The good and bad of childhood illnesses
jmone at MARAUDER.MILLERSV.EDU
Wed Mar 18 12:46:45 EST 1998
I am one of the intellectuals who you apparently look at with disdain.
I think I can get over that. However, I have a real problem with
those who advocate stopping vaccinations against "childhood" diseases.
Most people living in developed nations have never seen the effects of
these diseases first hand. Have you or any of your friends seen first
hand a child with paralytic polio? Maybe you have, but I would guess
probably you haven't. How do you think a child would feel who
survives paralytic polio, but with permanent paralysis, knowing that a
vaccine against the disease was available, but his parents opted
While it is true that an intial vaccine does not provide lifelong
immunity, it does offer considerable protection to the vaccinee.
Then, as the vaccinee encounters the disease at a later date, the
exposure provides a natural booster which provides several more years
of protection. Part of the problem is that the current vaccines are so
effective in preventing infection, that these natural booster effects
may not occur, and immunity does wane. But does this mean that we
On the other issue you raised, do I need my child to be sick to show
that child compassion? I would rather spend quality time with my
healthy children playing and teaching, and learning together, then to
stand vigil by my sick childs bedside wondering if he will survive the
bout of tetanus he contracted from a fall in the dirt outside (which
you probably have also never seen, since every child is vaccinated).
Which would you rather do?
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