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The annals of “I’m not antivaccine,” part 28: New York S2994 and the disappeared

In response to measles outbreaks among the Orthodox Jewish communities in Brooklyn and Rockland County, New York passed S2994, eliminating nonmedical exemptions to school vaccine mandates. This provoked a lawsuit and an offensive analogy that actually didn’t involve the Holocaust. So much for the protesters not being antivaccine.

Yesterday, I came across a series of Tweets by Gwynne Hogan, who noted a large line outside of a the New York state courthouse in Albany. They were there to see a legal challenge to S2994, a law recently signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo that eliminates nonmedical exemptions to school vaccine mandates. Curiously, many were wearing white:

The courtroom was, as she said, packed to the gills:

Why were so many antivaxers wearing white? What was going on? First, a little background.

As I mentioned yesterday, the measles outbreak of 2019 continues to rage on. True, it’s slowed down considerably, but we’re not out of the woods yet. As Dr. Paul Offit explained at NECSS, measles tends to have seasonal peaks, with summer being the low point, whether due to less contact (most children are not in school) or for the other reasons why various infectious diseases show seasonal variation in incidence. In any case, we won’t know whether we’re out of the woods yet as far as this outbreak goes until well into fall. I feel as though, whenever I write about this, I should remind you that, as of August 8, the CDC has confirmed 1,182 cases of measles. The CDC also notes that 124 of the people infected with measles had to be hospitalized, and that 64 had complications, including pneumonia and encephalitis. Measles can be serious. Indeed, measles suppresses the immune system for up to three years or even more, leaving children more susceptible to other diseases. The CDC also notes that more than 75% of the cases this year are linked to outbreaks in New York and New York City. This epicenter of the outbreaks was among Orthodox Jewish communities in Brooklyn and Rockland, fueled by a targeted campaign to spread antivaccine misinformation and an incursion of antivaxers, much as the measles outbreak among Somali immigrants in Minnesota was.

As a result, in June, lawmakers in New York passed s2994. Governor Andrew Cuomo then signed S2994 into law. This did not sit well with antivaxers, who brought suit against the state in July arguing that school vaccine mandates without religious exemptions, such as what S2994 requires, violate the First Amendment right to religious freedom. The hearing over a preliminary injunction in the case to stay the law and allow children who currently have personal believe exemptions to start school next month.

Which brings us to the white clothing. As explained in the subsequent article by Gwynne Hogan:

Many who stand to be affected by the new law gathered outside the State Supreme Court on Wednesday dressed in white. Organizers said their uniform harkened back to Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo, a group of Argentinian women who protested the murder and disappearance of their children during their country’s military dictatorship.

Here’s a Facebook post by the New York Alliance for Vaccine Rights:

Here’s the key passage about Las Madres:

PLEASE WEAR WHITE (avoid t-shirts)- we are rolling out a campaign inspired by the “Mothers of the Disappeared.” Back in the 70s, the Argentinian government “disappeared” (kidnapped and killed) 30,000 mostly young activists who spoke out against the dictatorship. Their mothers donned white scarves and stood vigil in their honor every Thursday in the Plaza de Mayo in front of the presidential palace in Buenos Aries. The Madres de la Plaza de Mayo did this for decades to protest the denial of their children’s existence. They demanded answers and held their government accountable. Like the children of these women, our children have “disappeared” in a different way. They have already been, or may soon be “disappeared” from school. In denying that vaccine-injury occurs, the truth of the health problem afflicting many of our children is “disappeared.” Religious beliefs at odds with the marketing needs of the vaccine industry must “disappear.” And the overall goal of the vaccine industry is to “disappear” any population that does not consume their products without question.

Our government has sent a message that our kids should not exist, don’t count, our kids are not wanted, our kids are somehow dangerous, dirty and inherently diseased. Like the mothers from Argentina, we cannot allow our children to be forgotten and cast aside by an industry based on lies, avarice and deceit, and a government based on arrogance, ignorance and corruption.

I see what antivaxers did there.

Of course, I’ve written many times about antivaxers who claim they’re “not antivaccine.” There’s always a “but.” That but could be, “but, I’m a vaccine safety advocate”; “but I’m for parental rights”; “but I’m for religious freedom”; or “but I’m suspicious of big pharma.” Then, after the “but” almost always follows the antivaccine tropes. Sometimes, those tropes include some comparisons that give the game away. I even have a whole series of posts about some of these comparisons, such as to the Holocaust (more examples than I can remember); to rape; to human trafficking; and now to this. I never would have thought that S2994 would provoke the 28th installment in this series of posts

Of course, Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo were courageous women. They represented 30,000 people who disappeared during the wave of kidnappings and killings that took place in Argentina during the government’s “Dirty War” against left wing “subversives,” most of whom were young students, active, idealistic and uncharged. During the 1970s, roughly 30,000 people, whose bodies were “disappeared,” became the “desaparecidos,” or “the disappeared.” The disappeared were erased from the public record, with no government traces of arrests or evidence of charges against them. Those whose bodies were found often had been tortured and killed, with their bodies disposed of in unmarked graves in rural areas. For nearly 30 years, the mothers of the disappeared waged a campaign to hold the government accountable at great personal risk.

