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Maybe that title is mean.  But I’m angry.

(For the record — “pro- vaccine” means “pushes vaccines on everyone and thinks people shouldn’t have a choice” not “thinks vaccines are the right choice for their family and believes ‘to each his own.’”)

I truly have nothing but contempt for this movement, who think they can limit others’ freedom because of their personal belief in vaccines.  This latest bit of news shows pretty clearly how they can’t think critically, and therefore shouldn’t be allowed to make decisions for anyone else (not that they should anyway).

The pro- vaccine logic goes a little bit like this:

Vaccinate everyone as much as possible! … Some people opt out … People are getting sick because we don’t vaccinate enough! … Vaccine rates go up, more people get sick …  Blame the unvaccinated!  They’re not listening to us!!

There are some disease outbreaks now (mostly whooping cough).  But there’s also evidence of mutating strains and vaccine failure.  They refuse to consider this evidence, pretend it doesn’t exist, and scream louder at the unvaccinated crowd.  That’s just brilliant.  And then this happened….

The Map

The Council of Foreign Relations has been tracking outbreaks of vaccine-preventable disease since 2008.  They’ve created an interactive map, showing which diseases are having outbreaks and where.  Each disease has its own color, and appears in the area where it occurred.  The size of the circle relates to how many cases there were (and if you hover over the circle, it will tell you exactly how many cases).

This is actually really neat, and there’s a lot we could learn from it.  Assuming, that is, we engage our brains and use critical thinking skills.

In the U.S., the single most common disease was whooping cough.  Why?

Overall, the kindergarteners entering in the fall of 2013 had over 95% DTaP completion rate (varying from 83 – 99.9% depending on state).  We’re at the level that supposedly provides “herd immunity” but a lot of people are getting pertussis anyway.  And if you look at the map, some states with very high vaccination coverage had major outbreaks.

Plus if you look at the CDC’s historical data, in 1997 the coverage rate for four doses of DTP was just 81%!  That means in the last 25(ish) years, coverage has significantly increased yet so have the cases of pertussis.  (There were 6,564 cases of pertussis in 1997, or about 2.7 per 100,000 people.  In 2012, there were 47,277 cases, or 15.4 per 100,000 people.)

This would suggest that it’s not childhood vaccination rates that are causing the pertussis outbreak.  To anyone with any critical thinking skills, something else is going on.  But oh no — they have to blame those “anti-vaccine parents” anyway.  It’s easier to lead the witch hunt if you can scare people with misrepresented data….

But more importantly, what is going on?  There are a few possibilities:

  • Adult Tdap rates are low and they are spreading pertussis, possibly unknowingly (it’s often minor in adults)
  • The vaccine is failing, and people who are vaccinated are getting pertussis anyway
  • Pertussis is mutating, and the strain circulating isn’t covered by the vaccine

Let’s explore those a little more.

Adult Tdap Rates Are Low

About a year ago, the Annals of Internal Medicine announced an adult vaccination schedule for the first time.  This includes 1 dose of Tdap, or a dose for women with each pregnancy.  Since the schedule is brand new, vaccination rates are likely to be lower.  The CDC also doesn’t have a very accurate count on who has received a Tdap vs. Td (just tetanus).  It’s estimated that around 60% of adults have received some form of tetanus-containing vaccine, which may or may not have contained the pertussis element.  

Despite the uncertain numbers, it’s likely that adult coverage is fairly low (although getting higher, since the new recommendations have come out).  We know that the vaccine lasts for around 5 (or up to 12) years, so adult rates being low could be a factor in pertussis spreading.  

(However, “protection” is estimated based on antibody levels, but antibody levels don’t correlate well with protection against pertussis.)

The Vaccine is Failing

We’re told that pertussis rates “must” be high because so many people aren’t vaccinating.  But what does the actual data say?

According to the CDC, the vast majority of people who are getting pertussis were fully vaccinated.  According to this data, 59% had 3 or more doses of DTaP.  Just 9% were completely unvaccinated.  In fact, a full 73% had had at least one dose of DTaP!

Which leads me to the last point….

Pertussis Strains Circulating Aren’t Covered by the Vaccine

There are two main forms of pertussis: pertussis, and parapertussis.  It is theorized that parapertussis is responsible for many of the cases that we’re seeing now.  In fact, this study from Penn State shows that getting a DTaP vaccine actually increases the colonization of parapertussis, making infection more likely!

This study shows that when vaccine coverage increases, so do rates of parapertussis.

How Do We Protect Infants?

Ultimately, any or all of these things could be a factor in why pertussis cases are increasing.  What’s not a factor is “parents who don’t vaccinate.”  That’s far too simplistic, and basically disproven by point #2 above, as well as the overall increase in vaccination coverage over the last 15 – 20 years.

But the real question we should be asking isn’t “whose fault is this,” but “how do we protect young infants?”

That’s something that we should be asking, because young babies are at risk.  This is despite high vaccination coverage.  We could look at all the data available to us and decide what the best option is.  Some will say vaccines (the “cocooning” that is being suggested — all adults in contact with newborns should receive Tdap) and others will say something else.

I would suggest breastfeeding, babywearing, keeping new babies out of public places where possible, especially in the first month or two.  I would suggest adults acquire natural immunity to pertussis if at all possible, because they will pass this to their newborns!  

Regardless — there’s a lot to learn here.  There’s a lot to be discussed.  It’s a good conversation to have.

And yet, people are too busy focusing on the overly simplistic (and incorrect) conclusion of, “It’s those unvaccinated peoples’ fault.  We need to blame them and shame them some more, and try to scare them into vaccinating.”

I have had enough of that.

Stop trying to scare or shame people.  Start asking the tough questions and having a little scientific curiosity.  Start having honest discussions and respecting peoples’ input.  Because these latest scare tactics lead me to believe that the people using them simply aren’t capable of this level of critical thinking.  They aren’t capable of looking at actual data, or history, and drawing interesting and complex conclusions.  No, they’ve made up their minds that everything is “those darn non-vaccinating parents’ fault” and they’re not open to evidence that might suggest something different.

Parents on the fence, ask more questions.  Demand more answers.  Don’t believe everything you read.  (Including here — all my sources are linked, so feel free to read them for yourself.)  Maybe then we can have a respectful discussion on an important topic, without the fear.

What do you think about the latest scare tactics?


This is the writings of:

Kate is wife to Ben and mommy to Bekah (5), Daniel (4), Jacob (2), and Nathan (born March 2013). She is passionate about God, health, and food. She has written 7 cookbooks and a book entitled A Practical Guide to Children's Health. When she's not blogging, she's in the kitchen, sewing, or homeschooling her children. You can also find her as a contributor at Keeper of the Home.

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97 Comments

  1. Amen, sister. This stuff is getting old. I was shaking I was so angry after I saw a friend post this and I read it. And just saddened by a nurse’s response to my friend that it was a “great article” and her applauding the doctors who drop their patients for not vaccinating to teach the parents a lesson until they “wisen up”. Thanks for posting a great response. I’d be curious to know the vaccination rates in the countries with no dots (parts of South America, Northern Africa, and a few middle eastern countries from what I could see) or if they just don’t report them?

    Reply

    • Hi Carrie,

      I can’t find the vaccination rates for those countries right now. WHO should have them (www.who.int) although I’d imagine they’re kind of uncertain. I would think they are lower than the US for sure!

      Reply

      • I agree with your stance. I held out for 5 years and did not vaccinate. However, I live in a rural area and had exhausted my medical options. My child was basically pretty healthy and didn’t require much. I was usually able to see a physician around 3 times before they would realize I was not vaccinating and then they would refuse to see my child. which forced me to go to hospital emergency room for earaches etc. I finally caved so she could have regular medical care. How do you deal with this?

