“And we have done those things which we ought not to have done. And there is no health in us. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders.”
When I get especially upset with myself or others, I am sometimes driven to the memory of those words from the old General Confessional of my youth. The screeds of the anti-vaxxers drive me to the memory of those words each time with their diatribes in this paper against the lifesaving covid vaccines. Truly “there is no health” in anything they say.
Dr. Russell Blaylock’s latest article in these pages attempts to dissuade parents from the vaccination of their children ages five to 11, as the FDA now authorizes, and the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatricians (AAP) recommend. His article is a prime example that in spreading vaccine misinformation for parents “there is no health” in it.
Dr. Blaylock wrote November 11: “What really concerns many of us is the rush to vaccinate children aged five to 11 with what many of us consider, a deadly “vaccine.” Oh, really? The recommendation of the AAP to parents after the due consideration of this nation’s best pediatricians is clear, stating: “The AAP, recommends COVD-19 vaccination for all children and adolescents five years of age and older who do not have contraindications using a COVID-19 vaccine authorized for use for their age.”
The AAP says parents should vaccinate their young children “as soon as possible.” The AAP is especially concerned for any children behind or due for their immunizations, stating: “Given the importance of routine vaccination and the need for rapid uptake of COVID-19 vaccines, the AAP supports coadministration of routine childhood and adolescent immunizations with COVID-19 vaccines (or vaccination in the days before or after) for children and adolescents who are behind on or due for immunization and/or at increased risk from vaccine-preventable diseases. Pediatricians are encouraged to promote vaccination through ongoing, proactive messaging, as well as to use existing patient visits as an opportunity to promote and provide COVID-19 vaccines.” (AAP.org, Nov. 2, 2021).
Dr. Blaylock, who last put on the white coat as a surgeon over 14 years ago, well before the advent of covid, and who has no degrees in infectious diseases or immunology, dares to say: “These children have an extremely low danger from this virus or variant, but thousands will die” from the vaccine. Well, Doctor, thousands of children have in fact been hospitalized or died from the disease it prevents: covid. There have been more than 8,300 covid related hospitalization of kids five to 11, about A THIRD requiring intensive care; and 94 deaths (and funerals) among five to 11 year-olds according to the CDC. (AP Nov. 2, 2021: “US gives final clearance to COVID-19 shots for kids 5 to 11”). Yes, Dr. Blaylock, the overall risk to young children and adolescents is lower, but the risk for them of severe disease is still very real.
An actual practicing physician, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the CDC and its thousands of supporting physicians and infectious disease researchers, emphasizes the importance of the vaccine for the protection of schools. She states: “There are children in the second grade who have never experienced a normal school year. Pediatric vaccination has the power to help us change all that.” (AP Nov. 2).
Blaylock also says (without citation) that VAERS data show that deaths linked to the covid vaccines “after the first six months of their release exceeds all the deaths linked to other vaccines in the past 30 years.” I have found no such source. Instead, I see the verdict of Reuters which has fact checked the exaggerated claims of deaths by antivaxxers misusing VAERS data: “False. Claims of widespread death due to COVID 19 vaccines reported on VAERS are false. Entries in VAERS do not prove causality.” (Reuters, Aug. 4, 2021). Moreover, the echo rooms of the anti-vaxxers spew out such false or exaggerated death claims from vaccine with abandon on such conspiracy sites as openvaers.com, a site thoroughly debunked. See “Double Check: How Does OpenVAERS Misrepresent Data?” at logically.ai/articles/, Aug. 12, 2021).
Blaylock’s article is full of unsourced, generalized statements such as “experts are warning,” “studies have shown” and “two highly regarded studies,” all of which makes me wonder whether Blaylock is looking at articles generated by other notorious anti-vaxxers. The only person Dr. Blaylock cites is Dr. Peter McCullough, an anti-vaxxer who unfortunately paid a visit to the Hilton in Jackson October 29 to rail against vaccine mandates. For more on Dr. McCullough see: “Lawsuit: Doc Using Old Baylor Affiliation While Dishing COVID Vax Falsehoods” (MedPage Today, August 6, 2021).
Truly anti-vaxxer misinformation by Blaylock and all the others can cost lives and health. There is “no health” in it.
Robert P. Wise is a Northsider.