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The Worst Things People Say About Unvaccinated Kids

By KateTietje |

What myths have you heard?

Editors Note: The title of this post has been changed and the word “myth” has been removed to emphasize that this post is the opinion of the blogger.

Choosing to vaccinate your child or not is a very personal decision, which is up to each individual family to make.  There’s a lot of anger out there on both sides of this debate.  And usually when I read the comments on any post dealing with vaccines, I see a ton of what I consider incorrect claims. (And no…in sharing those things with me and telling me I’m a bad parent, I will not be persuaded to see things your way, and no, you are not telling me anything I haven’t heard a hundred times before.)

Today I’d like to address some of the worst things that I see flying around out there:

1) “You better keep your unvaccinated kid away from mine because I don’t want mine to get sick!” — You do realize that in order for my child to get yours sick, my child would have to…actually be sick?  In that regard, only children who are actually ill can pass along illness.  It does not matter if a child was vaccinated or not, if a child is sick, then the child can pass along the illness.  Unvaccinated children aren’t magical disease-carriers.  In fact, many are rarely sick.  If they are, they’ll stay home!  It’s just not a good argument, because anyone *can* catch an illness, and unvaccinated kids aren’t extra-special in this regard, especially not when it comes to general mingling with society.

2) “But the greater good…!” — Nope.  If there’s something out there that’s “for the greater good” and promises absolutely no harm to my child, guaranteed, sure, I’ll do it.  But vaccines come with their own set of risks, and parents must be willing to accept them.  And since unvaccinated kids aren’t disease-carriers (see point #1), it really isn’t that big a deal anyway.

3) “Your child will die of the measles or another preventable illness!” — Highly unlikely, and not because of vaccines!  Let’s suppose my child does catch the measles.  The primary reason for complications/death from measles, according to the WHO, is vitamin A deficiency.  In fact, the WHO recommends immediate vitamin A supplementation in areas where children frequently catch measles and aren’t vaccinated.  My children aren’t deficient in vitamin A, and if they were, could easily be supplemented.  Knowing the position of the WHO and why people do die in third-world countries eases my mind, because that is just not an issue here.  (Along with poor nutrition and sanitation causing complications, also not an issue here.)

4) “You don’t love your children!” — This is just a rude thing to say!  Every parent loves his/her children, and makes what s/he believes to be the best choices.  You may disagree and that’s your right, but it is absolutely wrong to say that a parent doesn’t love their child.

5) “If you don’t vaccinate, your kid can’t go to school!” — False!  In 48 states there are medical exemptions, in most religious exemptions, and in about half, philosophical exemptions.  Yes, you can use them for college, too.  Basically you just have to fill them out and your kids can attend public school, without any vaccines at all.  This is a scare tactic that schools and doctors use to get reluctant parents to vaccinate, and it is a lie.  (All of you who are afraid of your kids going to school with unvaccinated children…they probably already do!)

There are a whole bunch of other things, but those are the most common. But if you want to say, “We couldn’t have healthy people without vaccines,” or “Wait till all those iron lungs come back” or whatever else…rest assured I, and other parents who choose not to vaccinate, have heard it before!  This question simply isn’t settled and decided, it’s very much up in the air.

Choose what works best for your family, and don’t let people scare or shame you into making any particular decision.

What things have you heard?

Top image by UNICEF Svergage

Learn more about why parents choose not to vaccinate, and what that means for our kids.

One mom says: I don’t vaccinate my kids and it’s none of your business.

And head to Strollerderby for Sierra’s post on why you should vaccinate your kids.

More on Babble

About KateTietje



Kate Tietje is a food blogger who focuses on natural food and cooking. In addition to Modern Alternative Mama, she has contributed her writing to the Parenting and Pregnancy channels on Babble.

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120 thoughts on “The Worst Things People Say About Unvaccinated Kids

  1. just me says:

    I don’t care what you do with your kids, you’re the one who will have deal with the consequences if they end up sick. I choose to vaccinate.

  2. JoJo says:

    I heard a myth the other day that raising children without preconceived notions of gender teaches them to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered. I also heard that removing gender stereotypes teaches kids to engage in oppositte-gender behavior and cross-dress, and that somehow, this encourages homosexual behavior.
    Could you imagine ever hearing anything crazier than that?

  3. Linda says:

    Perhaps that those that choose not to vaccinate are the reason that some of the “older” diseases (that there are vaccines for) are coming back with a vengeance… just sayin.

  4. Caitlin says:

    The “Greater Good” argument bothers me the most because if my kid isn’t vaccinated and yours is, and my kid gets sick, YOURS WON’T. So what do you care if mine is sick?

  5. Megan says:

    Sorry, did anyone else just turn off due to the article’s hostile tone? (Particularly the hypocritical bit about ‘don’t tell me what to think because I’m not interested’, and then turning around and doing the same to readers who probably came to this article for a rational well-researched discussion.) I realize this is a sensitive topic with a lot of emotion attached, but I certainly don’t think this type of condescending pulpit-banging really promotes intelligent discourse on this sensitive subject (and I realize this occurs on both sides).

    I came to this website for information and support during my pregnancy, but clearly this site is not for me. Good luck, everyone, and good bye.

  6. KateTietje says:

    Just Me — You’re right, those consequences are mine to deal with…and I prefer to accept the risk of illness over the risk of harm from vaccines. Everyone has to accept whichever they are more comfortable with.

    Linda — No. That’s another big myth. Most of the outbreaks are occurring in highly vaccinated communities, especially whooping cough.

  7. JoJo says:

    Not sure what was hostile about my comment to have it removed – I was merely answering the question about myths that I have heard.
    And I did hear a myth the other day that removing gender stereotypes encourages kids to be gay.
    Seriously? This site is a joke.

  8. admin says:

    @JoJo: Your comment is live.

  9. Krissy says:

    With the exception of #3, NOTHING here was sourced, meaning that you didn’t debunk ANY myths. Why do anti-vaccinators just pull facts of their asses and expect people to believe them?

  10. Sarah Kline says:

    I really don’t care either if you vac your kids or not. Mine are so they won’t catch the diseases yours could get anyway….although I do not think it’s fair that my infants won’t have this protection till they are properly vaccinated. One thing I do find wrong with this article is that the reason you are able to chose not to vac your kids is because people in generations past did. I don’t think you’d be able to even make the choice is millions weren’t vaccinated with polio in the 1940′s huh? If you lived in the 1940′s you simply wouldn’t have a choice… it would actually be a life or death situation in some cases. So maybe you should talk to your grandmother on what she thinks about vaccinations…

  11. Helen says:

    Back in May I found this post on Boing Boing, along with the comments, interesting: “This is what happens when we don’t vaccinate”. Touched on a few things you just mentioned.

  12. KateTietje says:


    I’m not really sure why all the points need citations. For example, #4, what could I cite to ‘prove’ that all parents love their children…? #5, anyone can look up the rules on exemptions, though I could provide you with links to different states’ rules if needed. As far as #2, greater good, there’s not really a citation for that either, it is up to parents to accept different sets of risks. The VAERS database is a good resource though to show the risks of vaccines. and #1, it is true that only those who are sick can pass along illness.

  13. Beth A. says:

    The consequences are not just yours to deal with. Besides people who are immune-suppressed or can’t be vaccinated, the first MMR dose doesn’t come until 12 months, which means all babies are vulnerable. According to the CDC, out of the 118 cases of measles in the US in the first five months this year, 15 percent were babies under a year. I had to take my newborn to get an immune globulin shot because she was exposed to measles in the hospital. I wouldn’t wish the terror of wondering if your newborn might develop a disease that could kill her on anyone.

    It’s not that people think that unvaccinated are more diseased, it’s that they could be carrying more dangerous diseases and often people are contagious before they show real symptoms. Out of the 118 cases, 89 percent were among the unvaccinated and pretty much all of the outbreaks started with the unvaccinated.

    And finally, since you don’t live in a third world country, don’t you think it would be good to find out what the actual risks to your children are? According to the CDC (, there’s a 1 in 20 chance of developing pneumonia and a 1 in 1000 risk of encephalitis, which carries a high risk of brain damage. 1 to 2 out of 1000 die. There’s a reason people have been trying to eliminate diseases like this.

  14. Krystal says:

    I was initially intrigued by the idea of not vaccinating my child after she is born, but upon further research, I realized that none of the people who advocate not getting vaccinated have an MD behind their names, so I will be listening to the people who have gone to medical school. The past few generations have been vaccinated and many dangerous diseases have been nearly wiped out because of it. It’s really a no brainer for me.

  15. Jennifer says:

    In regard to myth #1.. ‘only children who are actually ill can pass along illness.’ The whole issue with that, is many illnesses (vaccine preventable or not) can infect someone and not have symptoms show up for days, or even weeks.. but during that period, still be highly contagious. Thus, putting everyone who came in contact with the infected person at risk. Have we not read the articles about people who’ve been infected with measles, but have not yet started feeling the symptoms travel on planes, land at their destination and end up in hospital? And then disease control agencies have the burden of tracking down the others on those flights who may have been exposed to warn them.. (Which I believe sometimes results in quarantine, depending on the circumstances.) God forbid an immune-compromised person or infant too young to be fully vaccinated be a part of this sad scenario.

