.” Of course these are situations we should strive to avoid, but so is death, permanent disability and unnecessary and unpleasant experiences caused by vaccine injury. Because the necessary studies comparing the overall health of non-vaccinated vs vaccinated populations have never been done, whether the risk of vaccines outweighs the benefit is still unknown.

All of that suffering will be YOUR fault for not vaxing your rugrats.” Vaccinated individuals are still likely to harbour and pass on disease, but likely with reduced or absent symptoms, which in a way makes vaccinated kids more dangerous than unvaccinated kids – they become silent disease carriers [12].

1. National Immunization Survey (NIS) - Children (19-35 months)
CDC, September 2, 2014

2. Nationwide vaccination coverage among children age 19-35 months, 2002-2012
CDC, Morb. Mortal. Wkly.

3. Deaths Due to Infectious & Parasitic Diseases https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_fOow977UVfMU0xSVZEamVDNHc/view?usp=sharing

4. The Development of the Immunization Schedule
The History of Vaccines

5. CDC Mandatory Vaccine Schedule: 1983 vs 2014
Monday, January 17, 2011

6. Virus in the system
Natasha Bita,THE AUSTRALIAN, MAY 28, 2011

7. Little girl died in cot after flu jab
Jamie Walker, THE AUSTRALIAN, APRIL 26, 2010

8. Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System

9. General Recommendations on Immunization
Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases
The Pink Book: Course Textbook - 12th Edition Second Printing (May 2012)

11. The Childhood Immunization Schedule and Safety: Stakeholder Concerns, Scientific Evidence and Future Studies. Institute of Medicine Committee on the Assessment of Studies of Health Outcomes Related to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press 2013. pg 11
“Although each new vaccine is evaluated in the context of the overall immunization schedule that existed at the time of review of that vaccine, elements of the schedule are not evaluated once it is adjusted to accommodate a new vaccine. Thus, key elements of the entire schedule—the number, frequency, timing, order, and age at administration of vaccines—have not been systematically examined in research studies.”

12. The Implausibility of Vaccine-Based Herd Immunity
Natural Mama NZ
A collection of over 100 studies about the inability of most vaccines to prevent infection.

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