Thank you, nyk537, for agreeing to debate me and allowing me to choose my side. Thanks also to MemoryShock for setting us up, and thanks in advance to
those who will be reading and/or judging our debate.
The government and those responsible for public health and safety want you to believe that mandatory vaccinations are a purely medical issue. They
argue the benefits of vaccinations as a medical procedure and compare the benefits to the risks. If you have a disease, and the treatment has a 75%
chance of helping you and only a 5% incidence of side effects, are you going to take the treatment? Probably. But normal healthy children are not
afflicted with disease and do not need treatment. The analogy is invalid and specious.
Mandatory vaccinations are, in my opinion, at least partly an ethical issue. When considering it, I am reminded of the movie Storm of the
, in which a community is told it must give up (a clear metaphor for sacrifice) one of its children, without knowing in advance which child
it will be, in exchange for the safety of the rest of the community. Ultimately they are coerced into agreement, but I think that Mr. King meant us to
doubt that they made the right decision. Certainly the parent of the child who got the short straw did not accept the decision in the end.
In human history other tribes and civilizations have practiced sacrifice for similar reasons - the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one, or
the few - and we refer to those societies as barbaric and primitive. And yet, by accepting mandatory vaccinations, we are agreeing to a similar
practice in our own society.
ABC reported that since the federal government began urging routine hepatitis B shots for infants in 1991, at least 274 newborns had died after
receiving the vaccination. An additional 2,600 infants had suffered serious medical problems. ... It is well established that a small percentage of
children will suffer adverse reactions or die from routine childhood vaccines.
From 1986 to 1997, the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program awarded nearly $1 billion in damages to more than 1,000 families whose children
suffered catastrophic reactions to mandatory vaccines. Vaccines do
kill and damage children.
Do you agree that the sacrifice of one child is acceptable if it (supposedly) saves others? Perhaps you can be convinced to agree, hypothetically,
that the death of one child is a fair exchange for the lives of hundreds or thousands of other children. If, however, the one child is your
child, will you still agree? Would you take a "lottery ticket" knowing that one of the tickets means death or severe illness for a child of one of
the ticket holders? Perhaps you do not feel that way about vaccinations, and perhaps I will not be able to convince you to feel that way. However, I
believe that I can bring you to an understanding of the parent who does
feel that way about childhood vaccinations, (there are many of them)
and concede that they should have the choice to refuse vaccinations for their children.
The ethical question is made much easier to decide in favor of mandatory vaccines when you are told that a child who is not vaccinated will likely go
on to die anyway of one of the dread diseases he wasn't vaccinated against, and will pose a health risk to all of the other children he comes into
contact with, as well as perhaps some of their parents. This is simply not true.
If vaccinations work as advertised to prevent disease, then an unvaccinated sick child poses no risk to vaccinated children. They are protected by the
vaccine. Therefore, anyone who makes this argument is admitting that vaccinations don't really work and yet is still trying to use it to convince you
to allow your child to be vaccinated. This issue, and the true extent of the "danger to the public health" represented by unvaccinated children,
will be further examined during the course of this debate.
There is also another non-medical issue surrounding mandatory vaccinations: that of civil liberty and personal freedom. If I do not have sovereignty
over my own body (or the bodies of my children), what personal freedom can I claim? How shall I be happy about constitutional protection from having
my house searched without "probable cause" if my children can have foreign substances forcibly injected into their bodies, and can be taken away
from me by the government if I refuse to allow this? Furthermore, adding insult to injury, I can be required to pay
for the vaccinations my
child is mandated by law to have! This seems more representative of a police state than a "free" country.
As this debate continues I will show you that:
1. Doctors continuing to recommend
vaccines for children is sufficient to prevent "epidemics." Most parents will still vaccinate their
children in accordance with the recommendations, and 100% vaccination is not necessary for "herd immunity."
2. The risk of side effects from several mandatory vaccinations is actually higher than the risk of the child contracting the disease.
3. Other developed countries with modern water treatment and sewage facilities and good hygiene do not mandate vaccinations, and they are not
suffering from epidemics or overrun with preventable childhood diseases.
4. Vaccines do not work nearly as well as the medical community would have you believe. In many cases vaccines provide incomplete and temporary
protection. By contrast, contracting the disease in childhood is seldom life-threatening, and recovering from the disease confers complete and
permanent (lifetime) natural immunity.
5. Although the government, CDC, and other authorities will assure you that vaccines have been proven to be safe, the truth is that no
studies on the safety of vaccines have been done; there is no clinical data on any reactions, effects, or conditions which might
arise more than a few weeks after the administration of the vaccine.
In short, I hope to convince you that we (collectively) do not have the right to force parents to play a form of Russian Roulette with their children
in order to theoretically protect other children.