Will The Real, Silent Majority Please Stand Up – To Oprah and Jenny McCarthy?

From: Science Based Medicine

By Dr. Val Jones

Much to my surprise and delight, my recent blog post about Jenny McCarthy’s  “educational” video was picked up by several other blogs and websites, resulting in a small flood of emails applauding my efforts to expose dangerous pseudoscience. I had braced myself for what I assumed would be an onslaught of hate mail (what else would irrational folks do about a sensible warning message?) and found that instead I received a small number of high-fives from advocates and health organizations committed to cutting through the rhetoric and providing accurate information about vaccines. Perhaps the hate is still in the mail?

I began wondering who is in the majority on the issue of vaccines – those who want to study concerns carefully and accept what the science shows, or those who are fixated on blaming vaccines for diseases they don’t cause, despite all evidence to the contrary.

Since the latter are louder than the former, one does tend to feel as if the world has gone a bit nutty. And when celebrities like Oprah Winfrey promote the unfounded anti-vaccine rhetoric of Jenny McCarthy, sensible parents across the country begin to shudder. But when will this shuddering lead to action?  Read more

4 Replies to “Will The Real, Silent Majority Please Stand Up – To Oprah and Jenny McCarthy?”

  1. Bravo to you for saying what so many of us think and feel. Not every parent of a child on the spectrum rides the coat tails of these people. While i am glad their celebrity gives a louder voice i wander if it hinders instead of helps.

  2. I refuse to have Jenny McCarthy speak for me, “louder than words” or not. This movement that was started in the 1960’s by parents is becoming a joke with her appearing everywhere talking about her indigo child and saying her son is cured. Once he’s an adult and living completely independently in the community, then we can make that call. But for now, we all need to start speaking “louder than Jenny”.

  3. I posted this at Dr. Jones’s article at SBM, but it’s worth posting it here, as well, so that it is clear to any who happen by and think that there are not parents and professionals who disagree with the Jenny-ites:

    I am a mother to three children on the spectrum and I have concluded based on the extensive evidence at hand on vaccines and autism that there is no link between the two. So strongly do I believe that and so much ignorance have I encountered in the classroom regarding the lack of a link, that several months ago I decided it was time to become more vocal. To that end, I began posting comments at Huff, lurking at AoA and GR, reading Orac and this site, and creating my own blogs to stand counterpoint to the overwhelming woo I found.

    A like-minded band of posters from Huff and I banded together and formed a forum, http://www.sciencerocks.proboards.com. My original blog, Detritus, at http://www.kwombles.blogspot.com, took on commenters from Huff and AoA when the censors would not allow things on, and I have recently created Countering Age of Autism at http://www.counteringageofautism.blogspot.com.

    I will not be silent. I will not let Jenny McCarthy, Handley, Olmstead, Stagliano, Kirby or the like attempt to speak for all parents of children with autism nor misrepresent what we do know about autism. Enough. It is my hope that they are in fact the minority, but they cannot be left unchecked and allowed to utter their lies uncountered for parents of newly diagnosed children. They cannot be left uncountered for new parents to hear and fear. I have read too many comments by people who say they would rather risk the disease and possible death than risk autism.

    and our facebook group, Countering AoA: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=91368243169

    We may still be a small group of woo-fighters, but we’re a busy bunch!

    Let’s make a loud noise!

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