I know that the idea of not vaccinating your children, to some, is a shocking idea. Some may think that it is an irresponsible thing to do and some may even think that parents who makes this choice are neglecting their children. I can understand why some may feel this way because I once felt the same way. I didnt think that parents who didnt vaccinate were bad parents..I just thought that they were crazy. I couldnt understand why someone would not give their children shots that would protect them against deadly diseases. How I once thought is completely reasonable given how we are conditioned from childhood to put our faith in vaccines. One of my favorite books as a child was a Berenstain Bears book about brother and sister bear getting shots at the doctors office. Just the other day, my children and I were watching PBS when a popular childrens program dedicated an entire show to discuss how important getting your flu shot is. As adults we are further conditioned by the media and the medical establishment. We are made to believe that vaccines saved us and that vaccines are our only option for living healthy lives. This is how I felt when my son was born. Before my son’s 2 month check up, I remember sitting in the parking lot outside of his pediatrician’s office crying. Something inside of me almost made me leave. But I didnt. I wiped the mascara from underneath my eyes.. “I have to hold my baby down while he gets these shots because I love him..I am doing this to protect him.” This is what I told myself; this is what a lot of parents probably tell themselves.
The last time I ever told myself this was at my son’s two month check up. He reacted badly to the 6 shots they gave him and something went off in my mind..”something isnt right here.” That day as I held my screaming son, I got down on my knees before God and I asked him to show me the truth. That simple prayer has sent me down the longest road that I have ever been on..and I am still on it..I learn new things everyday.
One aspect of this whole vaccine debate that drives me to the point of tears is the lack of common sense. I would have came to the same conclusion years ago about vaccines if I would have only thought to look at the right things. All that a person really needs to look at when researching vaccines is the list of vaccine ingredients (for instructions on how to search through chemical databases and research these ingredients see this post). If common sense was king then vaccines as they are today would have never happened. Infants and children receive somewhere around 34 shots by the time they 6 years of age. In 1983, before a child turned 6.. they were recommended to receive 10. Many of shots are mulit dose vaccines ( like the DTaP is actually 3 vaccines in one and the MMR is 3 vaccines in one) How can we inject the things that are in vaccines into a developing mind and body 34 times, and in many cases, 8 or 9 shots at once.. and expect the results not to be negative?
The most frustrating thing to me is that parents who have made the choice to refuse, delay, or be selective about vaccines are constantly made to look like “the bad guy,” when in reality the we have very sound reasons for our choices. There is a battle going on for our minds. If you think that I am just another conspiracy theorist please read the following links in detail…after you have done so, I can almost promise that your feelings will have changed. I am going to share a few link for anyone who may be searching to learn more about this topic. Also, if you are reading this and you vaccinate your children.. I want you to know that as long as you are comfortable with the informed decision on vaccination that you have made, I respect that. Hopefully after reading this, you will also respect my decision.
1st thing to consider: MONEY IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN OUR HEALTH AND OUR RIGHTS TO KNOW THE WHOLE STORY
example 1: SIMPSONWOOD
In 2000 a secret meeting was held at the Simpsonwood Conference Center in Simpsonwood, Georgia. CDC and other government officials, Pharm reps, and several prominate doctors met to discuss the connection between thimerosal and brain damage.. Thimerosal is a compound that was in many childhood vaccines up until the latter half of 2002 – but is now only in most flu shots — the compound is 49% mercury. A study conducted by Dr. Thomas Verstraeten of the CDC had indeed found a link between thimerosal and brain injury and this meeting was called to figure out what to do about it. The simpsonwood transcript was obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and what can be read is shocking.
