The debate over vaccines has never been more mainstream than it is right now. If you ask me, this is a debate we should have been having years ago. It’s a shame that it took a measles outbreak to finally get the ridiculous anti-vaccine movement exposed on a national scale. For far too long, this absurd movement has grown and spread throughout Internet forums and blogs, often unchallenged by most mainstream media entities. Until this recent outbreak apparently it wasn’t a “big enough” story to garner national attention.
Thankfully, that’s definitely something that can no longer be said, though that doesn’t mean we’re on the precipice of a huge breakthrough that will finally end the absurd anti-vaccine movement. But at least the issue is finally getting a good amount of mainstream attention and the soundly debunked information these “anti-vaxxers” have been clinging to for years is being exposed for the nonsense that it is.
But what this debate has also done is it’s created some rather strange bedfellows. Politicians who often can’t agree on much of anything, finding themselves on the same side of an issue that’s seen as fairly controversial by many. Though that hasn’t stopped individuals like Sen. Rand Paul or New Jersey Governor Chris Christie from showing off their ignorance about this issue.
To even call this issue a “debate” is a bit ludicrous in and of itself. There isn’t a “debate” on vaccines. A debate implies both sides have valid points to make. I view those who oppose vaccines much in the same way I do those who deny climate change. To deny overwhelmingly accepted science is absurd no matter what the issue.
Which is basically the sentiments Hillary Clinton expressed in a brilliantly worded tweet that slammed those who oppose vaccinating their children:
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) February 3, 2015
That tweet leaves no doubt that the probable 2016 Democratic presidential candidate is clearly on the side of those of us who believe in science and know that vaccines are safe and necessary.
Personally I’m glad that most politicians, both from the left and right, are coming out in support of the science proving that vaccines work and are safe for children. It’s not every day that you have President Obama, Speaker of the House John Boehner, Sen. Lindsey Graham, Sen. Mitch McConnell, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Ben Carson and Hillary Clinton all on the same side of an issue. That fact alone makes the comments from Paul and Christie that much more ridiculous.
I think as this issue moves forward, and more of the misinformation surrounding the “danger” of vaccines gets exposed, any public figure (especially politicians) coming out against vaccinating children is going to highly regret their comments. Especially for individuals like Paul and Christie who have big aspirations heading into 2016, whose comments might really come back to haunt them in a presidential debate.