Public policy in our country and state today is being driven by many dangerous elements and forces. Of substantial concern are policies, agendas and legislation being driven by claims of crises, which do not exist and are unsupported by reality, fact or science. It is dangerous when these claims are driven by the politics of fear mongering, hate and division. This is especially concerning when specific groups of people are targeted and attacked to incite fear and to promote misguided and harmful policies.
Our country’s system of checks and balances is being circumvented and ignored by those we have placed in positions of authority and accountability. Intelligent and rational debate have fallen victim to hysteria and the politics of misinformation and fear. It is precisely this kind of politics that is being used by legislators across the country to promote government mandated vaccination in response to a manufactured crisis—one based on dated or misleading information.
To be clear, I am not anti-vax. I have worked in the pharma industry and now work in the healthcare insurance industry. My family came here from a former communist country. We understand well what happens when government is allowed to deny individual liberties and personal freedoms. We know quite well what happens when the state considers its interests to be more important than protecting the rights of its citizens.
The scientific benefits of vaccination are not in dispute. However, concerns regarding vaccine injury, today’s vaccine schedule and our government’s much too close relationship with the vaccine industry—should also not be in dispute. When it is well documented, admitted and scientific fact that many children have been severely injured or even killed1 as a result of adverse vaccine reactions—then government has no right or authority of any kind to place parents in a situation where our government forces them to expose their children to admitted risk and risk they deem to be unacceptable.
Our system of modern medicine only works because it was founded on the concept of doing no harm and importance of informed consent. A person has a fundamental and protected right to control what happens to their own bodies. Parents have a fundamental right to the care, custody and control of their children and their family’s medical care. Not the state.
Once we hand over that control, where does it stop?
The solution to the vaccine issue is not government mandates and more draconian government infringement of parental rights and decision-making.
If our state and federal governments want people to vaccinate, the solution is better education and promoting informed consent. It would start promoting full disclosure. By addressing and responding to the valid concerns being expressed by concerned parents who are asking all of the right and legitimate questions. The answer is not by engaging in the politics of hate and fear. It is not found in labeling parents raising these issues as being “crazy,” “uninformed” or worse, to promote a political agenda.
A further serious concern is that the vaccine issue has made the recent headlines in some states not due to any crisis or emergency of any kind. A few dozen cases of measles in Washington state or 1,200 parents opting not to vaccine, or to vaccinate on a limited schedule in Connecticut, is not a medical crisis or threat to the national health. It certainly does not justify sensationalist news media headlines designed to scare people using words like “Outbreak!”
All of us should also be very concerned that some legislators are using this issue as a basis and justification to allow states to further infringe upon and deny parental rights and parental decision-making.
A very dangerous combination indeed.
Note: This article was reprinted with the author’s permission.
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