Contamination requiring ritual purification: Superstitious concepts at the heart of antivaccine beliefs

Over the years, I've frequently contemplated just where many of the ideas that underlie alternative medicine in general come from. Certainly, I'm not the first to have thought of this by any stretch of the imagination, but over the last 13 years, I've become convinced that it is a fear of bodily "contamination" that harks back to ideas found in many religions. Think about it. Where does the fear of "toxins" in vaccines come from? Vaccines are portrayed as "foreign," as something "unnatural" that is "injected right into the bloodstream." Never mind that vaccines are not injected directly into the bloodstream. To the antivaxer, there is no difference between an intramuscular and intravenous injections because to them both are equally "contaminating." It's also not a coincidence that many of the treatments for "vaccine-induced autism" or any other condition falsely attributed to vaccines are represented as "detoxification." They are basically purges, to purge the "evil humors" that antivaxers believe vaccines to be packed full of. It's not for nothing that I've not infrequently described alternative medicine "detoxification" as being akin to ritual purification of the sort found in many different religions.

Sometimes, antivaxers even help to make my case for me. For instance, here's antivaxer and all-around supporter of everything quacky, John Rappoport, declaring the The Occult Archetype Called Vaccination. Here, Rappoport claims to examine the "archetypes and symbols" that surround vaccination and to him "give it occult power." My first reaction was: Projection, thy name is antivaxer. You know he's off the rails from the very beginning when he begins with a claim that vaccination was begun as a "crude version of homeopathy." Here's a hint. Variolation predated homeopathy by 75 years, and other investigators had tested vaccination with cowpox to protect against smallpox a couple of decades before Samuel Hahnemann dreamt up the sympathetic magic that is homeopathy. Even Jenner's work was roughly contemporaneous with Hahnemann's first descriptions of homeopathy in the late 1790s. Homeopaths (and quacks like Rappoport) love to claim that vaccination was somehow an imitation of homeopathy (or, these days) that homeopathic nosodes are the equivalent of vaccination because of homeopathy's "law" of "like cures like."

Then we get to the "meat" (if you can call it that) of Rappoport's comparison:

Today, as a revival of ancient symbology, vaccination is a conferred seal, a sign of moral righteousness. It’s a mark on the arm, signifying tribal inclusion. No tribe member is left out. Inclusion by vaccination protects against invisible spirits (viruses).

The notion of the tribe is enforced by dire predictions of pandemics: the spirits of other tribes (from previously unknown hot zones in jungles) are attacking the good tribe, our tribe.

Mothers, the keepers of the children, are given a way to celebrate their esteemed, symbolic, animal role as “lionesses”: confer the seal on their offspring through vaccination. Protect the future of the tribe. Speak out and defame and curse the mothers who don’t vaccinate their children. Excommunicate them from the tribe.

Or it could just be that they understand that herd immunity is important and that unvaccinated children can serve as vectors for disease outbreaks.

There's also a rather amazing extension of normal antivaccine arguments in which Rappoport claims that the child is "more than the offspring of the parents" and is now the "property of the village" You might remember how often I point out that the invocation of "parental rights" by antivaxers often assumes that children are the property of the parents. Indeed, I often quote Rand Paul, who, referring to the "right" of parents not to vaccinate their children, once said, "The state doesn’t own the children. Parents own the children, and it is an issue of freedom.” Now get a load of what Rappoport says:

The ceremony of vaccination is a rite of passage for the child. He/she is now more than the offspring of the parents. The child is in the village. The child is property of the village. As the years pass, periodic booster shots reconfirm this status.

See what I mean? The only difference between this remark and Rand Paul's objection to vaccination is that Rappoport substitutes the "village" for the "government" referred to by Paul.

Now here's where Rappoport really lets you know that I'm right about their viewing vaccination as contamination by the way he describes what he perceives to be the mystical aspect of vaccination:

Some ancient rituals presented dangers. The child, on his way to becoming a man, would be sent out to live alone in the forest for a brief period and survive. Vaccination symbolizes this in a passive way: the injection of disease-viruses which might be harmful are transmuted into protective spirits in the body. The injection of toxic chemicals is a passageway into immunity. If a child is damaged in the process, the parents and the tribe consider it a tragic but acceptable risk, because on the whole the tribe and the village are protected against the evil spirits (viruses).

