This morning I had to go pick up some forms from the local government school system. Yeah, with my son of legal age now, it's time for me to cross over into the official realm of *homeschooling*. Because it means nothing for anyone staying at home with toddlers, doodling, reciting the alphabet, and doing a little algebra(!), to say they homeschool - that is until their child is 6 and they are *defying the state*.
Of course I have no expectations of the process being easy. I went to the local school, had to check in with *security* at two different junctures, navigate my car and my kids through a sea of shiftless adolescents....only to come up empty-handed. The woman who was supposed to meet me had stepped out. I waited as long as I could before rushing off to my kids' pediatric appointment - which I ended up being late for.
Why were we seeing the doctor?
Because the Prince and the Princess can't attend any of these camps without physicals.
My son hadn't been to a doctor in two full years; and my daughter was due for her annual check-up as well. They say *due* but all they really mean is that they want to pump some more vaccines in her - "MMR boosters" or whatever. Having USED MY OWN BRAIN and done some research....this stuff scares me - meaning the vaccinations, not the diseases.
The doctor, unlike some others, was good though. She had no ego, no opinion about whether or not I got the vaccinations that were *due*. Though she did regurgitate the illogical propaganda in the face of my hesitation:
Pediatrician - You know, there was a case here last year in New York where an entire community got the mumps...
Of course, I knew exactly what she was talking about. I had blogged on it!
CaptiousNut - And 76% of those people were already vaccinated...
Pediatrician - But that just proves that there are some wild strains of the disease out there.
CaptiousNut - (lightly laughing) I thought it proved that the vaccine doesn't work?
Pediatrician - (blah, blah, blah)....herd immunity....(blah, blah, blah).
But she was very nice, which is rare to find among doctors(!), so I diplomatically changed the subject. It'd probably be unpleasant for me to diagnose her ignorance any more than I already had.
About 15 minutes later, it was a long examination, I changed my mind and allowed the vaccinations on my poor kids. Because the fact remained, if I wanted to send them to ANY camp this summer, they'd need a note from the doctor stating their immunizations were "up-to-date". This really pissed me off, but what am I going to do?
My kids love summer camp, even if they'll only get a week or two. They work hard all year long and have earned it - as far as my wife and I are concerned. Have y'all see my daugher doing her math yet?
Looking over my daughter's chart I was displeased to see that at age two she was given some *chicken pox vaccine* (on Mrs. C-Nut's watch!). That's my fault I guess because I hadn't done my research or paid close enough attention. Knowing what I know now - see Kids Need Viruses... - I'd never have allowed my kids to be injected with that crap. In fact, even more chafing, was a remark made by the doctor that the particular chicken pox vaccine my then 2 year old daughter was given is now *off the market*. Go figure! And worry!
Sometime around 1995 a vaccine for chickenpox became available. It is a live-virus vaccine. Typically live-virus vaccines are made by growing the wild -type virus in ways that alter its ability to cause the disease. In essence it is similar to the natural virus, and capable of reproducing once inside the body, but is supposed to be less likely to actually cause the disease itself. However just because the symptoms are reduced does not necessarily mean that it is not causing harm inside the body. Their are many examples of infections that can silently damage organs, and not be discovered until many years later.
The normal route of entry of chickenpox into a child's body is through the mouth and nose-- usually inhaling particles that an infected person has coughed. This means that the virus will come in contact with the mucous membranes and trigger the beginnings of an immune response. After this initial "alert" of the immune system, the virus travels to the lymphatic system, where additional body defenses are mustered. Finally, after the body has had adequate time to gear up, the virus gains access to the blood stream and major organs. But by this time, the immune system is mounting a full response (thanks to its being alerted early by the mucous membranes and lymphatic system) and will usually protect the major organs from damage from this virus.
Now compare this scenario to what happens when one's first exposure to the virus is from a vaccine: The mucous membranes are bypassed. The lymphatic system is bypassed. The live virus gains immediate access to the bloodstream and major organs -- a situation that millions of years of evolutionary wisdom seems to have tried to avoid!
No one really knows what the long term ramifications of exposure to this virus in this unorthodox way are. Since it is so new, there is no long term data available. In fact there is no data to even suggest that after ten years, immunity from this vaccine is sufficient to prevent the disease -- possibly leaving people vulnerable to getting chickenpox as adults when the risks of this illness are much greater!