    Just because you don’t ‘feel’ sick, doesn’t mean you aren’t. And by the time you feel sick, you may have jeopardized countless others. That’s why people that choose to vaccinate (or people that can’t for purely medical reasons) generally wish their families to not be near the chosen unvaccinated.

  16. Kim says:

    I want to weigh in, but it’s a topic that everyone just argues about and really doesn’t listen to the other side. If you really look at the nature and history of things you would see that vaccinating isn’t the cure. Our immune systems are designed to fight for us and need to do at some point in order to make us stronger. Vaccines have actually caused other illnesses to surface. (Doing away with chicken pox has resulted in an increase in shingles.) There are so many dangerous things in vaccines, like animal DNA for one. Can you really shot monkey or chicken DNA into your baby and not worry? It’s a very personal topic and a very personal decision and anyone that I know that does not vaccinate has also researched and carefully studied before making their decision. I find that those that do vaccinate are usually less informed and are simply doing what they are told is best for their child and they believe that to be the case…without much reading.

  17. Grace M. says:

    Yes, you can get exemptions for college vaccinations, but the armed forces WON’T exempt you. Period. A friend of mine was raised unvaccinated. Then he became a Marine. He had to have every single vaccination all at once. Was he miserable? Heck yes!
    Just something to keep in mind if you think your kids might ever go into military service. I’m a military wife, so it’s something I think about a lot with our son.

  18. Krissy says:

    All of your points need citations because you’re making tremendous claims. You can’t debunk myths with opinions. It doesn’t work that way. Maybe #4 and #5 don’t need sources, but your top two ones do. And #3 misinterprets WHO data. It’s just baffling that anti-vaxers have such a difficult time sticking to the facts and creating strong, science, evidence-based arguments. But on the plus side, making asinine posts like this just further shows that the anti-vaccine arguments are weak, which will hopefully make fence-sitters realize that facts always favor vaccines.

  19. Krissy says:

    “Linda — No. That’s another big myth. Most of the outbreaks are occurring in highly vaccinated communities, especially whooping cough.”

    WRONG. Just plain wrong.

  20. Chelsea says:

    Just so you know, “myth” actually means something that isn’t true. How awkward for you.

  21. J says:

    I’d like to debunk your myth number #1. Children actually don’t have to be sick to spread the illness. They can actually start spreading the virus before they showing any signs of being ill. Let’s look at a few:
    Measles: can be transmitted from four days before the rash becomes visible
    Polio:Patients infected with the polio virus can pass the virus on for 7-10 days before the onset of disease. In addition, they can continue to shed the virus in their stool for 3-6 weeks.
    Influenza: A person is most likely to pass on the virus during the period beginning one to two days before the onset of symptoms and ending four to five days after the onset.
    Rotavirus: Infected persons shed large quantities of virus in their stool beginning 2 days before the onset of diarrhea and for up to 10 days after onset of symptoms
    ChickenPox:Patients with chickenpox are contagious for 1–2 days before the rash appears and continue to be contagious through the first 4–5 days or until all the blisters are crusted over
    Rubella:The disease is most contagious when the rash is erupting, but the virus can be spread from seven days before, to 5–7 days after the rash begins. People with rubella without symptoms can also transmit the virus.

  22. KateTietje says:

    J — You’re right, it is possible to spread illness before symptoms appear. However, this is true if you catch anything, regardless of your vaccination status. It just bothers me that people forget that those who have been vaccinated could also spread disease, either because they do get sick anyway, or because, in certain cases, their vaccines can shed (live viruses).

  23. Trevor says:

    J is correct. You do not have to be symptomatic to pass on disease. BUT this goes both for un-vaccinated as well as vaccinated. Vaccinated persons can pass on disease and so another myth is this idea of cocooning.

  24. Trevor says:

    >> “Linda — No. That’s another big myth. Most of the outbreaks are occurring in highly vaccinated communities, especially whooping cough.”
    WRONG. Just plain wrong.
    Krissy, please site your references. It is a fact that most of the outbreaks are occurring in vaccinated communities. One in particular has been amongst 100% vaccinated.

  25. Heather says:

    As you’ve heard all the arguments, then surely you’ve heard of the concept of “herd immunity.” Can you offer an argument for that point? That’s why your “for the greater good” point doesn’t work for me.

  26. Victoria Goins says:

    It’s actually a myth that UNVACCINATED people spread disease.

    The vaccinated are actually infected for the rest of their lives with the viruses they have injected into themselves, and they spread disease to everyone–vaccinated and unvaccinated alike.

    It is a myth that vaccination is immunization.

    It is also a myth that ‘outbreaks’ are caused by the unvaccinated. Vaccinated individuals shed viruses onto the people around them, and this is the source of nearly all ‘vaccine preventable’ illnesses.

    If we’d just stop vaccinating, these viruses would either disappear or their real origins (like how polio is caused by DDT) would be exposed and we could deal directly with the virus.

  27. Robert Schecter says:

    Great post, Kate.

    Krissy, you’re saying you dispute the fact that a child has to have an illness to transmit an illness? And you want a citation to prove you can’t catch the measles from someone who doesn’t have the measles? That’s strange. And as to point #2, vaccines have some risks, that’s a “tremendous claim?” I don’t think so. Are you saying vaccines have absolutely no risks? And isn’t just the fact that you have to stick a needle into a child and cause that child pain evidence that the practice has harmful elements?

    Beth, if you had the measles as a child you would have passed on protective antibodies to your newborn so you wouldn’t have needed the IG. Anyway the 1-2 in 1,000 number from the CDC regarding measles mortality has no basis in reality. In the pre-vaccine era there were ~450 deaths out of 3-4 million cases.

    See Secular Trends in the United States

  28. Lydia says:

    Well yes unvaccinated children are not at risk for most diseases because of herd immunity. They are protected from measels bc their peers are vaccinated against it. However, if people start pushing for parents to skip vaccines herd immunity goes away and we have measles epidemics that are much more likely to kill children than the vaccines are. It’s actually not all about protecting just your own children, it’s about protecting the immunocompromised in our communities who *can’t* be vaccinated or for whom vaccines are not effective.
    If only a handful of people don’t vaccinate, we will not have any huge public health problems. However if it becomes the norm to not vaccinate we will have enourmouse public health problems.

    How many people do you know with polio? The answer is 0 and the reason was because of a vaccine.

  29. ChuckUA says:

    Other myths that are perpetuated here:
    “So maybe you should talk to your grandmother on what she thinks about vaccinations”. Maybe you should talk to your doctor and have him give you a long list of things that use to be terminal that no longer are due to medical advances.
    “Besides people who are immune-suppressed or can’t be vaccinated, the first MMR dose doesn’t come until 12 months, which means all babies are vulnerable.” People in these categories should know how to protect themselves in the first place because they know they are vulnerable to all sicknesses, vaccine preventable or not (see #1 above).
    “But on the plus side, making asinine posts like this just further shows that the anti-vaccine arguments are weak,” Ad-hominem attacks is usually a sign of weakness when someone cannot actually provide their own resources to justify their opinions.
    “Linda — No. That’s another big myth. Most of the outbreaks are occurring in highly vaccinated communities, especially whooping cough.”
    Right, just plain right:
    Among the 242 students in the county’s middle and high school, 77 cases (attack rate: 32%) occurred, and the school was temporarily closed because of absenteeism. Of the students in the school, 93% had received at least 4 doses of pediatric DTP/DTaP during childhood.
    This means that 60 cases, the vast majority were in the VACCINATED students.

  30. Michelle says:

    As for #1 a your unvax’d kid could most certainly get mine sick, particularly when my baby isn’t old enough to get vaccinated himself. Your kid is also a danger to pregnant women and the immunosuppressed. The incubation period for these diseases is as long as two weeks – that’s two weeks to infect people before your kid even seems ill. Its not good enough that you are willin to endanger your own child, but I will make sure my kid and myself are safe.

  31. ChuckUA says:

    The herd immunity threshold has existed for pertussis every year in the 21st century, however the number of cases has continued to grow since 1976 with recurring endemics every 3 to 4 years. There are also reported cases of polio on this link and reported cases of smallpox on the CDC web site (not this link) :

  32. ChuckUA says:

    Another myth: “I will make sure my kid and myself are safe.” No vaccine is 100% safe or 100% effective. Current legal case has forced the CDC to admit that vaccines are legally “unavoidably unsafe” So any child or adult can potentially be a danger to the community by spreading diseases, even if they are vaccinated against the disease they are spreading.

  33. Anna D says:

    On the Point 1 I want to add that ‘If your kid is fully vaccinated then you have nothing to be afraid of from my unvaccinated kid – by your definition your kid is safe’

  34. Amy says:

    For all of you who are so quick to put your trust in the CDC & FDA even though they are constantly recalling vaccines, drugs & other unsafe things they previously approved for the public, here is a blog that offers support for why they don’t vaccinate based on research & reason:

    I enjoyed this blog. If you want to vaccinate or are afraid not to vaccinate or whatever your reasons for being so angry with this blog…just stop reading it. So simple and yet apparently so not. Huh.

