Hundreds of people, mostly ultra-Orthodox Jews, gathered at a rally in Rockland County, New York last week to listen as speakers ticked off a slew of unverified claims about vaccinations.
The story included prominent critics of the mandated vaccine program: Robert Kennedy, Jr. Del Bigtree, Barbara Loe Fisher, and Dr. Andrew Wakefield via Skype. Also in the gathering was an outspoken leader in the Orthodox Jewish community from Brooklyn, Rabbi William Handler. Brooklyn is an area where the measles outbreak is especially acute.
Readers were told that most of the attendees were “ultra Orthodox Jews,” and that these are “people who are mostly isolated from the outside world and have limited access to the internet or scientific research, can be particularly vulnerable to anti-vaxx rhetoric.”
At a May 14th rally in Albany Handler joined other activists in attacking a bill that would remove the right to a religious exemption from vaccines. “We have come here today to protest this latest desecration of God in culture to take away the religious exemption.”
Handler has received coverage by such well-known vaccine defenders as the Washington Post and the New York Times. A hit piece by Kimiko de Freytas-Tamura at the Times with the headline, Despite Measles Warnings, Anti-Vaccine Rally Draws Hundreds of Ultra-Orthodox Jews, sounded more like an editorial than standard journalism. Anyone questioning vaccine safety and calling for the right to exempt children were blamed for “the spread of misinformation.”
Handler was featured saying that his community has recently been demonized. "We Hasidim have been chosen as the target... the campaign against us has been successful,” but the Times accused him of having “falsely described the measles outbreak among Jews as part of an elaborate plan concocted by Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York to deflect attention from ‘more serious’ diseases brought by Central American migrants.”
There was of course no mention of any risk involved with mass vaccination with multiple vaccines at once, or the fact that the people making and giving the vaccines can’t be sued for injuries resulting from the shots.
(To understand the attitude at the NY Times, one need only to look at the 2011 story where in attacking the movie, The Greater Good, reporter Jeannette Catsoulis made this stunning statement:
“But while the film acknowledges that science has so far been consistent in its refutation of a vaccine-autism link, it fails to point out that even were such a link proved definitively, all that matters is that its victims number significantly fewer than those of the diseases vaccinations are designed to prevent.”)
While the real fear mongers warn about measles outbreaks, Rabbi Handler continues to call attention to individual civil rights along with questions about the safety and efficacy of the measles vaccine.
So now they’ve hyped up the measles, it’s deadly—you can die. They scared everybody, and the politicians are getting on the bandwagon now. Oh, we’re going to save the country from the measles.
Everybody’s getting hysterical and frantic. And now the drug companies have gone up to Albany and they’re making a lobbying campaign. Oh, you see what’s going on. The measles is dangerous. We have to stop these religious exemptions.
When I grew up, the doctors actually recommended that you should make a party, a measles party or a chicken pox party. Make sure your child gets the measles at age five to ten so he’ll have a lifetime immunity to measles.
And the doctors didn’t even know some of the recent research that shows that if you get the measles, you are going to have a much lower chance of heart disease and cancer. …
Your pediatrician has a magazine which he reads that comes from the CDC, a list of vaccines he has to give, what the schedule is, what the dangers are, and he accepts it. And even if he doesn’t believe it, he better do it because he might lose his license if he does anything different than what’s called the standard of care.
Therefore the doctors all march in lockstep to the CDC. Not because they think they’re marching in lockstep, but because they believe it. They don’t understand that the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia is a totally corrupt swamp. To quote Robert F. Kennedy [Jr.], it’s a swamp pit. They are criminals.
The Lubavitcher Rebbe in his book, Mind Over Matter —and as you know the Lubavitcher Rebbe was very good technically, he went to the University of Berlin, the finest university in the world and the Sorbonne—he wrote: “Unvaccinated children have a four percent chance of getting measles.”
Four percent. THAT’S IT. Ninety-six percent will not get the measles.
What percentage of children who are vaccinated get the measles?
According to the CDC, the measles vaccine is only ninety-seven percent affective. That’s what they say. Dr. Gregory Poland, head of the magazine, Vaccine, …says, two to ten percent.
So what do you want? The vaccinated children can get the measles just as readily as unvaccinated. Why are you picking on the unvaccinated children?
Throw everybody out. Close the yeshivas.
Is that reasonable? No.
The reason that the unvaccinated children are the focus again is because they are potential customers who are lost by the drug companies. The finger is being pointed at them.
In the Disneyland outbreak, which was the big tumult, thirty-eight percent of the children…who had measles had a vaccine strain of measles, not natural measles. They got it from the vaccine. So the more vaccines you give, the more measles there is in the community. You’re giving these children a live virus. It’s not dead, it’s live. And for two to three weeks afterwards, fourteen days, just like regular measles, that child can give measles to anybody else.
(*I talked with a medical doctor about the effectiveness of the measles vaccine, and he corrected on statement by Rabbi Handler. Handler cited Dr. Greg Poland and said that Poland claimed it had a two to ten percent failure rate. ACTUALLY, Poland claims a two to ten percent for ALL VACCINES IN GENERAL. When specially talking about the measles vaccine, the failure rate is TEN PERCENT, according to Poland.)
I’ve had contact with Rabbi Handler for several years. He is a constant critic of forced vaccination despite opposition from within the Jewish community and the media at large.
Past coverage: 2013, An Interview with Rabbi William Handler on Vaccination