the number of dose related relationships [between mercury and autism] are linear and statistically significant. You can play with this all you want. They are linear. They are statistically significant.” – Dr. William Weil, American Academy of Pediatrics. Simpsonwood, GA, June 7, 2000 —
the issue is that it is impossible, unethical to leave kids unimmunized, so you will never, ever resolve that issue [regarding the impact of mercury].” – Dr. Robert Chen, Chief of Vaccine Safety and Development, Centers For Disease Control, Simpsonwood, GA, June 7, 2000 —
Forgive this personal comment, but I got called out at eight o’clock for an emergency call and my daughter-in-law delivered a son by c-section. Our first male in the line of the next generation and I do not want that grandson to get a Thimerosal containing vaccine until we know better what is going on. It will probably take a long time. In the meantime, and I know there are probably implications for this internationally, but in the meanwhile I think I want that grandson to only be given Thimerosal-free vaccines. – Dr. Robert Johnson, Immunologist, University of Colorado, Simpsonwood, GA, June 7, 2000 —
But there is now the point at which the research results have to be handled, and even if this committee decides that there is no association and that information gets out, the work has been done and through the freedom of information that will be taken by others and will be used in other ways beyond the control of this group. And I am very concerned about that as I suspect that it is already too late to do anything regardless of any professional body and what they say…My mandate as I sit here in this group is to make sure at the end of the day that 100,000,000 are immunized with DTP, Hepatitis B and if possible Hib, this year, next year and for many years to come, and that will have to be with thimerosal containing vaccines unless a miracle occurs and an alternative is found quickly and is tried and found to be safe. – Dr. John Clements, World Health Organization, Simpsonwood, GA, June 7, 2000 —
Shockingly, the CDC received letters in July and September 1999 from Merck and SmithKline Beecham, respectively, letting CDC know that full production of Thimerosal-free vaccines for Hepatitis B and DTaP could be made available almost immediately. To SmithKline, CDC responded with a tepid letter thanking them for the offer, but not taking them up on it. Thimerosal would remain in the vaccines on the Childhood Immunization Schedule for three more years, it would be late 2002 before Thimerosal-free vaccines were finally available for all vaccines. They were well aware that this toxic substance was hurting our children, but they chose to wait. How many children were damaged during those 3 years simply because money means more to our government?
– pdf for the simpsonwood transcript obtained through FIOA – http://www.putchildrenfirst.org/media/2.9.pdf
– to read an depth summary including links to any documents mentioned above that I did not already link, please see – http://www.putchildrenfirst.org/chapter2.html
– a summary of simpsonwood written by Russell Blaylock, M.D. – http://www.wnho.net/vaccine_coverup.htm
example 2: CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
What is it that you hear constantly in the media about vaccines? The answer to that question is that vaccines are safe and this newly released study proves it. As mentioned above, the study written by the CDC’s Dr. Verstraeten that was the main reason for the simpsonwood conference was released in 2003, three years after the simpsonwood incident. Of course the data had been “handled” by then and the results showed no connection between thimerosal and brain injury (even though there are many peer reviewed studies that do show a connection – see the bottom of this entry for a few links to thimerosal studies). How is it that this significant linear relationship between the two simply disappered? The study was written by the Centers for Disease Control, the federal agency in charge of the vaccine program. The lead author, Thomas Verstraeten, left to take a job with Glaxo SmithKline — a vaccine manufacturer — after the study was written and before it was published. The U.S. Congress later cited this as an ethical violation.
