Here’s the post I was going to write yesterday concerning three events that others might think unrelated, but to my mind are part of the same worrying trend. I write to my mind but then I have suffered brain damage….
A quick recap. The first concerned a high court judge permanently banning activists against LGBT equality lessons from demonstrating outside a Birmingham primary school. The second dealt with the chief rabbi strongly criticizing Labour, claiming the party wasn’t doing enough to root out anti-Jewish racism and other faiths making supportive statements. Well here is the third,
Health secretary ‘looking seriously’ at compulsory vaccines for schoolchildren
The health secretary has said he is “looking very seriously” at making vaccinations compulsory for all children going to school in England.Some experts have suggested it may be necessary to address falling rates of immunisation and a surge in diseases like measles.
Matt Hancock told an event at the Tory conference he had taken legal advice this week on how to go about it. Unvaccinated children were “putting other children at risk”, he said.
The uptake of the MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) vaccine in particular has been declining in many countries. The reason is not clear. Rates dipped in the 1990s following publication of a report linking MMR to autism, but partly recovered after that research was discredited and disproved.
However, the volume of anti-vaccine sentiment on social media has been swelling and in March, the head of NHS England warned “vaccination deniers” were gaining traction online.
Of course they have! Why listen to health professionals with all their evidence and studies, a welter of demonstrable historical fact to support the absolute validity of the science, when instead its easier to believe something you’ve read and then shared online, because it ‘feels’ right? If something feels right and you believe in it, then isn’t your opinion just as valid as everyone else’s? In a word, no.
Granted there may be children who suffer adverse effects after being vaccinated, but is it circumstantial? Are there other causal links? Diet? Lifestyle? Pollution? I don’t know, but admit I don’t know.
He added: “The worst thing is if you don’t vaccinate your child and you can, then the person you are putting at risk is not only just your own child, but it’s also the child that can’t be vaccinated for medical reasons.
Measles is highly infectious and can cause serious health complications, including damaging the lungs and brain. There were more than 82,500 cases in Europe in 2018 – the highest number in a decade and three times the total reported in 2017.
In England, the proportion of children receiving both doses of the MMR jab by their fifth birthday has fallen over the last four years to 87.2%. This is below the 95% said to provide “herd immunity”, the level considered by experts to protect a population from a disease.
To me, this story and the two yesterday are linked by not just by other peoples frankly idiotic beliefs, not just that some are considered more worthy of credence than others, but a selfish belief in the correctness of your belief. It baffles me that in the second decade of the 21st century religion isn’t a niche activity! The same stupidity informs people who are vaccination deniers, that despite all the evidence that comprehensively proves them wrong, they believe they’re right.
That people who believe in this nonsense – any religion, conspiracy theories and other guff – concerns me. Because not only are they having children who they’ll indoctrinate with this garbage, but it’s more that what other evidential fact will they ignore, because it doesn’t ‘feel’ real? Will they, for example think that climate change isn’t real? Or that if they break their arm, the worst thing they can do is to go to their local A&E and get it set in a plaster cast? See how that ‘feels’!
It’s like Horace Vandergelder as said “Ninety percent of the people in the world are fools and the rest of us are in danger of contamination.”