Unfortunately, the “issue” of vaccines was brought up in the most recent GOP debate on CNN, and as one would suspect, the candidates performed poorly in regards to this subject.
First of all, here at CauseScience, we have posted NUMEROUS times trying to dispel any beliefs that parents should not vaccinate their children. Vaccines work and they are not linked to autism. period.
Second of all, I think journalist Ana Marie Cox from HuffPosts “so That Happened” podcast says it best, “CNN was irresponsible to even bring that up. If you even talk about the vaccine debate you give it credence.” Nailed it.
So what exactly happened at the debate? The Donald has been criticized for his adamant stance that vaccines cause autism, and so debate moderator Jake Tapper asked the other doctors on the debate panel if there was any validity to this. Obviously, we know Trump’s stance is just plain wrong, but I’d like to point out anti-quotable responses from the DOCTORS on the panel: Ben Carson and Rand Paul.
“We have extremely well-documented proof that there’s no autism associated with vaccination, but it is true that we are probably giving way too many in too short a period of time. I think a lot of pediatricians now recognize that and are cutting down on the number and the proximity in which those are done.” ~Ben Carson
“I’m for vaccines, but I’m also for freedom. Even if the science doesn’t say bunching them up is a problem, I ought to be able to spread my vaccines out a little bit, at the very least.” ~Rand Paul
“Vaccines are very important. Certain ones. The ones that would prevent death or crippling. There are others, there are a multitude of vaccines which probably don’t fit in that category, and there should be some discretion in those cases…” ~Ben Carson
At LEAST these doctors agree vaccines are important and not linked to autism. HOWEVER, the timing of vaccines and adhering to a vaccination schedule is INCREDIBLY important. In the New York Times, Dr. Paul Offit, a pediatrician specializing inin infectious diseases at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia explained, “When you delay vaccines, you increase the period of time in which you are susceptible to those diseases. We are seeing the effects of that. The outbreak we saw this year in Southern California was among parents who had chosen to delay or withheld vaccines for their children.”
Furthermore, WHAT are the “multitude” of other vaccines in which discretion should be used? That’s just not right. I’m sure more issues like these will arise as the election season warms up, but its disheartening to see candidates so eager to appeal to their base that they will completely ignore facts and scientific data (I guess that’s not surprising for politics). Importantly, in this situation, it’s irresponsible for these doctors to make such blatantly false statements regarding vaccines.