I received a flu shot a week or so ago. Guess what? It didn’t give me autism or Alzheimer’s or AIDS. It didn’t even make me sick or give me a sore arm. I did not get the shot because I was particularly worried about the flu. I have had the flu and it came and went in a few days. I went to the doctor’s office for a flu shot because it is the socially-responsible thing to do. I also intend to ask my doctor for a Tdap shot.
Some people are more susceptible to serious cases of the flu than I am. Also, I visit assisted-living facilities and nursing homes. I would not want to spread the disease among people I am visiting to help.
Pertussis is particularly dangerous for infants. I want to get a tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis booster so I will not have to worry about being close to an expectant mother or infant.
The more people are vaccinated against the flu, the smaller and less frequent outbreaks are. This is known as community immunity. My act of getting immunized is a small step toward a more healthy society.
Parents who refuse immunization of their children are not just harming their children, they are putting other parents’ children at risk. The chance of a negative reaction to a vaccination is orders of magnitude lower than the chance of contracting the disease itself and the effects of such reactions are far less severe than the possible debilitating outcomes of contracting measles, mumps, rubella, HPV and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
There is no demonstrable link between vaccination and autism, or any other negative outcome, except in extremely rare cases. People who think that vaccination is a some kind of evil conspiracy of the pharmaceutical industry or the government are not merely mistaken, they need treatment.
Parents should have the choice to refuse vaccination for their children. However, exercising that choice to deprive their children of protection and to endanger other children is not merely misguided, it is pernicious.
John B. Payne, Attorney
Garrison LawHouse, PC
Dearborn, Michigan 313.563.4900
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 800.220.7200
©2015 John B. Payne, Attorney