The psychological and occult and archetypal impact of vaccination is key: modern parents are given the opportunity to feel, on a subconscious level, a return to older times, when life was more bracing and immediate and vital. That is the mythology. Modern life, for basic consumers, has fewer dimensions—but vaccination awakens sleeping memories of an age when ritual and ceremony were essential to the future of the group. No one would defect from these moments. Refusal was unthinkable. Survival was All. The mandate was powerful. On a deep level, parents today can experience that power. It is satisfying.

There is no doubt that there is a feeling of satisfaction that vaccinating one's children can bring. It is indeed the feeling of protecting one's offspring against diseases that might threaten their lives. It has little to do with the "mandate" of the "tribe" or anything else like that. What's interesting is that Rappoport tries to dismiss the societal mandate to vaccinate as though it were nothing more than some ancient tribal ritual transplanted into modern society. I think that's very telling. He can't explain vaccine mandates any other way than as ritual. He also represents vaccination as some sort of dangerous process that might damage the child, when in fact it is very, very safe, with serious adverse reactions exceedingly rare.

Then there is the religious aspect. Note the language: "Injection of the disease-virus." This is a very clear reference to the "contamination" that I was talking about. Indeed, this choice of phrasing is very common in antivaccine circles, where vaccines are often referred to as "injecting disease matter," which is technically true but phrased to make it sound as scary as possible.

And, of course, who is at the center of this "mystic ritual"? You guessed it. It's the physician, who is portrayed by Rappoport as a shaman:

The doctor giving the injections is, of course, the priest of the tribe, the medicine man, the holder of secrets. He is the spiritual source of, and connection to, “unseen realms” where opposing spirits carry out warfare and struggle for supremacy. Without the medicine man, the tribe would disintegrate.

The medicine man is permitted to say and do anything. He can tell lies if lies serve a noble purpose and effect greater strength of the tribe. He can manipulate language and truth and meaning. He can turn day into night. He can present paradox and contradiction. No one can question his pronouncements.

Loyalty to the medicine man is absolute. In this regard, a rebel is exiled or destroyed.

Methinks that Mr. Rappoport vastly overestimates the power that physicians have in society. Oddly enough, what he is describing seems to be an extreme version of medical paternalism that was common 70 years ago but hasn't been a part of medicine for decades. There is much projection here, as well. In fact, the real shaman/healer/medicine man tends to be the alternative medicine practitioners and the antivaccine doctor-"heros" like Andrew Wakefield whom antivaxers do basically idolize much like the description of medicine men above. Indeed, I've explained in depth why the appeal of this sort of unscientific medicine, part of which includes antivaccine beliefs, is the appeal of the shaman, a view that Dr. Mehmet Oz, of all people, appears to support without realizing it.

The sort of thinking that Rappoport is attributing to those advocating vaccination is in actuality much more characteristic of believers in alterntive medicine in general and the antivaccine movement and their quacks in particular.They are the unquestioned, shaman-healer so common in so many societies in pre-scientific times. Bringing us back to the religious aspect of "contamination" that I started out with, as I've pointed out time and time again, in ancient Egypt, physicians were also priests; both functions, physician and priest, were one, which made sense given how little effective medicine there was. Praying to the gods for patients to get better was in most cases as good as anything those ancient physicians could do. All of this is of a piece with the antivaccine view of vaccines as "contamination" that makes the child "unclean" such that he must be ritually purified with "detoxification."

I sometimes like to reference the über-quack and über-scammer Mike Adams, because he goes so over the top that he often illustrates my points for me, albeit in a sort of reductio ad absurdum manner. A couple of days ago, he was claiming that Facebook was "censoring" Natural News. Today he's claiming that is "declaring war on children" by "censoring him." I must admit that in this rant Adams outdoes himself in pure looniness, but inadvertently he helps make some of my points for me, again largely by projection.

For instance, to him vaccination goes beyond mere "contamination" and becomes both violation (as in rape) and contamination with something even more unspeakable than "toxins" or "disease matter":

Mark Zuckerberg isn’t accused of raping little children with his biology, but he controls the social media network that openly espouses the medical violation of childrens’ bodies with toxic injections — a form of “medical rape” that obscenely violates the American Medical Association’s medical ethics when mandated by coercive government (as has already happened in California with SB 277).

Further adding to the horrifying truth of what Zuckerberg and Facebook are really up to, many vaccines given to children in America today are made from the ground-up, homogenized, disease-inoculated organs of aborted black babies. These “human embryonic lung cell cultures” are openly listed as chicken pox vaccine ingredients by the CDC and vaccine manufacturers, all of whom also openly admit that vaccines are made from diseased animal organs such as African Green Monkey kidney cells. (MMR vaccines are also made from the tissue of aborted human babies.)

