Civility, Please!

I have a heavy heart today.  Well, it’s been heavy for a couple of days now.  Quite simply, I get so tired of reading, watching, and hearing the level of incivility that seems to so pervade the debate surrounding vaccines.

I stumbled upon an article that was written by a mom and a concerned citizen cautioning parents to understand the risks taken in vaccinating, particularly with the current CDC recommended schedule:

Click here for the article

I happen to agree with the author.  However, I certainly recognize (whether I agree with it or not) that there is another side to the debate.  The hostility and name calling HAS to stop … but I’m not holding out hope that it will any time soon.

I am holding on to the hope that someday we will see real studies that test the appropriate factors to determine what role vaccines have in autism and the myriad of childhood illnesses and disabilities that are unquestionably skyrocketing.  I have to have that hope.  I don’t usually comment when I read all the flying insults and anger on these types of articles, but I couldn’t help myself on this one … Here’s my comment:

Wow.  All I can even bring myself to say anymore is wow.  For two days I’ve read the comments made on this article.  And, although I imagine by now I should not be, I continue to be shocked at the accusations, anger, and downright contempt that is so often shown by people on both sides of this debate.  I don’t begin to have all the answers – but no one else does, either.  But the lack of civility, and sometimes simple humanity, that is bantered about is so darn tiring.

Before I comment further, I have to say please go ahead and prepare the insults and allegations against me, my physicians, my beliefs that as an American I have an inherent right to, my choices, and my child.  Because I am the parent of an amazing little boy who was vaccine injured (whether you choose to believe so or not – which is certainly your right, as well).

For those who question – I have done the research, along side both mainstream physicians and autism specialists, to see the negative medical effects that resulted from his vaccinations.  Yes – we’ve scoured the medical records to be able to clearly identify a shot, followed by an adverse reaction.  More than once.  Following his diagnosis, we had genetic testing done.  We did not know to do so before he was injured.  And that genetic testing revealed abnormalities that made him more susceptible to toxins that exist in vaccines (please don’t debate the point that toxins exist in them at all – even the CDC, NIH, and pharmaceutical companies state that they exist, even though the possible negative side effects of those toxins are certainly in dispute).  And all of the docs we’ve seen have agreed (vaccine supporters and vaccine detractors) that, in his case, his little body was simply not capable of processing them sufficiently to avoid the result we now have.  Which is autism.  And nutritional deficiencies.  And mitochondrial dysfunction.  And GI problems.  And autism.  (Yes – I know I said it twice.)

I don’t expect everyone to agree with me.  But I sure wish I could expect civility in that disagreement.  I am a well-educated, thoughtful, inquisitive parent.  And when I first began to really understand what had happened to my child, I did the research.  I read every one of the (at that point) 16 studies that claimed to provide definitive proof that autism was not related to vaccines.  And I was disappointed to find several things that I believe are inherently wrong.  All of the studies had ties to the pharmaceutical industry.  None of them followed an experimental protocol with a control group and a study group – that is, not one (and not one to today) compared vaccinated to unvaccinated populations (not talking a look-back review of files, but a true experimental protocol).  None of them tested current schedules of vaccines against previous schedules for an evaluation of the compounded effect of the increased number of vaccines recommended today.  They simply did not answer my questions – but left me with more.  The primary one being – why hasn’t there been unbiased, extensive, and protocoled studies done to really try to answer the question.

I’ve also read more than 40 studies (yes, peer reviewed, and some that have their own issues with bias) that show a correlation between vaccines and all types of immune dysfunction, including asthma, ADHD, allergies, diabetes, celiac, bowel disease, and autism.  Although I’m not saying a correlation equals causation, without a real study testing the precise issues, there’s not enough to convince me to the contrary.  Of course, you have every right to believe as you choose to.  And so do I.

I can almost guarantee that I’ve done far more research than most of the people commenting on this topic.  And just as it is your right to believe what you do, it is my right to believe what I do.  Not a single person reading this comment knows my child better than I do.  And you will never be able to convince me – particularly with hatred and contempt – that you know better.  But I am always willing to do more, read more, seek more knowledge and gather more information.  Because it is about our kids – our futures.  My kid and his future.

So please, before you bash me, call me names, tell me I’m stupid or naïve, assert that my injured child is seeking a “free ride” for anything, think about the words you choose and the people – the real, live children and families living with these injuries that you may not think exist – who you are condemning for doing what they believe is most appropriate in their specific circumstances.  I can certainly debate the specific points made within these comments, but unless we all do so respectfully, what does anyone hope to gain?

2 comments on “Civility, Please!

  1. Hey, girl! Missing you much & love reading your posts. Fun story about the tooth, BTW! This is interesting, love getting new views & info from someone that loves research as much as I do. There is a lot of hate & anger in every issue these days – look at the upcoming election (if you can stand it!) I hope you are doing well! Take care, love & hugs!

  2. This might be my very favorite blog post ever. I recently got into it with some folks at Sevenly.org. And some folks at NBC.com. And basically wherever there is a story about autism. I need to pace myself.

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