Orac note: Please be sure to read the addendum.
Say it ain’t so, Jill! Check out this e-mail notice from the latest Generation Rescue mailing list sent to me by a reader. It’s apparently legitimate, because I found a copy of it on the Generation Rescue website itself. Look at who’s being featured at a fundraiser for anti-vaccine guru, discredited and delicensed U.K. physician and “researcher” Andrew Wakefield:
A Private Evening with Dr. Andy Wakefield
To benefit Dr. Wakefield’s research:
“Strategic Autism Initiative”
WHEN: Sunday, July 25th
WHERE: Private house in Woodland Hills, California
Time: 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
There will be a book signing by Dr. Wakefield of “Callous Disregard: autism and vaccines-the truth behind a tragedy.”
For more information or to RSVP for this event (by July 22nd), please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is a requested $100 donation per person – all profits will be applied to SAI*.
Generation Rescue is looking for a wine donor for this event. If you know of a company that would be willing to donate to the event, please contact Emily Herman at Generation Rescue.
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*The Strategic Autism Initiative (SAI) is a medical research organization focused on identifying the environmental causes of the worldwide autism pandemic. SAI represents national and international autism organizations as their research arm. It exists to design, commission, fund, and publish first-class science that leads to the prevention of autism and related disorders.
I have no idea who Mike Marino is, but I kind of liked Jill Sobule. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that she apparently buys at least somewhat into the anti-vaccine line. I suppose I can hope that it’s ignorance, but that would have to be some powerful ignorance not to know all about how Wakefield lost his U.K. medical license over his unethical behavior doing the “research” that, or so Wakefield claimed in the press, linked the MMR vaccine to autism and sparked a decade long scare over the MMR vaccine from which MMR uptake rates still haven’t recovered.
If you’re a fan of Jill Sobule, please consider sending her an e-mail or contacting her on Facebook (and I know some of my Facebook friends have also friended her) expressing your disappointment with her for associating herself with this sort of pseudoscience and trying to educate her. Ditto Mike Marino and his Facebook page.
If anyone gets a response, please leave it in the comments here.
ADDENDUM: I have an as yet unconfirmed report from a reader that he had e-mailed Jill Sobule already and gotten a response that she was planning on canceling. Assuming Sobule has indeed done so, then please be sure to send her an e-mail praising her decision. I’ll post a confirmation when I know for sure that she’s canceled her appearance. Unfortunately, this means I can’t chalk up a victory for the power of Orac in Sobule’s case, mainly because I received the e-mail from my reader informing that she’s canceling right after this post went live, meaning that my intrepid reader’s activities had borne fruit before this was posted. Well done!
Oh, well, at least there’s still Mike Marino needing a gentle education regarding what he’s gotten himself into.
ADDENDUM #2: Jill Sobule’s e-mail reply is included in the comments below. Surprise, surprise! The “friend” who asked her to do the benefit performance never told her that Andrew Wakefield was involved, which tells me the anti-vaccine zealots know how toxic his reputation has become. One wonders if Jill’s “friend” is Jenny McCarthy herself, one does. In any case, whoever the friend is, if I were a performer I’d consider it an extreme abuse of my friendship to ask me to do a benefit concert while willfully hiding from me who the true beneficiary of the proceeds of that concert is to be. That’s deceptive and not a nice thing to do to a friend at all!
In any case, in your e-mails, besides congratulating her for her knowledge of who Wakefield is and her unwillingness to support pseudoscience, you might also want to warn Jill that she can expect to have some rather nasty e-mails coming at her from the AoA crew; no doubt a hit piece is forthcoming, either against her or me. Sadly, Orac can’t take any credit for making Sobule aware of what she had agreed to. He wishes he could. He really does. But he can’t.
Unfortunately, there’s still Mike Marino.