Thursday, April 30, 2015


By Mary Ann Slavcheff

When I was a preschooler, I got the measles. I had pimples all over my body, but I was not sick. I went outside and played with the neighborhood children. It did not matter to their moms that one of us had the measles. We all played. Chicken pox were more serious and may have kept us in bed. But it was all part of childhood. No one died or went to the hospital.

My younger sister did not get the measles until she was in grade school. She had to stay home from school, but she went outside to swing and watched television. She was not sick.

One day a boy in our class had pimples on his body. The teacher looked at him closely and then sent him home. None of us were concerned that we had been interacting with a child with the measles. Most of us had already had the measles. Those who didn’t hoped they would get the measles, so they could stay home from school.

I did not have children of my own. As an adult measles were a forgotten thing until they entered the news recently. Suddenly measles are a disease as horrible as the bubonic plague. There is talk of compulsory vaccinations for all children. Some unvaccinated children will be ostracized - as if kids don’t already have enough reason for bullying. Parents are pressured to vaccinate their children.

A few years ago I had a deaf student, her affliction, caused by a childhood vaccination. She and her husband shared the same fate. Their children were not vaccinated. Need I explain why?

In November 2013 I lost a cat to a rare disease, eosinophilic granuloma complex. Cats are expected to be vaccinated every year, even though the kitten shot should give them protection. This cat, Sonoma, was accidentally double vaccinated one year. The disease is difficult to treat; my cat suffered horribly and there was nothing I could do to help her. Some research suggests the disease is caused by over vaccination.

I myself am pressured to have a flu shot every year. I refuse it. I don’t get the flu. My doctor’s assistant once said I could be penalized by the insurance company for not getting the shot. I don’t believe this is true, but it shows the pressure’s we are put under to have vaccinations.

My mother and my husband both had flu shots one year and both became very ill with flu like symptoms. I did not get the shot or become sick.

The big drug companies have powerful lobbies and they can buy influence everywhere including in the media.

The media has made gentle pit bull dogs into deadly killers and the measles into a deadly disease. Brian Williams is not the only newsman who lies.

If you are considering a vaccination for yourself or your children, go ahead. it is your right. It is also the right of others to refuse. Parents who don’t have their children vaccinated are not negligent. They are intelligently weighing the pros and cons.

Let’s to get to the real issues. Jobs are disappearing. Globalization is no longer the only thing taking our jobs. Robots are here too. What happens to workers then? I admit it is a tougher question than: Should I have my children vaccinated against the measles?

But we will be unprepared for the future unless we start making better choices.