Monthly Archives: March 2019

vaccine rant

This is completely, wildly insane.  I hope she sues and gets a huge payout.  I’ve had various medical advice over the phone many times that I’ve declined to take because the situation on the ground changes.  A child beginning to act and look healthy is a perfect example of this.  The woman’s concerns about harrassment because she doesn’t vaccinate do call her judgment into question, but a doctor should not be able to call the cops on you because you fail to take your kid to the ER with a temperature of 102 “just to make sure” he’s OK.  And with guns drawn?  Are you f-ing kidding me?

Sometimes I feel like I’m living in communist Russia.

Another example: a town in NY refuses to allow unvaccinated *children* in public.  Now, in case your wondering about this “community” that has so many unvaccinated kids, it’s Hasidic Jews, you know, religious extremists with views most of us don’t agree with.  But to not allow them to go in public over the measles?  Are you kidding me?  When people came back from Africa with frikking Ebola they were still allowed to go in public (which I thought was nuts).  Also, why does this apply only to children?

To me, the next obvious step in the vaccination war is not hysteria over the 8% of children who aren’t vaccinated for the measles.  92% is more than enough to ensure herd immunity.  In my opinion, it’s not worth trampling on people’s civil rights to save less than one life per year.  How about we ban a few guns instead, given the 33,000 people die a year from gun fire?   The media loves to portray anti-vaxxers as yuppy moms who’ve watched too much Jenny McCarthy.  But many or most measles outbreaks occur in obscure religious communities or among recent immigrants – Hasidic Jews (2018), Somali-Americans (2017), and Amish (2014).  Other outbreaks have been imported from overseas.

Every time there’s an outbreak, there’s a rush to pass more restrictive laws impinging on people’s freedoms.  Why?  We’ve had consistent 92% vaccination for decades, which is more than enough to keep people safe.

Instead, the obvious next step in the vaccine campaign is to go after adults who don’t get vaccinated for the flu.  In a typical year, more than 10,000 people die from the flu.  According to the CDC, around 40% of adults get the flu vaccine, but they have a lot of uncertainty in the number.  This has been flat since at least 2010.  Even with the uncertainty, it’s pretty clear a hell of a lot of people are not getting vaccinated.  Why are companies not required to verify all their employees get vaccinated, or sign forms stating conscientious objection?  I am well aware that the flu vaccine is not 100% effective, but I bet that with 92% flu vaccine compliance hundreds and maybe thousands of lives could be saved.  It seems like this would be much better bang for our buck than passing draconian laws forcing a small minority of parents to vaccinate their kids for the measles or take them out of school.  They might better also step up efforts to get children vaccinated against the flu – CDC estimates less than 60% uptake for children on the flu vaccine.   Why is evidence of flu vaccine not required to attend school?

sad things

One of the things about the internet and social media is that you get exposed to so much tragedy.  The friend of a friend, a toddler, nearly drowned and was left with a brain injury a couple years ago.  My friend posts about it, and it breaks my heart.  Just the utter pointlessness of it and also hopelessness.  A little girl, age 2, dealing with a second recurrence of leukemia.  A girl who attended my elementary school died of leukemia.  I’m guessing anyone reading this blog who went to my school and instantly remember her name.  But she was the only one I knew of as a child.  Today, people share and you hear all these tragic stories.  No child should ever have cancer.  It’s just so utterly unfair and ridiculous and harsh.  It breaks my heart.  Then the father of one of the children who died at Sandy Hook committing suicide.  I wish I didn’t know about Sandy Hook.  New Zealand had a massacre and they changed their gun laws.  We lose 20 six-year-olds and change nothing.  But just thinking about that poor man and his beautiful child murdered just is hard to wrap my mind around.

On one hand, it seems absurd to get upset about the tragedies of strangers.  I’ve cried tears over these people who I’ve never met.  On some level, this seems ridiculous.  On the other hand, to not be moved by such tragedy, even of strangers, seems heartless and cruel and callous.  But I wish I could go back to the days when I just didn’t know about so many sad things.

girls and books

I came upon L and B cuddling together in bed this evening.  L had just read B the first four chapters of her new Magic Treehouse book.  For some reason, I just found it to be the most adorable thing ever.  B loves those ridiculous treehouse books.  (We’re on Book #25, but who’s counting?)  I sadly told Bri we’d have read the entire series after we finish the latest bunch, but L cleverly noted that there is a whole second Treehouse series, some kind of Merlin thing, which has another 25 books.  Yay?  Maybe L will read them.

L and I are reading Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.  I always remember that my third grade teacher, possibly my best teacher ever, loved and recommended this book.  I think I read an abridged copy, but I don’t think I ever read the real thing, and i’m glad to finally read it in her honor.  It started a little slow, but we’re both enjoying it now.   Next up: Grandfather’s Dance (#5 in the Sarah Plain and Tall series) and My Friend Flicka.  I’m trying to decide if L can handle Where the Red Fern Grows – such a great book, but she would not like the part where the dogs die. at. all.

anyone but Trump?

Elizabeth Warren?  No.  Sorry.  Don’t agree with her views and very not thrilled that she claimed to be Native American.   Bernie Sanders?  Seriously, no.  Check out his enacted legislation list: Zilch.  Biden?  Ideologically, I’m more on the same page as him, but the man is 76.  Can we not get a candidate under 70?  Is that too much to ask?

I’m really waiting for a Democratic candidate to emerge that I can actually support, as opposed to just an “anyone-but-Trump” vote.  Anyone?  I just saw that Beto O’Rourke might run.  Two thoughts in favor: Irish last name, and Sarah likes him.  Maybe I could like him too?