As I said above, I see what antivaxers did there. Note the clever deflection, which they’ve used for plausible deniability that they were directly comparing their children to the 30,000 murdered victims of Argentina’s Dirty War, namely that it’s about how they’ll be “disappeared from school,” or about how inconvenient religious beliefs must be “disappeared,” or how the memory of their children must be disappeared. They claim that the message they’re presenting is about pharma “disappearing” any who don’t use their products. That’s some grade-A paranoid conspiracy mongering there, but it does reveal something.

Here’s what I mean. These parents are likening themselves to the parents of children who were brutally tortured and murdered by an authoritarian regime for activism against the regime. There’s no escaping one part of that analogy, as much as they try to dance around it with images of “disappearing religion” or “disappearing” the “truth” about vaccine injury. It’s hard not to wonder if these parents think of their children as dead. Here’s what I mean. Many are the times that I’ve seen parents lamenting the loss of their autistic child to vaccines and speak in the language of “recovering” them. That’s because many of them seem to have a hard time seeing their autistic child as their “real” child.

Here’s an example in the comments of an article on Left Brain/Right Brain:

I think it’s also appropriate for me to point out that the many parents that I’ve talked to whose children regressed view autism as a disease rather than a disorder or brain difference. I hope you can see why. This is why we feel like autism has “stolen” our children. This is why we “fight” autism and get offended when we are told that by fighting to get our children back, we are not accepting who they really are. Simply untrue… I am fighting to get my son back.

And:

This is why I speak up. We are not looking for normacy. We are not looking even, for non-autistic. What we are looking for it to regain what was lost… It’s all about my son… It’s all about the absolutely HORRIBLE thing that happened to him that is currently called regressive autism based upon his Fragile X premutation and AC1298 MTHFR mutation after a fever. Dr. Hagerman, the world’s expert on Fragile X has seen my son and with her help… We are fighting to get him back.

…autism has “stolen” our children. No, the child is autistic. No one has “stolen” him.

What we are looking for it to regain what was lost…

We are fighting to get him back. Why? He’s right there in front of her!

…we…get offended when we are told that by fighting to get our children back, we are not accepting who they really are. Simply untrue… Sadly, it is true for a lot of parents of autistic children who come to blame vaccines. They blame vaccines because human beings have a hard time accepting something like autism without a cause. There must be a cause! And there is; it’s mostly genetic, but we really don’t understand it very well at all yet. We do know, however, that it’s not vaccines. However, because autistic regression sometimes happens in fairly close temporal proximity to vaccination due to the vaccine schedule calling for vaccines around the age when autism is most frequently diagnosed and the millions of children being vaccinated, it can sure appear that correlation does equal causation to individual parents, and, once they invest themselves into that belief, not all the epidemiology and science in the world can convince them that vaccines didn’t cause their child’s autism. So great is the human need for an explanation that it’s not at all uncommon for memory to stretch the correlation beyond what is reasonable. All of this is understandable, but unfortunately this need to blame something, anything, leads to analogies like comparing vaccinations the Holocaust or the disappeared or:

Attorney Michael Sussman, representing the plaintiffs, had strong metaphors too, telling the court New York State had “dropped what I consider a nuclear bomb on these families.”

Some of Wednesday’s demonstrators felt the new law effectively disappeared their children from the school system, and said they were considering homeschooling their children, even moving to a different state, if the religious exemption to vaccines isn’t reinstated.

Yes, because requiring that parents protect their children from vaccine-preventable diseases, as S2994 does, is just like dropping a nuclear bomb on them.

Then, of course, because it was outbreaks among Orthodox Jews that resulted in the passage of S2994, Sussman pulled out the “hostile to religion” trope:

“The active hostility towards religion…was a pervasive theme and it needn’t have been,” Sussman said. “[These children] are going to have nowhere to go to school…They have no idea what they are going to do with these children.”

But Helena Lynch, an attorney for New York State, disputed Sussman’s claims, saying legislators weren’t hostile; rather, they were “skeptical” about whether people were expressing religious beliefs or personal ones.

In actuality, antivaxers selling “holistic” medicine and supplements targeted the Orthodox Jewish community with antivaccine misinformation, and the success of their pseudoscientific message was far more likely due to the insularity of the community and its distrust of outsiders than to the Jewish faith. After all, Jewish authorities have consistently urged Jews to be vaccinated and to cooperate with health authorities. The “religious freedom” argument has traditionally not convinced courts.