Conflicts of Interest in Vaccine Safety Research, an article published in 2012 in the peer reviewed journal called Accountability in Reseach had this to say:
Conflicts of interest (COls) cloud vaccine safety research. Sponsors of research have competing interests that may impede the objective study of vaccine side effects. Vaccine manufacturers, health officials, and medical journals may have financial and bureaucratic reasons for not wanting to acknowledge the risks of vaccines. —
Vaccine manufacturers have a COl related to the tension between making profits and studying the negative side effects of their products. Vaccines are a big and growing business: Worldwide sales of pediatric vaccines in 2009 were about $11.5 billion, and sales are expected to reach close to $20 billion by 2014 (Sahoo, 2010). Once manufacturers have met the expensive regulatory hurdles of vaccine approval, they have little incentive to research the safety of their products. Although postlicensure analyses are typically undertaken to ensure the safety of the products, such analyses in the United States, for example, are performed by the same regulatory agencies that initially approved the vaccines (Salmon et al., 2004). Moreover, vaccine manufacturers do not face the threat of lawsuits that might motivate other industries to seek to improve safety. The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 protects vaccine companies in the United States from being sued. The protection was deemed necessary, because vaccine manufacturers were facing increasing tort litigation and an adequate supply of vaccines at stable costs was considered essential for public health (Supreme Court, 2011). One implication of the legislation was to provide incentives for the development of new vaccines, which typically earned smaller profit margins per dose than other drugs. Citizens in the United Kingdom may sue vaccine manufacturers, but no plaintiff has ever been successful (Hanson, 2007).
Compounding the COls inherent in the business of manufacturing vaccines is the fact that vaccine manufacturers sponsor research. The influence of industry is wide-spread: It affects individuals as well as institutions and study outcomes as well as research initiatives. In a survey of faculty at top U.S. medical research institutions, Tereskerz et al. (2009) found over two-thirds of researchers (338 out of 506) received some support from industry. Studies show that the financial interests of researchers are positively associated with outcomes favorable to the sponsor in medical studies (Friedman and Richter, 2004; Jefferson et al., 2009; Yank et al., 2007). Not only individual researchers, but also research institutions can be influenced by industry sponsorships such as grants, endowed chairs, and other gifts (Tereskerz, 2003). Industry sponsorship can influence not only outcome, but research initiatives as well: The Tereskerz et al. (2009) survey mentioned above also found 35% of respondents knew of industry-sponsored researchers who compromised their research agenda because the researchers were sponsored by industry. Where industry support was important to the research unit, over half of respondents knew of researchers who compromised their research initiatives. The same study noted that industry support tended to go to senior or well-established researchers, so industry influence on research agenda could reach younger researchers who work with or for their more established mentors. —
The U.S. FDA faces at least three COls when it considers sponsoring research into the possible link between vaccines and autism. The first is the mission of the FDA, which is to protect “the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs …. The FDA also helps the public get the accurate, science-based information they need to use medicines and foods to improve their health” (FDA, 2009). The FDA evaluates and approves vaccines for safety and efficacy. Sponsoring research that finds a link between autism and vaccines that the FDA has approved could greatly damage the Administration’s reputation and reduce public trust in the FDA. A second major COl in the FDA lies in the way the Administration is funded. In 1992, the Prescription Drug User Fee Act was adopted whereby pharmaceutical companies paid fees to have their drugs evaluated. The intent of the legislation was to enhance the resources of the FDA and thereby speed up evaluations. However, industry funding could result in industry influence (Angell, 2004). While the Act refers only to prescription drugs and not vaccines, many vaccine manufacturers also produce prescription drugs. The user fees paid by drug manufacturers provide incentives for the FDA to be more friendly to the industry since it is dependent upon industry funding. —
After a vaccine receives approval from the US. FDA, the US. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) decides whether to add a vaccine to its recommended schedule for the US. civilian population. The CDC also sponsors research on vaccine safety. It has at least three major COls that could hamper its ability to provide objective research about vaccines. The first is the nature of the CDC’s mandate, which is to prevent and control disease, injury, and disability (CDC, 2012). Thus, the CDC is obligated to prevent disease, which it does largely by promoting vaccination. It is also charged with controlling disabilities. If the research it sponsors were to identify vaccines as being hazardous and if the vaccination schedule it recommends is associated with autism, it would be forced to concede that its policies did not support its goals and actually promoted disabilities. Since the CDC is charged with promoting vaccination programs as well as assessing vaccine risks, it might be reluctant to sponsor research that uncovers risks it may have created. —