I will give Mikey credit for one thing. I've heard and debunked the claims that vaccines are made from the "tissue of aborted babies" (dude, cells isolated from a fetus in the 1960s and maintained in culture over 50 years are not the same thing as "tissue from aborted human babies") and many others, including the fear mongering about African Green Monkeys. I've also dealt with the vile simile that likens vaccination to rape. However, I've never heard the claim that vaccines are made from the "ground-up, homogenized, disease-inoculated organs of aborted black babies." I did some Googling and was unable to find the origin of that incredible (and false) claim. Seriously, Mikey. Now you're just making shit up even more than usual.

Now, as ridden with hyperbole this is, it is far too close to normal, common antivaccine claims to be Mike Adams. So, naturally, Adams has to ramp the stupid and outrage up to 11 and beyond by likening vaccination to ritualistic child sacrifice and cannibalism:

Today, Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook demand the ritualistic sacrifice of children to the “vaccine gods” as a way to appease their globalist controllers. Just like in the era of the Maya, children are especially prized for their innocence which is violated by puncturing the skin and injecting the child with foreign DNA extracted from other children sacrificed at abortion centers.

Quite literally, the dead children are liquefied and “fed” to other children, many of whom are maimed or killed by the toxic intervention (yes, this is how vaccines are manufactured). This is all carried out in the name of “science,” just as the Maya high priests carried out their sacrifices in the name of “cosmic powers.”

What few people have recognized yet is that in the realm of globalist power, the sacrifice of children is always required for an ascending globalist to “prove” their commitment to the cause. Zuckerberg, you see, wants to become a “high priest” of the modern technocracy which is founded in a scientific dictatorship, medical tyranny and the power of the coercive state. The ritualistic sacrifice of children is a necessary component of those ascensions to power.

I had to read that passage three times because I couldn't believe what I had just read, Yes, Adams really wrote it. So let me get this straight. Dead children are somehow "liquified" and "fed" to other children, thus both contaminating them in such a way that "violates" their innocence, presumably both because it is (to Adams) like rape and because it also somehow "contaminates" them. Again, projection is the key here. This is how hard core antivaxers think.

Lest you think that Adams is so over-the-top, that Natural News is a wretched hive of scum and quackery so much scummier and quackier than all the other wretched hives of scum and quackery that it can be ignored, let's take a look at another article, over at Megan Heimer's wretched hive of scum and antivaccine quackery, entitled What You Didn’t Know About the Aborted Baby Parts in Your Vaccines:

You might have also heard that only two babies were used and it was a really long time ago, which justifies the continued use of shooting up live babies with dead babies. This just simply isn’t true and if you think it is, watch one of the many Planned Parenthood videos. These people are harvesting baby parts for a reason.

Aborted baby is supposedly some sort of magic that makes vaccines more effective (albeit safely untested and could contribute to conditions like autism and cancer).

No, the only people invoking "magic," "ritual," "contamination," and "purification" with respect to vaccine components are people like Mike Adams, John Rappoport, and Megan Heimer. That's because so much of the antivaccine belief system is rooted in ancient superstitious and religious concepts, the most prominent aspect of which are contamination and ritual purification. Sometimes they even throw violation (rape) in there for good measure. Basically, to many antivaxers vaccines are like fluoride in Dr. Strangelove. They sap and contaminate your precious bodily fluids, but they'll go even beyond that. They'll contaminate you so much that they corrupt your DNA. I wish I were exaggerating about these beliefs, but I'm not.


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The doctor giving the injections is, of course, the priest of the tribe

Uh, I dunno about you, but in my neck of the woods vaccination is done by nurses. You don't even need to see a doctor before getting childhood vaccinations done. So much for the high priest, eh?

Also, are uninjected vaccines ok? There's a lot of needle phobia in antivax land. Maybe things like the rotavirus and old-school polio immunisations are gateway vaccinations, to lure small children into trying the harder stuff, though.

Today, as a revival of ancient symbology, vaccination is a conferred seal, a sign of moral righteousness. It’s a mark on the arm, signifying tribal inclusion. No tribe member is left out. Inclusion by vaccination protects against invisible spirits (viruses).

If vaccination were some sort of tribal mark, shouldn't we still be doing smallpox vaccination, since it was a vaccine that truly left a mark on your arm? Oh, wait--smallpox was eradicated through vaccination (making members of that tribe are age 50 and older and not children anymore). And BCG vaccine (against tuberculosis) can leave a vaccination scar as well, but many countries don't give it, so this whole "mark on the arm" thing from vaccines ain't making sense (except in the echo chamber of Rappoport's largely empty cranium).

