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Dr. Peter Hotez: Were You There?

HotezNote: Meet the New Jan Brady, I mean Paul Offit.  Seems Dr. Peter Hotez has taken over the pit bull tactics founded by the Broad Street Bully himself, Offit. His tactic is to use his daughter to protect the vaccination program. For the record, if true, we are delighted that Ms. Hotez was not vaccine injured into her autism. It's a terrible feeling to know that something you did for your child to protect her, could have gone so badly. Isn't Dr. Hotez lucky he doesn't have to deal with that pain.

By Cathy Jameson

Last week, The Hill featured a piece from Sharyl Attkisson’s latest Full Measure news story.  In it, we learned that

Pediatric neurologist Dr. Andrew Zimmerman originally served as the expert medical witness for the government, which defends vaccines in federal vaccine court. He had testified that vaccines do not cause autism in specific patients.

Dr. Zimmerman now has signed a bombshell sworn affidavit. He says that, during a group of 5,000 vaccine-autism cases being heard in court on June 15, 2007, he took aside the Department of Justice (DOJ) lawyers he worked for defending vaccines and told them he’d discovered “exceptions in which vaccinations could cause autism.”

“I explained that in a subset of children, vaccine-induced fever and immune stimulation did cause regressive brain disease with features of autism spectrum disorder,” Dr. Zimmerman now states. He said his opinion was based on “scientific advances” as well as his own experience with patients.”

Two days later, The Hill published another piece on vaccines.  It was not another bombshell discovery in favor of parents of children with liability-free vaccine induced autism but a rebuttal from Dr. Hotez.  If you recall, Hotez is a pharmaceutical-industry spokesperson, author, and father to an adult daughter with autism.  He’s frequently seen on TV defending vaccines when they cycle through mainstream news’ media stories.  Besides a staunch defender, he is also of the belief that vaccines do not and cannot cause autism. 

In his latest opinion piece, Hotez once again adamantly defends liability-free vaccines making the following statement:

“Vaccines do not cause autism

There is no link between vaccines and autism. I trace the modern anti-vaccine movement alleging vaccine-autism links back to 1998 when a paper was published in The Lancet, a prestigious medical journal, claiming that the live measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine (especially the measles component) might lead to pervasive developmental disorder, a term then used to refer to autism.”

First, a correction. 

The paper referenced offered a possibility, not a claim:

“We did not prove an association between measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine and the syndrome described.

…We have identified a chronic enterocolitis in children that may be related to neuropsychiatric dysfunction. In most cases, onset of symptoms was after measles, mumps, and rubella immunisation. Further investigations are needed to examine this syndrome and its possible relation to this vaccine.”

Now, a response. 

As he has before, Hotez repeated his claim that his daughter’s autism was in no way a direct result of any vaccination she received.  That’s great!  Truly!  I wish I could say the same.  For my son, and for so many other children, including cases Zimmerman saw, the autism they experience is a result of a liability-free vaccine.  How do I know that?  Because I was there.  I saw my son go from healthy and developing to listless and declining.  Had I known more prior to my child’s vaccinations, I probably would have become vaccine hesitant much sooner than I did.  Unfortunately, I can’t turn back time, but I can tell our story and hope that it helps others.  That’s what is so great about the autism community I’m part of – we strive to help each other, not put each other down. 

In that piece, Hotez did not insult parents of children who’ve been injured from liability-free vaccines as tastelessly as he did last year.  But, instead of building a bridge with other parents whose children’s vaccines did result in autism, he began with negativity and continued an attempt to pit parents against each other.  In a world where we need more positivity, especially when it comes to autism, it’s terribly sad to see a public figure demean others who are in the same boat.   

Over the last decade, I’ve had countless young parents – both moms and dads, seek me and my husband out.  Tell us more, they beg – so we do.  How did you not see the signs? they inquire – to which we admit our lack of knowledge at the time.  When did you finally connect the dots? they wonder – to which we share a timeline that shows what going from healthy to diagnosed with autism looks like.  With how many voices are out there talking about vaccines, both for and against, it’s no wonder they’re asking us questions.  They faithfully listen to what the news and pharma reps are saying but quickly turn to parents, like us, for clarification.  New parents need to be empowered with truth, not distracted by spokespeople backed by the vaccine industry.  The industry’s goal is to make a profit.  Truth is the only thing they’ll get from parents like me.