        Reply

        • Hi Pam,

          In that case, I would honestly avoid regular medical care, or drive further to have an annual visit only. I would not make medical decisions based on doctors bullying me. That’s rough though. :(

          Reply

        • I would start reading up on how to heal earaches and the like with herbs and natural remedies. Garlic oil (olive oil, or oil of your choice infused with garlic) is a great remedy for ear infections. Did you know that some ear infections are caused by viruses, and so wouldn’t even respond to antibiotics? Also, did you know that most ear infections clear by themselves within 2 to 3 days? And, you can use numbing ear drops to help with discomfort in the meantime. For sure get out the garlic oil as it will help speed healing. Here’s an article about ear infections:
          http://www.nytimes.com/ref/health/healthguide/esn-earinfections-ess.html

          Reply

  2. Fear tactics are generally how this country operates. Instill fear in as many people as possible, in order to control their thinking and decisions. After that, just keep feeding them talking points, false or not, and the message will spread, the truth will get lost in the shuffle, and before long there won’t be many asking questions. If questions are asked, points are raised, then put more talking points out there.

    Unfortunately, this is true, whether on the topic of vaccinations or not. Quite simply, if you ask me, you’ve hit the nail on the head. Let’s all ask questions, listen to others, and be open to seeing/hearing information that might differ from our thoughts/ideas/opinions. :)

    Reply

  3. So if I’m reading this right, you’re upset that people are being asked to vaccinate against things that are either mutating or have low vaccination rates in adults. How do you explain away the measles outbreaks? What exactly is your scientific evidence for not vaccinating children?

    Reply

    • Hi Linda,

      I have many, many articles on here (with sources cited) explaining my position on vaccines. It would be impossible to type it all here because it’s long and complicated. There is quite a lot of scientific evidence to suggest that vaccination isn’t the best way to protect children.

      Also, I wouldn’t say I’m upset about people being asked to vaccinate. I’m upset about people yelling at other, shaming others, bullying others because they’ve made a different choice. This isn’t okay.

      As for measles, as of the end of August 2013 (the most recent data I can find), there were 159 cases of measles reported in 2013. Of these, there were zero deaths and zero permanent disability. I am not concerned with people who get the measles and fully recover.

      Please feel free to go here to read more on my position: http://www.modernalternativemama.com/blog/category/natural-health-3/drugs-and-vaccines/#.UuJ_ohAo6M8

      Reply

      • I read through a few of your other posts on vaccines. I have two issues with the way you have presented materials. It’s great that you post links to various sites that further explain what goes into vaccines, but from the 4-5 of those links I clicked on, most of the time it doesn’t explain in what quantities these ingredients are safe. For example, people have been using lye in soaps for hundreds of years. Obviously lye is only one part of soap.

        Secondly, in at least your vaccines and autism post, you seem very skeptical of the CDC or anyone with ties to a pharmaceutical company. You question their study methods, but then later cite a phone survey as study that supports the link between autism and vaccines. Who are the impartial researchers your are looking for to do these studies? The government (who I would think would have a public health interest in keeping us safe) isn’t doing a good enough job, and you don’t think the pharmaceutical companies are critical enough of themselves, which I agree can be a risk. (Monsanto, anyone?)

        Reply

        • Where is your critique of the pro-autism and vaccination link? You might have done this somewhere else on your site (first time visitor from a Facebook post), but I would imagine new parents are searching for the best info they can find out there: what about reminding them the other possible causes of autism being researched?

          In your entire polio article, you didn’t remind people that polio is a virus, but instead looked at what could have caused a spike in outbreaks. Polio is contagious. It might have been helped spread by the crop chemicals you mentioned, but it is spread through contact of fecal matter from an infected person. One of the symptoms of arsenic poisoning is diarrhea. Can you see how that might be a problem in developing countries?

          Also, your risk/benefit analysis posts are interesting. You post a lot about the percent of adverse reactions that were serious, but you don’t post about the percent of people that get adverse reactions.

          Reply

          • I think I glanced at something that pointed to you being anti-antibiotics. I agree with you! Unless you have a life-threatening illness, most things can be ridden out. Nobody needs a Z-pac for every single sinus infection. Look at all of the antibiotics that don’t work and mutating bacteria. Scary!

            I wil definitely check out more of your site. I’m all about eating healthy and taking care of your body to stay well, not just pop pills all of the time. I just happen to disagree with you on vaccines.

            Thanks for your time!

        • I can hopefully possibly answer this one for you (or just create more questions). :) When it comes to the individual ingredients, there is the issue of ingestion v. injection. The FDA lists the amounts that are considered safe and not safe for many of these ingredients, but usually just for *ingestion*, not injection (side note: they have no data on the effects of all the ingredients put together). The body metabolizes things eaten very differently than substances injected into the blood stream or muscles. Our digestive system is a very effective filter. Let’s take a look at aluminum, a common ingredient in childhood vaccines. Ingested aluminum is absorbed by the GI tract, but only about 1% of the amount ingested is absorbed. In that way you would have to eat massive amounts to get anywhere close to the 350mcg the FDA says is the toxic dose (also called “body burden”) for an adult body. The body eliminates 99% of ingested aluminum through your poop. However, when injected, ALL of the amount injected stays in your body, bonding to mostly bones and lung and neuro/brain tissue, and it takes 24 hours to get only 50-75% of the injected aluminum out of the body, depending on the body. Leaving 50-25% still in body tissue. The DTaP (given to children), depending on the manufacturer, has 170- 625 mcg per vaccine. According to Merck, their Hep. B vaccine has 500 mcg of aluminum. Far above the toxic dose of 350 mcg for an adult, injected into a newborn. So the issue of ingestion v. injection is an interesting one, worth considering. I don’t have time to go through and find all the toxic amounts for each ingredient and compare them to the vaccine, them compare ingested ingredient to injected ingredient, but I’m sure you could find those amount with some sleuthing. Here’s where I got my numbers: http://www.fda.gov/…/approvedproducts/ucm101580.pdf (170 mcg in this particular brand)

          http://www.merck.com/…/r/recombivax_hb/recombivax_pi.pdf (the Hep. B has a whopping 500 mcg of aluminum and this is injected into newborn babies)

          http://www.immunizationinfo.org/

          http://www.sciencedirect.com/…/pii/S0273230000914417

          http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/tf.asp?id=190&tid=34

          http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/98fr/oc0367.pdf

          Happy hunting!

          Reply

          • Thats all a moot point if you specifically ask for a single dose vaccine. The preservative is not necessary for single doses.

          • Chelsea—can I ask where we can find the info that single dose vaccines do not have preservatives? Why would a single dose vaccine not need a preservative? Preservatives help keep germs from growing in the vaccine vial. Why would having only one vaccine in the vial somehow exempt it from ever growing germs in it? That doesn’t make sense to me.

          • A single dose vaccine doesn’t need a preservative because it is used only once, and then it is gone. Multi-dose vials have needles dipped in repeatedly, which could cause contamination — hence the need for a preservative. Single-dose vials do contain antibiotics, though.

        • Simpsonwood CDC Conference 2000 – Research it.

          Reply

        • Linda,
          I make my own soap and the lye that is used actually undergoes a chemical reaction when combined with the fats, a process called saponification so that the chemical structure that is lye is no longer present nor caustic.
          I do understand the point you were trying to make but using the cosmetic industry (which has no formal safety standards and is responsible for adding over 40000 chemicals to their products) not exactly a valid point and just because its what is done does not make it okay.
          I would also question why the measles outbreak is mostly happening to the fully vaccinated people. I recently read an article (on mainstream media source CBC of all places) that all but ONE of the people who contracted measles were fully vaxxed. Doesn’t that make you wonder?

          Reply

  4. Good article you have written. But the thing I am fearful of, you only just touched on. ” I would suggest breastfeeding, babywearing, keeping new babies out of public places where possible, especially in the first month or two.” So what do you do if you have more than one kid, and your kindergarten age kid brings it home. There is no amount of baby wearing that will protect you. And what if you couldn’t breastfeed, or you have adopted a newborn, what do you do to protect baby? I know vaccinating isn’t the answer if vaccinated people are getting it. But I also wonder if unvaccinated people aren’t getting it to the same rate as vaccinated, because there is a trend here where I live, that all goes together, and it looks like this:
    Non-vaccinating/ Wholefood/ Organic eating/ HOMESCHOOLER. And it is the vast numbers of non-vaccinating parents are homeschooling, therefore diminishing their exposure. I am sure some non-vax parents send their kids to school, and some vax parents keep their kids home. But I am just telling you what the majority is here. What do you think? And if you can’t breastfeed, how can you improve the immune system of your baby? So if they do get whooping cough, It won’t kill them?

