In 2000, measles was declared eliminated in the United States. Last year, the Center for Disease Control reported 1,276 measles cases. The disease, which is especially dangerous for children under age 5, is making a senseless comeback in our country. This is partly due to anti-vaxxers who promote the false idea that vaccines are dangerous and cause health issues from autism to miscarriages.
Anti-vaxxers have eroded public safety through increasingly lenient vaccine exemptions that include medical, religious, and personal beliefs. Pockets of unvaccinated kids have sprung up around the US, concentrating in parts of California.
Americans are not protected from measles or any other deadly disease just because we live in a developed country. Our society is protected because the vast majority of our population is vaccinated. Anti-vaxxers are reversing this trend and endangering all citizens, especially the immunocompromised and those too young to receive the measles vaccination. It isn’t administered until children are 12 months old.
Childhood vaccines were erroneously linked to autism in 1998. Since then, many parents chose to forego vaccinating their children against deadly diseases that once routinely killed kids. Thanks to scientific advances in modern medicine, most families don’t lose children to polio, Diptheria, measles, or chickenpox.
Third world countries show the tragedy that can befall unvaccinated societies. 6,000 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo died from measles last year, with a total infected population numbering around 310,000.
Unless we want to experience the horror of a deadly epidemic that claims lives, especially children’s, we need to reverse the anti-vaxxing trend in America. Parents need to vaccinate their kids and not push a dangerous ideology that has no basis in science or logic onto innocent children.