Go get 'em, Peter!

Peter Bowditch is not happy about the claims of a certain woman who believes in homeopathy and is opposed to vaccination, and he tells her so in an open letter, written in his usual inimitable fashion.

From my perspective, in order to lend some tactical air support to criticisms of anti-vaccination fanatics, I suggest that people peddling exaggerated and erroneous anti-vaccination rhetoric read this recent article. It's about the last generation that ever had to worry about polio and some of its now aging polio survivors. Thank heaven, the development of the polio vaccine has essentially eradicated the disease from this country; unfortunately, the very success of the vaccine in eradicating this formerly dreaded disease is the very thing that allows anti-vaccination advocates to seem reasonable to the uninformed.


  1. not to forget just what it did for Smallpox.

  2. My older brother is a polio victim, and although he is nearing 60, and it's been 55 or so years since he contracted the illness, the 'post-polio' effects continue to worsen his condition. I was born long after he was, into the time when the polio vaccine was available. My father described once the fear that all parents had of the disease, and his own horror when he realized his own son had the disease. Although raising a child today is not fear-free, certainly there is no comparable danger out there, in terms of probability of occurence, and I'm thankful I don't have to experience that same fear.

    I have nothing but contempt for those who spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt about immunization. It is hard to understand how any sane person could doubt the efficacy of vaccination. What other cause can rationally account for the demise of polio, the demise of smallpox, the demise of rubella and measles and mumps, and all the other scourges of childhood? Perhaps people growing up in an age in which childhood infectious diseases aren't the terror they once were lack the perspective to understand the radical, positive change that vaccination has had on human health.

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