Vaccinations Provide More Help Than Harm

206,000. That is the number of documented cases of diphtheria, which is an infection affecting the nose and throat, cases in the United States in 1921. Do you know how many cases have been recorded this year? Zero. The reason for this drastic fall in cases is due to of one thing: vaccines. Most of society has believed in the principle of vaccinations since their initial development. However, in recent years, a movement has begun that questions their safety. This wave of going against the status quo is called the ‘Anti- Vaccination Movement’. It’s aim is to convince people that vaccines do more harm than good, and ultimately to stop vaccinations altogether.
Recently, the State of California has tried to pass a bill that requires children in public schools to be fully vaccinated. This means that parents cannot opt their children out for personal or religious beliefs. If they chose not to vaccinate their child they would be barred from attending any public school. Currently the only other states that have adopted this policy are Mississippi and West Virginia. The State of New Jersey does not allow children to opt out of vaccinations for personal reasons, but is lenient on the grounds of religious objections. However, there have been large protests against this position. Most people who do not work in the medical field remain uninformed about vaccines, and people are often quick to believe the worst. If they see a long list of obscure ingredients in vaccines, they start to assume the worst. However, the population consumes many things that are worse than vaccinations in their everyday food, such as additives that documented cases of diphtheria, which is an infection affecting the nose and throat, cases in the United States in 1921. Do you know how many cases have been recorded this year? Zero. The reason for this drastic fall in cases is due to of one thing: vaccines. Most of society has believed in the principle of vaccinations since their initial development. However, in recent years, a movement has begun that questions their safety. This wave of going against the status quo is called the ‘Anti- Vaccination Movement’. It’s aim is to convince people that vaccines do more harm than good, and ultimately to stop vaccinations altogether.

Recently, the State of California has tried to pass a bill that requires children in public schools to be fully vaccinated. This means that parents cannot opt their children out for personal or religious beliefs. If they chose not to vaccinate their child they would be barred from attending any public school. Currently the only other states that have adopted this policy are Mississippi and West Virginia. The State of New Jersey does not allow children to opt out of vaccinations for personal reasons, but is lenient on the grounds of religious objections. However, there have been large protests against this position. Most people who do not work in the medical field remain uninformed about vaccines, and people are often quick to believe the worst. If they see a long list of obscure ingredients in vaccines, they start to assume the worst. However, the population consumes many things that are worse than vaccinations in their everyday food, such as additives that have been linked to different types of cancer.

Perhaps one of the most widely spread myths is that vaccines cause autism. In 1998, Dr. Andrew Wakefield published a study claiming a link between the MMR v“accine and autism. The British doctor used some questionable methods, and later his medical license was revoked and the article retracted. Almost every doctor on the planet agrees that there is absolutely no link between vaccinations and autism.

The United States of America cannot allow unvaccinated children and adults to remain without protection. It is not just potentially dangerous to them, but affects others as well.When a society is fully vaccinated, it creates a form of safety net known as Herd Immunity. Herd Immunity protects individuals who cannot get vaccinated, such as the young and the sick. Without this phenomenon, diseases can easily spread and gradually infect growing numbers of individuals.

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Courtesy of Forbes

Many counties in California have low vaccination rates compared to the rest of the state, which caused a recent outbreak of measles because the population was not vaccinated enough for Herd Immunity to come into effect, the measles virus was transmitted very quickly. Before the MMR vaccine was developed, measles used to infect around 500,000 people each year. As a result of the MMR vaccine, there have been fewer than 150 cases of measles documented in the United States each year. However, through the efforts of ignorant people, around 700 people contracted measles in 2014.

If America continues on this downward trend
end, the results could be disastrous. Freshman Sanjana Dugar commented on the dangers of unvaccinated children: “I think vaccinations should definitely be forced. If people choose to not vaccinate their kid because of religious or personal reasons it is not only putting your child at risk but you’re putting everyone who goes to their school and everyone who comes in contact with them in danger too.” The sheer quantity of scientific data that supports vaccines is overwhelming; there is no legitimate reason why vaccines should not be forced. Even though America is founded on the idea of democracy, there should be no choice in this matter. Vaccines save lives. With every day that we let America remain partially unvaccinated, the risk of outbreaks increases.

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