An example of the CDC being concerned about research into a problem it may have created occurred in 2000, when the CDC commissioned the Institute of Medicine (lOM) to evaluate vaccine safety, particularly the possible links between the mumps-measles-rubella vaccine and the mercury-containing preservative thimerosal with autism. In a discussion concerning the proposed study (lOM, 2001), Dr. Marie McCormick, then Chair of the Immunization Safety Review Committee of the lOM, said (p, 33), “[The CDC] wants us to declare, well, these things [vaccines] are pretty safe on a population basis.” Later in this planning discussion, Dr. McCormick decided (p. 97), “[W]e are not ever going to come down that [autism] is a true side effect [of vaccines] … “, thereby declaring a conclusion before the study was undertaken. In its final report, the IOM stated that although a link between vaccines and autism was possible theoretically, epidemiological studies favored no causal link and suggested funds be channeled to more promising areas of research (lOM, 2004). Other researchers who receive grants from the CDC may also be leery of investigating problems their benefactor may have created. —
Finally, officials at the CDC may see working for the government as a stepping stone to employment at a vaccine manufacturer. A year after leaving as director of CDC in 2009, Dr. Julie Gerberding took a position as president of Merck Vaccines. During her tenure as CDC director from 2002 to 2008, Dr. Gerberding supported the above-mentioned IOM study as well as other studies that concluded no link between vaccines and neurological disorders could be found (see CDC, 2010, for an overview of the studies). Another former CDC employee, Dr. Thomas Verstraeten, began working for GlaxoSmithKline when he was in the process of completing a major study on the potential negative side effects of thimerosal at the CDC (Verstraeten, 2004); the study found no consistent significant associations between thimerosal and negative neurological outcomes (Verstraeten et aI., 2003). While the studies may have been good analyses, the COl regarding research emphasis or conclusion is unavoidable when a public official takes a lucrative position in the industry that she/he previously regulated. —
While U.S. Congressional committees have undertaken a few investigations into the possible link between vaccines and autism (US HR, 2000 a,b, 2003), they have not actively pursued the issue. Members of Congress may be reluctant to sponsor research into vaccine safety for at least two reasons: contributions and prospects of future employment. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the pharmaceutical/health products industry spent over $2.3 billion between 1998 and 2011 to lobby elected officials and candidates, more than any other industry (CRP, 2011). CRP also reports that the number of lobbyists increased steadily from 729 in 1998 to a peak of 1,803 in 2008, declining to 1,612 in 2010 (CRP, 2010). Since 2005, the industry employed at least three lobbyists for every member of Congress. Additionally, a revolving door exists between Congress and the pharmaceutical industry. Over half of the lobbyists employed by the pharmaceutical industry in 2008 had worked in Congress or another branch of the federal government, and 35 had been former members of Congress (Beckel, 2009). Mandating a study that could hurt major contributors or future employers could result in fewer contributions or no offers of employment or both. —
This article goes far deeper into this subject and is a must read. I linked the pdf file to this article above but if you would like to read the article without having to download the pdf see – http://therefusers.com/refusers-newsroom/conflicts-of-interest-in-vaccine-safety-research-article-from-peer-reviewed-journal/ —
This issue goes much deeper. It is hard for me to be brief when discussing it. I will share just one more example.
In August of 1998 the RotaShield vaccine (a vaccine for rotavirus) was approved for use by the FDA. By march of 1999 the RotaShield vaccine had been recommended by the CDC for universal use. 7 months later, in October of 1999, the vaccine was pulled from the US market because the vaccine was causing serious intussusception (bowel obstruction) in children. on June 15, 2000 at the
CONFLICTS OF INTEREST AND VACCINE DEVELOPMENT–PRESERVING THE INTEGRITY OF THE PROCESS HEARING before the COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT REFORM HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES ONE HUNDRED SIXTH CONGRESS SECOND SESSION, Rep. Dan Burton had this to say in regards to the Rotashield vaccine:
“So the question is, was there evidence to indicate that the vaccine was not safe, and if so, why was it licensed in the first place?How good a job did the advisory committees do? We reviewed the minutes of the meetings. At the FDA’s committee, there were discussions about adverse events. They were aware of potential problems. Five children out of 10,000 developed bowel obstructions. There were also concerns about children failing to thrive and developing high fevers, which as we know from other vaccine hearings, can lead to brain injury. Even with all of these concerns, the committee voted unanimously to approve it.”