    Reply

    • There are so many other options to improving immunity than vaccines- 1. remove GMO and sugar based foods form the house- (corn, soy, wheat) these have been show to weaken the immune system. 2. Eat or drink plenty of greens – kale, cabbage, brussel sprouts, spinach, and so on- I shredded mine for years and put in meatloaf and hamburgers – kids never knew they were eating them. 3. Get you child adjusted- chiropractic care has show to increase AIDS patients t cell immunity by 50% in 6 months- so in a normal immune system this is going to be incredible. 4. Get the book Family Guide to Homeopathy : Symptoms and Natural Solutions by Lockie, Andrew- one of the BEST written books on how to use homeopathy I have ever come across. become familiar with what you will need to have on hand for simple and complicated illness. 5. Eliminate the use of Tylenol and Motrin in your house- both are shown to destroy liver function which long term is key to your immunity. 6. Use Redmond’s Real Salt in all your cooking has a natural form of iodine which keeps the thyroid healthy, thus your immune system stronger. I did not homeschool any of my kids, have chosen to be picky on what foods I eat, rely heavily on homeopathics, herbs and my chiropractor. My oldest is in college my youngest in1st grade. None are vaccinated and have obtained natural immunity to just about every childhood disease listed! Hope this helps.

      Reply

      • YES. THIS is the kind of information that needs to be spread, not simply, “Get the shot.” It makes me so sad that these basic tools for immunity are not commonly known. I was 23 before I had ever HEARD that eating sugar was a bad idea if you were sick because it affects the immune response. (Just lucky I ran into a research-reading nurse at that point).

        Kate, sincere thanks as always for doing this research. It is so helpful!

        Reply

    • Hi Rebecca,

      That’s tough. I would recommend offering a non-breastfed baby a probiotic that’s specifically made for infants. Also encouraging the older children not to touch the baby’s face or hands as much as possible. Vitamin C (preferably pure acerola powder) for anyone who is sick (tiny doses for the baby, or mom takes it if breastfeeding). When a kid comes home from school, immediately have him/her wash hands and change into “play clothes” before touching baby. These things will all reduce the chances of infection. Parents can do the same when entering the home — wash hands, change clothes. (Many medical professionals do exactly this because they know they’re exposed to a lot of things.)

      Reply

  5. thank you for this great post! I was so irritated when I saw a friend post this and when I made a comment another friend of hers (very pro vaccines) went crazy. He started just cussing and calling me a moron to telling me that I should go kill myself. I know he clearly got off the topic, all I was trying to do was have a real conversation about it.

    Reply

  6. Well done!
    Thank-you. I will be sharing this.

    Reply

  7. You’re the one who has troubles with critical thinking skills. The posted article is quite illogical. For example, “I truly have nothing but contempt for this movement, who think they can limit others’ freedom because of their personal belief in vaccines.” That’s an embarassingly obvious straw man. The people who think that people should be required to have vaccines don’t think this “because of their personal belief in vaccines”. They think this because of the hard, incontrovertible, scientific evidence that vaccines prevent serious outbreaks of deadly diseases. This person thinks that she can argue against this evidence by claiming that it is just a matter of personal belief. That’s like someone trying to escape my telling them about the Gospel by saying that that is just my personal belief. In short, it’s a pathetic, straw man argument. Being a straw man argument, it’s illogical. The straw man fallacy is one of the most basic logical fallacies.

    Reply

    • That’s so interesting.

      You hide behind an obviously fake name, first. Second, you clearly can’t refute my actual argument with facts (I’ll give you a hint: “I truly have nothing but contempt for this movement…” was not part of it), so you pick out a personal opinion statement, ignore all the data, and try to criticize it.

      Have you ever heard of cognitive dissonance? You are displaying a classic example.

      Reply

      • Kate,

        You are so correct!
        I thought I was having ‘discourse’ last night. Other party saw it as an argument! I am ‘anti-vax’ and stated my reasons (the arguments you used in the article) and said, ‘did you know…’. And then asked upon what evidence had she based her opinions? She took that as, ”…disrespectful to question my logic (i.e. my intelligence)” LOL, I hadn’t said a word about her intelligence and her response was ”because I think so”. Ah well, There are none so blind as those that cannot see. And, as Mark Twain said, ”it is easier to fool people than to convince them they have been fooled.” Keep up the good work!

        Reply

      • “I truly have nothing but contempt for this movement, who think they can limit others’ freedom because of their personal belief in vaccines.”

        If you’re saying people can’t think critically when they’re looking at studies and evidence that supports the use of vaccines, and you’re finding studies and evidence that support your position, that’s cognitive dissonance and a straw man argument.

        Reply

    • Actually, Mosquito…it was very logical. I used to be a lemming just like you. I began researching both sides of the controversy well over 17 years ago to prove that vaccines were indeed very safe. I was shocked at what I was learning. I went to seminars, talked to world renowned doctors, read and watched everything I could get my hands on. Knowing all I know now…I NEVER would have allowed my child to become the equivalent of a lab monkey by letting him be injected with poisons.
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Measles
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Mumps
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Rubella
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Pertussis
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Flu
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Shingles
      Your child has the CHANCE of getting over Chicken Pox
      My child will NEVER have the chance of getting over his Autism
      So thanks…but no thanks. If anything, it is those of us who have been fully vaccinated who are a much greater risk to others. Once I began thinking for myself rather than taking everything I was told by my government, CDC, FDA, and big pharma as gospel…I finally saw that I was doing more harm than good. If you take the time to educate yourself rather than take the word of those making money off each and every shot…you too will find that you have been lied to. I pray you do so before you have a child or grandchild who is harmed and/or dies due to the ongoing lies and ignorance that you are fed.

      Reply

    • Tell that to the thousands of parents of children who have become autistic as a result of these ‘safe’ vaccinations…

      Reply

      • 1- There is absolutely no evidence, no scientific proof, and no correlation between vaccines and autism. To the contrary, there are a host of studies proving that it in fact does not.

        Further, the guy that started that rumor with a falsified “study” has since lost his medical license. So there you go.

        2- The reason why pertussis is up now when vaccination rates are so high is because the effect of not being vaccinated takes a while to show up in statistical data, including disease outbreaks. That means that as vaccination rate goes up, disease rate will continue to go up for a period of time until full immunity is established among newly vaccinated. Beyond that, yes there is a possibility of mutation – which is, incidentally, caused by A RESURGENCE OF THE DISEASE DIRECTLY CAUSED BY NON-VACCINATION.

        3- With regards to measles, which I saw also mentioned above in the comments (I believe) – you aren’t concerned with cases where death or considerable disability occurs? WHAT?! Measles may not have caused either in recent cases – thanks to modern medicine – but it can AND has caused both, and if it ends up mutating, because (again) people refuse to vaccinate.

        4- The majority of people that I know that are pro-vaccine are, as you say “vaccine pushers” not because they are crazy or illogical or unable to read through facts, but because they CAN read, ARE able to ascertain factual data from hoo-haa, and – more often than you’d think – have witnessed firsthand a child die from one of the terrible TERRIBLE diseases they could have easily avoided through vaccination.

        It is hard to take someone seriously who starts off talking about wanting to talk logically and sensibly, but at the same time goes crazy about the “pro-vaxxers” and references nothing but hearsay and unproven claims.

        A few final notes:

        -I would be careful not to refer to the pro-vaccine advocation as a “movement.” Vaccines have been around much longer than this anti-vaccine fear mongering. Being pro-vaccine is not a movement, it is an established medical practice that has been the safest status quo for YEARS.

        -Documented autism has been around for much much longer than vaccines have, so I would love to know how that happened if autism is caused by vaccines.