To Dr. Hotez and to others who wish to belittle parents instead of believing them, I have a few things to say. 

You may want to believe that vaccines cannot and do not cause autism.  But in our case, you weren’t there, Dr. Hotez.  You didn’t know my son before he received liability-free vaccines.  You weren’t there afterward to see what happened to him post-vaccination.  I was there.  I saw what happened, and I know what happened to him.  I saw my son change.  I saw him lose his speech, lose already-developed skills, have seizures, and tumble onto the autism spectrum.  To deny and to protect the vaccine industry as you do makes my work as a parent of a child with autism harder.  I don’t need or rely on your opinion to get what Ronan needs though.  Those who directly work with my son also don’t need or rely on it either.  They believe us because they, too, know what happened.  At the end of the day, that’s what matters most. 

They know what is fact – my son was healthy.  Oh, he was so healthy!  Then, he got vaccines.  Then, he got sick.  As a doctor and supposed vaccine expert, to deny the truth I know to be true is so disappointing.  Thankfully, other medical professionals have correctly made the connection that my son’s health suffered greatly post vaccination.  With them, I’ve got an army of helpers ready and willing to make Ronan’s life a tad bit better.  In doing so, they’re making mine a bit more manageable, too.  Autism is hard.  We can probably both agree on that.  On everything else, especially about the vaccines not causing autism?  Well, you weren’t there, Dr. Hotez.  You didn’t see that beautiful baby boy of mine go from typical to losing acquired skills.  You weren’t there when we got the diagnosis.  You weren’t there anytime we’ve had to fight for our son’s rights over the years either. 

Vaccines do cause autism for some.  They really do.   For us, they did.  They did for a lot of kids, too.  Our community here knows that and respects that.  We and you, Dr. Hotez, have some similarities, but not enough yet.  You still aren’t ready to support parents like me in this autism community.  I wish you could, but you’d have to change your tune just a bit.  If you ever do, let us know.  Our doors – and hearts – are open to all parents of children with autism, no matter how it was acquired.

Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism. 


Angus Files

"Yes, it’s true that Amazon sells more books than any other retailer in America. But, telling someone you’re an Amazon bestseller is like telling someone you’re the fastest runner in your office building or church congregation. It’s not an official statistic and is based on theoretical data that isn’t reliable."

Pharma For Prison


David Weiner

Hotez was just interviewed by Joe Rogan, who has a lot of listeners.

cia parker

I had read that Hotez' book was selling very badly on Amazon, but I looked last night, and it was the number two or number three best-seller in three categories. What does this mean? Did Merck buy a million copies?

susan welch

Hans, Just to put the record straight, I don't think JBH said it WOULD be China who 'broke this'. I believe he said it COULD be. I'm sure he doesn't care which country it is that decides to tell the truth, as long as it happens somewhere.

(I may be wrong because I'm speaking from memory and I haven't time to find the video to check it out).

Hans Litten

Posted by: R Prasad | January 21, 2019 at 03:27 PM

Autism is being recorded at 10% in South London for maybe 2 years now !
We are at 1 in 10 already, but people are still watching and the believing the BBC which is still pumping out the "safe and effective" mantra. This is an exercise in gross stupidity now at this stage.
Deferring to a criminal authority - poisoning EVERYONES babies\children.

Aug2014 William Thompson spoke out and told the truth, the BBC is yet to publish that mans name.
The lamestream medias are the chief organisers of the crime, without them none of this would be possible. The internet has punched a huge whole in their narrative which is why they desperately seeking ways to block independent communication like FarceBook-whatsapp.
India is looking like our best hope for bringing this all to an end right now. Not China JBH

Low IQ

Excellent post Cathy. Thoroughly enjoyed reading it...

BTW, totally deceptive article by NY Times... As it happens in mainstream media frequently... The comments entry is closed there. So I couldn't participate.


