In The Politics of Autism, I analyze the discredited notion that vaccines cause autism. This bogus idea can hurt people by allowing diseases to spread. And among those diseases could be COVID-19.
Ema Sasic at The Desert Sun:
Before anyone heard about COVID-19 or knew the global devastation it would cause, Academy Award nominated documentary filmmaker Scott Hamilton Kennedy was looking at another viral outbreak.
From Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2019, 1,274 measles cases were confirmed in 31 states in the United States, the greatest number of reported cases in the country since 1992, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Globally, measles cases reached nearly 1 million and killed an estimated 207,500 people in 2019.
Although measles was declared eliminated in the United States in 2000, record-breaking numbers were occurring. Why? According to the CDC, the U.S. measles outbreaks were all linked to travel-related cases that reached at-risk populations, including those who are unvaccinated or under-vaccinated against measles.
The first measles vaccine was licensed for public use in 1963. Today, two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine is recommended for children to protect against the viruses. Between 2000 and 2020, measles vaccination prevented an estimated 31.7 million deaths worldwide, according to the World Health Organization.
Over the years, however, anti-vaccination activists have grown. Much of it dates back to 1998, when a fraudulent research paper was published, asserting a link between the MMR vaccine and autism without robust scientific evidence. Although there have been numerous studies since then refuting the posited link between MMR vaccination and autism, vaccination rates dropped, with many still concerned about the risk of autism after vaccination