Also, it's strange how vaccines= contamination, but yet, for many AVers it's ok if mom eats her placenta--something they will almost certainly still support even though there was a recent warning of group B strep neonatal infection from a mom taking encapsulated placenta post partum ( But, hey--it's probably the baby's fault for contracting group B strep anyhow, right?

Over at the misnamed "Immunity Education Group"-- anti-vaxxers recently penned a piece claiming that last year's change in the vaccine schedule from 3 HPV vaccines to 2 shows how the ebil ones at the CDC are backtracking and trying to cover up how dangerous HPV vaccine is. You would think IEG might have expressed gratitude that--since vaccines are full of "toxins" --that one less vaccine on the schedule would equal fewer "toxins". Alas, can't do anything to placate AVers because their messed up minds will just convolute whatever you do into some even more diabolical plan to kill children/sterilize society/put lizard overlords in power.

When it comes to contamination, there's not enough GoLytely in the universe to even partially flush the crap-filled brains of hardcore AVers.

By Chris Hickie (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Right from the beginning, opposition to vaccination has been religion and "freedom" based. From the Jenner Institute's website, "People quickly became fearful of the possible consequences of receiving material originating from cows and opposed vaccination on religious grounds, saying that they would not be treated with substances originating from God's lowlier creatures. Variolation was forbidden by Act of Parliament in 1840 and vaccination with cowpox was made compulsory in 1853. This in its turn led to protest marches and vehement opposition from those who demanded freedom of choice."

Fred Clark, on the blog Slacktivist, often writes about the love people have for stories about Satanic baby killers, and how they don't want to let those stories go. It appears that this same mentality is found among the anti-vaxxers, and probably for the same reason. It elevates them and separates them from 'the other.' They can feel righteous knowing they would never do such a terrible thing. I still want them all in an iron lung for 24 hours, with a bad case of Shingles. Then, I want them in Dara O'Briain's sack.

Oops! I misspelled my own name. Good grief. I guess I need more coffee before reading about anti-vaxxers.

The doctor giving the injections is, of course, the priest of the tribe, the medicine man, the holder of secrets.

And so on. Such a long-winded rant to claim that vaccines are ritual magic.

How do you call magic which has been shown to be working? Medicine.

By Helianthus (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

They're out to pollute our bodily essences.

I think Rappoport should re-watch Dr Strangelove and realize it's not a documentary. Then again, maybe the problem is, no-one wants his bodily essences.

By Anonymous Pseudonym (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

As George Carlin said, I will leave symbols to the simple-minded.

Adams seems to have lost whatever little bits of his mind were still in his possession. He seems to be saying that Soylent Green isvaccines are made of people.

And I'll second Ellie's remarks about the satanic baby killers schtick. People will often go to great lengths to "prove" their moral superiority, even to the point of inventing such horrors out of whole cloth.

By Eric Lund (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

I wonder when is the last time any of these people actually watched a child vaccinated.

I guess this is behind the language we hear that talks of unvaccinated children as "vaccine-free" or having an intact immune system, whatever that is.

And is the logic behind the demand for a vaccinated/unvaccinated study and t new movie Azeris making, designed to present unvaccinated children as better, including publicly humiliating the vaccinated children of the participating families by working to present them as less good.

By Dorit Reiss (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Rappaport actually manages what would be a few bits of semi-respectable cultural analysis, if he didn't expect us to take it to literally, and didn't put such a pejorative twist on it. Vaccination as rite of passage, through danger, into the tribe and village, conferring a moral righteousness, presided over by a shaman, etc. It's exaggerated, but not totally wrong. The problem is, 'So what's wrong with that?!' or 'You say that like it's a bad thing!' A respectable cultural anthropologist might make similar observations, especially a Levi-Straussian structuralist, but wouldn't find anything sinister or even "religious" really in any of it. That is, these things would be seen as resonances of fundamental symbols systems human beings have employed across very different cultures over long periods of time in order to understand the world and deal with it socially in some functional way.

But even the later part where Rappaport goes full looney – "Loyalty to the medicine man is absolute... a rebel is exiled or destroyed" – looks like genius in comparison to Adams rantings. To those, I can only shake my head, in lack of comprehension at how anyone could go there, and just have no words... W. T. F. ??