Still, the main reason I wrote about the use of this analogy by antivaxers attending the lawsuit against S2994 was to add yet another offensive analogy used by antivaxers who claim they’re not antivaccine, that of Las Madres de la Plaza de Mayo, to compare themselves to, as they compare their children to the disappeared and vaccines to the Holocaust or rape. Anyone who uses such analogies is certainly antivaccine. They dishonor the memory of the disappeared and the legacy of Las Madres.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

89 replies on “The annals of “I’m not antivaccine,” part 28: New York S2994 and the disappeared”

“So great is the human need for an explanation that it’s not at all uncommon for memory to stretch the correlation beyond what is reasonable. All of this is understandable, but unfortunately this need to blame something, anything, leads to analogies like comparing vaccinations the Holocaust…”

I would suggest that so great is the need for something to blame other then their sperm and eggs combined genetics being at fault. They have a rational and accurate, at least as far as science can go, explanation for why their child is autistic. They don’t want to believe that it’s their fault. It’s very painful and difficult to realize that you and your lover created something that isn’t your vision of perfect. Instead they lash out and blame spurious things for it. Centuries ago, it was witches and fey folk leaving a changeling. Now it’s vaccines and red food dye. Humans need to blame an external force for things they perceive as not right in their life.

The idea that sometimes bad thing happen for now reason is not something our brains are naturally inclined to accept. Our brains find patterns. It’s why pareidolia is a thing. People do the same thing with the good things in their life when they talk about how they “earned” certain things, and if people really wanted the same thing, they just need to try harder. We crave the illusion of control.

@ AP,

They don’t want to believe that it’s their fault

Funny how parents of kids with CF don’t have to put up with people telling them that their sick kid is their ‘fault’. Of course, CF is not a multifactorial/complex genetic disorder; is it.

Or has a consensus now been reached that Autism is NOT a multifactorial/complex genetic disorder? Definitely, a citation would be required. Here is mine to refute you in advance:

there is consensus in the autism research community that both genetic and environmental factors contribute to the symptoms, leaving no doubt of the multifactorial nature of ASD

https://www.karger.com/Article/FullText/492225

Let’s stop the draconian attacks on parents of autistic children, please. Your vaccines really don’t justify that sort of behavior from the scientific community.

Because if anything, the consensus seems to be that Autism is an Immune-Mediated disorder:

ASD is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder and studies of animal models and in humans demonstrate alterations in the immune system across the spectrum

That’s from the same citation. ALTERATIONS IN THE IMMUNE SYSTEM. Would that make it a ‘genetic immune disorder’? Would that mean that genes could be involved with an atypical immune response to an agent that those without certain genetic variants are responding to in the typical manner?

Has a consensus been reached yet as to what that agent is? Pathogen? Antigen? Organic foods? Do tell.

Does the epidemiology that does not show vaccines as causative for autism despite that no agent has yet to be identified justify the abuse of families with autistic children? How premature.

Do you understand the difference between self-created guilt and blame? AP is clearly describing the former. And, yes, many, though not all, parents who have children who have genetic conditions blame themselves for passing along bad genes.

Funny how parents of kids with CF don’t have to put up with people telling them that their sick kid is their ‘fault’.

Oh, but they do.
https://debunkingdenialism.com/2013/06/30/the-scientific-ignorance-of-stasia-bliss-part-i-cystic-fibrosis/

Immediately this causes one to think “is this doctor suggesting the parents are to blame for a child with CF?” Yes, and No. Yes, in the way that our choices do indeed affect the way our cells replicate, mutate and pass on to future generations. No, in that we are not taught this, in fact we are taught something of the reverse, leaving us as unintentional contributors to conditions in our posterity that we are only now becoming aware of.

Definitely, a citation would be required. Here is mine to refute you in advance

I take it that you are offering this solely because you were able to mine some of your favorite things, as the paper itself doesn’t seem much to jibe with the moves of Christine Christine the Antivaxing Machine.

Autistic brain shows nerve cell overgrowth. How immune system causes this ? Check autism brain studies.

@Christine K

Here’s a long list of studies reporting on that genetic component. https://scholar.google.ca/scholar?q=autism+genetic+component+study&hl=en&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1&oi=scholart

And note that without the genetic component, the environmental wouldn’t amount to squat. The basic gist is that there may be environmental components, but there definitely is a genetic one.

If vaccinations had anything to do with autism, every soldier in the western world would have autism and according to you Alzheimers. My vaccination book is filled with jabs for various vaccine preventable maladies going back to the late 80’s with diseases endemic to the Americas, Europe, and Asia. I can’t remember what jabs I got as a child, other then small pox (Mainly due to the scar on my arm). But I’m also old enough, unlike you apparently, to remember family members with small pox scars, and polio side-effects. I am also old enough to remember kids in ICU after taking part in measles and chicken pox parties. So please, peddle your anti-vaccine horse shiat to someone who hasn’t seen the effects of vaccine preventable diseases. Take an example from Chris Preston and help improve the world for everyone.