There are TWO questions I'd like to see Dr. Hotez fully and honestly answer:
1. What *DID* cause your daughter's autism....????....
2. WHY was PhRMA given blanket liability immunity....????....

If he's EVER answered these questions, and I missed that, then I'm sure somebody here at AoA will supply the answers!

KEEP UP the GOOD WORK, people....

R Prasad

The whitewashing of Autism continues in one way or other. This will continue until a breaking point (like 1 in 10 kids having Autism) . This old piece still relevant today as ever.


The linked Hill” article above mentions Tuberous sclerosis. I have Neurofibromatosis a similar disease. I wonder if environmental factors can worsen the outcome of both and these genetic tumor diseases and a rare environmental factor can include a tainted vaccine. These disease also make on vulnerable to a half dozen rare cancers and radiation and ect. make the risk higher. Other conditions linked to ID and autism include Sturgeon Weber, Van Hippel Lindau’s disease, Turcot’s, Gardener’s syndrome all terrible genetic tumor diseases with early onset cancers. Please autism parents get your child check for these conditions! Cafe au lait spits, ash leaf spots, port wine stains, lipoma neurofibromas, angiofibromas, brain tumors, are the symptoms.


About the book “Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel’s Autism”:
If Dr. Peter Hotez hoped to reassure people about vaccines and autism, his inadvertently revealing book’s silo thinking, inaccuracies and omissions achieve the opposite effect. Hotez’s slim volume contains only 2 graphics about vaccines – but indulge much name dropping, media quotes and personal speculations. Hotez hoists himself by his own petard, portraying an ambitious generalist with irons in too many fires, bedazzled by status, blind to cronies’ data fraud, and avoidant of scientific evidence inconvenient to his career.

Evidence such as emerging research on medical treatments: Hotez over-focuses on his daughter’s behaviors, rather than her biology. While the rest of the autism world runs scans and lab tests to detect co-morbid or causal disorders, he never mentions ordering medical tests to detect encephalopathies, GI inflammation, MTHFR, allergies, OATS, etc. While many autism parents avoid gluten, he still feeds his daughter bagels. Which perhaps is fine if, indeed, vaccines didn’t cause her autism – but her single case cannot negate the medical history of countless victims of vaccine-induced autism.

Hotez’s daughter Rachel is a supporting player in her own book, essentially his heroic narrative bouncing frenetically from topic to topic. Various classic autistic affects she’s displayed include loud piercing crying, late speech, scripting, low IQ, eczema, “colic,” selective eating of gluten/casein (p. 45), texture sensitivity, spitting and swearing (Tourette’s, her father wondered), hyperfocus on specific topics, and more symptoms familiar to readers of listservs and social media. All words that provide medical clues to parents more focused on the health of kids instead of their own career.

Rachel’s vaccine history (pp. 38-39): “…she received five doses of the… (DTaP) vaccine, and then boosters in 2006 for tetanus and diphtheria (Td), and later in 2011 for all three diseases (Tdap) - the adolescent/adult formulation. She also received the two scheduled measles-mumps-rubella and varicella vaccine doses, and four doses each of the polio vaccine and Hib vaccine. Rachel received three doses of the hepatitis B vaccine and also her hepatitis A vaccine, meningococcal vaccine, and HPV cervical cancer vaccine. To this day she receives annual influenza vaccines.”

The books’ references total a sparse 14 pages and their not-so-rigorous content explains much about Hotez’s grandiose utilitarian worldview. Elsewhere, awkward personal aspects of his character are revealed — as when considering the risk of autism if choosing to have another child (p. 78): “Quite honestly, it was Ann who had the intense desire to have a fourth, and she pushed her agenda hard.”

Hotez’s book confirms the public’s fear about vaccine policymakers who perpetuate the autism epidemic: that they are selectively inconsiderate of others’ experiences, entrenched in cronyism, comfortable with vaccine mediocrity, and/or paralyzed by fear. Taxpayers deserve more than another deluded lifetime bureaucrat with a white knight complex who doesn’t care what he tramples while moving toward his career’s summit. This he does at his child’s peril: If Hotez remains unwilling to investigate how other parents have healed their children, he will never heal his.