        - Lastly – and I cannot believe I spent this much time trying to reason with a completely unreasonable post – no one is actually trying to PUSH anything down your family’s throats. We’re just saying – look…you are wrong – factually, categorically, scientifically, logically, and even from an humanitarian standpoint. It has been proven over, and over, and over, and OVER again. The holes have been poked in the anti-vaccine argument(s) until there is nothing left there but nonsense and un-connectable lines. What we ARE trying to say though is that it would be amazing if you would keep your unvaccinated family away from mine. Because if these life-threatening and debilitating diseases ever mutate into a form that the vaccines and modern medicine do not cover, it will forever be YOUR FAULT, and you will endanger the lives of OUR families when we did not make such irresponsible decisions. As I see it, our responsibility to our children and to our community is to protect life. PROTECT. Not act irrationally out of fear, thereby endangering the future of everyone.

        Reply

        • 1. Wrong. There are hundreds of studies showing a correlation between vaccines and autism. “That one study” wasn’t about vaccines and autism, it was about bowel disease, it wasn’t disproven, and it never suggested the MMR caused autism. That was a run-away media conclusion. Look up the actual study and read it. You can find a list of over 60 additional studies here: http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.co.uk/2007/06/no-evidence-of-any-link.html

          2. If you read through the comments, people corrected my original statistic from 1997 (which was for younger children) and showed that, in kindergarteners, the rate has always been at or above 95%. Which means that despite *continued* high vaccination rates, pertussis cases are increasing sharply. This is the fault of vaccine failure or disease mutation caused by vaccination…not people who don’t vaccinate. That is just illogical. It’s not unlike antibiotic use leading to resistance…vaccine use leads to disease mutation (“resistance”) too.

          3. You misread what I wrote. I said I don’t care about *cases* if they do NOT cause death or disability. Minor illness from which people fully recover is not an issue.

          4. That implies that those who question vaccines are illiterate and stupid, which is not the case at all. People who question vaccines maintain scientific curiosity, and a desire to read as much scientific literature as possible. They may come to a different conclusion than you do, but that doesn’t make them stupid. It’s rude to suggest that you are superior because you believe in vaccines.

          I will refer to people who are pro-vaccine as a “movement” because this incessant bullying that’s going on now is unlike anything we’ve seen before. 10 or 20 or 50 years ago, people just said “vaccines are good.” But there wasn’t this huge smear campaign against anyone who dares question them. I’m targeting those who engage in unethical behavior, trying to shut down the conversation, refusing to allow others their opinion or their choice. That part is new.

          I don’t care how long that autism has been around. It didn’t matter much when it was 1 in 100,000 people. But in the 80s, it was 1 in 10,000. In 2000, it was 1 in 150. In 2008, it was 1 in 88. Early estimations place it around 1 in 50 now. What will it be (officially) in 2012? 2016? When the rate is nearly doubling in 8 years, that’s a huge problem. That’s not something that’s always been there. That’s not genetic. That’s not better diagnosis. That is a major epidemic that has clear environmental causes (no, not just vaccines) that is being ignored and written off. An epidemic that will have major social and economic issues. And yet, we’re freaking out because 150 kids got measles and recovered just fine. Why, exactly?

          Yeah, people are trying to PUSH stuff down other peoples’ throats. They’re calling for eliminating exemptions, making all vaccines — ALL — mandatory, suing parents who don’t vaccinate, jailing parents whose children *may* have passed along an illness. They’re stirring up anger and name calling. They’re asking, as you did, for people to be excluded from public places because of their vaccination status. They’re ostracizing people because of PERSONAL MEDICAL DECISIONS. That is wrong. Unfathomable.

          If you believe in vaccines, nobody is saying you can’t choose them for your children. You can. But stop treating those who have read the evidence and come to a different choice like they are idiots. Just.stop.doing.it.

          Reply

  8. Thank you for writing this rebuttal to that info-graphic! I simply have not had the time to contest it in my own webpage. Your links and writing squashed it!!! I have placed a link to your webpage on “Blogs I Love” page, and I will also link to this rebuttal and store it in my blog for reference. What a treat it is to come across your work. You have a ton of great information not just regarding vaccines!

    Blessings,

    Heather
    autismrawdata.net

    Reply

  9. I am an RN and have done countless hours of research on vaccines. I am also a mother of 4, ages 16, 12, 14mo and 2wks. My two eldest ( both girls) were vaxed on schedule and my two youngest (both boys) are vax free. The girls were always coming down with something and they always got it after a round of shots. I never questioned the shots. Not even for #2 who got a rare madtpiditis infection after the MMR at 12mo. #1 ended up with ear tubes and adenoids removed at age 5 due to recurring ear infections.

    As they got older I started to read a lot more about vax injury and after talking with their doctor, we agreeed to stop shots. He almost seemed relieved that I had come to this decision. I love that man for his ethics and for not being a pharma shill. He always sent me to natural remedies before pushing pharm.

    Then I went to nursing school and really dove into research on pharma. Oh my word. The unethical stuff I found was just too much and it wasn’t just vax. In 2011 I took a position of running shot clinics for a major corporation. The documentation I had to read was beyond mind numbing. I do not believe that the other nurses doing the clinics read itcall and I know doctors do not. In the manuals it clearly stated that vax do not work. We were giving a year old formula that year, mostly due to surplus! The industry is so full of contradictions that it is no wonder people get so confused.

    I now have my boys and they are vax free. Neither has had any illness outside of #3 having measles at 10.5mo. It was very short and cleared in 7 days and outside of the fever that I let burn he was not miserable. Now I have had some serious vax pushers give me hell saying it could have been prevented if I had vaxed. First of all, the MMR is not given until 12 or 15 mo. So there goes that argument. And the only person we were around was a child who had just gotten that shot. So I am going to suspect shedding as our route of infection. But since he was so healthy from not fighting other infections from shots that usually are given a birth and 2wks, 2, 4 and 6 mo…his immune system fought it off fast. And now he has natural immunity. Being educated on how to recognize and treat these childhood diseases is far more beneficial than any shots. If he had taken a bad turn I would have taken him in. That is the only reason I feel we need a doctor. Otherwise we stay out of his office.

    Vaccines are based on the flawed science of Pasteur who admitted that his theory was junk. Unfortunately our whole medical model is based upon it. Pasteurization was the worst thing we could have done to dairy as it has made it toxic to our bodies. And people wonder why we are chronically ill. We must shift to the pleomorphism model vs monomorphism and return to goo health. And until we reach critical mass, I will be a vax critic and do what I can to get people to see the double speak for themselves.

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    • Thank you so much for posting this. As part of the medical profession, I admire your honesty. I have three boys, and my only child who has had any vaccines was my oldest. I have from day one, been very uncomfortable with the immunization schedule and everything I’ve read about vaccines. I find it ridiculous how many parents wont allow their children to drink pop, eat candy, eat any processed food, yet they are so willing to inject multiple shots full of chemicals and disease into their children. My son Landon was 5 before he got any vaccines. I took him in because he stabbed his toe on a stick and got a pretty nasty infection. Of course, when the Doctor found out he hadn’t had any vaccines, including his DTap, she made me feel like I was the worse mother on the planet. She told me his chances of having Tetanus were so high, and that I have been beyond irresponsible. I actually left the clinic crying because she made me feel so horrible. Unfortunately, I caved because of the guilt her and three nurses gave me, and went ahead and gave him the DTap. He had a reaction, which I feared. He had a 103 fever for over a week, his arm was so red and swollen it looked like I literally blew up a balloon and put it under his skin, The worst part, his entire behavior changed. He started having severe temper tantrums, he would cry all the time for no reason, he couldn’t sit still. It was the longest and scariest three weeks of my life. It started making me question the whole autism theory. I told my husband, had we actually given him all the doses the doctors recommend, would he be the same kid he is today. I saw enough that one time, that I will never allow someone to guilt me again. I have a 5 year old, 3 year old, and a 10 mth old. The worse illness our family has seen, is a mild ear infection and a cold that lasted a few days. For the most part, our family is healthy. I thank you for posting what your research found, and it gives me comfort to know that there are other mothers out there that have given up hours of time to do research like I have. It scares the crap out of me when I see how high the rate of vaccines have grown in the past 10 years, along with the increase of child disorders and cancers. Anybody who says injecting chemicals into a child is safe, will never ever convince me. I read a book given to me by my Chiropractor, called “What Your Doctor May NOT Tell You About Childrens Vaccinations by Stephanie Cave. It was the most alarming book I have ever finished. I suggest ALL parents pro-vaccine or anti-vaccine to read it. Thank you for this post.