While you are correct that humans have a tendency to want to find someone else to blame for things, this is by no means universal. A lot of parents understand that their children have inherited disorders, but love them anyway. I speak from experience.

Both of our children suffer from an x-linked disability condition that had not made a known appearance previously in the family (subsequently a third cousin of theirs also was born with the same condition). Once we had the diagnosis we accepted it immediately and got on with life. The good thing about doing that rather than looking for someone to blame, is that you can spend your time profitably improving life for your children, rather than wasting that time raging at others.

@Chris Preston
Unfortunately, people who think like you seem to be a vanishingly small minority. Fix the problem and not the blame is an increasingly uncommon mindset. I do admit to painting with a very broad brush, as finer strokes would lead to comments longer then Orac’s original post.

@Anonymous Pseudonym:
I’ll note that it can be hard to tell the difference between ‘vanishingly small minority’ and ‘doesn’t raise a fuss, so doesn’t get noticed’ from the outside.

It’s been noted here before that the hard-core anti-vaxxers are, in general, a much smaller percentage of people than they may seem. They’re just loud, all over the place, and often have their own alerts and internal communications to allow them to descend like locusts on other places, which makes them seem a lot more prevalent than they actually are.

This goes hand in hand with the increasing concerns regarding violent rhetoric from anti-vaccinationists. If they can convince themselves they are victims of horrible wrongs done against them, it’s not much harder for the extremists in the midst to justify revenge and retribution against the alleged perpetrators.

The “hostile to religion” argument is an attempt to get around existing jurisprudence that says that a religious exemption is not required.

Mr. Sussmsn is basically trying to extend Masterpiece Cakeshop, the case in which the Supreme Court found that the Colorado Commission action against a baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple violated the first amendment because it was motivated by hostility to religion.

Of course, he’s running into the reality that the change in law here was a response to an outbreak, motivated by public health.

How can they resist the temptation to use yet more murdered children as tools for their pro plague campaign?

I’m sort of confused by the ‘I’m not antivaccine’ thing.

You guys call me ‘antivaccine’; yet I have no problem with the Tetanus-only vaccine, or the Measles vaccine. I DO have a problem with the U.S. schedule, mandates & lack of a legitimate response to recent appeals to the WHO regarding vaccine safety. I DO believe that the US schedule of immunizations is causing SIDS, Autism & Alzheimer’s & that this likely involves either an interaction with the multiple DTP/DTaP, etc vaccines. Possibly (but I hope not) the HepB. Or a non-specific effect from them.

So initially, I protested that I’m not antivaccine. This was in accordance with the oft-repeated thought here that ‘antivaxxers don’t approve of ANY vaccine & if asked which ones they agree with; they won’t be able to come up with one’.

So this is simply not true. Not here, at least. So what exactly would that mean if I were to say ‘I’m an antivaxxer’. Why is the label so important? How does that help you, in your quest for mandates?

Oh L-rd, look who couldn’t read the memo.

I DO believe that the US schedule of immunizations is causing SIDS, Autism & Alzheimer’s

Heh. Sharp as a marble.

Well, if children don’t die from vaccine preventable diseases, they may get old enough to get Alzheimers.

But I doubt miss K. has any proof, just some vague believing.

Still waiting for her to explain why the rate of SIDS in the US is at its lowest point in history….

Indeed. Also those studies that trend toward a protective effect of vaccines against SIDS, even if the results don’t quite reach statistical significance.

Still waiting for her to explain why the rate of SIDS in the US is at its lowest point in history….

Add country-by-country prevalence of Alzheimer disease versus vaccine schedules to that. Could it be… teh geenz?

Spreading misinformation about vaccines that blames them for conditions, diseases, and deaths they are well-established scientifically not to cause and “questioning” the vaccine schedule based on pseudoscience certainly qualify. Just because you think that two out of all the vaccines on the schedule are safe and effective doesn’t mean you’re not antivax. Your denial of the science showing that the rest of the copious science supporting the safety and efficacy of vaccines qualifies as antivaccine.

Note that the two vaccines she is pointing to are not available separately. I don’t think claiming she is okay with vaccines not actually available counters being anti-vaccine.
Further, in a previous post she used Thompson’s conspiracy theory about MMR, which doesn’t fit support for a measles vaccines.

Orac writes,

Just because you think that two out of all the vaccines on the schedule are safe and effective doesn’t mean you’re not antivax.

MJD says,

If a person thinks that only two out of all the vaccines on the schedule are not safe and effective does that mean they’re antvax?

@ Orac’s minions,

If a severe allergic reaction to a component in a vaccine has dissipated with time, is that person “antivax” if they continue to refuse said vaccine? Please advise after considering memory B-cell function and longevity.

