Chapter 17: VACCINATIONS
Vaccination is a hot topic right now. The pro-vax camp and the anti-vax camp have pitted themselves against each other and each side is dug in deep. I have remained open-minded and tried to avoid arguing with people about the subject because I have found that it is a very emotional subject, and understandable so. Parents with vaccine-injured children have a right to be upset and express their opinion. Parents of children who chose to vaccinate are worried that unvaccinated children put their child at risk, which doesn’t make much sense to me but they have a right to express their opinion as well.
Herd immunity is commonly the rally cry of the pro-vax camp. There is a belief that if enough of the population is vaccinated against a disease that it will provide protection to the entire population. My first question is: if you were vaccinated why would you need to worry about it? The argument is that herd immunity protects the immune compromised individuals like newborns and the elderly. I would argue that bolstering the immune system with natural means should be the preferred method of presenting disease, for example breastfeeding in newborns and a preventative regimen for the elderly that includes diet, exercise, and of course chiropractic care for both populations. If you recall the story about my father when he traveled to Vietnam, you can see that this is the approach we take in my family, and I have seen the results.
One important point that I would like to make is that both sides have based their decisions on theories. There have not been any conclusive studies done on the efficacy of vaccines or the safety of the vaccines. The anti-vax camp has proposed a theory that the rise and fall of infectious diseases like polio, smallpox, and measles was a natural progression. It actually makes a lot of sense when you think about it. In the days of our early ancestors, the population was spread out and people went to the bathroom out in the woods and went on their way, so the disease associated with sewage and people crowding into a small space was non-existent. Think about the bubonic plague that killed millions in the middle Ages. The carrier for the disease was the flea, which traveled via rats. This was not a problem in the era of the caveman. Then we entered a time when populations came to live together and a migration towards the cities. This was the Industrial Revolution, and interestingly the rise of these diseases coordinates with the rise in population in the cities. In fact, you can take a line graph of the rise in population of city-dwellers during the Industrial Revolution and overlay a graph of the rise of disease and they will match very closely. The second part of the story is the fall of disease. The anti-vax camp postulates that diseases began to disappear because of improvements in drinking water, sewage treatment, and other factors that affect sanitary conditions. Again, historically this makes sense. The improvements in public sanitation following World War II coincide with the fall of common diseases that had previously plagued our society since the Industrial Revolution.
So the question remains-who is correct? Do vaccines prevent disease? In all honesty I have not seen any research that proves their efficacy, although I will admit the theory behind vaccines makes sense as well. Put a small amount of a virus into the body and allow an immune response to occur. The next time the body encounters the virus it will have stored antibodies to combat the virus. The theory makes, sense, but much like the anti-vax theory, it is just a theory. It has never been proven. There has never been a randomized controlled trial that compares the rates of disease between vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals, so at this point I choose to trust my instincts, and you can probably guess the direction that has led me.
Is vaccine injury real? Yes. There is no doubt in my mind that vaccine injuries have occurred. In this matter there is research that is statistically sound, and it shows that neurological disorders, in many cases, can be attributed to vaccine reactions. There is also a special court that deals with vaccine cases. You can look it up online and read for yourself. The risk of vaccine injury is real and has been documented. The movie Bought, by director Jeff Hays discusses this topic and it is very well done. If you are interested in learning more I encourage you to check out this film.
Another option you may consider for your family is a reduced schedule. If you look at the vaccine schedule from the 1980s until present day, the number of vaccinations recommended has increased astronomically, yet the projected lifespan has decreased. I am not insinuating the two are necessarily related, but it is something to consider. Are the pharmaceutical companies interested in increasing health or increasing their bank accounts? That is a question that must be asked. If you believe in the validity of vaccinations at least take a look at which vaccines are necessary and which may be included in the increased schedule for profit.
For example, let’s look at the Hepatitis B vaccine. It is part of the mandatory schedule for newborns, but Hepatitis B is contracted in two ways-drug use (sharing needles) or sexual intercourse. Why would a newborn need a vaccine for a disease like Hepatitis B? Why would you stress the immune system of a perfect newborn baby unnecessarily? In my opinion, taking your time to research the need for every vaccine is very important. If your pediatrician is not willing to discuss a reduced schedule for vaccination I would find a new doctor.
There is nothing in this book that I have not lived by. My own children received their first round of vaccines but I have stopped allowing further shots and chose instead to focus on bolstering their immunity with natural means. In retrospect I wish I had at least waited until their immune system had fully developed before I considered allowing any vaccinations; I feel like I dodged a bullet there.