  35. Kay says:

    @ lydia I don’t know anyone with Polio, but I do know a women who cannot use her whole right side of her body because of the polio VACCINE

  36. Kay says:

    Maybe all the children who ARE vaccinated should have to wear a warning note after being vaccinated that says, “beware I could pass to you the very sickness I have just been vaccinated against, because I might be shedding”

  37. Amy says:

    Herd immunity is a myth. The CDC continues to promote more and more booster shots after acknowledging that vaccines only last 2-10 years, which simply means that most of us adults are walking around unvaccinated.

    – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep;53(18):389-92– 2004- 5-14

    In Michigan in 2003 there was a chicken pox outbreak. Vaccination was verified for 485 students, resulting in a vaccination coverage of 95.7% (485 out of 507).

    According to the CDC in 1999, rotavirus was causing 20 to 40 infant deaths annually in the US when the first rotavirus vaccine, RotaShield, was introduced. It was estimated that about 50,000 hospitalizations occurred in the US because of severe diarrhea and dehydration. Today, even though almost all US infants receive vaccines for rotavirus, and despite efforts to improve the management of childhood rotavirus-associated diarrhea, hospitalizations of children in the U.S. with the disease have not significantly declined in the past two decades: the CDC says rotavirus infection is still responsible for an estimated 400,000 doctor visits; more than 200,000 emergency room visits; and 55,000 to 70,000 hospitalizations in the US.

    A case-control study has shown that 41 percent of meningitis occurred in children vaccinated against the disease. The vaccine’s protective efficacy was minus 58 percent. This means that children are much more likely to get the disease if they are vaccinated. ~ JAMA, 1988, Osterholm et al., 260: 1423-1428

  38. Momma, PhD says:

    KATETIETJE- What about children who are too young to be vaccinated? Kids who fall in the small percentage that won’t acquire sufficient immunity from the vax? Pregnant women? People who are immune suppressed? If your child were to fall ill from a vaccine-preventable illness, they most definitely could pass the illness along.

    Also, pertussis, in older children and adults does not sounds like whooping cough- so unless you keep your unvaxd kid home every time he/she has a cough, they could be spreading pertussis all over the place. And while you may keep your kids home when they are sick most parents don’t. Ask any school nurse and they will tell you the innumerable times feverish kids have been sent to school with some Tylenol because their parents can’t/won’t stay home from work to care for them. And what about all the other children and families in your doctor’s waiting room?

    The clear and well-documented medical/scientific consensus is that vaccines are safe and they save lives.

    Wishing you and your family a community of well-vaccinated people so the herd immunity can help keep them safe and healthy.

  39. KateTietje says:


    Parents sending their kids to school sick — actually feverish, not a little runny nose — is not something I agree with, and a separate issue entirely. Most parents I know whose children are not vaccinated are very careful about this, though, keeping their kids home if there is a chance they are sick. Most of what you say here, though, simply applies to any child who is sick…their vaccination status is really irrelevant. I am also not a fan of the herd immunity theory, but I need to find my documentation before I address that one…. (But no, I certainly don’t rely on it to keep my kids ‘safe’ and I am not worried about them getting sick, there are illnesses I hope they do get while young!)

  40. Brittany says:

    Honestly, I think it should be against the law to not vaccinate your children. Your “myth” list is actually true statements and someone who is obviously uneducated when it comes to heatlhcare. I am a health care field and I find you, and other parents who do not vaccinate correctly, complete idiots. You have some serious issues and I wish child services had the ability to do something about parents like you who are using their unjustified, paranoid ideals to do unjust harm to your poor children. People like you should be prevented from ever even having children. You are equally irresponsible in actually trying to convince other soon to be parents against vaccination with complete lies and uneducated statements. Stick to what you know, which obviously isn’t much, and leave the healthcare advice to those who actually spent years training and know what they are talking about. People like you disgust me.

  41. R says:

    It seems you know very little about vaccine immunology. No one disputes that you don’t love your children, but your desire to not vaccinate is not based in hard facts.
    First, diseases can be spread when someone is in an asymptomatic stage. So, it’s entirely possible that your child may come in contact with someone who is immunocompromised and get them sick, all while your child doesn’t show symptoms. It seems unfair to put other people’s children at risk like this.

    Secondly, vaccines are not going to work in everyone 100% of the time and it would be irresponsible for anyone to tell you different. By the way, this is the reason that children who are vaccinated may still get sick; unfortunately, you won’t know that you aren’t protected unless you’re sick or you get your titers checked. Personally, I’ve had the Hepatitis B vaccine 3 times before it worked. It was annoying, but i wasn’t going to risk getting an incurable disease. And vaccines definitely have risks, including serious injury and death. However these are quite rare. Most medical interventions have risk of death, that doesn’t mean that you houldn’t get them though. I mean, you wouldn’t refuse an appendectomy because of the off chance that you have an adverse reaction to the anestesia, would you?
    And just because you don’t think herd immunity is real doesn’t make it true. Herd immunity protects the immunocompromised, pregnant women and people with medical contraindications. How else can you explain why rates of measles and pertussis are back pm the rise? Proper sanitation isn’t going to prevent you from getting airborne diseases.
    Finally, there was a very smug and negative tone about this article. I understand that people have attacked you about this before; but I don’t think it’s absurd for people to ask you to back up your claims with scientific papers. Vaccines are too important for you to feed people unsubstianted information.

  42. girlrobot says:

    Instead of attacking each other, can someone honestly explain why people are against vaccinations? Is there hard evidence that vaccinations are bad? Or are all of these claims just based on paranoia?

    It seems like most people have their kids vaccinated and all of the ones I know seem fine. It seems like all reasons point to vaccinating your kid. Please point me to sources that state otherwise. I’m really curious about this issue and actually disappointed in how this post was written. I was hoping to find real info that I could use to decide for or against vaccinations instead of just opinion. When it comes to my (future) kid(s), I’m more likely to base my decisions on cold hard facts.

  43. ChuckUA says:

    As usual, the myths are rampant on both sides.
    “And vaccines definitely have risks, including serious injury and death. However these are quite rare.”
    Right now you are twice as likely to have a severe life threatening adverse reaction to a vaccine then dying from measles and the last reported measles death was in 2005 and there have only been 3 deaths in the United States in the 21st Century.

  44. Samantha says:

    @ Kim:

    Where did you hear that the Chicken Pox Vaccine has caused more cases of Shingles? I am pretty sure that is completely false. I am not a doctor, (but I am married to one), and he told me that prevention of shingles is the main reason to vaccinate children against chicken pox. According to this article, an individual can get shingles if they have had the Chicken Pox virus in their past. Shingles can actually be fairly dangerous, and it sure the hell is super painful. So you can ONLY get shingles if you have HAD the disease. Or…if you have never had it and are exposed to someone with shingles, you might get shingles. Even though the Chicken Pox Vaccine is a live virus vaccine, 95% of people who get the vaccine do not get the disease, and if they do it is super mild.

    I did find one source that says that there have been some cases of shingles after having the vaccine, but they are much more rare than cases of shingles after having chicken pox.

    So it would seem that you are incorrect in your statement. The vaccine can sometimes lead to shingles, but in way less cases than just getting the regular disease.

  45. ChuckUA says:

    Actually the chicken pox vaccine is causing more shingles cases in younger cohorts. The reason is very simple. Individual immune system will keep the varicella zoster virus dormant as long as the immune system is naturally exposed to live strains of varicella. The Chicken pox virus reduces the probability of being exposed in the natural environment. Your immune system weakens due to less exposure to the point at which it cannot keep the varicella dormant so the varicella zoster virus becomes active in the form of shingles. The chicken pox vaccine is also causing other unanticipated adverse reactions. Adults are now contracting chickenpox at higher more alarming rates with more adverse reaction then would have happen when they were children because the vaccine immunity has waned to the point of non-effectiveness.
    Since the reactivated varicella zoster virus is a wild strain, it will also most likely jump the vaccine. I have already been able to predict two vaccinated children contracting Chickenpox two weeks before they were systomatic just because one of their parents contracted shingles. Just like clockwork, both vaccinated children had chickenpox just like their parent did. No better, no worse just the same.

  46. Janie says:


    Why did your husband comment as chuckua? I’ve read his writing on your personal blog, and the style is obviously the same. Not to mention his inability to correctly use “than.” (Ben uses “then” just like chuckua- a really uncommon mistake made by anyone who is educated.) By the way, where is “safemama?” She commented so much on you last vaccine post but is strangely silent this time. Oh, that’s right, safemama is you commenting under a different name!

  47. Victoria Goins says:

    Kay, you are soo right! Especially when health care workers get their annual flu vaccine and then pass on the flu to their residents. It’s ridiculous. Less people would die if we’d just stop spreading diseases around!

