Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Our Old Friend Pertussis Is Back Again

IM conversation from earlier:
Mel: pertussis outbreak in CA now 
Chris: Fucking Jenny Fucking McCarthy 
Mel: don't forget to get a booster at your next appointment 
Mel: and me too 
Chris: I swear, she should be forced to do a year in prison for every child who gets sick because they weren't vaccinated.
I'm having a hard time disagreeing with that sentiment.

I took Daughter the Older to her new pediatrician this week, one part well-child checkup and one part "please make sure she has the right vaccinations for public school".  I was also a little worried about the new pertussis outbreak in Kootenai and Bonner Counties.

Currently Kootenai and Bonner Counties are experiencing a resurgence of pertussis.  This is due almost entirely to idiots not vaccinating their children.  There's a large contingent of the very religious here (one of my favorite games is Name That Sect!  played at Wal-Mart every time I go) but also a large contingent of "omg everyone is out to make my child autistic!"

Ignoring the absolute stupidity of that statement and the fully discredited, fraudulent, and criminal study behind it, I have a problem with the entire idea. Just the thought that "I'd rather have my baby be dead from a disease we eradicated decades ago than be autistic" makes my head hurt.

It's not just YOUR baby, MORON.  The most susceptible aren't even of vaccination age.  Newborns in hospitals  are dying from something we managed to mostly kill off generations ago.  All because you're afraid it's a conspiracy to make your kid different (the definition of autistic being so loose these days).


The "skyrocketing" rate of autism isn't because there are lots of new cases; it's a combination of autism awareness programs resulting in more, and earlier, legitimate diagnoses, and the 1994 redefinition of autism from a PROFOUND AND TOTAL DISABILITY, to anything falling into the "autism spectrum"... which includes anyone more than slightly socially awkward or with communications difficulties... Like a lot of geeks for example.

This isn't to deny the real pain and hardship that families with profoundly autistic children go through... It's hard as hell... But that's not what we're talking about here; at least not for the most part.

In the mean time, do me a favor, and keep your unvaccinated kids the hell away from mine.

And yes, the kiddo's vaccinations were up to snuff.  However, when I asked the doc if our kid would be okay with the pertussis outbreak, she said "yes, but when was the last time YOU got a booster?"

Yeah, adults can still get pertussis too, and almost as bad.  Nevermind if you deal with (or live with) the very young.

Something to think about.