Saturday, June 28, 2014

Anti-Vaccination Movement and gunmen

The large misinformation campaign put on by the anti-science community over the last decade has made it so that numerous diseases ranging from polio to measles and rubella have seen increased prevalance and deaths from these pathogens has needlessly increased their death rate. The anti-science community is going against all knowledge that modern biology has given us, and are constantly in their unscientific fashion using poor studies that prove nothing and going on the television and writing in popular anti-science journals, particularly Natural News, that maliciously spread lies and deceit to people who don't understand how science works. I would even argue that people who spread such tripe are committing murder.

Imagine a man who stands outside of a building stating that there are great deals and free things being given away to passer-bys on the street. People will hear it and go in to check out the great deals. However, the man outside the building is perfectly aware that as soon as someone walks in they will be immediately shot or stabbed for walking in. He is using his knowledge and the other people's lack of knowledge to kill them, even though he never pulls the gun. There is little doubt this man has committed manslaughter with his colleague inside the building, and there would be almost nothing he could defend himself to a court when he is convicted.

The same can be said of the anti-vaccination movement. They are deliberately putting people's needlessly lives at risk knowing full and well that their actions will greatly increase the probability of them getting terrible viruses that will then spread and kill millions of people.

As one friend of mine argues, they could kill more people than bin Laden did through his terrorist organizations, and I have no reason to doubt it. The weapon used by terrorists like bin Laden is fear, which is exactly the same tool that the anti-vaccination movement has used. Calling them terrorists is not a stretch if we use terrorist in its most reasonable definition, to strike terror into the hearts and minds of many, which is a form of power. Some of their leaders (like the MMR-autism scam a few years ago) have enough training in medicine to understand the difference, which makes me convinced the problem is malice and cannot be misinformation on the part of the informants. They refer to papers published by highly corrupt and dishonest people, most importantly Andrew Wakefield, and this causes mass hysteria through misinformation. If we are going to hunt for terrorists across the world, we should also work hard to end the misinformation campaign by these people because they will kill far more people than terrorists ever had if they are allowed to continue.

No one has the right to put other people needlessly at risk by spreading pathogens, either by dumping them in the water supply or walking around a town or city with an extremely contagious pathogen. No one deserves to be put in the type of danger this can cause to so many people.

Murder is not protected by the first amendment.

Manslaughter is murder.

Manslaughter does not have to be a direct action.

The anti-vaccination movement is putting billions of people in danger from being killed by pathogens that should be destroyed because as soon as one of these viruses becomes prominent it will be able to mutate and if it mutates enough the current vaccines will not work, meaning that many more lives and hundreds of billions of dollars will have to be spent before we can protect ourselves.

If that isn't manslaughter, I don't know what is.

It is the job of those of us who are scientists whether we specialize in biology or economics to counter these anti-science arguments and we need to choose which is more important, making people happy, or saving lives. For me, saving lives is always worth more than someone being unhappy they have been disproven from their pet topic, so I will not take prisoners and speak the truth about science so people understand how vaccinations save people and need to be done to enough people to prevent the outbreaks we have been seeing lately.

This also isn't theoretical, with outbreaks in measles, polio, and whooping cough on the rise currently, which is a threat to the whole world. Source

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