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AAP Decides that Insulting Parents Will Increase Vaccination Rates

Posted Aug 24 2008 1:31pm
The American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends (see update) that pediatricians tell parents who don't vaccinate their children that they:

Are "Selfish"

Are "Self-Centered"

Are "Complacent or Lazy"

Are often "Emotional" decision makers

Have "Unacceptable attitudes"

But they do not believe that insulting you like this is in any way coercing you to vaccinate your child.

Further, they kindly tell you that if you decide to only get one or two shots at a time, your child might die, but they are not trying to scare you into sticking to the full CDC schedule.

'Oh... and vaccinate or you are out of our practice and we won't recommend any other docs to you... but seriously... don't feel pressured.'

I have criticized the AAP in the past for making today's vaccine decisions based on the health threats that my father faced when he and his brother contracted polio, and lost their father to the disease, in the epidemic of the 1940's, rather than basing them on the modern heath threats my child, who contracted autism, faces a full sixty years later, in the current epidemic of developmental and immune disorders of the early 21st century.

But now they have topped themselves. In the letter that they are holding out to pediatricians as a model of what to tell their patients (from All Star Pediatrics), they are citing the small pox threat (which was eradicated 30 years ago) that Ben Franklin's son faced, and died from, in 1736!

They reiterate that they believe that neither vaccines nor thimerosal causes autism, or other any other developmental disabilities, and that "ALL children and young adults should receive ALL of the recommended vaccines according to the schedule published by the Centers for Disease Control." [emphasis mine]

This despite the multitude of research to the contrary , and in complete contradiction to the vaccine safety package inserts themselves that list contraindications and say that certain people should not receive certain vaccines.

All this is a part of the collaborative effort between the AAP and other organizations (yes of course Pharma and Paul Offit are among them, I can't believe you even asked) under their new " Childhood Immunization Support Program " or as they might as well call it, "We Know Everything and Parents Are Idiots Program".

Like pediatricians, and many of you reading this, I make my living by providing a service to people. I wonder how many of my clients and potential clients would still want to do business with me if I handed them a letter that in any way even remotely suggested that they were selfish, self-centered, complacent, lazy, emotional people with unacceptable attitudes if they didn't take my recommendations on which services of mine they should purchase? Any one of you wanna give it a try for a week in your business and see what happens?

By digging in and taking this increasingly absurd stance they are not just potentially damaging the vaccine program, they are putting at risk parents trust in their their statements about EVERYTHING. When you stand in front of your doc and hear him make the statement that vaccines have nothing to do with autism, then watch Hannah Poling get a million or so check from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Fund for her "autistic symptoms", then listen to the head of the CDC explain how vaccines cause autism in the presence of mitochondrial disorders on CNN, then go back and ask him about the whole thing and hear him reiterate that vaccines don't cause autism, but this time handing you a piece of paper that insults you, are you going to take his word about about anything else?

What do they plan on doing if the VCIP Omnibus Hearings find for the petitioners with Autism?

Do they understand that they are moving from shooting themselves in the foot to shooting themselves in an artery?

Two weeks ago Jim Carrey asked, "How stupid do you think we are?"

The AAP has answered, "You are so stupid that we can not only keep telling you obviously disprovable lies, but we can also insult you, and you will not only CONTINUE to entrust your children to us, you will pay us money to do it!"

Last April the AAP took the wise step of attending the DAN! conference. They said that they were impressed and thought we were on to something.

I wrote a piece on the AAP's chance to mend the widening rift between parents and pediatricians, and to regain the lost trust that was growing by leaps and bounds due to the obvious overstatements on vaccine safety that they were making to patients and their families.

I warned that they had a small window of opportunity to work to change course, work in good faith, and begin to make statements about the true risks of vaccination that abandons the now untenable assertion that vaccines don't cause autism or contribute to neurodevelopmental disorders. I warned that the window would only be open for a short time unless we saw real action, and would probably close around the time of the Green our Vaccines Rally if they didn't show up for us in some respect.

Well the AAP didn't show up for the rally and well... this certainly signals that the window is closed. They want it closed. And it looks like they may be locking it.


An addendum to address critique that this post has received elsewhere.

-One person seems to have been concerned that I was personally insulted by the AAP and All Star Pediatrics. I want to assure that I am at peace on the matter. After having my son become sick due to AAP's bad policy, not much that they simply say about me, or people like me, hurts my feelings.

Insults given do not necessarily need to be received.

In my life, personally, I believe it is wise to work toward not being "insulted" by insults. Because really, either the person insulting you is right, and you need to do some self examination and change, or they are wrong, and (to be frank) who cares what they think about you.

In this case, I think that Dr. Dyer and his crew are wrong. Deciding not to vaccinate based on your best judgment is not selfish, self-centered, or a product of 'unacceptable attitudes'. (Come to think of it, how exactly does Dyer and company read minds to know what peoples motives are? Especially people he has never met, as the statement is a blanket one?) We are charged with making the best choices for our kids that we can given the information we have. Reducing that decision making process to the motives Dyer wants to believe are behind those decisions is just speculative bullying and communicates low regard for parents.

Especially parents who are earnestly struggling with the issue.

And it is not me being insulted that is the problem. It is the parents on the vaccine bubble. Treat their legitimate concerns with contempt and you only risk making complete vaccine refusal more widespread.

-Umbrage seems to have been taken at my use of the word "recommends" in the opening sentence, "The American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends that pediatricians tell parents who don't vaccinate their children that they..."

I am making the assumption, a reasonable one I think, that choosing only one medical practices vaccine policy letter to patients (one would think there are a thousand out there to choose from) and placing it prominently both on your newsletter and website whose purpose is to give guidance to pediatricians who are members of the AAP constitutes a 'recommendation'. If not a recommendation, it certainly represents a ringing endorsement.

For the sake of accuracy, I will contact the AAP on Monday and ask that they clarify if this was a 'recommendation' or an 'endorsement'.

But, if we can cut the crap and get real for a moment, it does not matter what semantics the AAP decides to play with this. They are holding it out for their members as an example to be followed and even if they DID run a disclaimer (which they didn't) that they don't recommended the letter at all, the message would still be loud and clear to peds.

'Feel free to insult your patients, use coercion to get them to fully vaccinate and dismiss them if they don't. We might 'have' to officially say don't do it, but really, you won't get any arguments from us! (wink)'

Kinda like the conversation I had with my seven year old yesterday, "Son, it is totally wrong to steal cars. Did I ever tell you about Jonsie "Zoom Zoom" Mcgillicutty? Man that guy was great at stealing cars. Here is what he did... now here is how you jimmy the lock to break in... and here is how you hot wire it... and once you have the car you..."

They can say all day they want their docs to 'work with' parents, but what they DO gives us the real message of what they are all about. And what they have DONE is tell peds how to treat patients with earnest vaccine concerns with contempt.
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