This place matters

This place matters

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Choices

I read recently that when it comes to vaccines, parents should have a choice. Which is a funny way of putting it.
Parents of children with leukemia now have a choice: take my kid on their Make a Wish trip to Disneyland and risk their death, or keep my kid shut up in the house and keep them alive.
Parents of infants too young for vaccines have a choice: take my baby to day care and risk a long and dangerous illness, or stay home with my kid until the outbreak is over and risk unemployment. 
Parents of kids with AIDS have a choice: take my sick kid to the doctor and risk their catching a deadly disease, or keep my sick kid home and risk their dying of the disease they've already got. 
Pregnant parents have a choice: avoid public spaces where measles could be spread, or risk miscarriage or stillbirth. 
In the words of my friend Diane, doctor and all around amazing lady:


When you choose not to vaccinate, it's not just about you and your family. If [an immunocompromised] child... has to stay away from school because of the foolish decisions of parents who can and should vaccinate their healthy children, then aren't their actions really saying that their pseudoscientific beliefs are more important than an ill child's right to an education?


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