Often, it’s planted when one’s education consists of 13 years of test preparation rather than preparation for life. Not to speak of four additional years of outrageously costly, grade-inflated, higher (mainly in the beer and sex bingeing definition) education.
It’s cultivated by news and information delivered in 20-second sound bites (and their print and Internet equivalents) by “if it bleeds, it leads” 24-hour “news” outlets.
It’s manifestations are all around us. State school boards cheerfully replacing the teaching of evolution with a concoction spun by religious fanatics shined up and named “creation science.” The federal government gleefully banning stem-cell research on totally non-scientific grounds.
And it’s harvested when what you think you understand can hurt you, or worse, can kill your children, while most effectively endangering everyone else’s.
Public Health Risk Seen as Parents Reject Vaccines
By JENNIFER STEINHAUER | Published: March 21, 2008
SAN DIEGO — In a highly unusual outbreak of measles here last month, 12 children fell ill; nine of them had not been inoculated against the virus because their parents objected, and the other three were too young to receive vaccines.
The parents who objected to their children being inoculated are among a small but growing number of vaccine skeptics in California and other states who take advantage of exemptions to laws requiring vaccinations for school-age children….
Every state allows medical exemptions, and most permit exemptions based on religious practices. But an increasing number of the vaccine skeptics belong to a different group — those who object to the inoculations because of their personal beliefs, often related to an unproven notion that vaccines are linked to autism and other disorders….
“The very success of immunizations has turned out to be an Achilles’ heel,” said Dr. Mark Sawyer, a pediatrician and infectious disease specialist at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego. “Most of these parents have never seen measles, and don’t realize it could be a bad disease so they turn their concerns to unfounded risks. They do not perceive risk of the disease but perceive risk of the vaccine.”
Science certainly doesn’t always get it right the first time, nor every time. But the efficacy of immunization to combat life-threatening disease should not be a question requiring an answer in the year 2008.
And yet, based on a spurious notion that has never been proven, but has been reinforced by promulgation in sweeps-month “news” reports and self-described “medical” websites, about vaccinations causing autism, parents are using exemptions to public health laws to bypass the requirements for vaccinations for their children.
[Please click the link below for the complete article — but then please come on back!]
If their irresponsibility, based on their pseudo-knowledge, only impacted themselves, one might shake one’s head, put in a nomination on their behalves for Darwin awards, and leave it at that.
But, their kids! And yours! And mine!
In MUDGE’s perfect world, a couple, or an individual if it came to that, would be required to earn a license in order to be allowed to procreate and/or raise children. And that license would only be awarded if the parties so applying could prove that their knowledge about life, and life-saving science, is sufficiently mature that society would expect that all of the important decisions affecting their children’s health, and therefore the public health, would be based on grounded scientific and medical principles, not pseudo-knowledge.
States demand the passage of written and driving and vision tests before licensing its citizens to drive to the mall, but society lets any ignoramus bring children into the world. What’s wrong with this picture?
We have seen the enemy, and it is (we highly semi-educated, Fox News/CNN/Internet devouring) us.
It’s it for now. Thanks,
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