The author of this guest-blog has asked to remain anonymous due to her fear of being targeted by the Australian Skeptics and Stop the AVN. She is the parent of vaccine-damaged children – some of whom are on the autistic spectrum. She found Peter Bowditch’s assaults against families of vaccine-injured children to be incredibly disturbing. As a result, she chose to write about her fears regarding where society is headed when parents who love and cherish their children can be abused because of their health choices. If you agree that nobody has the right to treat another individual in this way, please make a supportive comment on this blog page. It doesn’t matter whether you are pro-vaccine, anti-vaccine or somewhere in the middle – any decent human being would have to accept that harassment, abuse and discrimination are never justified. Oppose Peter Bowditch and the incredibly vile comments of those who support him by speaking up for the right to make our own choices on this and all health issues. If you are on Twitter, please use the hashtag #DumpBowditch on your tweets to encourage Mia Freedman of Mamamia and other venues where this man publishes his hate-speech to no longer allow him an opportunity for abuse. Feel free to drop them a line as well, telling them how you feel about this issue.

Our history is full of people using terms to incite hostility, fear and resentment against other groups, and now is the age of the ‘Anti Vaxxer’ – the title given to people who question the safety and in some cases the necessity of vaccinations.

If you look in the newspapers or on the internet, you will see that people who question vaccine safety are ridiculed, condemned and discriminated against on quite a regular basis.  You might think, “Surely this behaviour is not promoted by supposedly intelligent, rational beings in this day and age?”, but unfortunately you would be wrong.

Just look at this list of recent quotes from newspapers such as the Daily Telegraph and blogs and articles from around the world…

“Parents who dodge vaccinating their kids are pocketing thousands of dollars”[1]

“…babies die because of the antivaccination movement.”[2]

“Bill Gates Says Anti-Vaccine Autism Groups “Kill Children” — And He’s Right”[3]

“NSW paediatrician Dr Chris Ingall added this: “We’re appalled at how many kids are getting whooping cough because the chardonnay set and the alternatives don’t vaccinate their children.”[4]

When did raising your child with love, respect, a healthy diet, plenty of fresh air, sunshine and exercise, while limiting their exposure to toxins become a crime?

If you listen to what these people are saying, anyone who does not vaccinate their child is a money grabbing, disease causing, child killer.

So who are these supposed child killers’?

Many are parents who have vaccine injured/killed children; some are educated and health-conscious individuals who want a more natural approach to good health; and some are alternative practitioners, doctors or scientists. Do any of these groups sound like child killers to you? What they all have in common is something that most of us take for granted: the belief that everyone deserves the right to decide what the best health choices are for themselves and their families

I find the hostile attitude towards parents of vaccine injured children particularly astounding, as parents of children that have been killed or disabled have always been treated with an outpouring of compassion, understanding and empathy. If the death or injury have been caused by a vaccine however, they are somehow no longer worthy of these basic human emotions.

Instead, we get open hostility and contempt as seen in the case of Peter Bowditch who asks vaccine-injured parents if they get sexual pleasure from seeing dead babies!

And how does our society respond to a man who can say such vile things?  Well, apparently it is no big deal, as he still continues to write articles for the popular women’s and children’s website Mamamia!  Is this the kind of individual who should be writing about women and children’s health?

Another very disturbing aspect to come out of this portrayal of ‘anti vaxxers’ is that the media, government and medical vaccine advocates are working together in promoting an ‘us’ versus ‘them’ mentality. These groups are actively condoning discrimination and in turn, persecution of the Australian Vaccination Network, it’s founder Meryl Dorey and anyone associated with them.  Is this what our true Aussie spirit is about now?  Be there for your mate but only if he vaccinates.

Persecute

1. To oppress or harass with ill-treatment, especially because of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or beliefs.

2. To annoy persistently; bother.

Discrimination

1. (Sociology) unfair treatment of a person, racial group, minority, etc.; action based on prejudice

Minority

a. A racial, religious, political, national, or other group thought to be different from the larger group of which it is part.

b. A group having little power or representation relative to other groups within a society.

We as a society believe that discrimination, harassment and persecution against minorities or any law-abiding citizen is unconscionable. Now however, it seems that it is acceptable if the minority or individual in question does not vaccinate to a government approved schedule.

What these harassers of ‘anti-vaxxers’ do not realise (or maybe they do) is that they are laying the foundation for persecution and repression of people that are just trying to raise their families in the healthiest way possible.

The path to repression begins with many small steps. It starts with the gradual wearing away of someone else’s rights through restriction of employment, public education, and government entitlements. Then comes ostracism whilst creating fear, hostility and resentment towards the group in question from the rest of society.  Not too soon after that, segregation comes in to the mix.

You may think that this is an unlikely scenario, but I cannot tell you how many times everyday mums and dads have told me to keep my children out of schools with vaccinated children; to stay out of public places where vaccinated people may be exposed to our disease-causing germs; some have even wished that all people who don’t vaccinate could be murdered or expressed a wish for their children to die from disease!

Countless times in history we have seen that ugliness in human nature breeds more ugliness.  Intolerance, discrimination, persecution, repression are all formed through fear and hatred.  Have we learned nothing from the past, or are we just so insecure that we always have to look for someone to oppress in order to make ourselves feel powerful and dominant?

If this type of hostility continues towards people who just want the right to make choices for their own families, what do we have to look forward to in the future?

 

 

 

 


[1] http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/sydney-news/vaccine-dodgers-win-big/story-e6freuzi-1226426099974

[2] http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/category/antiscience/page/78/

[3] http://www.wired.com/geekdad/2011/02/bill-gates-says-anti-vaccine-autism-groups-kill-children-hes-right/

[4] http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/doctors-warn-parents-to-keep-newborns-at-home-as-whooping-cough-epidemic-escalates/story-e6freuy9-1226055946293

 

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