The callousness of some people

If you’re a regular reader, you’ll no doubt have heard before the lengths to which people who lie about vaccines will go to prove their point. They will lie. They will misinform. They will twist facts, take statements out of context, and they will bash anyone that gets in their way.

Me? I’ve gotten used to being called all sorts of names whenever I counter the anti-vaccine talking points. I’m a “shill,” a “bastard,” a “traitor,” and worse. What I don’t understand is why some people go to severe lengths to make their point. Friends of this an other blogs may know who “The Vaccine Machine” is. He is this guy. This guy used to troll over at Orac’s for a while before he decided to start a blog of his own and try to get an in with the anti-vaccine groups. His writing is tedious, to say the least. He tries, but his rants get out of hand. It even looks like Generation Rescue has stopped publishing his rants on their site. But that’s not the worst thing he’s done.

Today, he did his worst (so far). A concerned mother went on Facebook and implored people to vaccinate their children against influenza:

“We don’t have the nasal mist where we are, but as a parent who lost a child earlier this year as a result of complications from a flu related pneumonia, I would implore you to please have your child immunized against the flu. If not just for his own protection but for the protection of those with fragile medical conditions who are more susceptible to severe complications. All of my other four children had the shot, my eldest acquired it influenza from a care provider who had refused the vaccine and subsequently infected more than a dozen medically fragile children, all of whom ended up in hospital with complications.” (my emphasis)

“The Vaccine Machine” replied:

“It’s the flu. What’s to worry about. Are you really going to have your child get a shot every year of his or her life to possibly prevent a minor illness? I wouldn’t”

And then he went on to blame the victim:

“As to the mist, based on the side effects your giving the kid what you are trying to avoid”

This is not unprecedented in the anti-vaccine world. Anti-vaccine people told a father that his child died of a vaccine-preventable disease as the result of natural selection (i.e. survival of the fittest), and the parents of a little girl who died from pertussis in Australia were hounded for even suggesting that other parents vaccinate their children against whooping cough. Yet, somehow, we’re supposed to listen to the shrieking screams of parents who swear that their children are “lost” or “dead” from autism that, in their minds, came as a result of vaccination. As usual, anti-vaccinators want it both ways.

(Below are the screenshots of that Facebook discussion, in case you can’t log in and read it. Click to enlarge.)

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5 thoughts on “The callousness of some people

  1. I wish someone would come up with a way to give Rob/Offal the measles.

    I can tell you that, since I did have the measles, back in the dark pre-vaccine days, if he were ever unwise enough to tell me to my face that measles is a minor illness I would undoubtedly emulate wzrd1.

    I may not be retired Special Forces, but I still have my Kabar.

  2. You know, I knew that guy was a callous jerk, but seriously? Telling a parent whose child just died from the flu that “it’s just the flu”? Seriously? What an unmitigated ass.

  3. I learned a long time ago, meet unreason with unreason. Reason doesn’t work, but escalating does.
    Case in point, my daughter takes my grandchildren to the library on a regular basis. At one point in time, our youngest grandchild was only one month old. My daughter related an antivaxer mother bringing her children around the library and exposing one and all to whatever they were carrying.
    I then accompanied my daughter and grandchildren to the library and spoke with the woman quite sociably. A few vague probes revealed her zeal in antivax subjects and her immense pride in her unimmunized children and something about an upcoming measles party.
    I then showed her a side I only showed some when I was still in the military, as I was recently retired. Indeed, that side is still present.
    I kindly and with quiet speech did explain that if her disease ridden children caused my one month old grandson disease, I would remove her, her entire family and extended family from this planet. I then asked if my daughter mentioned what I did in the military.
    A negative response then caused me to explain that I’m retired Special Forces.
    She wisely distanced herself from my grandchildren and daughter and later, kept herself and disease ridden children well away from that library.
    It is strange that one has to use the very same methods one previously used in negotiating with terrorists at home with antivaxers.

    As one who has personally witnessed epidemics morbidity and mortality in preventable infectious disease, I’m highly adverse to the antivaxer.
    When it comes to a potential threat to my family, there is the wrath of God, then there is me. As any God seems to be an absentee landlord, there is only one wrath left.
    One that my own commanders thanked their deity that I was on their side.
    And yes, my threat was serious.
    As, it isn’t what one says that counts, it is what the other party perceives as true that is a threat.
    And no, I’d not murder an entire family. Though, I will admit, I’m uncertain as to what I’d do in regards to the mother. I suspect that she and her husband would be walking with a bad limp a few months after release from the hospital.

    As far as threats go, I far prefer one threat. “I’ll tie your shoelaces together! If you’re wearing sandals, you’ll wonder over that!”
    I’m actually quite the pacifist, until the safety of my family comes into play.

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