  48. Victoria Goins says:

    Kate, you are soo right about everything. People keep sighting the CDC like it’s some sort of independent reliable source of information, but what people don’t realize is that vaccine manufacturers PAY the CDC to say whatever they want them to say. AND the CDC and vaccine manufacturers police themselves, so who knows what is really going on? Vaccinating people makes money–because they get sick, and they get other people sick, then the CDC gets more money to ‘figure out’ what is going on, and vaccine manufacturers get to come up with new vaccines for the superbugs they have created, and Big Pharma gets to develop more pills for these conditions. I’m telling you, sick people make money, healthy and dead people don’t.

  49. Victoria Goins says:

    Don’t even get me started with the diabetes and cancer industry! $$$ is all they care about!

  50. diana says:

    For all the pro-vaxxers.
    My kid got encephalitis from her shots and her brain is unneccessarily damaged for the rest of her life. None of you will help me care for her nor will be get any financual help from our government, despite it being recognized as back damage, but I have to be home with her. Lovely stuff.
    There was a comment about people in the 1940 being happy with the polio vaccine. Not in my end of the world. My parents and grand parents never got vaccinated. None of them, nor any of their siblings had polio complications. Those complications are actually quite rare.

  51. ChuckUA says:

    “You people on this forum need to stick to talking about your pregnancy experiences, not giving medical advice! It is so damn irresponsible.”
    Then you are just as irresponsible as every one else that has posted aren’t you Brittant?

  52. Janie says:

    By whom is my comment being moderated? The comment certainly falls within the guidelines you have established; it is not unduly hostile.

  53. d says:

    I think that each parent need to make that decision – worst case, children can get vaccinated when they are older if they so decide.
    When I was 15, there was a meningitis outbreak. My parents made sure I read all the information and then I made my decision.
    My sister chose not to vaccinate her daughter – who is now 3, and is a pretty healthy girl. I haven’t made a decision on the matter yet – since I don’t have children yet, but clearly, it’s one of those things I’m going to keep to myself, because everyone seem so ridiculously opinionated.

  54. TJ says:

    It boggles my mind how wrong some of these posts are. I mean, I haven’t read all of them, but as a Microbiologist with courses in immunology and having worked in immunology labs for several years, all I can say is that some of the things people are saying here are, not to be disrespectful, just plain ignorant. What I don’t understand is how the blogger does not correct these incorrect claims, yet she will “correct” individuals who do not think along her line. There are consequences to our actions and words. Staying quiet when a half-truth is spoken because it backs up your ideals and beliefs is wrong and unethical. Perhaps Kate would do well to sit down and interview EXPERTS who are on different sides of the vaccine debate and post that (or those) interview(s) and allow the public to make INFORMED and EDUCATED decisions. I cannot respect the words or ideals of a person when these are so one-sided that she refuses to correct those who speak rubbish. Babble, allowing these posts on what is obviously such a public forum without editing from a scientific editor is unethical. Kate is not an expert. Her lack of scientific training and exposure to actual research negates her right at attempts to sway the public on such a topic. We are not talking about how to sew diapers, recipes for pregnant women, or personal relationships with our kids. Shame on Kate but more so, shame on Babble. You are asking for legal troubles. Even if my post is censored, I hope that Babble editors will realize how wrong it is to allow Kate to blog about such topics.

  55. Momma, PhD says:

    For those looking for more information on herd immunity and how it works, there is a well-cited Wikipedia entry for it:

    Note in the first chart that the percentage of of the population that has to be immunized for herd immunity to be effective (and it is never 100% effective in PREVENTING ALL incidences- just effective in preventing the SPREAD of the infection!) for various illnesses. For instance, for whooping cough/pertussis, you’ll see that 92-95% of the entire population must be vaccinated! Not just little kids, but everyone! (And remember, most babies get pertussis from their caregivers! And in adults, whooping cough does not sound like it does for a baby, so many adults don’t know they even have it. So caregivers should be vaccinated.)

    Part of why this rate has to be so high is that it is known that not everyone who is vaccinated will develop sufficient immunity to prevent infection.

    We really must work together to keep ourselves and our families safe.

  56. ChuckUA says:

    “No vaccine offers complete protection, but the spread of disease from person to person is much higher in those who remain unvaccinated.[4] It is the general aim of those involved in public health to establish herd immunity in most populations. Complications arise when widespread vaccination is not possible or when vaccines are rejected by a part of the population. As of 2009, herd immunity is compromised in some areas for some vaccine-preventable diseases, including pertussis and measles and mumps, in part because of parental refusal of vaccination.[5][6][7]”

    This statement from Wakipedia shows the inherent biases in the studies cited. The studies referenced (4-7) unequivocally believe that the unvaccinated are the cause of the recurring outbreaks of pertussis. CDC’s own documentation has said time and time again that the predominance of cases are in the vaccinated population and some epidemiological studies put the effectiveness of the pertussis vaccine at 35% after 3 years, making “herd immunity” scientifically impossible and yet these same CDC representatives try to guilt individuals into vaccination even though it is, for pertussis, a pure science fiction story.

  57. Doug says:

    Great article, and just wanted to correct the myth that there are no health experts critical of vaccines. I’ve read articles by a whole lot of MDs, NDs, and OMDs who are critical of vaccine policy and/or vaccines in general. Harold Buttram MD, Donald W. Miller Jr, MD, Sherry Tenpenny OMD, Neustaedter OMD, Joseph Mercola ND, and many others, and I’m just naming them off the top of my head.
    Not to mention many people in the research field who’ve either done intrepid studies which called vaccine policy into question (talk about limiting your access to funding sources!) as well as researchers who’ve become fed up with the pharmaceutical bias.
    Nonvaccinating parents would not feel the way they do if they had no expert opinion behind them. I’ve got to give a hand to the honest docs and researchers who stick their necks out and complain about current policies. They have nothing financially to gain by doing so and in fact risk losing a lot by doing so.

  58. Kay says:

    I would *love* to know what your background in microbiology and immunology is, Kate. Do you perhaps have a PhD from Google University?

  59. Laura says:

    I’ve quit reading Babble as much as I can help it since I started realizing it was a great place for ignorant crap-throwing matches. And everytime I have the misfortune to come across something like this, it just reconfirms my desire to avoid this website like the plague. Could somebody please invent a website that has an IQ prereq for posting? Jesus, some of you people make me lose faith in humanity.

  60. ChuckUA says:

    “I have the misfortune to come across something like this, it just reconfirms my desire to avoid this website like the plague.”

    Maybe your IQ isn’t high enough to stop yourself from doing it and maybe a prerequisite IQ would stop it once and for all.

  61. dobee13 says:

    had your unvaccinated child come in contact with my vaccinated child, while he did in fact have meningococcal disease, your unvacc’d child would’ve suffered 100x worse than my child. so it’s not about being sick, it’s about being not sick and contracting something from someone who is. you CAN pass an illness before it presents itself, that’s when you’re most contagious. do your research.

  62. Nadine says:

    Oh I feel for you lady. Went through this months ago when I was dumb enough to give an interview about it in one of Canada’s largest papers. Check out the comments.–as-roster-of-vaccines-grows-so-does-backlash-from-parents

  63. Bec says:

    This article is highly irresponsible. Kate is not a doctor or medical professional.

  64. Aubrey says:

    I have seen the ” effects ” of non vaccinated children and its sad when they are constantly picking up every sickness and always out of school because of out-breaks, How do you as a parent feel that it is your choice to put your child in these situations. Shame on you!!!! BTW my best friends husband is the one who made this decision and over ruled her because he “felt” it was a greater decision ( NOTE his children are constantly exposed and hospitalized MONTHLY ).

  65. Meredith says:

    I agree with the fact that it is the parents choice to vaccinate their children or not. I am pregnant with my first child and have done alot of research. In the end, I will be getting my child their vaccines. Of course i have my own reason behind this. My friend does not vaccinate her children and she is upset with me because I will not let her children around mine until it has the Whooping cough vaccine. Whooping cough is highly contagious in our area at the moment and I am getting the shot while I am pregnant and then the baby’s as soon as they will let me. A friend of mines baby passed away at 2 months from whooping cough. I know there are chances of exposing my baby just by taking it out in public but not on the level of sitting in the house with someone for a prolonged period of time. I also highly believe in the tetnus vaccine. My brother was not up to date on his tetnus stepped on a rusty needle and ended up in the hospital for a month and a half. He almost lost his foot. Whether I agree with the other vaccines or not, I have not decided, but with all the crap out there today my choice is I would rather be safe than sorry and vaccinate my child. No telling what terrorists might throw our way next. Of course as in every post here, this is my choice and I hope people respect it as I respect a parents right to not vaccinate their child.

  66. Jacquie says:

    The most common thing I hear about people who choose not to vaccinate is that they are misguided and misinformed. Unfortunately, this post demonstrates that perfectly. There are many reasons to question Big Pharma and the pressure to vaccinate, but this poster hasn’t provided any of that rationale here.

