Measles outbreak causes outrage

Vaccinations essential to keep children healthy

Rumors and horror stories of vaccine side-effects spread faster than the illnesses themselves. The time to drop silly precautions is now, before it’s too late.

Parents across the U.S. are blaming the ‘anti-vaccination movement’ for the avoidable illnesses thousands of people continue to face every year.

Parents across the U.S. are blaming the ‘anti-vaccination movement’ for the avoidable illnesses thousands of people continue to face every year.

California became the epicenter of the vaccination debate when 39 of the California’s current 107 measles cases were linked to a December outbreak of measles in Disneyland.

The deadly measles virus was declared eradicated by the Center for Disease Control(CDC) in 2000, but the number of cases shot up in 2014.

The U.S. went from fewer than 200 cases in 2013 to an increase of over 600 cases in 2014. Parents immediately pointed fingers at those who did not get their own children vaccinated.

Should unvaccinated students be allowed to attend school? Many Californians responded since the outbreak with a resounding “No.”

In 2013, the CDC recommended 49 doses of 14 vaccines between day of birth and age six, and 69 doses of 16 vaccines between day of birth and age 18, which seems overwhelming, but provides optimum protection.

Gov. Jerry Brown amended laws to allow religious exemption from vaccines in 2012, so it is easier than ever to find a way around those 69 doses of vaccines in California. Parents can now reject certain recommended vaccines for medical, philosophical or religious reasons.

The federal government may not be able to enforce vaccination laws, but it sure feels like California and many other states could do more to ensure the safety of its citizens.

Thanks to modern medicine, vaccines are more effective, better made and studied, with less side effects than ever before. So why are people still so skeptical?

One of the biggest reasons is because of the rumors that fly around, one of the most well established being the link to autism. This rumor and many others, from overwhelmed immune systems to adverse side effects, have been debunked by multiple scientists.

The 1998 research linking autism to vaccines was found to be falsified in 2011. Sound scientific trials have been carried out to disprove just about every myth you have heard.

Coming from an anti-vaccine family, I know what it’s like to regularly be affected by viruses. Every year the flu hit my family hard because my mother believed that the flu vaccine adversely induced the flu.

Knowing now that the flu and many other sicknesses I faced could have been avoided frustrates me. All five of my siblings and I were truant almost every year in high school because of our susceptibility to sicknesses, and I do not want that for anyone else.

It is normal for people to question what is being put in their body. There have been vaccine skeptics since the very first vaccines were administered, but not protecting yourself and your children is one of the most narrow-minded things you can do.

Before you say no to vaccinations, consider the small-scale risks, but do not write them off completely. You can educate yourself by visiting You will find in your research that there is little to worry about.