By Harry Hofherr
If you've had an email address for more than 24 hours, odds are you've been introduced to The Darwin Awards. These are the Oscars of stupid human stunts. The Darwin's are awarded to those among us who exhibit a monumental disregard for double digit I.Q.'s. These are creatures that should not be allowed to pass on their DNA. They pee in the gene pool.
I got a new list of nominations not long ago and it got me thinking.
Leo Kanner, the guy who first described autism, coined the term "Refrigerator Mom", but Bruno Bettelheim is more closely identified with the phrase. Bruno made the expression his. He gave refrigerator moms their day in the sun. He put his stamp on the term and reaps the well earned disdain.
But, even without the decades of advancement in understanding autism, the idea that autism is the result of distant, uncaring, cold, refrigerator moms has got to be one of the sillier theories ever postulated, almost Darwinish. Refrigerator moms? You've got to be kidding. Even the name sounds quaint and condescending. Thankfully Bernie Rimland and a whole lot of very smart people put a torch to that theory. But…
But, maybe it wasn't so silly. Maybe Bruno just needed to adjust his aim a bit. How about refrigerator Doctors? Could they cause autism? I guess it's biologically plausible.
We all know cold hearted doctors with zero bedside manners and that silly godlike demeanor. They're usually the same folks who argue that vaccinating humans against every past, present, future, and potential microbe, is a wise and prudent public policy. And besides, it's profitable. The same folks also have a hand in creating or modifying many of the modern microbes that require their patented multiple dose vaccines.
Of course these very same people can't conceive of a connection between the irrational over reliance on vaccines and 20% of today's children (1 in 5) having some degree of neurological damage, including autism. But they believe we need further studies to determine if a program to study the potential implications of a possible linkage is warranted under prescribed conditions.
All vaccines pose a risk to some human bodies. When corporations increased the number of mandated children's vaccines they increased their risk. At the same time they increased their product offerings and their production, they decreased the government oversight. Now they're begging for infallibility. I can't imagine why?
I think vaccines were once a life saving discovery that unfortunately evolved into a religious and economic movement. The overindulgence in vaccines is now life threatening. As Bertrand Russell said, "All movements go too far".
Having almost 40 mandated vaccines on the childhood schedule is going way too far, again. Twenty years ago these same fanatical extremists were turning kids into little pink bubblegum flavored amoxicillin junkies, and we all know how well that worked out. "Paging Doctor Mersa. Doctor MERSA. STAT!"
So; to honor Bruno, and those stalwarts who go too far and loudly proclaim vaccine infallibility, and that there is no possible connection between vaccines and neurological damage, that there is no evidence of an autism epidemic, that autism is entirely genetic in origin and causation, that autism is a psychological dysfunction and not a biomedical disorder, that cold hearted mommies and old fart daddies cause autism, that autism is a lifelong sentence and parents who try to recover their kids are relying on junk science and charlatans, I suggest a new coveted award; "The Bruno's".
The Bruno's should be awarded to individuals, government agencies, Pharrma, politicians, members of the media, and maybe some charitable awareness groups, who combine the scientific fantasies of Bruno Belltelheim and an irrepressible urge to deny the ugly truth about vaccines.
For instance; Paul Offit wins a Bruno Award, for being Paul Offit.
Julie Gerberding wins a Bruno, for keeping a straight face.
The IOM wins a Bruno, for completely disregarding fundamental life sciences and relying on computer programming to determine there is no link between mercury and autism. (Somebody should have asked Santa for a microscope instead of a Playstation.)
Eric Fombonne wins a Bruno, just because.
The New York Times reporter extraordinaire, Gardiner Harris, wins a Bruno for not watching; "I am Legend" and drawing the obvious correlation.
I think the people who believe every vaccine is a gift from the Gods, that every microbe is another Mt. Everest to be conquered, and that Public Health only squirts out the end of a needle deserve a Bruno for their ignorant arrogance.
I'm pretty sure the readers get my drift here. I imagine an appropriate memento for this distinguished accomplishment might be a refrigerator magnet.
Are there any other nominations?
Harry Hofherr and his wife have three children; two daughters and a son, Eric 11, who has autism. He has been in sales and marketing for over 25 years.