  67. KBeach says:

    This is a link to the CDC speaking about Measles (ONLY) and the complications that arise from measles. Which is rather high, up to 20% of the people it can have debilitating effects. It even talks about what could happen if vaccinations were stopped…..
    I’m no rocket scientist but I’d rather have my child here with a reaction from immunizations, than dead from a completely preventable (and highly DANGEROUS) disease.
    This link is from the WHO and says what has helped to decline the the 91% reduction rate of measles in Africa.

    I think research shows the greater good wins here…. I’m sure mothers of children in developing countries where these preventable diseases are an epidemic…. would jump at even having the CHANCE of vaccinating their children if it were as readily availble to them as it is to us. I think as Americans we forget how fortunate we are to even consider it an OPTION to not vaccinate.

  68. Spectra says:

    I am a nurse. In looking at both sides of the debate, yes, vaccines do carry some risks and your health care provider should inform you of these risks. However, the diseases that are being vaccinated against are in some cases so awful that even with the risks from the vaccine, the vaccine is a better bet. Tetanus, for instance, is a terrible disease with a very high mortality rate. And there can be no denying that since the smallpox vaccine was introduced that the number of cases of smallpox, particularly in developed countries, has dropped sharply.
    Some doctors have postulated that the problem with the pertussis vaccine was caused by the mercury used as a preservative in the vaccine rather than by the vaccine itself. It is my understanding that mercury is no longer used as a preservative in this vaccine. But knowing the risks, one can opt to have a DT (diptheria-tetanus) or TDaP (Tetanus-diptheria-attenuated pertussis) vaccine.
    I am not saying that vaccines are without risks, but in weighing the risks of the vaccines versus the risks of the diseases, I would choose to have the vaccine and would advise my family members to do the same.

  69. april says:

    My question to you all….. Have you ever read the disclaimer, release forms you have to sign? Why do you have to sign it? So when your child gets the disease you can’t sue them even though you had them vaccinated.Oh yea and the autism thing… what are the statistics now how many ppl did you know when you were growing up that had it. vaccines change just like other things do and sometimes it just isn’t as good as it was before…I’m just sayin

  70. Aviva says:

    I can’t believe I wound up reading another one of this blogger’s posts. KATETIEJIE espouses her, often uneducated and ill-founded, opinions and beliefs to be facts. It is not her opinion that I take issue with; it is her consistent lack of research or data to back up her claims. Why does Babble publish this blog????

  71. Proud mom says:

    I choose to vaccinate. Also will not read a blog by you again. Every time I read something you wrote the attitude completely turns me off.

  72. Alicia says:

    Not vaccinating your kids because of the risks (and there’s no established allergies or the like) is as stupid as not giving your kids medication like antibiotics because of the risks. *Everything* in medicine carries a risk! Even something many mistake as totally safe like supplements carry a risk! Does that mean everyone should avoid everything in medcine? No!

    Also, *stop* saying this is a “personal” choice, because it’s not something that is affecting *you*. It’s affecting your children, and the whole point is to make decisions that protect them, which is what vaccinations do. Yes, chicken pox and the measles aren’t a death sentence in the West, but the other illnesses very well could be. Even if you weren’t vaccinated and haven’t gotten sick, you’re simply lucky. But leave and go to a third world country, and you and your kids are time bombs waiting to catch the very things medicine has worked so long to fight against. Because polio and the other illnesses still exist, and are rampant in those parts of the world. How is leaving your kids without an inkling of defense against those devestating illnesses good parenting?! Do you expect them to just stay within US borders their whole life? How is that good parenting?!

    I wonder what would’ve happened if so many selfish parents had refused the smallpox vaccination. Would it had ever been irradicated? Would children still be dying from it? And what about if they lived during the polio epidemic? Would they have refused and almost guaranteed their child’s crippling by the illness? Or even death?

    Stop relying on bad science people, please! For your child’s sake! Stop relying on internet quacks to tell you lies about vaccines! This isn’t a matter of pharmaceutical companies versus us, it’s literally a matter of life and death! Get your heads out of the sand for your children!

  73. Alicia says:

    Kate – you say to an earlier comment that the consequences are yours to deal with; NO THEY’RE NOT! They will be your kids to go through and handle! How can any loving parent want to put their kids at such risk for getting so sick?! And put them at such risk to suffer?!

  74. KateTietje says:


    I love my children and have chosen what I believe to be best for their health, in the short and long term. I believe every parent who makes a decision on vaccines, whether to get them or not, has their child’s best interests in my mind. No one wants their child to suffer…from anything. And so they weigh the decision carefully. Many, like me, have spoken to their child’s doctors and other authorities and feel completely comfortable with their decision. If, when they grow up, my children choose to receive vaccines and travel abroad, that will be their decision, but I can’t know the future. I am comfortable now with what we are doing.

  75. Alicia says:

    “#1, it is true that only those who are sick can pass along illness.”

    Kate – Big fat FALSE. People can carry illnesses without getting sick, and pass it along. It’s called being an asymptomatic carrier. The most well known case in the US is that of ‘Typhoid’ Mary. (Google her.)

    You *really* need to be more educated about how diseases actually work before acting like you do.

  76. Alicia says:

    Say all you want Kate, but not vaccinating when there’s no cause (such as allergies or a previous reaction) not to is irresponsible parenting. The simple fact is that non-vaccinating parents base their “facts” on bad science or pseudo science and conspiracy theories. You and others either don’t provide hard evidence against vaccines, or provide the snippets that only support your own views. This shouldn’t be something that’s considered a “parenting debate”; this is about children’s lives. This shouldn’t be something that is considered a “parental right”. Abusers consider their hurting their children a “parental right”. Doesn’t make it actually so.

    Again, would you deny your children any medical treatment simply because they all carry risks? If you don’t want your children to suffer, why aren’t you doing everything within your power to do so?

    Yes, people unfortunately have bad reactions to vaccinations. It’s because we all have unique biochemistry that determines what we do and don’t react to. But we all react to medications and medical procedures in different ways. Unfortunately most of us won’t know if there’s a reaction until we try that medicine or go through that procedure, but does that mean we don’t try? No. Our family doctor has two little boys who have egg allergies, so they can’t be vaccinated, but she still recommends vaccination for everyone who can be vaccinated.

    I’m convinced that people who don’t vaccinate without a medical reason have no idea how vaccines work, how diseases work, the devastating effects these illnesses still have, or how science works, period. That’s an unfortunate effect of a bad educational system. But that doesn’t mean you put your children at risk because you want to exercise a parental right or because you want to listen to quacks. When the WHO, a worldwide organization of trained and educated medical professionals say people should be vaccinated, that says *a lot*. How about listening to them instead of Dr. Internet?

  77. Alicia says:

    And for the record (just remembered to post this), I am fully aware that vaccinations don’t always mean immunity, but it sure as hell does mean better protection! A case of the measles struck me at 3, after I had the MMR shot, and it’s what kept me out of the hospital. The measles I had attacked my eyes, and I had to have horrible, stinging medicated eye drops every few hours to keep my sight. Imagine what would’ve happened if I hadn’t had some sort of defense against measles.
    I wouldn’t wish measles on anyone, let alone a little kid.

  78. Nicole says:

    Here’s one other little thing to think about. When you start feeling under the weather and then begin to run a fever – soon realizing that you have influenza, lucky you, and so you will stay home from work with it so as not to infect others: Well, guess what? You’ve been contagious for one to four days prior to ANY symptoms!!! All your poor co-workers were already exposed to the nasty germs. It wasn’t your fault, and no one would blame you, because how could you know you were getting sick when you felt no symptoms right? But the problem with the diseases – whose contagious periods I’ve conveniently researched and posted – below is that these make our communities FAR sicker than a cold or even flu.

    # of days a person is contagious before symptoms appear for commonly vaccinated-against diseases:

    Measles – fortunately you’re not contagious until you start evidencing symptoms.
    Mumps – 3 days
    Rubella – A person can be contagious if they are carrying rubella, EVEN IF THE SYMPTOMS NEVER APPEAR. For those who are symptomatic, they are contagious 7 days prior to the onset of rashes.
    Tetanus – Is fortunately not spread from person to person. (However this sounds like one of the the worst ways to die I have ever heard of! The death rate is 10%, quite high compared to other diseases, and far higher than the % of death associated with side effects of vaccinations.)
    Diphtheria – A very contagious disease with an the ability to infect others for up to 4 WEEKS, again, even if your child never even shows symptoms of the illness herself!
    Pertussis – Fortunately not until symptoms are present, but it is a highly contagious illness, and can easily be mistaken for a mild cold or allergies at first.
    Polio – 7-10 days before the onset of symptoms
    Hepatitis A – spread via oral-fecal contact. (Ew! But think about the littlest kids we’re talking about and their not-so-great handwashing at times, right?) The infectious period is 2 weeks prior to symptom onset.
    Hepatitis B – Not as easily spread among children because it requires contact with bodily fluids, but if a child happens to have a cut in her mouth and sucks on a toy and then passes it to another child, then there’s the potential for transmission. (A little far-fetched, but certainly not out of the realm of possibility.) The infectious period is nearly as long as the incubation period: A staggering 4 to 12 WEEKS prior to symptom onset.
    Varicella (chicken pox) – 3 days prior to onset of rash
    Haemophilus influenzae type B (causes meningitis) – 3-7 days

    My point is this: It’s great that you know to keep your kid home when s/he is sick, but with many of these diseases, you DON’T KNOW your child has the illness until she shows symptoms, and by then she’s potentially infected people at school, daycare, church, grocery stores, doctor’s offices, etc. This is why herd immunity is so vital. You are welcome to your own opinion on the subject of course, but seriously, for the sake of society at large, consider how much more risky going unvaccinated is than getting the shots.

