Published March 26, 2017
My favorite late night television host of all time was David Letterman. He was on the air for 33 years,...
— William Wilberforce
We are all biased. We have a bias based on our current beliefs or assumptions, many of which we have been told over and over again since we were born. The trick is to question our beliefs and assumptions, to see if they stand up to scrutiny. When we look at them are we happy that they are solid, scientific facts. I did not always know this and so I harmed my children.
I am a mother who wants the best for her children, to protect and keep them safe, the same as other mothers, because we love them. But what if I made mistakes? I now know that I did, grievous ones and now we live with the consequences, one of my children has Asperger’s and one has Type 1 diabetes. You see, I based the health care of my children on beliefs and assumptions with which I had grown up. I believed and I assumed that vaccines were safe.
I did try to ask questions about vaccines, but this was back in the 1990s and I did not have access to the Internet and I did not realize that I had a bias. I did not look at my belief that vaccines were safe, I could not find unbiased scientific proof to support this and I was not shown any by the doctors or the government who were also reinforcing this assumption.
When my daughter Ariana changed before my eyes at four years of age in the week following a vaccination, I was forced into research, into looking at all I believed. What I found was truly eye opening. I found that all the scientific information that our doctors and governments have on drugs and vaccines, and on which they are basing their beliefs, comes either directly or indirectly from the manufacturers of those same drugs and vaccines.
If I made up a cocktail of a dash of formaldehyde, a pinch of virus, a drop of monkey DNA, a sliver of DNA from an aborted human fetus, a few other ingredients for good measure, gave it a stir with a spoon—thereby introducing stray bits of bacteria—and then gave it to you in a bottle and told you it was perfectly safe because the bloke down the road in the laboratory, whom I had paid, certified it so, would you drink it? No, of course not. You would think I was mad and I would probably be had up for attempted manslaughter.
Yet, this is what I did when I vaccinated my babies. I put into their beautifully perfect little bodies these same ingredients, and more, based on safety data that the manufacturer had funded, directly or indirectly, and given to those in authority whose job it is to make sure that vaccines and drugs are “safe.”
When I started to research drugs and vaccines, I found that there were many who questioned the safety of both, including doctors and scientists. I also found out that while some diseases had been prolific killers in the early 1900s, they were no longer so today. Take measles, for example. In the early 1900s to 1918, in the United Kingdom, measles was responsible for 10-12,000 deaths a year but by 1960 it was responsible for 100 deaths a year in the UK; a 90% decrease before any vaccine for measles was introduced. Yet today one of the adverse effects listed for Merck’s MMR 11 vaccine is Diabetes Mellitus (Type 1 diabetes).
If we search the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) database, and remember that it is estimated that only 6% of adverse effects are reported, we find that since 1980 there have been over 100,000 adverse effects reported including permanent disabilities and deaths for MMR vaccines. So, as parents, we need to decide which we are more concerned about, a disease whose mortality rate had dropped by 90% before the vaccine was introduced, or, the vaccine which does cause adverse effects including deaths and permanent disabilities.
Questioning ones beliefs and assumptions, I found, was a very frightening thing, it rocked the foundations of my world but I also wished that I had done it sooner. I wished that someone had told me their story of why they questioned our current medical beliefs. I know why they did not, because it is heartbreaking to face it all again and difficult to write it with a positive, inspiring outlook. So I thought I would try, so that maybe I could help others avoid our heartbreak and give them some of the information that I had found out along the way, so that they had a starting point.
Everyone has the right to make an informed choice when it comes to their children’s health care. To decide what they feel is right to put into their bodies from food, to drugs, to vaccines. They also need to know what it is like to live daily with health challenges which are now being listed as adverse effects of vaccines or have long been attributed to being caused by a vaccine by parents. When we have this information, we can make informed choice on whether to vaccinate. That is our right and we need to respect that right. No one person or group has the right to force another person or group to bow to their beliefs or biases.
Note: Kelly CS Johnson is the author of the book What If?: I Harmed My Children. She lives in Ireland.