Great points by Cathy and Jonathan Rose about omissions and redirections by Hotez and mainstream media. Most MSM reporters appear to lack the intellectual curiosity to ask key missing questions, such as: Who is studying vaccine injuries, in order to treat and prevent them?

Instead we’re told again and again simply that vaccine injuries are rare. But even the presumption of rarity must not preclude swift, effective investigation — just as manufacturers of non-mandated consumer products such as food, drugs and motor vehicles must do.

Everyone in the vaccine program essentially uses children as human shields, protecting their careers when protecting health goes horribly wrong. Their denial is especially understandable — though not acceptable — when one has administered the harmful or fatal vaccine to one’s own child.

Jeannette Bishop

Well-written, Cathy!

There is also this rebuttal by Alison Fujito posted by Sharyl Attkisson that may be helpful to share with those who accept "the science is settled" line:

I want to suggest to Dr. Hotez that rather than asking Congress to "not waste" more money researching this concern, that he consider asking for funding for better research than the conflicted tobacco science that has been wasting our time so far. Otherwise, we're left to note, among some other patterns, the extensive lack of confidence in COI-free gold standard research among vaccine "scientists" or the industry generally.

susan welch

Great article, Cathy.

For anyone with some time, the attached link (if it works) is an 88 page response from ICAN to HHS. It is extremely well written, with loads of research, and it will be very interesting to see the response from HHS. I think this will be covered in Highwire on Thursday.

go Trump

Well written Cathy.

Dr. Hotez, is of course, a classic "bought off / vaccine Rock Star" who wants to someday create a new vaccine and "profit like Offit."

I would suppose he is very well paid in some manner for every anti-vax hit piece he writes. He probably understands exactly what happened to his daughter and has read about dozens of others with the same story.

Like many other issues in the nation "mocking many Americans" is the only game in town to continue to be on the receiving end of millions of dollars.

For some reason his article in "THE HILL" shows a photo with about 5ccs being injected, looks just a bit heavy. Perhaps Dr. Hotez could be the first to inject the entire "well baby visit vaccines" into himself, and become a real vaccine Rock Star.


I think it would be more convincing if he was so pro vaccine and did not have an autism daughter.
Plus if his daughter did not autism he bothered to publish her vaccine records and medical records.

Hmmmm, perhaps he should do the later anyway. Let us see how her development went in correlation with her vaccines. Correlation may not mean causation, (heard that a billion times), however it sure would interesting to see how curious they are about such an event. Do they have any curiosity to see if maybe correlation does mean causation.

But then perhaps he needs the money to support his daughter. I understand, sort of. Well I don't know, I myself would explode - over everything if I tried to contain what I know about the matter.


Dr. Andrew Zimmerman was our son's very first neurologist (Johns Hopkins/Kennedy Krieger Institute's CARD) in 2003, when our son was just 4 years old. Dr. Zimmerman said he was doing research on Terbutaline at the time and was greatly concerned about its long term effects. Dr. Zimmerman, without hesitation, told us our son's Regressive Autism came about from 1) exposure to Terbultaline (the drug used by asthmatics which is routinely given to mothers experiencing premature labor and 2) the vaccines acting as a trigger which sent our son into a state of Regressive Autism. First, he told us Terbultaline is NOT even FDA approved to be given to pregnant women, yet OBs use it all the time because it does stop premature labor. Therefore there is and was no testing to see the long term outcome of its use on pregnant women. He said the Turbutaline laid the foundation for future reactions. Secondly, he said the vaccines triggered our son's Autism.
He heard our concerns because each time our son received his shots he suffered immediate convulsions IN the pediatrician's exam room on two occasions and on other occasions our son screamed, ran fevers and cried for days on end and then started to have seizures. Each time we lost a piece of him and each time our son's pediatrician NEVER reported these reactions to the CDC (VAERS) and denied that these reactions meant anything. What I don't understand is WHY Dr. Zimmerman NEVER encouraged us to report his findings to VAERS either. It is hard to read his affidavit now and wonder if he would have publicly come out in 2003 to the CDC which could have secured our son a life time of financial support. The state government now has very long waiting lists to serve these ADULTS which means we will continue to bear the financial burden for our son's care from the adverse reaction to vaccines for many, many years. What hurt us even more is our recent move to a new state which put him now at the bottom of their list. This burden should be shouldered more by the FEDERAL government. With so many of us in this predicament, how is our voices not creating a rippling effect across this world to STOP this insanity? What we are currently doing is not enough to overcome the mass media's paid suppression and the government cover-up. It's a shame.