    Here is an excellent article ( on the costs – and not just of suffering or death – that not vaccinating is having on countries around the world right now. Your decision to not vaccinate your child, whether you intend it to be or not, DOES impact others around you.

    My sources:

  79. tonya guidry says:

    I think its funny how people say vaccines can be better cause idk how many people still can get what you vaccinate for! Now with my child yes they will be vaccinated but that’s my choice and I don’t judge anyone cause vaccines aren’t always better for your child. Honestly if you plan to judge someone you should know your facts before you go running your mouth and bashing on parents that chose not to vaccinate. Children that’s aren’t vaccinated hold just as much germs and chance of spreading anything as children that are vaccinated. They aren’t a plague to any other child thats not vaccinated and anyways why care cause if your child is vaccinated for what your so worried about them getting then they should be fine right??? So worrying about other children that aren’t yours thats aren’t vaccinated shouldn’t be a real problem…..just a thought.

  80. ChuckUA says:

    “This is why herd immunity is so vital. You are welcome to your own opinion on the subject of course, but seriously, for the sake of society at large, consider how much more risky going unvaccinated is than getting the shots.”

    Let’s consider it then:
    Unvaccinated by choice (current estimate 3%): 9.3 Million US citizens
    Unvaccinated due to medical condition (current estimate 2%): 6.2 Million US citizens

    Measles: 90% coverage. Current outbreaks currently show a 90% effective rate. Current vaccinated population not immune: 58.7 Million. Vaccinated not immune outnumber all unvaccinated by a factor of: Almost 4:1. Who is the bigger danger for outbreaks: The vaccinated.

    Influenza: 40% coverage. Highest effective rate in healthy population 70%. Vaccinated population not immune: 86.4 Million. Who is the biggest danger for outbreaks: Everyone.

    Pertussis: 95% Coverage: Epidemiological studies put the vaccine effectiveness at 35% after 3 years. Vaccinated population not immune (estimate): 106.5 Million. Vaccinated not immune outnumber all unvaccinated by a factor of: Almost 7:1. Who is the bigger danger for outbreaks: The vaccinated.

    Sources: CDC and Census documentation.

  81. Dynamentope says:


    Actually, this isn’t true. Anyone who is vaccinated with a live-attenuated virus sheds the virus and others can actually become ill were they to come into contact with the saliva or feces of that vaccinated person. So, a person who has actually contracted the “full-blown” virus is not the only danger.
    Many ppl have commented on how “even if the vaccine doesn’t fully give the person immunity, it sure makes it a less severe case”. NEWSFLASH – those people can also transmit the disease to your unvaccinated newborn as well!

    There goes your whole theory about how vaccines PROTECT everyone.

  82. Dynamentope says:

    the above was supposed to have quoted
    “You better keep your unvaccinated kid away from mine because I don’t want mine to get sick!” — You do realize that in order for my child to get yours sick, my child would have to…actually be sick?

  83. Simon says:

    Here is a coherent and thorough rebuttal of every claim made in this article.

    I’m really not sure whether I’m more annoyed with Kate’s cherry-picking of sentences from a WHO report to try and substantiate her incorrect claims or the the slack editorial that allowed this irresponsible article to be published on a website such as babble.

  84. Ashleybane says:


    I don’t get what point you are attempting to make. Since the VAST majority of people in the US are vaccinated, would stand to reason that in every case the vaccinated are ALWAYS the biggest danger. How could they not be? Please explain your reasoning.

  85. Andrew says:

    With regard to point 1.
    Infact its recently vaccinated children with live vaccines who are a risk to the non vaccinated due to viral shedding of the live virus, so you should be saying keep your dirty virus ridden child away from clean non vaccinated child.
    This covers point 2 as well.
    How can children shedding live viruses to all and sundry be for the greater good?

  86. tara says:

    I read this great piece just today that goes over her post point by point and lists the flaws in her reasoning. It does it kindly which I like, I don’t agree with her but I don’t despise her. Enjoy!

  87. Mayank says:

    First, in response to Caitlin’s remark (“The “Greater Good” argument bothers me the most because if my kid isn’t vaccinated and yours is, and my kid gets sick, YOURS WON’T. So what do you care if mine is sick?”) – clearly someone does need to care for your kids since clearly you don’t give a damn.

    Secondly, it truly is lamentable to think that such an idiotic way of thinking still exists in the educated world. Does anyone here honestly think there’s a real argument against prevention of disease? These doctors and practitioners of medicine don’t base their lives solely around the purpose of “making your children sick” – their job is to ensure that certain diseases that have been virulent and can be eradicated, ARE eradicated.

    Polio is a prime example of where human stupidity has undone years of hard work – it has returned violently through murderously stupid parents around the globe, who believe that it is better not to vaccinate on account of, what can only be deemed, utter idiocy.

    And now it is rampaging across the South Asian subcontinent and parts of Africa – it takes a handful of cases of parents putting their own prejudices and illogical mindsets ahead of the well-being of the child to allow a disease that is on the verge of extinction to come back and claim thousands if not millions of other lives.

  88. ChuckUA says:

    “Does anyone here honestly think there’s a real argument against prevention of disease?”
    It is scientifically impossible given the current effectiveness of manufactured vaccines along with the necessary medical and sanitation infrastructure in most of the known world.
    “These doctors and practitioners of medicine don’t base their lives solely around the purpose of “making your children sick” – their job is to ensure that certain diseases that have been virulent and can be eradicated, ARE eradicated.”
    Actually a majority of medical doctors have specialties that would give them the necessary skills to treat patients for illnesses, including vaccine preventable ones, after they have been infected, not the prevention of the disease. Doctors base their lives solely around the purpose of attempting to make children and adults better, however just like vaccines, they are never 100% effective.

  89. ChuckUA says:

    Scientific Facts: There is no vaccine that is 100% safe and 100% effective.

    That is the Achilles’ heel of the vaccination argument. The problem expands as population size increases. There are more vaccinated individuals walking around believing that they are immune to an illness even thought they are not. These individuals with their false belief of immunity outnumber the people who know they are not immune by choice or due to medical issues. Most people who know they are not immune most likely will take extra steps to protect their health. The people who have been vaccinated, sometimes, falsely believe that they have done enough to protect their own health.

  90. Ashleybane says:


    So are you saying that the vaccinated have the mindset that they have done “enough to protect their own health” and, therefore, engage in behaviors that the unvaccinated (who, following your logic, haven’t done anything to protect their own health) won’t? What “extra steps” do the unvaccinated take to protect their health? What “risky” steps do the vaccinated take? If there are steps that can be taken to protect us from vaccine preventable diseases, shouldn’t we all be taking these “extra steps”? Please share the steps (besides the obvious step of getting vaccinated) we can take. Lastly, are the “extra steps” 100% safe and 100% effective?

  91. ChuckUA says:

    Ashleybane ,
    “What extra steps do the unvaccinated take to protect their health?” Ask the parent of a child who is less than a year old or immune compromised what extraordinary steps they take to protect their health. Does everyone in these groups do it? No, otherwise it would not be called extraordinary. Do the vaccinated take extraordinary steps? Some may, but there is less incentive for them to do so. Should everyone be taking extraordinary steps? Yes. Should everyone be vaccinated? No. Is anything 100% safe and 100% effective? Categorically and undeniably, No.

    The unvaccinated are the only group that makes rational decisions concerning their health because they are the only group that know their true status when it comes to immunity to a disease.

  92. Ashleybane says:


    Thanks for the response, but you didn’t address my most basic question. I asked what “extra steps” the unvaccinated take to protect their health. Your response, “ask the parent of a child who is less than one year old or immune compromised,” is cryptic. I’m asking you since you made the statement. Additionally, please explain how “the unvaccinated are the only group that makes rational decisions about their health.” Aren’t the unvaccinated who are discussed in this blog post children? Does that mean these children’s vaccinated parents are making irrational decisions? It seems you are saying that simply receiving vaccines precludes one from making rational health decisions. Are you vaccinated?

  93. ChuckUA says:

    Ashleybane ,
    “I asked what “extra steps” the unvaccinated take to protect their health.”
    Eat well, sleep well, wash your hands, avoid social contact, and be diligent of the heath and well being of those around you (or lack of health). You can avoid being a statistic for violent crimes by maintaining a situational awareness of your surroundings. The same is true for contagious illnesses. Situational awareness is the key to making rational decisions. There is no way to make a rational decision unless you know all the potential outcomes of a problem and all the resources at your disposal. Vaccinated individuals do not know if they are immune, they have no situational awareness.

