Anti-Vaxxers, This Measles Outbreak Is on You

Pediatrician: We can't let junk science endanger us
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 23, 2015 3:42 PM CST
Anti-Vaxxers, This Measles Outbreak Is on You
Sleeping Beauty's Castle is seen at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

The measles outbreak linked to Disneyland is now at 70 cases, and pediatrician Russell Saunders at the Daily Beast rips into those he views solely responsible: anti-vaxxers. "The reason the disease was once considered eradicated in the United States is because there is a safe and effective vaccine against it, and the reason it’s coming back is because people are making the impossibly absurd decision to skip it." The problem is that their "self-centered" choice, based on junk science, affects not just them and their families but everybody else. Our "herd immunity" will be endangered if enough people opt out, and the disease will no longer be kept at bay, writes Saunders.

The current measles outbreak is making news because it's so unusual, but if the anti-vaccine movement isn't stopped, outbreaks like these "will cease to be news, because they’ll simply be with us all the time," he writes. Last year, the US had 644 measles cases, the biggest number in about 25 years, writes Robbie Gonzalez at io9. If January is any indication, we're going to blow past that number easily this year. With the vast majority of cases involving unvaccinated people, the reason is "unambiguous," he adds. "This is how the anti-vaccination movement ruined Disneyland, not just for those who would actively refuse vaccines, but for everyone else." Click for his full post, or for Saunders' full post. (More measles stories.)

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