Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Controversial, political, personal. All words that come to mind when I think of vaccines.

I will start by saying that all my children are fully vaccinated and I think vaccines are a good thing. The more I have learned about vaccines the more I realize that they are forced down most parents "throats" with little education, little real information, thought, or options presented.

When B was born I did not even consider not vaccinating him. Even though that was more than 9 years ago some people were already choosing not to vaccinate. I think in recent years the debate has become more public.

I feel the same way about vaccines as I do about a lot of things. I think the most important thing is for people to educate themselves and make an informed decision not simply to do what the doctor or politicians say we should do.

A week and half ago I picked up the editorial section of the Baltimore Sun Times to find an editorial about vaccinations written by the President of the Maryland Chapter of the AAP. I was outraged to say the least and I am writing an editorial back in response. I am slightly delayed but maybe it will get published. I did have an editorial published before so maybe.

The editorial tries to shove vaccinations down the public's throats and goes as far to say the state of Maryland should mandate "no exception" policies requiring every child to be vaccinated with no exception.

REALLY? Are we still in America here people? Do I think vaccinating is a good idea? YES! If I have another child I would research each vaccine more thoroughly and possibly do a delayed vaccination schedule with my child. Do I agree that if large numbers of children are unvaccinated it starts to diminish the "public health"? YES! But when Americans are unable to make their own health decisions we have a real problem.

Toto I don't think I am in Kansas anymore! Or more like "Michelle I don't think I am in the West anymore." East Coast politics and ideology is definitely different than the West. Whether the President of the AAP likes it or not I am keeping my right to think for myself. I think whether or not to vaccinate your children is a very personal decision, not one to be made by the government. The President of the Maryland AAP even states that in certain Western states that there are geographic areas where large numbers of children are unvaccinated. Most likely this is because these parents flock to areas where like-minded parents also live. I suspect near where I grew up (Boulder, CO) is one of the unvaccinated "hot spots."

So ladies, what do you think? I would love to hear some of your opinions and have some good old political debate. While I know this is not a political blog. My degree is in political science and I always love a good discussion.


Gina said...

Working with children with disabilities and their parentsmakes me extra paranoid about vaccinations. You can only hear that vaccinations absolutely caused their child's disability so many times before you begin to wonder. I think that you have to have a predisposition to most disabilities...I don't think vaccines cause them, but I am also not convinced that the vaccinations do not worsen them. I have gotten every vaccination for L (even the Hep), except for the MMR. He'll receive the MMR, but like the other ones, they were all on a delayed schedule. And if I didn't have the right to do that, I would be OUTRAGED. Good for you for writing your paper.

I'm a Mom!..? said...

I agree with you - parents need to make their own decisions and do the research. As a whole I think Vaccines are good, I don't think getting 4 shots of anything at one time is a good idea. I have talked to our Dr at great length about the girls. He has tons of research - one thing that always stood out to me was the statistic for Austism in the US v/s countries that don't vaccinate, there's no difference. Anyway, my 2 cents.

On a side note and for a different post, I learned today that the AAP is looking to up the age that children can turn forward facing to 2 years....

Jen said...

as a RN vaccines are a must for me b/c the alternative is just not good. these are serious illness that need to be kept at bay.

Evolving Mommy Catherine said...

Monkey is vaccinated. I think vaccines are a good thing. I also wouldn't want everyone to stop getting their children vaccinated just because it is the in thing. With all things we learn over time, there are a lot of things that we were told were good and now we are finding out are bad (margarine, anyone?. I think maybe we should be thinking more about what preservitives and additives are in these vaccines along with the meds that could be causeing problems.

Also I think that the schedule is a little out of control. If you look at what we got and when compared to what Monkey's schedule is it has gotten a bit crazy.