5 children out of 10,000 suffered bowl obstruction during the clinical trials for Rotashield. That is an intussusception rate of 1 in 2000! The high occurance of adverse reactions during the clinical trials were not the only thing ignored. Rep. Gilman speaks of this when he said:
“Rotashield was developed to combat rotavirus, which symptoms are vomiting, diarrhea, low grade fever. However, it was pulled from the market following reports of serious illness in over 100 babies. The Rotashield vaccine intended to cure these symptoms, instead, caused 2 deaths, 53 cases of surgery and 47 cases of required medical care, all in babies.
The FDA and its advisory committee approved the vaccine in 1999, overlooked the 1989 tests of a similar vaccine in China in which a number of babies suffered identical bowel problems to those caused by rotashield known as intussusception, a bowel obstruction so severe that the intestine swallows itself. Moreover, at least one of the researchers involved in that China test is now working at the CDC, was also involved in Rotashield. Therefore, the data from the earlier China test was available to the advisory committee members who approved the Rotashield vaccine but was overlooked or ignored.
Regardless of the reason why this information was disregarded, American babies suffered, underwent surgery and some even died. The FDA and CDC advisory committee members do have the responsibility of abiding by all regulations to ensure the safety of our public health. Human life should not be undermined or compromised for personal or financial ties that advisory members may have to the pharmaceutical industry.”
and what financial ties and conflict of interest might these FDA and CDC advisory committee members have? Rep Burton gives a summary to answer this question:
“Families need to have confidence that the vaccines that their children take are safe, effective and very necessary. Doctors need to feel confident that when the FDA licenses a drug, that it’s really safe and that the pharmaceutical industry has not influenced the decisionmaking process. Doctors place trust in the FDA and assume that if the FDA has licensed a drug, it’s safe for use. Has that trust been violated? How confident in the safety and need of specific vaccines would doctors and parents be if they learned the following:
1. that members, including the chair of the FDA and CDC advisory committees who make these decisions own stock in drug companies that make the vaccines.
2. that individuals on both advisory committees own patents for vaccines under consideration, or affected by the decisions of the committees.
3. that three out of the five of the members of the FDA’s advisory committee who voted for the rotavirus vaccine had conflicts of interest that were waived.
4. that 7 individuals of the 15 member FDA advisory committee were not present at the meeting. Two others were excluded from the vote, and the remaining five were joined by five temporary voting members who all voted to license the product.
5. that the CDC grants conflict of interest waivers to every member of their advisory committee a year at a time, and allows full participation in the discussions leading up to a vote by every member, whether they have a financial stake in the decision or not. So they’re discussing it, influencing other members possibly, whether they have a financial stake or not.
6. that the CDC’s advisory committee has no public members, no parents have a vote in whether or not a vaccine belongs on the childhood immunization schedule. The FDA’s committee only has one public member.
How confident can we be in the recommendations for the Food and Drug Administration when the chairman and other individuals on their advisory committee own stock in major manufacturers of vaccines? How confident can we be in a system when the agency seems to feel that the number of experts is so few around the country that everyone has a conflict and thus waivers must be granted? It almost appears that there is an “old boys network” of vaccine advisors that rotate between the CDC and FDA, at times serving simultaneously. Some of these individuals served for more than 4 years. We found one instance where an individual served for 16 years continuously on the CDC committee. With over 700,000 physicians in this country, how can one person be so indispensable that they stay on a committee for 16 years?”