Wait a minute..
he's talking about archetypes ( of the collective unconscious?) and he fails to mention the SHADOW?
You know, the Dark Side of human nature which ever lurks in the hearts of men. . which would be


and on a more serious note...
he's talking about primitive people, tribes, medicine men, symbolic mother _lionesses_, JUNGLES...
doesn't that sound a little racist? ... black people in Africa as the appeared in old movies or ancient pulp fiction**.

Not enlightened folk like him.

** or Disney musicals

By Denice Walter (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

@ Chris Hickie

Since you an turn day into night, and o one can question your pronouncements, you could get those AV parents to immunize their tots if you just pulled out the shamanic powers you were inducted into in med school. I admire your restraint and respect for your patients' parents autonomy. ;-)

doesn’t that sound a little racist?

Oh, you noticed that. Why, yes it does.

I should have added above that Ripapart likely cribbed the outline of those comments from a legit anthro text, and just put his negative spin on all of it. This could be just projection as Orac says, but also a more Turdblossomish mustache-twirling scheme to tar his opponents with false accusations of his own groups 'issues'. We know who the real dark side occultists are one way or the other.

Maybe a good idea to improve vaccination rates is to combine the shot with an actual tattoo. Not a big one, just a small mark that would be part of a larger pattern that would only be completed by many years of consistent vaccination. A flu shot might add a feather to the eagle. Gardasil would be a snake the eagle is carrying.

By Mark Thorson (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

I want them in Dara O’Briain’s sack.

They can't escape the sack. The sack sees them all. The sack embraces them all.

By Rich Woods (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

@ Sadmar #13: Well, lets just say I prefer not using Jedi mind tricks when it comes to consenting for vaccines ;)

By Chris Hickie (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

When med-scammers adopt the 'abortions = BABY-KILLING' language of the fetus-fetishists, there's probably an element of good old-fashioned Affinity Fraud. If you want to defraud the religious loons -- and ever since religion became a branch of right-wing politicis, that's where all the Stupid is -- then you need to spout all the fetish-fondling shibboleths, so that the suckers will trust you.

By herr doktor bimler (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Fred Clark, on the blog Slacktivist, often writes about the love people have for stories about Satanic baby killers, and how they don’t want to let those stories go.

Norman Cohn's "Europe's Inner Demons" is my go-to source, for I am old-school. Cohn traces the tradition back to attacks on the early Christians as part of Roman Imperial persecution, which the Christians immediately adopted and redirected at their enemies (heretics) as soon as they had control of the Empire.

But when Adams combines the baby-eating stories with names like "Zuckerberg" --

Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook demand the ritualistic sacrifice of children

-- we're in Blood Libel antisemitism territory. Adams can't quite bring himself to shout out "MATZOHS IZ MADE OF BABY BLOOD!!" but that is what he wants his readers to think.

By herr doktor bimler (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Granted, I'm absent minded, but I can't ever remember having checked out anyone's arms at any time to check that they are members of my "tribe".

By Jane Ostentatious (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

I have been saying for years (this is sarcasm) that we should be doing drive by vaccinations and ear tagging to know who needs what. Ears tag would mark safe people to be around and those who avoid. Without ear tags we could ostracize those people. We could have teams of doctors, nurses and cowboys riding around doing the vaccinating and ear tagging. The cowboys could rope the little critters so they can be ear tagged.

Don't you think this would be a lot more fun setting around in a doctors office giving shots? If we did the vaccinating in schools we could use squeeze chutes and vaccinate and ear tag at the same time. I don't think branding would be necessary.

"I can’t ever remember having checked out anyone’s arms at any time"

A clear indication that you are a member of the tribe of those who do not check other people's arms. Welcome!

# 2 Chris Hickie

f vaccination were some sort of tribal mark, shouldn’t we still be doing smallpox vaccination, since it was a vaccine that truly left a mark on your arm?

We have replaced the mark with tattoos which actually is better since tattoos allow for one to indicate rank. The priest, err doctor, will have the most tattoos and the most sophisticated ones.

If you meet Orac in person you will hardly see one bit of bare skin.

By jrkrideau (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

ExCUSE me. Tag the ears of the UNvaccinated, and leave my perfectly formed lobes alone.

Panacea, as you noticed I was being sarcastic. Although, many people pierce various body parts to dangle things from. Myself, I have no piercings but do have 3 tattoos. The tattoos were applied as aiming points for radiation treatment a few years back.

If you meet Orac in person you will hardly see one bit of bare skin.

As befits one of the Scientific People.

