Medical jargon soup: An anti-vaccine tactic

This morning I was pointed in the direction of a post on the Washington Times’ community pages titled “Vaccination is not immunity.” I knew it was going to be bad, but I didn’t realize just how bad until I started reading.

Where do I start? With the utter wrongness of 90% of what he’s actually saying? With his baseless accusations that Paul Offitt is just trying to profit from his rotavirus vaccines? (A classic deflection tactic, since it’s actually anti-vaccine standardbearer Andrew Wakefield who got into the field of lying about vaccines in order to promote his own measles vaccine.)

Or maybe I’ll just start with the way the author is not actually trying to explain anything so it can be understood by the layperson. No, he’s trying to snow you under with a lot of medical/biological jargon that makes him sound like he knows what he’s talking about, when he’s actually full of the stuff you find lying behind bulls in a field.

Any post that was actually trying to educate non-medical readers wouldn’t include the following sentence:

Pediatricians and the proponents of vaccine as a means for increasing the immune system may well be causing more of the inflammatory response beginning with the mast cell and other lymphatic cells all the way to the ventromedial hypothalamic autonomic response.

Oh yeah? Well, yo’ mama was a ventromedial hypothalamic autonomic response!

Yeah, I have no idea what he’s talking about and believe me, all the paragraphs before did nothing to help.

I was already annoyed by all the pointless jargon trying to snow the reader and then I reached this little gem:

To be clear, infants do not have a completely developed immune or nervous system.

Then my head exploded. Really? Is that so? Wow, I’d love to see how you think babies survive coming through a vagina with an immune system that isn’t completely developed.

Do we bleach our hooha during the birthing process now? I hate to tell you, but there are millions of germs on our skin and in or bodies and all that natural birthing and snuggling just means babies get even more of it. Which is fine! Because babies are capable of handling it, as long as we don’t bring anyone near them with something dangerous like measles or whooping cough.

The amount of infectious material in an immunization is so small compared to what babies are exposed to just by latching onto a breast…you’d be astonished. The point is to give their bodies a chance to learn how to fight those dangerous illnesses without actually giving them the dangerous illnesses.

But as far as I know, the infant immune response has very little to do with the fact that “If you are too warm, your hypothalamus will activate your parasympathetic nervous system to dilate blood vessels to release heat….”

o_O Sometimes I just wonder what people are thinking. Or if they’re thinking at all.

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About mamamara

I'm a 40-somethng, work-at-home mother of two. I'm pro-vaccine, pro-medicine, pro-science, and an avid reader of information about all of the above, and I want to combine my love for my children with my love for science. So here we are!
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