By Anne Dachel
Read Anne's commentary and view the links after the jump. The Dachel Media Update is sponsored by Lee Silsby Compounding Pharmacy and OurKidsASD, an online supplement retailer for patients with special needs.
It seems that members of the press are all in agreement on the issue of vaccine exemption elimination in California. Vaccines are safe, vaccines save lives, everyone should get them. The terms you people like to use regarding those in opposition are "anti-vaccine" and "anti-vaxxers."
April 20, 2015, The Los Angeles Times published 3 letters to the editors in a column entitled Readers react-- California caves to vaccination deniers and all of them were in support of taking away a parent's right to exempt their child from vaccinations. It's hard to imagine that there were no letters from people opposed to the vaccine bill.
April 20, The LA Daily News also endorsed the end of exemptions in the piece, Broad, new vaccination law needed in California, by by Thomas D. Elias. Elias announced that there are "thousands of infants now being kept in homes all around California and not taken out because of concerns over the dozens of measles cases that broke out when the illness spread from one unvaccinated child at Disneyland." As far as a parent's right to choice whether or not to vaccinate, Elias said, "For sure, anti-vaxxers declaiming their right to freedom are in fact denying liberty to many thousands of children either too young or too allergic to be vaccinated." He went on to describe those using exemptions as "lazy parents [who] lie about religious beliefs."
April 20, The Sacramento Bee had the story Big emotion drives two major bills in California in which "anti-vaxxers" like Robert Kennedy Jr. were up against medical authorities who said that vaccines don't hurt children.
"Two marathon hearings have been packed with parents, mostly young and affluent, who oppose the bill, believing that vaccinations potentially cause autism and other crippling conditions. Robert Kennedy Jr. even came to Sacramento to champion 'anti-vaxxers,' as they've been dubbed.
"With medical authorities asserting that vaccinations pose no such threat, the bill made it through the Senate Health Committee but stalled in the Senate Education Committee over how unvaccinated kids would be educated."
April 20, an editorial in The New York Times entitled Vaccine Phobia in California called for "virtually all students" to be vaccinated and for California to follow the "trend" set by Mississippi and West Virginia and eliminate exemptions.
"California is in the midst of a dispute between parents who want to exempt their children from some or all of the vaccinations required for admission to public and private schools and a medical establishment that believes, with good reason, that vaccines can protect the students from the harm caused by infectious diseases and reduce the risk of transmitting the diseases from schools to the broader community. . . .
"Two other states - Mississippi and West Virginia - limit exemptions to medical necessity, but California would become the largest by far if the bill is enacted. It is a trend that should be encouraged. . . .
". . . The legislators, however, must keep their eye on the most important goal: ensuring that virtually all students have been vaccinated."
April 20, Fox News ran an article that was also in The New York Post on April 18. Fox News called it, Skip vaccines? Opt out of tests? Radicalism is tearing us apart and The New York Post headline was Radicalism is going mainstream. The author was Michael Goodwin and he went after RFK Jr and "the anti-vaxxer crowd" for "the outlandish claim" that vaccines cause autism. Goodwin referred to Kennedy as "a spoiled brat." Goodwin further said not only are these people wrong, they're also dangerous and out to destroy America.
"But this anti-establishment mind-set coming from within the establishment is more about turning back the clock of progress than pushing new ideas.
"Some of it reflects widespread distrust of government, but the choice of targets also smacks of paranoia."
"Similarly, boycotting vaccines risks a return to a time when children routinely died in infancy or were left with crippling and disfiguring injuries. America's public health system grew out of calamities caused by contagious diseases and it's nuts for a spoiled brat like Kennedy to use his celebrity status to put other people's children in danger.
"We live in strange times, and they are getting stranger by the day. I have argued that America appears headed for a crack-up, and mainstream radicalism is both cause and effect of the potential chaos."
This coincidental mass mainstream media endorsement of ending parental choice in California all shared the same talking points. Not one of these articles acknowledged even the remote possibility that vaccines carry real risks. Presenting those in opposition as "anti-vaccine" covered up the fact that in reality they're really pro vaccine choice and vaccine safety advocates.
News people writing like this merely expose their ignorance and their bias. This kind of coverage doesn't convince anyone that vaccines are safe, but it does add to the mounting distrust the public has of the media. With rare exception, reporters refuse to honestly and thoroughly cover this controversy. They get their talking points from officials who have long been seduced by the power of the pharmaceutical industry.
When this country is finally forced to acknowledge what so many have worked so long to cover up, the news industry will share equally in the blame.
The Dachel Media Update is sponsored by Lee Silsby Compounding Pharmacy and OurKidsASD. Lee Silsby is one of the most respected compounding pharmacies in the country and is committed to serving the needs of the Autism community. OurkidsASD is an online retailer for nutritional supplements for patients with special needs. OurkidsASD carries thousands of products from more than 60 brands and offers free ground shipping on all orders.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism and author of The Big Autism Cover-Up: How and Why the Media Is Lying to the American Public, which is on sale now from Skyhorse Publishing.