Monday, January 19, 2009

The Anti--vaccine Movement: If not vaccines, then what?

Just recently, I read an article describing Paul Offit’s stance on vaccinations and their correlation between autism. As a former educator, I’ve been heavily immersed in a variety of social and learning differences that students bring to the classroom, including autism. For me, I have always refused to believe that diseases/illnesses just happen to spring up from nowhere. Autism is no different. With a somewhat recent court case, parents tried to convince the courts that their child’s autism was caused by the endless number of vaccinations that were given to him.

Paul Offit blames the anti-vaccine movement on greed and opportunism; also citing coal, mercury and forest fires as the primary contributors of Autism. Paul Offit also supports and continuously advocates for various Autism groups throughout the country (Offit blogs for a group of anti-vaccine advocates called Age of Autism).

I haven’t read Paul’s book, but I honestly think that autism may stem from a number of man made creations. I’m no doctor, nor am I an expert on autism—I just have good old-fashioned common sense. This is such an interesting topic (and point of contention for many), I think I may have to pick up this book in the next few weeks. Stay tuned for additional commentary…

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