If you read the document in full, Rep Burton goes into great detail about specific advisory members and the financial ties that they have to pharm companies. The things that you will read will make you sick. If you have the time, I would definitly read this in full. I am sick of these people being the jurors deciding so many children’s lives. In closing, I’ll leave you with one more thing that Rep. Burton had to say:
“Now, I don’t know how the bureaucracy in Washington feels, but I think I can speak for an awful lot of parents around the country who want to have confidence that the vaccinations their kids are getting have been tested, and that there’s been an unbiased judgment made as to whether or not they’re going to be safe as well as effective. And the problem with the bureaucracy is, you keep saying, well, we can’t do this because we might not be able to attract people to these advisory committees. Look, there are 700,000 doctors. There must be somebody else out there in that vast mass of humanity that has the expertise to be able to be on these advisory boards. And if a parent knew that there was a financial interest, possible conflict of interest from the person making the decisions on the vaccination, especially if we find out after the fact that kids died or are ruined for life, then I think the parents would say, you know, maybe we ought to make absolutely sure there’s no conflict before we allow these people to be on these advisory panels making these decisions. Now, you know, you may disagree because you serve in a position in the bureaucracy where these decisions are made, and you think that that’s the way it ought to be. I speak from a little bit of experience. I have two grandchildren, two. One got a hepatitis B shot and within 3 hours she was dying. She wasn’t breathing any longer. They had to rush her to the hospital and she survived. Now, there’s a lot of parents who have had that kind of problem with other drugs and other vaccinations. My grandson got nine shots in 1 day. He was a perfectly normal child. And within about 3 or 4 or 5 days, a week, he became autistic. Now, it may be a coincidence. A lot of people say that’s coincidental. But the one thing I want to make sure of as a grandparent or as a parent is that the guys making these decisions or the ladies making these decisions, these doctors, these experts, don’t have some kind of a conflict of interest that skews their judgment in one direction or the other. And the American people, well, you can say, we shouldn’t be making this stuff public. Let me tell you something. Everybody in American who has a child who’s had this kind of a problem wants this stuff made public, because they want to know if the people making these decisions do have a conflict of interest. We go to the doctors and we get these shots for our kids, and we do it believing that the health agencies are above reproach, that there’s no danger to our children, or at least it’s minimal. And we put great confidence in CDC and FDA and all of our health agencies. And if we find out after the fact that our child has had a terrible, serious problem, and then we find out after the fact that people on that advisory committee that made those decisions did have a conflict of interest, it will weigh on us very heavily, because we’ll wonder, always wonder, if that conflict of interest led to the problem that we have in our family. And that’s why the people on these advisory committees need to be above reproach. They need to be above reproach. If they have a conflict of interest, if they’re a paid consultant for a company that has an interest in that product, if they have a large amount of stock in that company, and they’re going to benefit from that product, or if they have some other reason to be tied to that company, they’re getting grants from that company for scientific research, whatever it might be, they should not be on those advisory committees. And if they are, it should be made known at the outset so that people can make a decision based upon information, total information. And I just think it’s wrong. You may shade this one way or the other, based upon what you feel is being with the Department of Ethics in this country. But if that’s the way it is right now, I think the law should be reviewed and changed. There’s got to be people out there that can serve on these advisory panels that don’t have conflicts, who may have their judgment skewed in one direction or another. And there’s got to be people out there that are going to make decisions based upon what’s best for the people of this country and the kids of this country without any bias whatsoever. And that’s what the American people, I believe, want.
For a transcript of the hearing click here.
also see this website that digs in deeper concerning the conflicts of interest for specific studies. Most of these studies were blasted across the media to show that there is no connection between vaccines and autism. Every one of them has huge flaws and were written or funded by people who gain financial profit from vaccines – http://www.14studies.com/
This is just the first step in understanding how some one could possibly question vaccines. Once you get past the feelings that the government and medical establishment would never do anything to hurt you and realize that there have been times when we have been lied to..it becomes easier to approach this whole issue with a more balanced perspective.
Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth. – Gandhi
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge – Hosea 4:6