Correlation, Causation, and Preventable Diseases

By: Wednesday March 26, 2014 7:10 pm

The purpose of this post is not to rehash the debate, but to point out the impact of the anti-vaxxer movement, which is beginning to show alarming results.

 

‘He Said/She Said’ Journalism: A Growing Threat to Public Health

By: Sunday August 4, 2013 6:00 pm

The recent announcement that actress Jenny McCarthy is replacing Elisabeth Hasselbeck on the popular ABC morning talk show The View has sparked an intense wave of backlash.

The problem is that after McCarthy’s son was diagnosed with autism, she became convinced it was because of the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, and over the last several years she has reinvented herself as the leading celebrity voice of the anti-vaccine movement. Although the study that originally sparked the MMR vaccine-childhood autism panic has since been completely discredited, many parents have stopped vaccinating their children, in part because of anti-vaccine advocacy carried out by McCarthy and others. As a result, measles cases have spiked in recent years.

Late Night: This Wouldn’t Be Happening if Our Schools Still Taught Math and Science

By: Sunday June 30, 2013 8:00 pm

Our public schools no longer teach math and science very well, apparently for fear of angering religiously militant parents, and the religiously oriented private schools have in many cases been forbidden from doing so. We may have a lot of verbally adept and linguistically clever students, but not many who understand even the core principles of mathematics, much less the sciences. We see it in our journalism, especially those sectors covering finance and science, and we see it in the rise in the use of new-agey nostrums even in modern hospitals whose administrators know better but still cynically seek the dollars fake medicine can bring.

FDL Movie Night: “The Greater Good”

By: Monday April 29, 2013 4:59 pm

Would you sacrifice your child’s health or life for the greater good? That is the question that arises in tonight’s film The Greater Good, directed, produced, and written by tonight’s guests Leslie Manookian and Kendall Nelson. The Greater Good takes a step back from the recent divisiveness discussing the issue’s complexity and nuances, bringing the bigger picture into focus through the stories of three families affected by vaccinations, with experts on both sides and in the middle of the vaccination debate.

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