Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Science says vaccines not always safe


By LESLIE J. MANOOKIAN and KENDALL NELSON


    The Express’s “Fight the panic virus” editorial implies that vaccines are a panacea and that those concerned about vaccines deny reality. These opinions, while echoed in the mainstream media, are not supported by science, as vaccines carry the risk of both injury and failure.
    With respect to the vaccine-autism link, health authorities publicly deny any connection while the U.S. government has secretly compensated dozens of children who developed encephalopathy (brain damage), seizures and other injuries including autism after vaccines. The government admits vaccines can cause brain damage that leads to autism, but maintains vaccines don’t cause autism. Parents see through this game of semantics for obvious reasons. Furthermore, the government of Italy recently compensated a boy who developed autism after the MMR vaccine.
    The column claims science has proven no link between vaccines and autism, yet there are over 80 studies, published in peer-reviewed medical journals, linking vaccines to autism. Moreover, an independent researcher who evaluated all the empirical research investigating the mercury-autism link found the body of science favors a link by a factor of 3:1. So much for the government’s “the science shows no link” mantra.


The U.S. Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System records the reports of hundreds of thousands of vaccine injuries—yet most people don’t even know the system exists.


    The body of science also links vaccines to a host of other health concerns including allergies, asthma, auto-immune diseases like diabetes, lupus, MS and arthritis, learning disabilities, speech delays, chronic fatigue, bowel disease and more. Tragically, research shows that 54 percent of U.S. school children have a chronic illness or disability like those just listed. Interestingly, this epidemic of chronic illness coincided with the steep increase in childhood vaccinations. In 1983, the CDC recommended 11 doses of four vaccines by the first birthday; today it’s 26 doses of nine vaccines. In 1983, the CDC recommended 22 doses of seven vaccines by age 6; today it’s 48 doses of 14 vaccines.
    The U.S. Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System records the reports of hundreds of thousands of vaccine injuries—yet most people don’t even know the system exists. Many folks never connect their health ailments to vaccines, as vaccine injury can take years to manifest.
    The Supreme Court recognizes that vaccines are “unavoidably unsafe” yet vaccine makers cannot be sued. Federal law protects the vaccine makers and those who administer vaccines from any liability that might arise as a result of a vaccine. One has to wonder, if vaccines are so safe, why don’t the drug companies stand behind their products?
    Perhaps that is because in the early 1980s many children suffered brain damage from the DPT shot and juries awarded them millions of dollars in compensation.
    Clearly, it is no accident that the educated and affluent are most likely to decline vaccinations: they are confident, willing and able to do research themselves. They are empowered to make independent choices and know no one cares more about their children than they do.
    Lastly, claims that recent outbreaks of infectious diseases have occurred as a result of non-vaccination are not supported by the data. Vaccine-induced immunity wanes and outbreaks of measles, mumps and whooping cough have occurred in highly vaccinated populations. The medical literature amply documents this vaccine failure.
    Even the U.S. government admits that vaccine failure is not responsible. Importantly, these outbreaks have occurred in those beyond childhood, a time when the dangers and risk of complications is much greater.
    Similar recent opinion pieces in other publications nationwide abound, suggesting a coordinated campaign to spread fear and intimidate. We must ask ourselves how a moral, ethical, free society can force its citizens to put anything into their bodies, let alone a pharmaceutical product that might injure or kill them.

 

    Leslie J. Manookian and Kendall Nelson collaborated on a documentary film about vaccinations called “The Greater Good.”




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