Fall down seven…get up eight…
Late Thursday evening, I took a few minutes to catch up on some autism and vaccine news I’d seen earlier in the week. FYI: A lot has happened over the last few days! Two groundbreaking books debuted, one on the autism epidemic and the other about the HPV vaccine. Live interviews with several prominent advocates in the autism/vaccine community took to the airwaves, and jaw-dropping discoveries and demands were made by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. While I’m elated that more information is being shared worldwide about vaccines and autism, reading through last week’s news crushed me.
Recently discovered evidence provided by Kennedy and Hazlehurst details obstruction of justice and appallingly consequential fraud by two DOJ lawyers who represented the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in 2007. These actions led to a denial of justice and compensation for over 5,000 families who filed claims of vaccine injury leading to autism in their children.
It’s not the first time that that sort of news has left me reeling. Our community’s learned other things too late before. That happens when we find out that someone didn’t do their job or that something that was done years ago didn’t have to happen. I’d love to hear that we’re only making progress but have sometimes been left feeling defeated instead...
Like when an article published in the Pace Environmental Law Review revealed that the VICP has compensated “83 cases of acknowledged vaccine-induced brain damage that include autism”. That’s only documented cases that made it through the system. How many more are out there??
Like when Nancy Grace, a well-known lawyer, learned on air from Becky Estepp that families cannot sue vaccine manufacturers for vaccine injury or death. How could she not know that??
Like at the end of a fear-mongering vaccine morning news segment when Dr. Nancy Snyderman arrogantly demanded everyone to “get your damn vaccine”. Um, thanks but no thanks!
Like when one Congressman took the floor and begged his fellow members of Congress to do what they said they were going to do. Please! Listen to the people!!
Like when the Department of Human Health and Services didn’t do their job for the last 30 years. What else have they neglected to do??
Even with all the frustration those sorts of news stories bring, I admit that there is bit of a silver lining. People are seeing this information go across their newsfeeds, they’re reading it and also talking about it. That part is thrilling! But in the same moment, my emotions will sometimes take a hit. It’s just so heartbreaking to know that we have been let down. I always hope that these stories won’t consume me, but how could they not? The autism journey I’ve been on has had countless ups and downs. I’ve gotten used to that, but I never expected the pitfalls I’ve encountered to have stemmed from organizations and leaders I was told to trust.
So many families have been misled by the experts. Too many still are.
Call me naïve, but it still hurts to know that people in high places have never, and will never, have my child’s best interest in mind. It’s a shame that I had to learn that the hard way, but thank goodness I learned it when I did. From that unfortunate experience, I learned how to be a better advocate not just for my son, who regressed post-vaccination, but for all of my children. These kids of mine - they are my pride and joy! God help anyone who tries to get between them and me.
By the weekend, I dug myself out of the doom and gloom that the news had put me in last week. Brave souls are helping validate what so many of us know, and I want to shout to the rooftops. How many times have heard or read that vaccines don’t cause autism when we parents know otherwise. So often. Too often! It’s taken awhile, but lies made by our government and their representatives are being revealed. Data that supports our children’s poor decline post-vaccination is being discovered. All of that is being shared with the masses. It may not be on the mainstream news yet, but these latest books, these live interviews, and RFK Jr’s discoveries are good. The more he and his crew dig, the more we can teach future generations what to avoid. If families can avoid the atrocities some of us were unable to, imagine the possibilities!
While some of this week’s news weakened my spirit, thinking about those possibilities lifted it. I’m anxiously waiting to see what will happen next. I’d love to be completely optimistic about whatever next week’s vaccine and autism stories will bring, but I’ll guard my emotions just a tad. I can’t afford to be too down in the dumps like I was late last week after reading the news. No matter how many times I fall down, though, I will always get back up. I have to. My family needs me to. Ronan needs that as well.
Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.