For more than a hundred years, two basic assumptions have been put forth by public-health officials. One is that vaccines are safe. The second is that vaccines are effective for the conditions for which they’re prescribed.
The public and our legislators have, by and large, accepted these assumptions as true, and as a result it is now compulsory in many states that children have as many as 33 inoculations before entering school. Some of these are given as early as the first few weeks of life.
The problem is that if you dig around in the medical establishment’s own archives, you soon discover that neither of these assumptions — that vaccines are safe, and that they are effective — is necessarily true. In fact, the situation with vaccination is analogous to that of chemotherapy: Both are presented to the public as efficacious and safe, when, in reality, with a few exceptions for each, they are neither. In both cases, then, personal decision-making requires research.
Let’s start with The Journal of Pediatrics, which ran an October 1997 article summarizing reports to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System. Between 1991 and 1994, 38,787 adverse reactions following vaccination were reported to this clearinghouse. Most of these cases occurred within two weeks of vaccination, and they ranged from less than serious reactions to deaths, which were most prevalent among children from one to three months old. Since only about one tenth of vaccine-induced reactions are ever reported, these numbers coming out of VAERS vastly understate the real incidence of vaccine-associated complications. You also have to consider that this reporting system is not dealing with long-term complications. While long-term causality is hard to prove, there are thousands of reports documenting cases of meningitis, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes, autism, chronic encephalitis, multiple sclerosis, cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis, among other conditions, that seem to be linked to vaccines.
But the medical establishment does not generally want to acknowledge either the short- or long-term problems that vaccines can cause. This is something that concerns an increasing number of medical consumers, including Alan Phillips, the founding director of Citizens for Healthcare and Freedom, a Durham, North Carolina, group dedicated to raising awareness about vaccine issues and supporting the right to choose. “The fact is,” Phillips says, “that in this country over a hundred deaths are reported each year following vaccination.” Furthermore, “the FDA admits that 90 percent or more of serious vaccine adverse events are not even reported, and independent sources raise that figure to as much as 95 or 97 percent. So,” says Phillips, “any pediatrician or other person who says that this doesn’t happen is uninformed.”
One of the problems that crops up with vaccine after vaccine is that immunization often provides only temporary immunity, whereas getting the disease naturally usually confers permanent immunity. Barbara Loe Fisher, president of the National Vaccine Information Center, of Vienna, Virginia, notes, “That is one of the reasons why they have to keep giving booster doses. With DPT [diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), and tetanus] and OPV [oral polio vaccine], you need up to five doses. They told us that with the measles vaccine, one dose was needed for life. Then we started seeing more and more measles in vaccinated children. Now they are asking for a second dose …. Already, measles has mutated into a more serious form of the illness. When babies are no longer protected by their mothers’ antibodies because their mothers have only been vaccinated [and have not actually had measles] … these little babies are going to get a more severe form of measles.”
There is a lot of guesswork behind vaccination practices. This bothers Jamie Murphy, author of What Every Parent Should Know About Childhood Immunization (Earth Healing Products), in which she stresses that vaccines are suspensions of infectious agents used to induce, artificially, immunity against specific diseases. The aim of vaccination is to mimic the process of naturally occurring infection through synthetic means. Theoretically, vaccines produce a mild-to-moderate episode of infection in the body with only temporary and slight side effects. But in reality, they may be causing diseases rather than preventing them. “Vaccines produce disease or infection in an otherwise healthy person,” Murphy says. “And so, in order to allegedly produce something good, one has to do something bad to the human body — that is, induce an infection or a disease in an otherwise healthy person that may or may not have ever happened.”
Thus, she explains, “You have a situation in which everyone is being given a disease with no control over that disease, because once you inject a vaccine into a person’s body, whether it contains bacteria or viruses or split viruses or whatever, you have no control over the outcome. Of course, what they want the vaccination to do is initiate the building up of our immune defenses, just [as] a regular infection would do. The problem is that the medical profession and science do not know, and have never known, what the infecting dose of an infection really is. So, they’re really guessing at the amount of antigen [a substance that stimulates an immune response] and other supplementary chemicals that they put in the vaccine.”