    “Are you vaccinated?” is cryptic. Do you mean “Have I been vaccinated?” or “Am I immune?” because the answer to either of these depends on the situation.

  94. Ashleybane says:


    Thank you for clarifying the “extra steps.” I’m relieved to know that my family and I take the “extra steps” of eating well, sleeping well, washing our hands, and taking note of the health of those around us. Since we are all adults, avoiding social contact is impossible. However, this does sound like good advice for parents of children less than one year old or who are immune compromised. What solutions for avoiding social contact do you have for those of us who engage in “risky” behaviors such as working, grocery shopping, and attending church?
    “Are you vaccinated?” was a bit cryptic. Let me ask the question more clearly: have you ever been vaccinated for any diseases? If so, then you fall into the category of the vaccinated. Following your logic, you would then be unable to make rational decisions about your health. You also state, “Vaccinated individuals do not know if they are immune[;] they have no situational awareness.” I seems you are saying that receiving vaccines prevents individuals from having situational awareness. Can’t intelligent vaccinated individuals, such as you if you have indeed received vaccinations, forsee contracting a disease for which a vaccine exists as a possible outcome even if vaccinated? Additionally, can one ever know “all the potential outcomes of a problem”?
    I’m finding your logic regarding the awareness and intellectual ability of vaccinated individuals to be convoluted. I think this is because of your use of superlatives and your concrete, “either/or” explanations (either one is unvaccinated and makes rational health decisions and has situational awareness, or one is vaccinated and is unable to make rational health decision and has no situational awareness.) If what you have written is true, I’m wondering how parents who are vaccinated but choose not to vaccinate their children are making rational health decisions or exhibiting situational awareness not only for themselves, but also for their children?

  95. ChuckUA says:

    “What solutions for avoiding social contact do you have for those of us who engage in “risky” behaviors such as working, grocery shopping, and attending church?”
    In an office environment, there is no need to touch anyone. Grocery shopping, self-checkout. Use a knuckle for touch screen and wash hands as soon as I get home. Church is easy. Out priest always reminds everybody at the beginning of flu season to not touch anyone if they are not 100% healthy and usually highly recommends waving between November and February. We will wave if there is any doubt about those around us. Trust is key here and it works very well for all communicable diseases.
    “have you ever been vaccinated for any diseases?”
    The last time anyone in my family was effectively vaccinated was 1996 IIRC. The last time I was effectively vaccinated for anything was probably in the early 1970’s (That immunity has probably waned to non-existence). We have all received vaccines in 1999 and 2003 (a very weak moment that I paid for) but I don’t count failures. And you are right, I was taught very quickly that I was not making rational decisions concerning my family’s heath while we were being vaccinated but thankfully, once we stopped, everyone’s health has improved tremendously (with the slight hiccup in 2003).
    “I seems you are saying that receiving vaccines prevents individuals from having situational awareness.”
    Right now you think you are immune, but you have no proof. Titer’s is also not proof of immunity in some CDC and epidemiological studies I have seen. Believing that you are immune when you are not isn’t rational.
    “I’m wondering how parents who are vaccinated but choose not to vaccinate their children are making rational health decisions or exhibiting situational awareness not only for themselves, but also for their children?”
    I wonder the same thing about parents who are vaccinated and choose to vaccinate their children but really have no concept of why or what the actual risks are involving the vaccines and the effectiveness of the vaccines.

  96. Ashleybane says:


    I work in a school not an office. Other members of my family work in a nursing home. Social contact is inevitable. Using a self-check-out is feasible when one has a few items, but impossible with a cart full of groceries. Aren’t the touch screens of self check-outs and handles of the carts loaded with bacteria? Aren’t some diseases airborne making waving, hand washing, avoiding contact in general moot?

    You state, “Right now you think you are immune, but you have no proof.” I haven’t stated that I think I am immune; how did you come to that conclusion? I haven’t said if I’ve ever received a vaccination or if my family has received vaccinations or if I am for or against vaccinations. You are making assumptions – yet another problem with your logic and reasoning. You have offered a few good, common sense ideas about how to prevent the spread of disease, but
    your position that those who choose to vaccinate are irrational and socially unaware has not been even remotely supported. “It is a tale/ told by an idiot, Full of sound and fury/ Signifying nothing.” Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5)

  97. ChuckUA says:

    “I work in a school not an office. Other members of my family work in a nursing home.”
    Then there should have been absolutely no reason for you to ask what “extra steps” are necessary because if you or other members of your family do not do all of them then you deserve every single contagious illness, vaccine preventable or not, that is brought home from work. My unvaccinated wife works in both of the environments you have described and the only problems she has ever brought home from work is sore muscles from lifting obese elderly individuals.

    “Using a self-check-out is feasible when one has a few items, but impossible with a cart full of groceries.”
    My wife, sometimes to my annoyance, prefers to use these lines and we all work together to check and bag everything, usually saving a great deal of time.

    “Aren’t the touch screens of self check-outs and handles of the carts loaded with bacteria?” This is why I use my knuckles and not my fingertips to check out and wash my hands after shopping. I also don’t touch the handles of any cart. I pull the side or front of the cart, or wipe the handle down if the location provides wipes.

    “Aren’t some diseases airborne making waving, hand washing, avoiding contact in general moot?” Measles is the only illness that has the capability of lasting any length of time once airborne and the current probability of being exposed is geometrically larger than a multi-state lottery win. Otherwise a comfortable 3-4 feet of personal space should do.

    “It is a tale/ told by an idiot, Full of sound and fury/ Signifying nothing.” Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5)”
    This is also a good line to describe what the CDC and doctors usually tell their patients concerning vaccines.

  98. AhsleyBane says:


    It appears you have comprehension issues. I clearly said my family and I take all of what you call “extra steps.” I asked what steps you had in mind because I hoped that you had something to offer besides washing hands, eating well, and sleeping well. Those are common sense steps taught in pre-school. I can now rest easy knowing that we, in your kind opinion, don’t “deserve every single contagious illness, vaccine preventable or not, that is brought home from work.”

    The tone of your comments suggests that you think most people just aren’t quite as smart and enlightened as you, but you haven’t written anything that is smart or enlightening. You’ve cherry-picked information from reputable sources and given common sense suggestions. In had hoped for better information from you. By the way, according to the Mayo Clinic, mumps, rubella, polio, chicken pox, and whooping cough, not just measles, can be spread from droplets sprayed when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Good luck with your reading comprehension difficulties! I wish you and your family continued health!

  99. Alicia says:

    I had to come back here and share this link: It is the website by people who has lost children to meningococcal disease or meningitis, or else have watched their children go through it. A friend lost her twin baby nieces go through this, and one died after 18 days. Another mom watched her son bleed from every orifice for 14 hours before he died. Other victims lose their limbs and their faces as gangrene sets in. And all of this suffering is preventable with vaccines. Why would any loving parent put their child at risk of suffering like this?

  100. ChuckUA says:

    Reading for comprehension, you are doing it wrong. I have offered a great deal more information then you have given me credit for or that you have offered to the discussion in general. Bringing only a quote from Macbeth and reference from the Mayo is like brining a Yugoslav to race in the Indy 500. You lost the race right after it started. You need to do more research and bring it to the discussion.

    My family’s health and well being has only improved once we took vaccination out of the equation and put personal responsibility in it’s place. Your family’s health will do the same once you take this step.

  101. AhsleyBane says:


    I’m totally confused by “Reading for comprehension[;] you are doing it wrong.” what’s the “it” to which you are referring?

    I wasn’t trying to offer information; I was asking for information.

    As I said before, I have never said whether or not I have been vaccinated, whether or not my family has been vaccinated, or if I support or am against vaccinations. Thankfully, our health is quite good, but thank you for your advice.

    Why am I not surprised by your NASCAR reference?

  102. ChuckUA says:

    “As I said before, I have never said whether or not I have been vaccinated,”
    So the question you put before me is now put before you:
    Have you or any of your family members ever been vaccinated for any diseases?
    “Why am I not surprised by your NASCAR reference?”
    Please provide a metaphor that suites your individual nature. Maybe:
    “You brought a knife to a gun fight” , or “You brought a mule to race in the Kentucky Derby”, or “You brought a tricycle to the Tour de France”

  103. ChuckUA says:

    “And all of this suffering is preventable with vaccines. Why would any loving parent put their child at risk of suffering like this?”

    Because the vaccine effectiveness is questionable:

    “Vaccine effectiveness was strongly related to age at vaccination: 83% (95% CI, 39%-96%) for ages 15 through 20 years, 75% (95% CI, − 17% to 93%) for ages 10 through 14 years, and 41% (95% CI, −106% to 79%) for ages 2 through 9 years. There was no evidence of protection in children younger than 2 years; all 8 MCD cases in this age group occurred in vaccinees.
    Conclusions Serogroup C polysaccharide vaccine is effective for controlling outbreaks in teenaged individuals but should not be used in children younger than 2 years.”

