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Anti-Vaxxers

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Ryan Huling

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My two cents on why it’s dangerous that people are choosing to not vaccinate their children.

Photo by Savannah Jo Reeves

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One thing that was reinforced in my mind at a young age was that those awful shots I got at the doctor were actually good. Although it hurt, I was going to end up healthier because of them. So why, in 2019, is the idea of keeping your children healthy something people are questioning?

There are a group of parents, I’m sure you have heard of them, known as anti-vaxxers.

These are people who are against vaccinating their children for, what I consider, the dumbest reasons. From the idea that the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is lying to saying vaccines cost too much money, people will find any reason to have a different opinion.

As political as I can get, my research says this isn’t that rooted in politics. The Pew Research Center did a study regarding politics and beliefs and found that adults older than 50 are more likely to believe in required vaccines for children than young adults. The CDC also didn’t report about it being a political problem.

If it’s not political, and it isn’t, there are only two assumptions I can make.

One is that people choose not to think thoroughly about topics that affect their children and choose to do something that goes against medical advice.

The other, based on the Pew Research Center study, is that it’s being passed on in specific families who are choosing not to think about the decision. The study shows that race and ethnicity were a large factor when it came to those who think vaccines are safe and those who don’t.

Furthermore, the whole argument that vaccines cause autism drives me a little bonkers. The argument started a little over 20 years ago when British researchers conducted a study with 12 children and (falsely) determined that vaccines cause autism.

Only 12 children.

Imagine if you asked me to tell you what the majority of the music in the world was in regards to genre. If I went off the top 12 songs in my Spotify, it would mean that 25 percent of the world’s music is the Jonas Brothers.

To villainize autism is a problem that spans beyond the vaccine argument.

In 2018, the CDC determined that 1 in every 59 children has been identified to have a form of autism. That’s 1.5 percent of children. Autism is around us like everything else we encounter in our life. Why are people taking their hate for one thing and connecting it to something else that had nothing to do with it, therefore creating unsolicited hate for the second subject?

I can see the research with most things, but this is one thing I cannot understand.

Now, if someone doesn’t want to read past the headline, they’re missing out on the whole story. In a way, this is just choosing to read that a vaccine is “microbes that have been killed or weakened so that they don’t cause disease” and deciding to let your child risk getting whooping cough, a disease that can $10,000 to treat.

When it comes to people that truly oppose vaccines, it’s quite a small percentage of people. But it’s becoming a bigger problem, which leads to possibly being a bigger threat to uneducated spectators.

In the first two months of this year, there have been more than 200 cases of measles in the United States. One unvaccinated boy, who was infected with tetanus, almost died because of his lack of tolerance to the disease. His care cost nearly $1 million.

So, college students, think about what this means for the life of your future children.

Odds are, you are probably alive and healthy because of vaccines. The country is currently in need of critical thinkers for many subjects, and this is one.

Don’t let your child have to suffer because you fear autism or the CDC. We live in a country where we are lucky enough to not have mandatory vaccinations, which gives us the choice to choose what we do, but maybe we should. I know I don’t want my future child to possibly get measles in their kindergarten classroom.

But that’s just my two cents.

Huling can be reached at [email protected]

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About the Writer
Ryan Huling, Staff Writer

Ryan Huling is a first-year English Education student. He enjoys listening to excessive amounts of music and podcasts. If you'd like to discuss in-depth Marvel theories, Ryan is definitely interested.

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