Respectful Insolence

Maybe I need to inaugurate some sort of monthly award for the best comment, as some other ScienceBloggers do. If I had such an award, surely this comment earlier today by Prometheus would be in serious contention for it:

Re: “Green Vaccines”

One of the things that the “Greens” are in favor of is biological diversity and protecting endangered species. This dovetails nicely with the “Green Vaccine” movement, since it is clear to me that they (the “Vaccine Greens”) are simply trying to prevent the loss of valuable biological diversity.

Not too long ago, in 1977, one viral species (Variola or “smallpox”) was made nearly extinct. It now no longer exists in its natural habitat, being reduced to a few specimens kept in captivity. This near-extinction was due solely to human activity, in the form of vaccines.

More recently, another virus (poliovirus) was brought to the brink of extinction before it was saved by the valiant efforts of a combined team of anti-vaccinationists and religious wack-jobs. Now, it is thriving again in Nigeria, Namibia and Yemen and is expected to make a complete recovery.

The virus that causes measles was never listed as endangered, although it had largely disappeared from its habitat in the US, UK and Europe, suggesting that governments in those regions were actively conspiring to bring about its extinction. Fortunately, by the tireless efforts of anti-vaccinationists and shameless medical opportunists, it has been re-introduced into large areas of its former range and is expected to thrive there.

So you see, the “Vaccine Greens” are just doing their part to prevent human-caused species loss and to maintain global biodiversity.

Damn. I wish I had thought of this sort of comment. I hate it when a commenter comes up with better material than I can.

THE “GREEN OUR VACCINES” COLLECTION:

  1. The Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey rally to “Green Our Vaccines”: Anti-vaccine, not “pro-safe vaccine”!
  2. An Open Letter to Congress on Immunization
  3. “Green Our Vaccines”: Further skeptical reading
  4. “Green Our Vaccines”: Serendipity and schadenfreude as antivaccinationists go to war
  5. “Green Our Vaccines”: Best comment EVAH! Or: How to preserve biological diversity through not vaccinating
  6. “Green Our Vaccines”: Celebrity antivaccinationist ignoramuses on parade. Or: I didn’t know that Dumb & Dumber was a documentary
  7. “Green Our Vaccines”: “Pro-safe vaccine” or anti-vaccine? You be the judge!
  8. “Green Our Vaccines”: “Pro-safe vaccine” or anti-vaccine? You be the judge! (Part 2)
  9. “Green Our Vaccines”: The fallacy of the perfect solution

Comments

  1. #1 D. C. Sessions
    June 4, 2008

    Damn. I wish I had thought of this sort of comment. I hate it when a commenter comes up with better material than I can.

    Deal. We have you outnumbered.

  2. #2 Niobe
    June 4, 2008

    Regardless of the scathing satire, it does remind me of a Poe’s Law for antivax nutters. The Prometheus Posit, I guess.

  3. #3 Interrobang
    June 4, 2008

    It’s worse than that. Those eeevil vaccinationists have been driving those viruses to exinction! That’s genocide!!!1eleventyone!

  4. #4 Joe
    June 4, 2008

    Damned right about Prometheus.

  5. #5 Jesse
    June 4, 2008

    ‘Twas a thing of beauty indeed.

  6. #6 Mariah
    June 4, 2008

    Oh…right…we should go after the antibiotics too. I mean–just think about the name alone!!1!

    anti. biotic.

    Root of all the other evil.

  7. #7 Dan
    June 4, 2008

    That is it! I have had enough of Orac making fun of our “Green Vaccine” movement!!! I am starting PETV (People for the Ethical Treatment of Viruses). Soon we will get laws passed given viruses the same rights PETA advocates for animals and be afraid as we will come after the scientists/researchers who are abusive to viruses. Viruses have been abused long enough!!! Be afraid, very afraid if you are a researcher abusing viruses. We will find out where you live, work, and play and you will be held accountable.

  8. #8 mona
    June 4, 2008

    And as an added bonus, the antivaccinationists’ new method for population control will totally help cut our carbon footprint!

  9. #9 Mike
    June 4, 2008

    Actually, PJ O’Rourke said this years ago. When talking about species extinction, he noted that not all species are beneficial with the comment, “I don’t remember ever donating to ‘Save the Smallpox’.”

  10. #10 DLC
    June 4, 2008

    Oh well, the earth is overpopulated anyway.
    culling a few million here or there will only help reduce global warming.

  11. #11 DLC
    June 4, 2008

    oops! my sarcasm tag didn’t get included in that last.

  12. #12 Samantha Vimes
    June 5, 2008

    I hope there are EnergyStar rated iron lungs.

  13. #13 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    June 5, 2008

    I am starting PETV (People for the Ethical Treatment of Viruses)

    Well that transfers easily for the anti-vaxers.

    Vaccines are murder!

  14. #14 Prometheus
    June 5, 2008

    Gosh! I’m blushing!

    I was not aware that PJ O’Rourke had precedence on this line of humor – and I’ve read a lot of what he’s written. Oh, well.

    Back when I was in college – during the late Cretaceous – I had an English professor tell me (in response to one of my early cynical writings), “It is exceedingly difficult to parody a farce.” I have found that this is true. Parody depends on going “over the top”, and it is “exceedingly difficult” to go “over the top” of a movement that is setting new records of “over the top”-ness.

    Of course, that hasn’t kept me from trying.

    Prometheus

  15. #15 Diora
    June 5, 2008

    “Oh well, the earth is overpopulated anyway.
    culling a few million here or there will only help reduce global warming. ”
    Not to mention demand for oil, food and other commodities. Good timing too.

  16. #16 outeast
    June 12, 2008

    Not to mention demand for oil, food and other commodities. Good timing too.

    Nah, commodity demand will go up. Think of all the coffee for the enemas, etc.

  17. #17 Lilly de Lure
    June 12, 2008

    outeast said:

    Think of all the coffee for the enemas, etc.

    Thank you very much – one perfectly good caffeine break has now been completely ruined!

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