Are you kiddin’ me?
Who could have guessed in our ever-so-intelligent nation that we would be discussing “to vaccinate or not to vaccinate?” Arguments against vaccinations can be summed up in one word. Ludicrous. Jenny McCarthy and the anti-vaxxing army are putting children at risk more than a decade after the theory that vaccinations cause autism were dis-proven.
Still the ignorance rambles on and science is being ignored. We'd rather expose our children to the risk of disease and death than have them turn out autistic. Even though there is absolutely zero evidence to back the vaccination claim, fear and lack of education have caused a deadly outbreak of measles and mumps both here in the US and abroad in what we consider "civilized" countries.
*The face of a boy after 3 days with measles rash.
Have you ever wondered how an autistic person may feel about the issue? Many people are under the impression that autistic people are mentally incapable of coherent thought. They view autism as a completely debilitating disease rather than a neurological disorder.
A recent post shared on Facebook by a twenty-two year-old autistic woman has managed to put the issue into perspective from the vantage point of someone who lives with it everyday.
While 95% of the national US population has been vaccinated against the measles, certain communities have dipped below the 90% range. The Centers for Disease Control and Population have determined that the reasons vary as to why parents opt out of vaccinations.
Here’s her amazing post:
I am autistic and it never ceases to amaze me how scared anti-vaxxers are of autism. How they have no idea how completely ridiculous and offensive they are being I will never understand. They rather have dead children than have children like me and that just makes me sad, especially since that fear has absolutely no basis and puts so many lives at risk. I think about my mom and dad saying and doing the things they do and I feel very defeated and worthless. I can't imagine how the autistic children of anti-vaxxers feel!
But, fine. If they want me to be a monster, I'll be a monster.
Rawr, anti-vaxxers. Rawr.
In addition, Christian author and professor, Denny Burk, turns the question of vaccination into a moral one for Christians, asking pointedly: "Do we owe it to our neighbors to vaccinate our kids?" Burk highlights the following quote from a Washington Post article by Michael Gerson:
"Whether hipsters or home-schoolers, parents who don't vaccinate are free riders. Their children benefit from herd immunity without assuming the very small risk of adverse reaction to vaccination. It is a game that works - until too many play it."