      Reply

    • Good luck sending your kids to college. they will not let your children attend until they have had all of their vaccinations. so while you sit on your high horse thinking not vaccinating is okay, you not only risk them catching a deadly disease, but you also risk them ever going to college or having a doctor that is willing to see them.

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      • Oh, this is a silly comment.

        First of all, my vaccination decision doesn’t make me better or worse than any other parent. I’m not on a “high horse,” I simply have chosen what I believe to be best for my family. Second, these diseases are not deadly — look it up, you seem very scared. Third, colleges, like other schools, have exemptions, so people can go even if unvaccinated. Fourth, we’ve seen many doctors (yes, MDs, not alternative doctors) who are perfectly fine with them not being vaccinated. Any other complaints?

        I suggest you worry more about your own family than mine.

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        • I have to agree with the poster here, about the high horse. I am 57 years old and I admire the energy you have to do all this “research”. I originally came to your site because of interesting things you were writing about natural food. I think in the big picture you have a lot of good instincts and the chutzpah to go after EVIDENCE for what you believe in. My suggestion for you is to join a writing class and learn how to present your ideas in a more balanced way, leaving accusation, name calling, straw man, ad hominem attacks, out of it. Your emotions get all into what you write and eventually it leaves you preaching to the choir. Also my suggestion is to find a mentor who is older and more experienced You have a lot to offer. But I’m tired of the attacks.

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          • Dear god, join a writing class, find a mentor?? Lol. This blog is so popular precisely because of the way she writes, people love it, I love it. Nowhere on this post does she insinuate she is any better than anyone else, but rightly so, points out grievous errors in the logic of many pro-vaxxers. I pray she doesn’t listen to your “advice” Karuna.

      • I’m in college. And I’ve never been vaccinated. You obviously have no idea what your’e talking about. There’s these handy things called “vaccine exemptions”. Look ‘em up. Also, my kids see their doctor regularly. They are not vaccinated. I’ve seen plenty of doctors, as has my husband, and neither of us are vaccinated. You are mistaken.

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      • In the US perhaps, but it’s not like that everywhere. Give them an international education. It would probably be cheaper anyway.

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        • I don’t see what the US situation (with good nutrition, sanitation, access to clean water and medical care) has to do with the third world. Sure, disease can be imported, but the issue isn’t where they come from, but how well the person can handle it. And someone who’s well nourished and can see a doctor if needed is going to do just fine.

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  10. good article. if people are getting parapertussis, then what percent of the 59% (that had 3 or more DTaP vaxs) actually had pertussis/parapertussis. if none had pertussis, then i would wonder: Did the vaccine work against pertussis? also, the 9% that were unvax’d, did they have parapertussis or pertussis?

    Maybe we don’t know the answer…

    also, regarding breastfeeding, some mamas do not produce enough (due to insufficient glandular tissue), so it is difficult for their babies to receive immunities from their mama… and their are not enough milk donors out there. should one vax then?

    signed,
    on-the-fence

    Reply

    • Hi,

      I don’t believe people were tested for what form of pertussis they had. I think they have just discovered that parapertussis is infecting people and they really don’t know who had what.

      As far as breastfeeding and vaccinating…I would personally try to keep baby in the house, seek out donor milk (even if it only covered some of baby’s needs), and do probiotics. If mama wants to breastfeed, and is able, even if not very much, I would encourage that too. I hope that helps.

      Reply

  11. Thank you for addressing this issue. I do not see the original article or graphic, but it may be because I’m on mobile. Seems the more I read, the more fallacies I see with vaccines. I’m so thankful that we decided to wait with my daughter until we were sure. We’re sure of our decision now. My next project is to compile all the vaccine info I have into one binder. Website articles, etc, that way it’s in one place and I don’t have to worry about losing the info if I don’t have internet.

    Reply

  12. Couldn’t agree more! Great writing. You might be interested in yet another thing the CDC got completely wrong. http://regardingparents.wordpress.com/2013/04/19/lay-that-baby-down-on-his-tummy/

    Reply

  13. I just fell in love a little bit. Thank you so much for a clear, well written, respectful and evidence based (with some logic thought) point of view. Vaccines have been a passion of mine ever since I got my DC. I’m burning out, arguing with people who just want to point fingers (from both sides). We need to come together and start thinking more objectively and critically, and see if we can find out what’s really going on. This was really a pleasure to read.

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  14. Hi! A question about your opinion on a matter…

    I’m currently 3 months pregnant (first time mom) and know I will probably be faced with the choice of getting the pertussis vaccine, so I’m trying to consider very carefully. Doing some careful research about vaccine ingredients and safety for TDap is on my to do list, but I haven’t done this yet. I’m generally wary of but not necessarily against vaccines. I think in general we are over-vaccinated, but I can also see the benefit of some vaccines in some cases. I’ve chosen not to get a flu vaccine during pregnancy because I’m in good health, very rarely get sick (and when so, only with minor colds), and therefore I couldn’t justify the possible risk of the flu vaccine to my developing, first trimester baby. However, as far as pertussis goes, I’m wondering your opinion on if the possible vaccine benefits would outweigh the risks. I do plan to breastfeed, babywear, etc., but I don’t know if I could live with myself if my baby got whooping cough as a newborn and had complications, or worse. Do you think there are any significant risks to me (or baby) in getting a pertussis vaccine as a healthy adult (eating a real food diet, strong immune system, etc)? I know it does not have mercury, so that’s good at least. I’m not sure if I articulated my concerns well, but I guess basically I’m asking about risk/benefits of getting the TDap vaccine in late pregnancy.

    Reply

    • Sorry to jump on to your thread, but I thought some numbers might help. Despite all of the commercials, there are very few deaths occurring from pertussis. Yes, there is an outbreak, as stated in the article (whether or not it’s pertussis or parapertussis), but few deaths occurring. More recent years have data available as well. In 2012 there were 20 in the US.

      http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/g/cases&deaths.PDF

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    • If you are healthy, don’t get sick, etc. then why are you worried about contracting pertussis any more than any other disease? Doctors are now using the “it could kill you/your baby” argument to get pregnant women to get the flu shot too.

      Pertussis is just another disease. If you are healthy (truly healthy) you probably won’t get it anyway.

      I was exposed unknowingly on two separate occasions during a local outbreak, and I was 32ish weeks pregnant at the time. A BUNCH of us non-vaxers were exposed when a local family got it (half of them were vaccinated by the way). But other than the ‘original’ family there ended up being one documented positive test in the group of friends. It was an unremarkable case.
      Essentially, you would never forgive yourself if your baby got a complicated case of pertussis. But is the same true if your baby (or you) suffered a vaccine injury? The risks are real. I definitely recommend reading the risk/benefit analysis if you haven’t already, or read it again.

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    • Hi Heather,

      The idea of a newborn catching pertussis is scary, I know. It was going around last winter in my area — some of my friends had it — when my fourth baby was due (born in March 2013). I opted not to get a Tdap for myself.

      It’s important to know a few things about pertussis and newborns. First, the absolute risk of a newborn dying is tiny. In 2012, there were over 47,000 cases, and only 20 deaths (11 in young infants). Second, vaccinated adults can carry pertussis without knowing it (or becoming ill) and pass it to their newborns. Plus, it is theorized many cases now are caused by parapertussis, which isn’t covered by the vaccine.

      On the other side, most studies I can find claim that Tdap is safe in late pregnancy. Some alternative sources claim it caused high numbers of fetal death, but I can’t find any unbiased studies to support that.