@MJD:

If a person thinks that only two out of all the vaccines on the schedule are not safe and effective does that mean they’re antvax?

That depends on WHY they believe the vaccines are not safe and effective. If they believe it’s because the vaccines are causing harms that large studies have shown they don’t (e.g. MMR does not cause autism), then yes, they are antivaxx.

@ mjd

If a severe allergic reaction to a component in a vaccine has dissipated with time, is that person “antivax” if they continue to refuse said vaccine?

With so vague a description, the answer to your question could be either yes, no, or get bend.
“dissipated” seems to indicate that the person is not allergic to this component anymore. In this case,while it’s understandable that this person may feel cautious, taking the same vaccine shouldn’t lead to any issue. So ‘yes/no’, but likely ‘no’.
(PSA – consult your physician if you believe you are allergic to a vaccine component, don’t rely on my opinion)
If this person is cautious about vaccines containing the component which proved to have triggered the reaction, but has no issue with other vaccines, then again, ‘no’.
If said person overact and decide that all vaccines and injections are bad… ‘sigh’ understandable, and I cannot blame this person, but sadly the answer is ‘yes’.
If the reaction was due to the sushi they ate this morning but decide it’s the trace agar in the vaccine injected last month, that’s a resounding ‘yes’.

What studies do you reference for higher incidence of Alzheimer’s disease in the United States vs. nations with different vaccination schedules, Christine?

I DO believe that the US schedule of immunizations is causing SIDS, Autism & Alzheimer’s & that this likely involves either an interaction with the multiple DTP/DTaP, etc vaccines. Possibly (but I hope not) the HepB. Or a non-specific effect from them.

Looks pretty anti-vaxx to me.

@ Science Mom,

You may one day have to reconcile that science does not exist to fit your narrative. You are spoiled by a steady diet of epidemiology which can, unfortunately; exist to fit your narrative. You know; ‘lies, damned lies, and statistics’.

If there is a negative, non-specific effect from vaccines; it is what it is & it is not ‘antivaccine’ to suspect it, to look for it or to find it. Unless, of course; the injection has wrongly been assigned more worth than the human intending to be injected.

“You are spoiled by a steady diet of epidemiology which can, unfortunately; exist to fit your narrative. You know; ‘lies, damned lies, and statistics’.”

So you are now not only saying that there is a conspiracy in the world wide medical community to hide the dangers of vaccines, you’ve expanded it to include epidemiologists, statisticians, and apparently, statistical methodology itself? And you wonder why you aren’t taken seriously?

You may one day have to reconcile that science does not exist to fit your narrative. You are spoiled by a steady diet of epidemiology which can, unfortunately; exist to fit your narrative. You know; ‘lies, damned lies, and statistics’.

Funny and arrogant considering you not only don’t know my background but you have no expertise in any of the disciplines you malign.

If there is a negative, non-specific effect from vaccines; it is what it is & it is not ‘antivaccine’ to suspect it, to look for it or to find it.

Yet I can find hundreds of studies that address adverse effects from vaccines, specific ones that is and not unicorns (thanks Lawrence) as you would like to fit your narrative and woeful biases.

@Christine,

I had referred to this comment a couple times, so I’ll link to it here.

https://respectfulinsolence.com/2019/07/23/stop-mandatory-vaccination-to-be-removed-by-facebook/#comment-413246

It doesn’t really matter if you reply to it. However, someone reading it might note one thing that occurred to me after reading a late night comment of yours a few days ago.

You and I think in very different ways. I have many things that I consider to be true based on my experience and reading of scientific reseearch. But I still look to check and update those assessments and sometimes even review the evidence they are based on as I did for that comment.

I like to think of myself as a Missouri Skeptic. I am willing to be convinced to change my mind, but you have to Show Me the evidence. I won’t just take your word for it.

Whereas you decided a few years ago that vaccines caused your baby girl’s tragic death and your son’s autism. And your response to all evidence to the contrary is to claim that evidence is invalid and reassert your gut feeling.

I have tried to be a good parent to my children despite their problems and your #1 job is to be a good parent to your son. I sincerely hope that you take advantage of the resources that are available and don’t chase them away by comments similar to what you have posted here.

I DO believe that the US schedule of immunizations is causing SIDS, Autism & Alzheimer’s

You’re anti-vaccine.

BUT I thought that older people- like those who get Alzheimer’s- were hardly vaccinated at all…it’s only those born after the 1980s who are so “damaged”..
do you mean flu/ pneumonia vaccines caused thousands of cases of AD?

-btw- A new writer at Bolen’s Shambles has a theory about why millennials are so snowflaky…. it was the mercury!
They got more than anyone; post millennials should be fine.

Christine: ”I have no problem with the Tetanus-only vaccine, or the Measles vaccine.”

What does “I have no problem with” mean? Do you think vaccine protection against either disease is a good idea?

