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(44,228 posts)
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 07:35 AM Jun 2013

Will This Doctor Hurt Your Baby?


This is a really good feature article about a prominent vaccine researcher and critic of the anti-vaccine movement. The article isn't short, it's an in-depth look at what science is up against in the court of public vaccine opinion.

Thanks to celebrity anti-vaccine crusaders like Jenny McCarthy and Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Children’s Hospital doctor and vaccine inventor Paul Offit gets death threats from parents frantic about autism — and worse. He’s had enough. He’s taking his critics on

A few years ago, Paul Offit found himself in a small room with a bob-haired American mother of three who was so mad at him she had tears in her eyes, and she was standing above him, sort of rearing up — this is his recollection — as if she was preparing herself, mentally, physically, to call him something cutting and mean, “like ‘a piece of shit,’” Offit remembers thinking, “or ‘an arrogant jackass.’” That’s what Offit was bracing himself for. An epithet. But this woman didn’t say anything like that. Instead, she said, “You’re an elitist.”

Compared to some of the other names Offit’s been called, “elitist” is a tongue-kiss. But it got under his skin anyway. He still talks about it. He’s still trying to figure it out.

It had begun so calmly. There he was, at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C., doing what he does best, which is talk about vaccines. Offit is the world’s number one vaccine pundit. He writes opinion articles about vaccines. He writes books about vaccines; Offit just published his fifth book, Autism’s False Prophets: Bad Science, Risky Medicine, and the Search for a Cure. He recently helped convince a famous Hollywood actress, Amanda Peet, to become a spokesperson for vaccines. He even invented a vaccine. If you’re reading this, and you have a baby, and your pediatrician has followed the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommended vaccination schedule, Offit’s strain is most likely coursing through your kid’s bloodstream. Offit is basically Mr. Vaccine. Even his day job is vaccine-related; Offit runs the infectious-diseases division at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where he roams the colorful wards and pokes his head into the rooms of three-year-olds laid up with complex staph and strep infections, and engages in gentle patter like, “Trent, we’re just gonna look at you, sweetie, we’re just gonna look,” and prods gently at little Trent’s bandages, hoping to kill whatever bugs have slipped through Trent’s protective vaccine “net.” And Barbara Loe Fisher, the woman who called him an elitist, runs a grassroots organization called the National Vaccine Information Center, whose website features a quote from her decrying the State’s ability to “tag, track down and force citizens against their will to be injected with biologicals of unknown toxicity.”

They’re ideological opposites. Offit thinks vaccines are heroically staving off death and suffering, and Fisher thinks vaccines are causing death and suffering.

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Will This Doctor Hurt Your Baby? (Original Post) SidDithers Jun 2013 OP
K&R Good article, thank you for posting it! idwiyo Jun 2013 #1
Fisher is a dangerously ignorant screamer Warpy Jun 2013 #2
It pains me beyond end that Robert Kennedy, JR is a big promoter of the anti-vaccine movement hlthe2b Jun 2013 #3
Obviously, that is what RFK jr. believes. However, I think his big grip was thimerosal as a still_one Jun 2013 #5
And autism rates haven't gone down... SidDithers Jun 2013 #7
Not only that, jeff47 Jun 2013 #10
K & R. n/t FSogol Jun 2013 #4
k&r HappyMe Jun 2013 #6
RFK Jr is as bad as and more dangerous than Alex Jones. geek tragedy Jun 2013 #8
And more believable, because he's credible on other issues... SidDithers Jun 2013 #9
Let me fix that for you jeff47 Jun 2013 #11
Fixing it further... Archae Jun 2013 #12


(110,519 posts)
2. Fisher is a dangerously ignorant screamer
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 08:30 AM
Jun 2013

who is being paid handsomely to disinform people.

Those "biologicals of unknown toxicity?" The toxicity is well known, and if she were educated enough to read the literature, she'd know it, too. Unfortunately, she and other lazy people just like her would rather call educated people "elitists" and bury their stupid heads in the sand.

The diseases they prevent are all killers. Immunized herself, along with all her peers, Fisher has had the extreme luxury of never seeing them or feeling them in action.

The only reason idiots like Fisher aren't burying half their children before the age of five is vaccines.


(101,252 posts)
3. It pains me beyond end that Robert Kennedy, JR is a big promoter of the anti-vaccine movement
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 08:32 AM
Jun 2013

He's a smart guy, but he does not have an understanding or background in immunology, vaccine science and medicine--nor epidemiology.

I have to think that Mike Pappantonio (his long-term friend, fellow attorney and former radio co-host) does not agree with him. I only wish someone Bobby knows and trusts would push him to spend time with those with the expertise to counter his misconceptions.


(91,463 posts)
5. Obviously, that is what RFK jr. believes. However, I think his big grip was thimerosal as a
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 08:46 AM
Jun 2013

preservative, not against the vaccines themselves. I have also noticed that they have removed thimerosal from most of the vaccines given in this country


(26,549 posts)
10. Not only that,
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 11:55 AM
Jun 2013

but Thimerosal is still used when the vaccine is shipped to a place without reliable refrigeration. Such as Africa. Where autism is basically unknown.


geek tragedy

(68,868 posts)
8. RFK Jr is as bad as and more dangerous than Alex Jones.
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 09:37 AM
Jun 2013

People could actually die because of the insane swill he spouts.


(44,228 posts)
9. And more believable, because he's credible on other issues...
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 11:53 AM
Jun 2013

But on vaccines, he's spectacularly wrong.



(46,191 posts)
12. Fixing it further...
Mon Jun 3, 2013, 12:33 PM
Jun 2013

People have died because of the insane swill he spouts.

I have a cousin who is militantly anti-vaxx, and her 2-year old baby died of whooping cough.
She's still rabidly anti-vaxx.

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