      Ultimately there’s not a lot of good data on how safe it is and how well it works. Thousands of pregnant women have received it with no apparent issue. Most babies don’t catch or die of pertussis whether the moms receive the shot or not. Up to you what you want to do.

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      • Thanks for the perspective and different views!

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        • If the doctor asks you about the TDap, ask for the package insert. It states very clearly in the insert that it is not intended for (and hasn’t been tested on) pregnant women. Don’t get it.

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  15. Thank you so much for a thoughtful post. It’s unfortunately a rarity in the pro-vax/anti-vax world as people seem to have taken a hard stance in many ashes without doing any research. For me, one of the most insufferable arguments on this subject is the one with a person who is regurgitating information that they learned in a commercial, from a doctor, or just about anywhere without actually seeking out the real sources of the data. At first, I thought that by digging some holes in those common statements that I could point others to the sources, not to change their minds, but to create an understanding between us when they realized that the very data they were citing (CDC, etc) was where I made my case.

    Instead, they refuse to even look and will only yell louder and demand that I stop discussing my vaccine stance. I’m a statistician; to me, numbers speak, and they’re pretty convincing to a person looking for logic. I will not stop discussing when I hear a person being lied to and told their child will not be able to go to school; I’ll shine a light on the truth and help them find their state’s exemption language.

    If it’s an epidemiologist or another scientist who works with infectious diseases for a living, sure, go ahead and yell. Otherwise, the secondhand bits of rant are just obnoxious bullying.

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    • Your observation is so correct! Tonight I was told that if I turn every mention of vaccines into a debate, people will runs me out and that my zeal for the subject is drowning out the message. I don’t even know what that means! I guess it’s just a really nice way of telling me to shut up. And, in case you’re wondering, I don’t turn every mention into a debate. I only speak up when someone posts stupid maps and calls for compulsory vaccinations.

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  16. Paraphrasing but essentially your point about more people who are vaccinated getting a disease than those unvaccinated does not prove unvacinnation is better. Bayes theorem essentially. You seem a smart person and cite poor use of statistics but then use the most famous flawed intuitive reasoning that breaks actual statistics.

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    • I understand that, but do not have statistics available on how many people total are vaccinated vs. unvaccinated so that I could look at a percentage of cases that way. (i.e. perhaps 10% of unvaccinated people got it, but only 0.004% of vaccinated people got it — I’m just making up random numbers — but there is no data so that I can do that math.)

      What is more compelling to me is how often the vaccine is failing. And also how few deaths there were. There are about 18 – 20 deaths per year from pertussis, despite thousands of cases. I’m not concerned with how often people get sick, honestly. Illness is a part of life and you recover. I’m only concerned with serious complications or death — which are incredibly rare.

      In 2012, there were 48,277 cases of pertussis and 20 deaths. There were about 2 million vaccines containing pertussis administered (I’m guessing; about 10 million vaccines in total are administered each year, so let’s figure 20% contain pertussis) and 47 deaths. You have a 0.004% of dying from pertussis (and 0% if you are 4 – 55 years old, according to this data set). You have a 0.0023% chance of dying from a pertussis vaccine. So, your odds of dying of pertussis, at least in 2012, were approximately twice as great as dying from the vaccine. But both are incredibly tiny numbers. I also didn’t include any disability, and I think we’d see greater disability resulting from the vaccine than the illness; and if we lumped those together (death and disability) your chances with the illness or the vaccine would probably be about even.

      There are some more statistics for you, done correctly.

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  17. In my comment above I should have used “probability” instead of “statistics” but I hope you get the gist

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  18. Thank you Kate for making sense!

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  19. One of the things I love about the vaccine-pushers is their obsession with Jenny McCarthy. Nobody cares about Jenny McCarthy. And yet I challenge you to find a pro-vaccine article that doesn’t mention her as the leader of the “anti-vaccine movement.” As if a former Playboy model would have that kind of influence. The only people she has influenced are the vaccine-pushing lemmings who can’t recognize a big-boobed straw-man when they see one.

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  20. Thank you so much for a well researched, logical article that expresses a lot of my own frustrations, and those of many other parents who question the safety of vaccination. A number of great studies in there to add to my collection too. Keep up the great work!

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  21. Your numbers are wrong! You compared 2013 kindergartners to 1997′s 35 month olds! The 5-6 year olds have been vaccinated at over 95% since 1980 according to the link you posted. So the percentage of kindergartners vaccinated would be about the same and the diseases are on the rise.

    Reply

    • It looks like there are multiple documents on the CDC’s website, estimating coverage. This source says 92 – 96% coverage, depending on area: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/ss4909a2.htm

      Even if coverage is similar and diseases are on the rise, that leads to more questions. If we are at the important “herd immunity” level and outbreaks are still occurring (in areas with high levels of vaccination), why is that? Is the vaccine failing? The rest of the argument is still valid.

      Reply

  22. Great article. I was wondering if you could speak to the fact that Andrew Wakefield, the guy that “proved” a link between vaccines and autism, confessed to making it up? He confessed to fraudulent “research” on a pretend link between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, and the appearance of autism and bowel disease. It’s one thing to oppose vaccines for real reasons, but another out of a fear that was caused by a man who intended to profit from that fear.

    Reply

    • Hi Dan,

      There are so many misconceptions about Dr. Wakefield and that paper. I’ll set it straight here.

      The paper was about autism and bowel disease, not vaccines. His point was to show that colitis was common in children who had autism. The data was reviewed by at least three researchers, including one that had nothing to do with his team and wasn’t familiar with the study’s goal — all of which confirmed the diagnosis of colitis. While collecting data and talking to the parents, several of them mentioned that their children regressed after the MMR. He found the measles strain from the vaccine in the bowels of, I believe, 8 out of 12 children.

      He noted in the study’s discussion that this correlation was interesting, and suggested further research on a potential link between the MMR and autism.

      He did NOT “prove” that vaccines caused autism. He did NOT state that vaccines probably or even might cause autism. He only stated there was a potential *correlation* and that it should be studied further.

      What followed was a huge smear campaign. The media reported, very prematurely, that vaccines cause autism — something that was never in the study. This was incredibly irresponsible, but the media does this all the time because it’s far more sensational than the truth. Brian Deer was hired by the pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Wakefield has sued him for defamation, actually. Most of the other researchers jumped ship so as not to destroy their professional careers.

      Any doctor who openly questions vaccines, no matter what science they have, is ostracized and called a quack. Why would most doctors want to be in that position?

      At any rate, anyone who says that Dr. Wakefield falsified the data and said that the MMR causes autism isn’t familiar with the actual study or his research at all. That’s simply untrue.

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  23. The same people who blame nonvaccination are the same people who never question big pharma. To them the pharmacuetical-medical complex can do no wrong.

    I found it interesting on the statistics that diseases are happening despite vaccines.

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  24. Katie,

    I wonder if you’ve seen this article. My son sent it to me cause he knows that I question vaccines. It is just scare tactics just like you are writing about.

    http://touch.latimes.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-78971408/

    keep up the good work!

    Reply

  25. Vaccines are plain old bad medicine. The harm vaccines cause, gardasil for instance, is responded to with mind numbing contempt
    similar to the famous Monty Python “Argument” skit.

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  26. Hello,
    I have never been pushed into vaccinating my children. However, I have been bombarded with anti-vaccine scare tactics. I do like your site so far it appears to be more open minded and logical. I firmly believe that if there be an ill side affect there is a least one other factor involved-environment, hereditary, I used to say an unknown factor but now I have something I hadn’t thought of- a new strain of the virus. However, for the most part when I say I’m for most vaccines I’m accused as being a dumb sheep who believes everything the govt tells me to believe. I did share the map you refer to above but only as a tool to show that people still get these diseases because I was told by anti-vaccine believers that they weren’t a threat-that is a matter of opinion. Talking to them is liking talking in a circle-vaccines are bad because of a bunch of silly reasons that are repeated over and over. If I see the term “Big pharma” on here I will run screaming in another direction. Promoting “product” knowledge and looking at info from all angles I am all for.