After all, you’ve repeatedly assured us that measles is only “fever with spots”, so why bother getting protected against it?

Oh, the contortions that antivaxers will go through to not be recognized as antivaccine. The lone exception among antivax “leaders” is Kent Heckenlively, who proudly proclaims himself “The World’s #1 Antivaxer”. You could apply to be his Royal Antivax Consort. Maybe then Ben Garrison would feature you in a cartoon.

https://grrrgraphics.com/the-australian-freedom-force

There’s another one who proudly proclaims his opposition to ALL vaccines: Jake Crosby.( Autism Investigated)
How could you forget him? ( Maybe you tried really hard?)

@ DB,

Do you think vaccine protection against either disease is a good idea

Yes.

After all, you’ve repeatedly assured us that measles is only “fever with spots”, so why bother getting protected against it

No, I called several VPDs ‘a fever with spots’ & I never used the conditional ‘only’. The MV may have positive, non-specific effects against other pathogens, not just the Measles; which is something I’m excited about & interested in.

Oh, the contortions that antivaxers will go through to not be recognized as antivaccine

I don’t GAF, really. As I suspected; it was just a dumb-ass propaganda tool to invalidate concerns that you are not prepared to address. Now that I realize this, I could care less what you call me. Your agenda will require you to interact with people on a forum/venue way more public than this one & calling people names that are adverse to how they see themselves is a losing strategy.

I encourage you to continue with this behavior.

Your agenda will require you to interact with people on a forum/venue way more public than this one

Leaving aside the misuse of the term “more public,” that’s why we (tinw) hire professionals.

You should watch Balto (a great family-friendly adventure film!) and then think about why those dogs were racing.

There’s another movie about the same subject coming out soon, it’s called Togo and it’ll be on the Disney streaming services sometime late this year.

Maybe then Ben Garrison would feature you in a cartoon.

check link –
Eew. That one is a dozzy.
I was aware of some of Ben G. cartoons about US politics, but I see he is also branching out into Australia.
When antivaxers join with white supremacists and gun fetishists. Interesting bedfellows you got, “pro-safe vaccine” people.

I’ve found some discrepancies in reporting the number of attendees : was it hundreds, a thousand or thousands ( NY Post, NY Daily News, Spectrum News 1, lohud.com, AoA)?

AoA has a photo of them all lined up out of doors for maximum impact and I’m sure that somebody ( not me) can count them.

Dressing in white to suggest their similarities to the mothers of the disappeared ones may illustrate an important fact about the attendees themselves:
they don’t look “Jewish”! Now before you say that that is an anti-Semitic evaluation, hear me out. They claim that the new law affects religious beliefs and that people in Ultra-Orthodox areas like Monsey ( Rockland County) or Brooklyn are affected most. If you know anything about people who belong to these groups, you know that they dress in particular ways: women wear more covered up fashion and men wear shirts and trousers with jackets and they cover they heads ( scarves or wigs for women and yarmulkes or large hats for men; men wear beards)**-
they wear mostly BLACK. I don’t see many people in traditional black outfits in AoA’s photo- they would stick out like a New Yorker in a Southern or South Western mall.

** I know their fashion choices because I often shop or dine in these towns

I believe that vaccines are causing Alzheimer’s due to the recent discovery of the identical immune bio markers & resulting disordered synaptic pruning found in the brains of both those with Autism & those with Alzheimer’s.

I provided a citation above to ‘anonymous pseudonym’ regarding autism & here is one for Alzheimer’s

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321482.php

I should caution you that this assessment involves actual science + critical thinking that defies your constant references to the epidemiology.

I believe that vaccines are causing Alzheimer’s due to the recent discovery of the identical immune bio markers & resulting disordered synaptic pruning found in the brains of both those with Autism & those with Alzheimer’s.

When you’re a hammer, everything is a nail.

JustaTech writes,

…our other resident monomaniac.

MJD says,

Do you consider me a “monomaniac” based on the vaccine-safety effort of teaching pro-vaxxer’s about potential vaccine packaging hazards?

@ Orac,

Are monomaniac’s antivax?

My partner’s grandfather had Alzheimer’s (and vascular dementia). He was in his 80s. I wonder what vaccines he had. Can’t have been many back in them days. He didnt die of polio or measles though.

I should caution you that this assessment involves actual science + critical thinking that defies your constant references to the epidemiology.

Then why don’t you try applying said critical-thinking and read your own citation which is primarily about disease processes, not vaccines.

That’s how it’s done: tack your own set of idees fixes onto reality based research or general information. Unfortunately, I am all too familiar with this courtesy of PRN, NN, etc.

The one I’ve loved most has been “eating meat causes DEATH” but then they leave out, how, how much, what kind- all of which lead to highly specific situations like eating a load of cured meats, in high volume, over years.

@ Science Mom,

How stupid. You need it to say vaccines? Is your critical thinking really that gone?

