I think it’s time for governments in developed countries to stop dilly-dallying with anti-vaxxers. I don’t know how the law is written in other parts of the world but where I am, refusing children’s access to necessary health care is considered child abuse.
If your country does not have that law, make it a political question in the next election!
So, is vaccination safe or will it give you autism?
The latest medical study, in Denmark, performed on 657,461 children born in Denmark, says no, vaccination will not give your children autism, or even increase the risk of getting a diagnose if you are already at risk of getting one.
The only criticism of this study, really is that perhaps the energy should be spent on how to deal with parents that are anti-vaxxers or influenced by them rather than trying to prove something that has been proven so many times so many years ago already.
One anti-vaxxer claim, among several, is that vaccinating your child will increase the risk of it contracting autism. Ok, let’s assume this is true even if it has been disproven over and over again… after all, it must be a worldwide conspiracy of medical companies wanting to poison people for profit, right?
Let’s look at the alternatives. For instance, the MMR-vaccine:
The MMR vaccine is a vaccine against measles, mumps, and rubella (German measles). The first dose is generally given to children around 9 to 15 months of age, with a second dose at 15 months to 6 years of age, with at least 4 weeks between the doses. After two doses, 97% of people are protected against measles, 88% against mumps, and at least 97% against rubella.
So what are measles, mumps, and rubella?
Measles is highly contagious. If a person with it walks into a group without vaccination, they will most likely get it. But hey, only 25% needs to be hospitalized and only 1-2 in 1000 will die from it. Among the complications are permanent hearing loss or lethal brain swelling… (Lethal as in, it’s the last medical condition you’ll ever have!)
Mumps is also highly contagious. You can pretty much bet, if you meet someone with it (for instance a fellow anti-vaxxer) you’ll get it. If you’re a man that has completed puberty you suffer a 15–40% risk of getting a painful testicular inflammation (if your parents are anti-vaxxers, maybe you should verify they aren’t also a man-haters?) But then again, it can also give you ovarian inflammation. And brain inflammation.
Rubella is so mild you may not even know you have it… if you are a pregnant woman, on the other hand, congenital rubella syndrome (CRS) can occur in the fetus. And this is not funny. It can turn the baby deaf, blind, and dumb (intellectually disabled). I don’t know how to get closer to a classical medieval curse than that.
And an anti-vaxxer is willing to abuse their children with all this to avoid autism.
I can’t compare risks and statistics since there is no scientific material determining the risk of contracting autism from vaccines since there is no scientific proof this can even happen, but let’s be generous and pretend the risk is about equal to the risks of the complications of the above diseases.
As a person with autism, I’d like to take the opportunity to say this to the anti-vaxxer movement:
Fuck you too!
You’re claiming that you’d rather have lethal brain swelling, painful testicular inflammation, and deaf, blind, and intellectually impaired children than have autism?
Say it to my face and I’ll do my damndest to sue your ass off and use every cent of it to lobby for the criminalization of anti-vaxxing!
And no, I wouldn’t do it for some kind of petty revenge. I’d like to see a criminalization of anti-vaxxing to drive home the seriousness of this behavior.
Refusing to vaccinate your children isn’t a lifestyle choice or even a question of individual freedom.
I’d compare it to an act of terror.
Terrorists would drool over the above percentages and effects if they could devise a bomb that spread them in a western country!
Header image by DPP Law, Link.