Letter to the Editor: Vaccine mandates cannot deliver on promises

To the Editor:

As we approach the March 3 Question 1 referendum on the vaccine mandates law passed last May, it is worth fact-checking the two things the law’s proponents claim it will accomplish.

The first claim is “herd immunity.” The term arose from research on just one disease — measles — based on the lifetime immunity the natural disease provides. It is scientifically incorrect to apply the term to vaccines that offer immunity that wanes with time. This waning immunity in adults has been acknowledged by researchers and prominent vaccinologists as the real cause for the outbreaks of measles, mumps, and whooping cough — not unvaccinated kids.

“Herd immunity” is also irrelevant to vaccines for diseases that don’t spread (e.g., tetanus), for vaccines that permit an infected person to unknowingly spread disease (e.g., whooping cough), and for vaccines that have stimulated a proliferation of pathogen strains that the vaccine doesn’t cover (e.g., HPV, whooping cough, Haemophylus influenza, pneumonia).

The second claim is that mandates protect immuno-compromised kids. How is this possible, when immuno-compromised kids circulate in a society filled with infections for which there are no vaccines, and with adults who were vaccinated as children but whose vaccine immunity has long since worn off?

Where are the instances of immuno-compromised children actually being permanently injured by — or killed by — a disease proven to have been acquired from an unvaccinated child? They apparently are so rare that they don’t achieve the public notice one would expect in the present atmosphere.

Meanwhile, the federal Vaccine Court has so far paid out a very real $4 billion (and accelerating) for thousands of cases of serious or permanent damage and death caused by vaccines. This doesn’t count the two-thirds of claimants who are turned away based on the court’s hyper-rigid rules and its notorious antagonism toward victims. The media chooses not to cover these victims, but they are most definitely here.

No, the state government’s vaccine mandates do not offer what they have promised you. And in exchange, they take away your basic medical right to informed consent for medical procedures, and they will force the thousands of parents who assert that right to either sacrifice their jobs in order to do homeschooling, or to leave this state that claims it needs them.

Voting Yes on Question  1, to veto the mandate law, is the only way to right this wrong.

Dick Atlee

Southwest Harbor


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