  104. AhsleyBane says:


    My vaccination history is irrelevant to my purpose for commenting here which was to determine what the “extra steps” you mentioned that unvaccinated people take to ensure their health. I did not comment on the wisdom of receiving vaccines. You did.

    I also commented on the lack of logic, reasoning, and correctness in your arguments. Unfortunately, this trend continues. The figures of speech used above are analogies not metaphors (they are also cliches). Additionally, none of them “suites” me or anyone else since suites is a noun. They may, however, suit (singular- suits) people who think speaking in cliches makes them sound intelligent.

  105. TJ says:

    Chuckua and AshleyBane,

    I have been following your posts simply for comic relief. I won’t state which of you makes me laugh the most. Now, as to your last post, Chuckua, the article you mention is ancient in the scientific world (over a decade old) since vaccines are constantly evolving. The research was probably going on for at least 3 years prior to its publication. So, you do the math as to what you are basing your argument on. Speaking from personal experience, after all I work in a vaccine lab. No, I don’t work on the development, but on testing the efficaciousness of vaccines on a certain group of individuals. Currently, my research focuses on the RotaTeq vaccine, a vastly improved vaccine over the RotaShield vaccine, which was removed from the market in 1999 since it led to intussusception in some of its recipients. I could dig up papers from the late 90s and early 00s and make a case against having my child or any child receive the vaccine against rotavirus, but I wouldn’t be too transparent would I? That’s the thing about the anti-vax movement, so many (not all) of the references used are old. If the article you quote is considered old, what can be said about articles that were written 2, 3, 4, 5 decades ago. Research is constantly evolving. Perhaps you should let your thought process do the same. It is truly laughable how people who have had no experience in research and have not taken even a college freshman course in microbiology or human immunology cherry pick their way through articles so as to uphold their beliefs.

    Finally, your conclusion about vaccine effectiveness being questionable is completely asinine. Nothing in this world, except for death, is 100% certain. So if you or one of your loved ones had cancer or needed an organ transplant you would refuse treatment since only 75% or worse, 41% of individuals responded favorably to treatment? Or, if you only had a 25% chance of landing a job, you would refuse to apply? Maybe you would refuse treatment or applying for the job. That’s totally up to you. Even so, strive to make your arguments more logical, less deceptive and more transparent.

  106. ChuckUA says:

    “Research is constantly evolving. Perhaps you should let your thought process do the same. It is truly laughable how people who have had no experience in research and have not taken even a college freshman course in microbiology or human immunology cherry pick their way through articles so as to uphold their beliefs”
    You opened the gate, so prove your intelligence, or lack thereof, and cite a recent peer reviewed scientific study with the effectiveness of the meningococcal vaccines by age group that supports the assertion that children under the age of two should receive the vaccine.
    If the makeup and effectiveness of the meningococcal vaccine hasn’t changed than it is still relevant. It is up to you to prove that the study I provided is no longer relevant.

  107. ChuckUA says:

    “My vaccination history is irrelevant to my purpose for commenting here”
    Justify why your vaccine history is irrelevant in a discussion concerning vaccination? Maybe you just like to troll without putting any real information into the discussion.

  108. ChuckUA says:

    “So if you or one of your loved ones had cancer or needed an organ transplant you would refuse treatment since only 75% or worse, 41% of individuals responded favorably to treatment?”

    Are there other treatments with better outcomes? A failed transplant (or vaccine) may hasten my death more so than doing nothing at all. Are there things I could do, or not do, that would prolong my life without the need of cancer treatment/transplant?
    Deceptiveness and transparency goes both ways TJ.

    “Or, if you only had a 25% chance of landing a job, you would refuse to apply?”
    Tell me where you find the statistical probability of landing a job in the employment section of a newspaper or web site. It would certainly cut down in the amount of wasted time applying for jobs by those who needed them.

  109. AhsleyBane says:

    I’m glad you’ve found the “discussions” I’ve had with Chuckua are humorous! I’ve enjoyed many laughs too!

    I’m sorry that critical reading is so difficult for you, but I never discussed the merits of vaccines. Let me say it again in the hope that you will have at least a minuscule chance of comprehension: I never discussed the merits of vaccines. Therefore, my vaccination history has no bearing on my questions to you regarding the “extra steps” the unvaccinated take. I never offered information; I sought information. By the way, following TJ’s line of reasoning what percentage of effectiveness do your “extra steps” of washing hands, eating well, and sleeping well have? Lastly, please learn to use “then” and “than” correctly. Incorrect usage just adds to the perception that you have no idea what you are talking about.

  110. ChuckUA says:

    “Lastly, please learn to use “then” and “than” correctly. Incorrect usage just adds to the perception that you have no idea what you are talking about.”

    Where did I make such a mistake?

  111. AhsleyBane says:

    “Adults are now contracting chickenpox at higher[,] more alarming rates with more adverse reactions *then* would have happen[ed] when they were children . . .” 7/16 12:35 a.m.
    You are comparing two things in this run-on sentence. “Than” is comparative not “then.” (Think “more than” or “less than”)
    “If the makeup and effectiveness of the meningococcal vaccine hasn’t changed[,] *than* it is still relevant.” 8/3 12:49 p.m.
    You were not comparing in this run-on sentence, but were instead attempting to show cause/effect. (Think “If/then”)

  112. ChuckUA says:

    Thank you for catching my typographical /grammatical errors. Yugoslav (my post 7/29 @12:05) is not a Yugo, it is an inhabitant of Yugoslavia, but the Apple IPad will autocorrect when it should not. I will be more diligent when posting from an IPad or figure out how to stop the autocorrect function.

  113. AhsleyBane says:


    Umm, I’m posting from an IPad too. The “than” and “then” errors are all yours (not typographical). You just didn’t know the correct usage. How unfortunate!

    I never commented on your incorrect “Yugo” NASCAR error. I did, however, notice.

  114. ChuckUA says:

    All you provide is reactionary posts concerning typos and grammatical errors and little else. Good qualities if you are administrative assistant, but provide noting else to the discussion at hand. You even fail to note all of my indiscretions. How unfortunate that the only thing you can offer is criticism of what I type and not what I say.

  115. AhsleyBane says:


    I’m not at all surprised that someone as pompous as you finds grammar to be the purvey of the administrative assistant. Grammar is actually a form of higher order of thinking. If you can’t make a well-formed argument, one without SIMPLE grammatical errors like than and then, you can’t think logically. You have proven this over, and over, and over, again.

  116. Rebecca says:

    I personally do vaccinate my children and myself. I have had NUMEROUS MMR vaccines and yet my titer count shows no resistance to mumps. In my case, I am an individual who understands that that vaccinations are not going to make me immune to anything, but increase my resistance to catching a highly transmittable, possibly deadly disease. They also can help you if you do aquire an illness to fight it off faster because your body will have already formed Tcells that will recognize the impurity in your blood as a toxin it has previously encountered. I know that at any point I could come in contact with someone who does not yet realize they have mumps (vaccinated or not), I could catch it, and also not yet realize I’m carrying it, and pass it on to my infant who is not yet old enough to be vaccinated against it. A lot of these posts seem to imply that I would have caught this disease from someone who is carrying the mumps from their vaccination, and not someone who has the mumps and does not yet realize it who is not vaccinated. This just does not add up. In fact it seems quite silly. I have had contact with millions of people who have had the mumps vaccine and have miraculously (I’m being sarcastic) managed to not catch the mumps from them. I would have to take from that fact that it is not the vaccinated population that I need to be concerned about, but rather the unvaccinated. Disease does not discriminate (for the most part, there are some things obviously that only men get, or only women get etc, etc, aside) against vaccinated or unvaccinated people. The thing to take into consideration is to what degree to you want to protect yourself against catching, and to what degree do you want to be responsible for spreading disease. You may be unvaccinated all your life and never be responsible for spreading even the common cold, but on the other hand you may be responsible for giving an infant pertussus and that infant dying. People who are vaccinated may also be responsible for the same despite their vaccines, but they have at least done all they could to prevent that circumstance. It may seem like a “personal” decision when considering if you wish to vaccinate or not, but when a decision you make can be detrimental on someone elses health, it is no longer personal, it has taken on a different magnitude. That point can go both ways. If you choose to vaccinate and are carrying around a small amount of a live virus you could be spreading it unknowingly. Luckily the virus you would be carrying would be weakened and very unlikely, though addmittedly possible, to spread. I do have an open mind, and realize that some people are just not comfortable with, or have medical or religious reasons against injecting a killed or live attenuated virus into thier bodies, and I do like to hear thier reasoning behind it. But they will also have to hear mine.

  117. Lane says:

    A lot of illnesses don’t present symptoms until you already have passed the contagious stage (take chicken pox, for example). So, your kid gets sick but hasn’t shown any symptoms yet, brings germs to the playground or school, gives them to my (vaccinated) kid who brings them home to my BABY who can not be vaccinated against a lot. She then gets very ill (or worse!). Who’s fault is that? Mine? This kind of thing does happen….I’ve seen it. Stop fooling yourself. It is MY business.

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