    Reply

  27. blaming the unvaccinated for disease outbreaks is like blaming the poor for the economy. Both make a lot of sense to those lacking critical thinking.
    I saw this map the other day and the first thing that jumped out at me was that North America seems to be the only place having issues with whooping cough. I must believe either the other places aren’t bothering to report it, or the vaccine is fueling the spread of it.

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  28. I am totally against so many vaccines for the young before they are even 5.
    I do wish a study was conducted on the effectiveness of the vaccinated for the flu and the non-vaccinated–how many flu victims were vaccinated??
    Would LOVE to see those numbers.
    Never gonna happen.
    Just ask in the hospital or doc’s office IF they did or not!

    I did read data from one hospital–the numbers confirmed my stance against flu vaccine, for a huge percentage were vaccinated.

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  29. You mentioned some ugly truth here and I am totally agree with you. Fancy medical study, data, statistics makes us docto- hypnotized!

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  30. Do you really think it is a matter of freedom to be pro-vaccine? To be part of a community or society you have the responsibility to promote the welfare of everyone in that collective, and not just selfishly for those you care about. The only freedom that promotion of vaccines infringes upon is to be selfish and to endanger others. “Pushing” vaccines onto others implies that vaccines are needlessly dangerous, something that anti-vaccers just haven’t proven. If you don’t want to vaccinate your children, then you can choose to live outside of society. That is freedom.

    If you want to live within society, then you must abide by the collective rules and laws, otherwise prove those rules are wrong, and convince others with evidence. Opinions, emotions and intuition are not evidence. But again, anti-vaccers haven’t proven, without resorting to logical fallacies, fear-mongering tactics and conspiracy theories to prove that vaccines are needlessly dangerous. Nor have they attempted to submit to peer-reviewed medical journals and gone through the proper scientific methods to prove their claims. Why is that? Why wouldn’t someone want to prove with solid, peer-reviewed, and testable evidence that their claims are real? Perhaps because they know deep down that their position is untenable? That all they have are appeals to the emotions of parents and fear-mongering to make them think that vaccines are risky? It is quite easy to throw ad hominems and claim doctors and drug companies are conspiring against the world to make money by risking the health of others. But don’t the thousands upon thousands of people “in the know” also have family themselves? Why wouldn’t one company undermine another company by proving their vaccine is garbage? Why wouldn’t someone who cares about their children blow the whistle? Or a greedy ex-employee blow the whistle for perfectly selfish reasons?

    As for critical thinking, the failure to recognize and avoid your own logical fallacies is evident. First, conflating or misrepresenting the pro-vaccination position is to create a strawman, reductio ad absurdum. If you cannot present their side honestly, then that is a good reason to examine why you want to misrepresent others. Also, stating that vaccine rates go up, more people get sick is a just simply a statement that doesn’t hold up to scrutiny and you have given no evidence to support this statement. If you think presenting links to other people’s books in Amazon proves your statements, then you are resorting to argumentum ad populum. If you want people to listen to you, then make arguments that are backed up by facts, evidence that are supported with research, science and provable, testable data.

    Do you think that mutating strains are caused by the use of vaccines themselves? Again, where are the peer-reviewed studies that support these claims? Claims are not evidence. Even if you were to prove that a higher number of vaccinations correlate to higher number of virus outbreaks, correlation is not causation. In regards to this vaccine-preventable outbreak map, what would be useful is the reasons why there was a 12,000 case outbreak of Whooping Cough in Arizona in November 2013. Who were these people? What was a common factor? What made them reject vaccinations in the first place? Was this promoted by anti-vaccination propaganda? Political? Religious?

    Reply

    • Hi John,

      Given that vaccines are far from flawless or without risk, yes, I think it is a matter of freedom to choose to vaccinate. If vaccines were basically required for survival and came with essentially no risk, I might believe in your position. But that’s not the case, so I don’t. I think you’ve elevated vaccines to nearly the status of a religion, since you are willing to exclude people from society if they don’t share your belief. I think that is very, very dangerous indeed.

      Reply

      • Dear John
        I am.not sure if you realize that it is perfectly legal to vaccinate, or not vaccinate, tour child. So there is no need for anyone to live outside society for not abiding by ‘rules’. The government has made both perfectly legal, so that IS the rule.

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    • John Blackthorne,

      Look up Frits Mooi’s studies on Google scholar. The articles on mutations on the b. pertussis bacterium are available in full, but I cannot post the links using my mobile.

      Your argument that I need to submit myself and the children to the collective good is an opinion, not a fact, and it is based on personal philosophy, not science. The accusation of selfishness can just as easily work both ways. Is it not selfish to demand that all children engage in medical risk-taking, (no matter how dismissed or minimized), because a pharmaceutical product doesn’t always do its job and because you personally want some sense of security, no matter how tenuous? Not everybody shares your utilitarian view of our children. As a vaccinating mother myself, I happen to question it.

      Regards,
      Mary

      Reply

  31. Unvaccinated adults can not be a contributor to the increase in pertussis cases, since until recently adults were never vaccinated for it and the rates were far lower. The recent baboon study could actually lead to the conclusion that vaccinating adults for pertussis may be contributing to the rise, though. It would explain why “cocooning” was such an abysmal failure that the Australian government stopped covering/promoting it.

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  32. Good article, Kate. Interesting comments, too.
    One question with this part of your article:
    ” I would suggest adults acquire natural immunity to pertussis if at all possible, because they will pass this to their newborns! ”
    I actually had pertussis when I was 13yo (don’t know how I got it, since I was homeschooled). The dr. told us that it was common for teens to get it, because the vaccine wears off. =P Anyway, I am now 31yo and have 3+ children born 2008, ’10, ’12, and this year (Lord willing). All the children have been breastfed to at least a year. Now, from what you wrote, does that mean that my children have a natural immunity because I had the disease? Or, would that immunity only be during the time they are breastfed or right after birth? Or, does it not matter since it’s been so long since I had pertussis?
    Sorry, there are more questions than just one. :-) I just found this website and am enjoying the articles. Thanks for being “different”! (Makes me feel less weird! lol)

    Reply

    • Hi Sarah,

      You *may* have immunity still — it’s hard to say. Immunity seems to wane after 20-ish years (after natural infection; far sooner after vaccination) but that can vary quite a bit in individuals. It’s possible, too, that you were re-exposed in the last 20 years and that served as a ‘booster’ for your immunity. So many variables! But if you do have it, it would be passed along to your children and good for around 6 months, from my understanding.

      Reply

  33. Great article Kate. Have you ever considered using homeopathic remedies or homeoprophylaxis? It is a safe way to get good immunity to disease, using individual remedies for disease. If you have a look at Dr Isaac Goldens’ website, he does research on immunisation, and has facts and stats to confirm how effective the homeopathic remedies are.
    http://www.homstudy.net

    Reply

    • Hi Molly,

      I’ve heard of it, but haven’t been interested in it myself. Any sort of “vaccine” (even natural/homeopathic) doesn’t really fit in with what I believe about health. I have known others who felt safer doing this. If my child ever had a disease and home treatment wasn’t working, then I would explore homeopathy at that point. I have used it in that capacity before.

      Reply

  34. I JUST went today to my 24 week checkup for Baby #5 and was told the next time I go in, my midwife told me they now recommend that I get the tdap. Uh… nope. I just don’t like that I have to get the “weird” looks. :-( I just want to be armed with a quick, strong response as to WHY I’m not getting it. Thanks for this! I had a booster MMR the day after I had our third child (they told me I HAD to have it, didn’t have a choice) and I have struggled with arthritis ever since and now go to a chiropractor monthly for maintenance just to keep the pain from being overwhelming. That was almost 5 years ago and I am still only 31… with arthritis. (And BTW, my doc didn’t seem concerned that it could be from the MMR so it was never reported. I wonder how many that happens to.) Our 4th child, our only who has had no vax, is absolutely by far our healthiest child.