How stupid. You need it to say vaccines? Is your critical thinking really that gone?

This little game of your’s is getting tedious. Need I remind you that you were the one who claimed that vaccines were responsible for Alzheimer’s Disease based upon your own citation that says nothing of the kind. I can’t help if you can’t differentiate between immunological responses.

I believe that vaccines are causing Alzheimer’s due to the recent discovery of the identical immune bio markers & resulting disordered synaptic pruning found in the brains of both those with Autism & those with Alzheimer’s.

Have you heard of this thing called “time”? You can’t replay the “OMG since the ’80s” card given the age distribution.

I should caution you that this assessment involves actual science + critical thinking that defies your constant references to the epidemiology.

How do your adult children take to your insane fantasies?

I believe that vaccines are causing Alzheimer’s due to the recent discovery….

Please try to find a remedial English class. Or read Fowler, whatever.

Because nobody ever had Alzheimer’s until vaccines were invented.
Personally, I blame it on flush toilets.

Also, “[s]tudies have shown that infectious diseases and inflammation suffered during a lifetime can affect the severity of Alzheimer’s disease much later in life,” explains lead investigator Jonas Neher, an experimental neuroimmunology researcher at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Tübingen.

If infectious diseases can affect the severity of Alzheimer’s, that’s surely a reason to vaccinate.

This is science journalism, not science. I guess that because microglia is mentioned, it must be vaccines. Actually, microglia and stroke are linked, too, and this is much more probable explanation. Try to find original paper, any case.

You guys are saints to put up with such an enormous level of crazy. You’re telling these people that a banana is a banana, and they’re coming back with, “It’s yellow, grown in Costa Rica, sold by the Chiquita Banana Corporation, but I have a random citation telling me it’s an apple.”

I mean, how do you even begin to reason with that.

And the “lost” children has always been a sore point with me. As a parent (surprise, I’m a dad, motherbleeper!), it hurts to see children being labeled as lost or incurable or a nuisance, etc., especially when the child can hear and understand now or in the future what the parent has said about them. “Sorry, kiddo, I can’t take care of you right now because I need to go chase windmills in online forums.” Seems like child abuse to me to say a child is dead or lost or non-existent and act like it as well, just because the child has a special need.

Can you imagine if they actually put all that time and effort into lobbying for better support from the state for their children’s disabilities? But no, let’s waste time on beating the dead horse that is vaccines cause autism, SIDS, etc.

Bunch of sociopaths, those antivaxxers.

Re: the Fragile X syndrome (and don’t forget the new gene in fashion, MTHFR), they may be using a shortcut. That they are trying to say may be actually “the vaccine triggered the activation of an awful gene”. A common story among antivaxers, next to mercury and aluminium. Most of these people are not biologists, so a bit of fuzziness cropping up is to be expected when using the jargon.

Re: comparing themselves to the “Disappeared”.
Yep. Jockeying for attention by saying they are like the victims of mass murders not just past, but in the very process of happening.
To Venezuela, you can add Russia and China. The on-going protests of this past week in both countries are going to be dealt with by the authorities, and both countries are known to make problematic people disappear.

Doubly offensive because the antivaxers’ point is not about autistic children being like murdered ones, but about their non-vaccinated children having to stay home because they will be denied school access.

Once upon a long time ago someone sent me as “proof” that vaccines are dangerous to an NVIC page of “victim stories.” The first story I saw had a picture of a little girl with Down’s Syndrome. They were literally blaming the Trisomy 21 on vaccines. Le sigh.

I just have to shake my head at those moan and groan that their freedoms are being suppressed. I spent almost half of my youth in South/Central American, including Venezuela (though in saner days). Though one country was while under a dictatorship. The dictator of that decade liked to confiscate newspapers if he did not like what they wrote, and people tended to disappear, though fewer than what was then happening in Argentina. And if there was a yellow fever outbreak and if you could not produce proof of vaccination while in the interior the local Guardia Nacional would escort you to the clinic for a vaccine whether you wanted one or not. There was literally no choice.

The New York Daily News has strong opinions:

Acting like members of some cult blind to science and public health, a mob of anti-vaccine kooks packed an Albany courtroom Wednesday to watch lawyers argue their ludicrous case that parents have a constitutional right to spread communicable diseases and endanger the lives of others. Their deluded leader Robert Kennedy Jr. was there, supporting the spectacle.

The crowd of more than a 1,000 required an overflow room at the courthouse and rallied outside. They think their theatrical show of strength — like the display they made at the Capitol in June after failing to block the repeal of religious exemptions from vaccination — will sway the court. It must not.

https://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/ny-edit-vaccines-court-20190815-n5bbqjuptjc7ndragv2plqetuu-story.html?fbclid=IwAR27B6pVUNdjuu8GJed6nrv3uP-JfwFrLjvNTqAONClHTHx-4ZiOD68IvIQ

Last Thursday I went to the California Medical Board hearing on endorsing SB276. It gave me the opportunity to really listen to what the opponents were saying. It’s all fear and anger — they really, truly believe that vaccines are terribly harmful. I don’t think there is a way to break through that mindset.