There is no evidence that when little girls who have received the chickenpox vaccine grow up and become mothers, they will be able to pass sufficient antibodies on to their babies to protect them from chickenpox in infancy -- which can also be dangerous in the very young. And like all vaccines currently on the market, there is no requirement that manufacturers study recipients of vaccines to identify possible long-term ill-effects from these biological agents. In fact to my knowledge, no vaccine manufacturer ever records data on the health of vaccinee's longer then 90 days -- and even following them that long is rare! But that does make it easy for them to dismiss epidemiological data that seems to suggest vaccines may play a role in the increase in a variety of autoimmune diseases, asthma and brain disorders.
What we do know as a result of vaccination for measles, another previously common childhood infection--also thought to be much less serious if contracted between the ages of 3-9, is that for many, the vaccine does not confer lifelong immunity, it merely POSTPONES one's susceptibility. Prior to widespread measles vaccination, epidemics in college-aged people were unheard of -- today (or a least prior to requiring re-immunization of college freshman) college students have become more common victims, and face a greater potential for complications then children.
When I first heard press reports about the new chickenpox vaccine, I remember thinking to myself, "That's crazy -- how in the world will they sell a new vaccine with unknown long term dangers to the public -- nobody's scared of chickenpox." But very soon my question was answered. While reading a popular parenting magazine one day, I noticed a slick multi-page advertising insert that compared the cost of this vaccine to lost wages of the working parent who must miss a week of work to care for their sick child. It was a shock to see the health of our children so shamelessly traded for the materialism of our culture.
At that point, having studied a bit more about the history of vaccination, and the evolution of public perception about specific illnesses once a vaccine is introduced, I remember commenting to a friend, "Just wait -- in twenty or thirty years when childhood cases of chickenpox become rare due to the use of this vaccine -- everyone will be talking about what a DANGEROUS disease chickenpox was!" As it turns out, I was wrong -- it didn't take twenty or thirty years, it happened almost as soon as the vaccine was released. Pharmaceutical company spun articles and news reports began appearing that emphasized that chickenpox is not a benign disease. First they said that there were about ten deaths a year due chickenpox. A year later I saw an article that claimed there were a hundred deaths a year due to chickenpox. Next came a heart-rending article, splashed all-over the newspapers complete with color pictures and all of some poor child who had a "normal" case of chickenpox and then developed some serious heart complication. The child's doctor was quoted as saying, "Chickenpox is NOT harmless!"
I'm sure sales of the vaccine increased after that story came out -- funny how in the previous fifty years (prior to introduction of the vaccine) the media never had a story like that to run!
After this brutal and lengthy doctor's appointment (my kids were getting beyond restless), I swung by the house and dropped them off for lunch.
But then I had to go all the way back to the school, now all this nonsense was cutting into my afternoon, and try again to get the *home instruction* paperwork I needed to file.
It's damn hard to not get frustrated with all this BS. I mean who are these people? It turns out, I have to write a letter to the Superintendent AND the Board of Education, informing them of my intent to homeschool. THEN, they have to *sign off* on my curriculum, I have to file quarterly reports, and I have to subject my son to THEIR tests.
Hah! I should be testing their competency; and testing their Moronic kids...
In the doctor's office today, the nice pediatrician engaged my son, asking him what his favorite subject was. "I do a lot of math," he said.
CaptiousNut - Go ahead and ask him a math question.
Pediatrician - No...No...I'm not good at math.
CaptiousNut - (smirking) Well he's going to be the one who answers it...
CaptiousNut - Alright (Prince), why don't you ask her a question.
Prince - Okay...2 X equals zero...what is X?
Pediatrican - (about 15 seconds later) One half?
Prince - No, X is zero.
And I'm going to listen to her about vaccines???
Like I said, I should be testing them.
See also - Vaccinate Yourself Against Doctors.
And my rebellious pig flu posts:
Massachusetts - The Dumbest State, QED
The Bizarro World Of Pig Flu Hysterics
More Pig/Bird Flu Fraud
More Pig Flu Nonsense
Swine Flu Cooties
Pig Flu Quack-ccine
Pig Flu Bogeyman - Up For Slaughter