    Reply

    • Hi Randi,

      When I worked in sales, we were taught all of the possible objections we would hear to purchasing our product. Then we memorized ways to respond. Health care providers undergo the same kind of training in vaccines. These days, I treat the pushier HCPs the same way as I do pushy salespeople. I don’t give explanations. They have already memorized how the staged debate is supposed to progress. Their intent is to “win” this “debate,” not engage in dialogue or actively listen and consider any evidence you present. Definitely continue to read, read, read on the vaccine issue. But I wouldn’t stress about how to explain yourself to providers, especially those who have already decided what they want to believe.

      Regards,
      Mary

      Reply

  35. I personally did not vaccinate my children until they were older. I am unvaccinated myself, as when my eldest brother was recieveing a vaccination he has a severe and immediate vaccination reaction and was rushed to hospital, where he ended up with encephilitis . Luckily he is fine, but it scared my parents off, and made me cautious about vaccinating my own children at a young age. I think what people need to do if they chose to hold off is USE COMMON SENSE. When my children were babies, no visitors wee allowed to kiss them. Everyone was asked to not visit if they were I’ll. I messaged al my mothers group friends and asked them to let me know if thier children were ill before a catch up, and if they were, even a runny nose, I wouldn’t go. I did the same if MY children were ill so I did not share THIER sickness around. My children did not attend daycare so it made it relatively easy to control exposure to ill people. When they attended 3 year old kinder I made sure they had had the most serious vaccinations, but we did it sloooooowly and not all together as they seem to want to lump them, so we could monitor easily for any reactions and give thier immune systems time to recover before the next assault. AND WE NEVER SHARE DRINKS. I personally am still unvaccinated, although I will be going in for the first round soon. My brothers and myself are honestly extremely healthy, and have very strong immune systems. If we get a illness, its gone in 3 days. Its no big deal. I have to agree for pro immune people to get off the back of non immunizing familys. I HATED having to justify myself every time I explained I was not immunized. Most people want to do what is best for thier individual child. They are doing what they believe is right, and in the best interests of thier familys health. Vaccinating is still a choice, and for a reason – there is the 1% who will have a severe life threatening reaction, and possibly die, as our family has seen. I am pro vaccinating to a extent, but not at such a young age when they do not even have a iota of natural immunity,and loading them up with so many at once seems to me, crazy. Also people seem to feel safe from disease now so may are vaccinated and send thier children off to kinder nearly puking. Disease and sickness is serious, and one Childs immune system may not be as strong as anothers. Keep sick people at home!!!! And stop judging one another, everyone is entitled to thier opinion on this subject.

    Reply

  36. Watch Alex Jones at Infowars.com/listen Its a lot deeper than vaccines. http://www.heartcom.org/Vaccines4Terror.htm

    Reply

  37. you know, some of you are just plain ignorant! I had EVERY childhood disease, except Rheumatic fever and quite a few of those wonderful childhood diseases, I had more than once. I spent my winters in the hospital. Today, thanks to no vaccines being present at that time, I am deaf. Oh yeah, let a disease have it’s way and ride it out! Don’t bother to consider how hard it is on the child! Do you folks realize how many people had polio before the vaccine came out? When I was growing up I knew a lot of people who had polio, myself included! How many people do you know that had polio?

    Vaccines save lives! Many parents lost their children due to those childhood diseases and would have given anything to have their children vaccinated and here you sit yapping about something you don’t even know about!

    If you don’t believe me, google diseases such as polio, whopping cough, measles, small pox, tb and learn what happens when a person gets these diseases. You don’t hear much about them now, BECAUSE people have to be vaccinated. All of these diseases were and are contagious!

    What some of you folks need, is to have your children come down with something and then tell us how right you were not to have them vaccinated!

    Reply

    • Hi Maria,

      I’m sorry for your experiences.

      Severe complications like yours are incredibly rare. And many parents who don’t vaccinate have had these diseases themselves, or have had their children catch them. Usually they are no big deal. I’ve read all kinds of information on the diseases on pubmed, WHO, and the CDC and I think I know the facts — not the scare tactics. That’s very important.

      Reply

  38. I have started a new blog. Post 1 surveyed the actual scientific literature (not the imaginary one Pediatricians and many others probably including you believe must surely exist) and showed the literature quite clearly indicates that vaccines in the first months of life, especially containing aluminum, are dangerous. Post 2 remarked on how the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies wrote a 270pp survey last year exactly on the question of safety of the vaccine series, and managed to ignore all of the dozens of mainstream journal papers cited and linked in my survey while finding no other cogent papers on the subject (but discussing large numbers of papers on strawman issues, sound familiar?)

    Post 4 points out that the examples of Vaccinism and Global Warmism empirically falsify the mental model almost all of us have of how people such as Pediatricians and Climate Scientists form their opinions. It discusses instead the psychological model of Gustav Le Bon (1895) which explains the observed data much better, including aspects such as the punishing of deniers and the religious intolerance. Le Bon’s book, The Crowd, although not widely cited today, was arguably the text that had the most influence on the shape of the 20th century since it served as a manual for, among others, Teddy Roosevelt, Adolf Hitler, Lenin and Stalin, Mussolini, and Madison Avenue.
    http://whyarethingsthisway.com/2014/03/08/example-1-pediatrician-belief-is-opposite-the-published-scientific-evidence-on-early-vaccine-safety/
    http://whyarethingsthisway.com/

    Reply

  39. As a nursing student I watched two babies die of whooping cough – both less than two months old – that they had caught from unvaccinated individuals. In one case that individual was the child’s uncle, whose guilt crushed him.

    The babies coughed themselves to death and choked on their own mucus.

    They are completely vulnerable if the vaccination cannot be given before birth in the small window of time they can inherit the vaccine from their mothers, and have to wait until they are at least six months old before they can be protected.

    This isn’t about personal choice. Or, if it is, whenever I read arguments like yours (which fall horrifically short of the level of knowledge or science expected at any upper-level human physiology course and therefore outside of educated dialogue) all I can think is watching those infants choke to death, their tiny bodies bruised and half-broken from the frantic attempts we made to try to keep them alive… all I an think is that if you want to turn harming the vulnerable members of our population like that into your personal choice… what kind of monster wishes that on an infant? What kind of moral choice is it that you choose to take that risk, that actual factual statistically real risk, for the sake of your… what? ego? fear?

    There is no link between autism and vaccines. At all.

    Even if there was, as someone with autism I am always curious about people like you. Are you really that revolted of me, as someone with autism, that you’d rather risk killing babies and hurting others than risk having a child “like that’?

    I came here interested in budget plans and interesting living suggestions, and found this instead. I won’t ever be visiting this site again and leave a little more sickened at your choices.

    Because, hey, who cares if you kill the children of others if you raise your own perfect child, right? That’s the Christian way apparently…

    Reply

    • Hi Sarah,

      This post isn’t intended to be informational or research-based, which I state clearly at the beginning. Please look at some of my other articles, which are research-based.

      I believe it IS a personal choice. The DTaP isn’t without risk. You don’t get to decide which risk parents ought to take, the risk of pertussis or the risk of a vaccine reaction. That is up to each individual family.

      As far as autism, nobody is ‘revolted’ by it. But it’s very, very, very hard for families with seriously affected children to walk through. To see their children slip away, to see them in pain, to see them struggle. It’s about wanting them to be healthy and happy. It’s not about hating a disability.

      Yes, there is a link between vaccines and autism. There are perhaps hundreds of studies now suggesting it.

      In the future, please word your comments more respectfully (for example, don’t call me a monster or say I want to kill children…) or I will not publish them. I allow different opinions, but not rudeness.

      Reply

  40. Wondering if you have any information or resources for vaccination policies in other countries. We are moving to a place where vaccines are supposedly required by law. We are currently unvaccinated and would like to remain so. Now sure what I can do.

    Reply

  41. We actually do know why Pertussis rates keep going up, and have been for over 30 years. The acellular vaccine is simply not that effective. Paul Offit himself comments about this in the link below.

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/whooping-cough-vaccine-falls-short-of-previous-shots-protection/

    Reply

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