Don’t all of the crunchy CA moms want to homeschool anyway? Or is it not as special when it’s required?

re “”CA crunchy moms”

IIRC You live near “the sign” so you should know! heh ( But I’ll concede, not the crunchiest area)

Looking over the various photos posted for the Albany gathering whilst I did not espy Orthodox Jewish groups, I think that I did see the crunchy faction. I can’t quite put my finger on it but they have a certain earnest cleanliness and obviously over-zealous self-regard. Albany is 130 miles ( or so) from NYC – the towns between include wealthy suburbs, artsy river towns, a former new age vortex, organic farms, universities ( including Vassar and a hippie haven) AND Woodstock ( the town , not the festival site) which is rich, artsy, new agey, back-to-nature.

I’ve recently seen adverts on television about a web-based public school that is ( supposedly) available to kids K-12 with REAL TEACHERS!. A while ago, I was made aware of this service because a trans girl used it to deal with her anxiety ( she went to a regular university later).
I think that this could solve problems eventually for:
— towns or cities who slyly want to drastically cut costs of maintaining buildings, paying staff, books etc.
— parents who want to avoid both compliance with vaccine rules AND home schooling chores ( which mean doing it yourself).

Of course, I think that kids get much more out of attending school than just academics: friendship, adult role models, exposure to a wider culture, diversity, escape from horrible home situations/ parents, food assistance, medical etc.
BUT I can see certain factions/ regions being interested in e-schools.

These online public schools are available in many states. It was how a friend’s level 1 autistic bipolar transchild managed to survive high school. And that is a literal use of the word “survive.” The child’s first suicide attempt was a age eight.

@ Liz,

It’s all fear and anger — they really, truly believe that vaccines are terribly harmful. I don’t think there is a way to break through that mindset

At least you get it.

A Kennedy called “deluded”.
Given the sanctified aura around everything “Kennedy” in the US, that’s saying a lot.

Maybe they should have dressed up as scarecrows to pay homage to their own disappeared brains.

Very well.

Just when I think the pro plague crowd can’t go any lower, they borrow Lord The Donald’s shovel, and manage just fine.

There’s just no bottom for these people. To me this is worse than the Holocaust references, because (per Godwin) those are so ubiquitous on so many topics they’ve become emptied of meaning, a routine cliche of online woofing. Maybe the AVs sensed that, and were actually looking for an as yet untapped horror to exploit for disgusting comparison. And/or maybe its because Holocaust analogies don’t offer the same sorts of platforms for narcissism as invoking the mothers of the disappeared.

If the whole world wasn’t going insane, I’d say the silver lining was that disgusting stunts like this would push the movement AVs farther to the lunatic fringe in the eyes of parents who may merely be vax hesitant. If…

Well, the lawyer said something about having “a nuclear bomb” dropped on them so

…. they’re survivors of Hiroshima!

Well, the lawyer said something about having “a nuclear bomb”

If only it were a neutron bomb, one could invoke the Lattice of Coincidence (not to give the Demon Core short shrift).

Tales From The Loony Bin, Part XXXIII to the nth power:

Not vaccination-related, but I had a minor coffee eruption reading Mike Adams’ article on the significance of cervical-area fractures found during the Jeffrey Epstein autopsy.

Setting aside his utterly logical conclusion that the fractures represent proof that Epstein is still alive*, Adams notes the sinister implications of Michael Baden observing the autopsy. You see, “Dr. Michael Baden is, of course, the very same person who oversaw the autopsy of JFK after he was shot and killed by the deep state in 1963. (Yes, Dr. Baden’s career spans many decades.)”

This would’ve been quite a coup for Baden, who was evidently still in residency back in 1963 (Adams is confusing Baden’s role on the House forensic panel investigating the assassination in 1979 with his having performed/directed the original autopsy).

*he’s being held by either the “Trump team” or the “Clinton team”. Stay tuned.
**most likely he was rescued by Bill Gates in order to further the global depopulation conspiracy.

@ Dangerous Bacon

Setting aside his utterly logical conclusion that the fractures represent proof that Epstein is still alive

I was expecting some craziness along some link between the fractures and vaccines, but not that.
You almost convinced me to go read Adams’s last creed. He may mention Elvis as the likely hitman any time now.

This is not statistics:
Courchesne E, Carper R, Akshoomoff N. Evidence of Brain Overgrowth in the First Year of Life in Autism. JAMA. 2003;290(3):337–344. doi:10.1001/jama.290.3.337
And I presume that you believe that smoking does not cause cancer, either.

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