VOTE: Who’s right on vaccinations – President Obama or Gov. Christie?
Programming note: As part of our Town Hall series, Wednesday, Feb. 18 at 7 p.m., Eric Scott and our news department will air a program entitled “Vaccinations.”
Since vaccinations have eradicated some of the most deadly diseases in recent memory, concern still exists over the link between the rise of autism in children and the possible link to vaccinations.
Most of the concern centers around the fact that New Jersey has the highest rate of autism in the country – an estimated 1 in 45 children.
While I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of there being a link, I’d bet environmental factors play a much bigger part in the equation – such as pollution and toxic waste sites. (This was brought up by an astute listener.)
In any event, I centered on the debate over whether or not to immunize your children against measles, mumps and rubella - and the concern some parents have over the relationship between autism and the vaccinations.
Tonight I’ll devote some time to the debate between President Obama and Gov. Christie, their respective opinions – and whose with whom you’d agree.
For instance, the President, in response to the recent measles outbreak in California, had this to say to NBC’s Savannah Guthrie on February 2nd, just prior to the Superbowl:
"I understand that there are families that in some cases are concerned about the effect of vaccinations. The science is, you know, pretty indisputable. We've looked at this again and again. There is every reason to get vaccinated, but there aren't reasons to not," the president explained.
"You should get your kids vaccinated. It's good for them, but we should be able to get back to the point where measles effectively is not existing in this country."
Gov. Christie, while on a trade mission in Britain – conversely had this to say – essentially breaking with the president. (shocker!!!)
“It’s more important what you think as a parent than what you think as a public official. I also understand that parents need to have some measure of choice in things as well. So that’s the balance that the government has to decide.”
However, this caused a firestorm, prompting a clarification of the governor’s statement by his spokesperson, Kevin Roberts:
To be clear: The Governor believes vaccines are an important public health protection and with a disease like measles there is no question kids should be vaccinated. At the same time different states require different degrees of vaccination, which is why he was calling for balance in which ones government should mandate.
In other words, he's pulling a "Johnny Cash!" "I Walk the Line!"
I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I'd trust the science - and thus far the science points to vaccinating your children - and protecting the population at large against the recurrence of diseases which had previously been eradicated.
With whom do you agree regarding vaccinations? President Obama or Gov. Christie?