John Stone

My comment in the New York Times

John Stone | London, UK
This article is an ideological folly, and it is also deceptive - it is deceptive because vaccine critics are already and have always been completely outgunned in the mainstream media. If the NYT are paranoid enough to claim otherwise there is surely something else going on.

Secondly, what is currently at issue is both freedom of choice and freedom of speech, and this is a dangerous combination. It is coming that we may not either criticise these liability free products or the lobby that produces them. Nor may we refuse the products. And this is entirely unreasonable - they are being placed on a pedestal, yet there are hundreds of things that can go wrong both singly and in combination (with the certainty that all or anything will be denied in advance as in this editorial). Furthermore, the industry has hundred of more products in the pipeline, which in turn can and will (be) mandated for our children. The industry needs this debate kicked into oblivion because it cannot stand scrutiny.

There is nothing in the history of either medicine or the pharmaceutical industry which suggests that this is a safe or wise way to proceed, not (nor) is it as if all doctors or medical scientists are in agreement about it.

To want ward off serious disease is an honourable thing but that does not mean that everything done in its name is safe or beyond criticism, and if we get into a state where we think this we have a problem.

John Stone, UK Editor, Age of Autism

Angus Files

Lettuce see the round I am clever Harry Potter glasses are meant to convince us he knows what hes talking about...mmmm

Great article Cathy thanks

Pharma For Prison



Ps it is called How To Innoculate against Anti Vaxxers. Tell your friends. Post, please.


Readers this is urgent. Please post comments on the New York Times editorial today calling for a repeal of vaccine exemptions. There are already many comments running pro, so make your voices heard ASAP. Thanks.

Jonathan Rose

Note what they're conspicuously not talking about. Hotez never mentions Dr. Zimmerman (Hamlet without the Prince) and the Times completely ignores the existence of both Zimmerman and Sharyl Attkisson (Hamlet without the whole cast). Amazingly, the Times, the most powerful newspaper in the world, casts itself as the underdog, hopelessly outgunned by some amateur-run websites (like this one)! The CDC, which has a huge PR apparatus, has "no loud public voice"! The Surgeon General isn't promoting vaccination. (In fact he did, with Elmo, remember?) The Gates Foundation, the medical establishment, public health agencies, big drug companies, and nearly all of the mass media have been pushing vaccination relentlessly -- but according to the Times, "just a handful of academics" are standing up for the cause. And now, because this vast propaganda effort has evidently failed, they want to recruit pro-vaccination parents. The difficulty there is that there aren't that many unconflictedly pro-vax parents. Polls have consistently shown that 70 to 90 percent of parents harbor at least some doubts about vaccine safety, even if most of them do vaccinate their own children. That's why, when state legislatures consider restricting vaccine exemptions, we can turn out hundreds and thousands of protesting parents, and the other side can't.

Lori C.

In reference to the nytimes link and the assertion made that anti-vax propaganda has outpaced public health information.... REALLY????? Have they done any searches with any search engine lately.... the pro vax propaganda is pushed to the top and information contrary to the pro-vax narrative is pushed far to the bottom. And there is a TON of pro-vax pages and websites, I would venture to guess more than there are on the other side. There is not a shortage of pro-vax websites and information out there. There is an over abundance of information that shows the other side, and rightly so. The powers that be have now resorted to censoring the sharing and visibility of posts and gaming search engines to further hide the other side. Protecting pubic health policy does not equal protecting public health... clearly. Anyone who cannot see the decline in the health of Americans of all ages since the liability-free vaccine push has blinkers on.


Excellent article Cathy, some really good points, enjoyed reading it!

In case anyone has missed this one in the NYTimes, they are taking comments now.

How to Inoculate Against Anti-Vaxxers

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