Anti-vaccination movement gets tooled
Remember the controversy surrounding Andrew Wakefield and his Lancet article that tried to make a link between autism and the MMR vaccine? If you don’t, the basic 30 second version goes something like this:
In 1998 Wakefield writes publishes a paper suggesting a link between autism and gastrointestinal disease with the MMR vaccine, and asks the government to stop distributing the vaccine until more study is done
In 2004, the Sunday Times reports that most of the parents of the children used in the study were recruited by a lawyer to file a lawsuit against the MMR vaccine manufacturers, and that Wakefield himself had been paid by this same lawyer to conduct the study
It was also discovered that data was falsified to prove that the symptoms had all occurred after the shot, even though many of the children showed the symptoms before actually getting vaccinated.
Flash forward to today, where the General Medical Council ruled Wakefield acted both dishonestly and irresponsibly, and had failed in his duties as a consultant. Now the Lancet has also removed his article from the archives, effectively closing an embarrassing chapter in their otherwise illustrious history.
There you have it. There really are no arguments left. The only piece of evidence “anti-vaxers” have has just been definitively proven to be a fraud, and Wakefield is disgraced. All that’s left is for the GMC to take disciplinary actions against him. Obviously, we all know this won’t do anything to stop the anti-vaccination movement, which is hell bent on proving a connection exists. They don’t need anything inconvenient like evidence to back up their claims; as far as they are concerned, they’ve already made up their minds.
It’s sad when people refuse to accept the truth, but in a way, I feel a bit of sympathy for these idiots. They want someone to blame for the fact their children are developmentally disabled, and the MMR vaccine was an easy scapegoat. It can’t be easy trying to raise a child with a disability, but it doesn’t entitle you to make shit up, and put other children at risk because you can’t accept reality. Because of their efforts, previously contained diseases like measles and rubella are back with a vengeance, and for the first time in decades people are dying from these highly preventable diseases. I personally feel embarrassed we can’t stop these morons from spreading their misinformation, even when their own studies are disgraced. When are people going to learn?