By herr doktor bimler (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Rich: Heh. I didn't get my ears pierced until I was 35, and my friends practically had to drag me. First go round I went, "Nope!" and ran out of the store when a six year old ahead of me in line cried when she got hers.

Besides, the unvaccinated SHOULD wear the ear tags, since they're advertising they're willing to be diseased cows.

I'll never get a tattoo, but if I got one it would be like the kind you have.

he’s talking about primitive people, tribes, medicine men, symbolic mother _lionesses_, JUNGLES…
doesn’t that sound a little racist? … black people in Africa as the appeared in old movies or ancient pulp fiction**.

My money is on "Watched trailer for 'Black Panther', saw imagery to coopt for his cause".

By herr doktor bimler (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

HDB @18: I was wondering when someone was going to notice that. It's about as subtle as a 2x4 to the head.
So, in summary: racist *and* anti-semtic, all in one!

(OT: How the heck could anyone who has ever seen matzoh ever think there is any blood in it? It's whiter than a saltine! You want food with blood, look at black pudding. I mean, it's *actively* stupid.)

By JustaTech (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink


You should see mine, on my back (4h single session).



Tattoo that is.

Jrkrideau - the vision of Oracle with the full sleeve tattoos (face tattoo too?) made me laugh out loud but he's a robot.. wouldn't be a full decal? But that would hide the blinking lights...

By Jane Ostentatious (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Alain: Adams has never pretended to be consistent.

HDB and it wasnt just me. Shades of Leo Frank.

By shay simmons (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

Myself, no tattoos or piercings, because I donate blood.
Say, isn't bloodletting used in certain rituals? ;)

By Julian Frost (not verified) on 10 Aug 2017 #permalink

In case you haven't caught the news (I have been away from civilization this week) Polly Tommey has been kicked out of Australia and banned from re-entry for being a danger to public health (and possibly other reasons).

She has been touring Australia with VaXXed, lying to venues about what the bookings are for and making outrageous statements about public health. She hasn't taken her banning well, but I suppose anti-vaccine liars can't help themselves.

By Chris Preston (not verified) on 11 Aug 2017 #permalink

Myself, no tattoos or piercings, because I donate blood.

Unfortunately, I can't give blood (Hashimoto disease since 2005); thus, tattoo it is.


How ridiculous. I don't care if the medicine is mud if it works and is safe - but there is the rub. For families with genetic tendencies towards immune system and inflammatory disorders or a history of adverse reactions, these vaccines have been proven to be less than safe. Moreover, they don't seem to be that effective, either.

So it's a simple question, is questionable benefit of not contracting a disease which has a small risk of causing permanent harm to you worth the risk of intentionally assuming the risk lifelong disease or disability from a vaccine that has limited efficacy?

Answering that question must be a personal choice, not mandated by law or coerced by dogmatic doctors.…

By Annonymous (not verified) on 11 Aug 2017 #permalink

@Annonymous: since that study has been debunked here and other places as a horrible example of how to do a comparative study, try again.

Vaccines are safer than the disease they protect against, and are generally very effective. True, the flu vaccine isn't as good as we'd like, because the virus mutates so rapidly, and the acellular pertussis doesn't last as long. But scientists are seeking to improve all vaccines.

Nothing is 100% safe. Life isn't safe. And some of us care about others as much as we care about ourselves.

By the way, give *good* peer-reviewed studies that vaccines are "more dangerous" than the disease for For families with genetic tendencies towards immune system and inflammatory disorders or a history of adverse reactions, these vaccines have been proven to be less than safe.

Note that Mercola, Null, and oatext may get you laughed out of the room.

Rats. Beaten by the All-Knowing plexiglass box about the study. :)

It never hurts to reinforce the basics, MI Dawn ;)

Thanks Johnny.

My motto is: Living is hazardous to your health.

You are totally spot on. I remember when I was an anti-vaxxer, how I would see children who had been vaccinated as somehow defiled, with a toxic substance running through their veins.

Right after I posted the above comment, I clicked on an Onion article in my email and at the top, there was the ad "Is your body toxic". Google knows what I type.

Orac writes,

...antivaxers frequently speak in terms of contamination due to vaccines as a cause of autism and all the other conditions...

MJD says,

A few antivaxxers clearly have difficulty grasping the phrase "the dose makes the poison", but, many vaccine safety advocates are certainly worried and uncertain about the phrase "the antigen makes the allergy/autoimmunity".

Master Orac and Master Vinu continue to be the voice of reason for both phrases.

By Michael J. Dochniak (not verified) on 12 Aug 2017 #permalink