Should the government mandatevaccines?I. Introduction:”Should the government mandate vaccines?”is a controversial question that is being asked by many during the past fewdecades. The problem with vaccines is that many people believe that vaccines domore harm than good. Vaccines are required for children before they enter the publicschool system. Vaccines are not required by the federal government, but eachstate has their own requirements. Even though there are several exemptions,such as religious and medical exemptions, exemptions are hard to obtain andcause problems when epidemics arise.
If an epidemic is going on, children whodo not have a certain immunization, will be kept away from schools, and theywill be missing out on learning, sometimes up to a month.In one research poll, people were asked onwhether or not vaccines should be required for children. The conclusion came tobe that: Overall,68% of U.S. adults say childhood vaccinations should be required, while 30% sayparents should be able to decide.
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Among all age groups, young adults are morelikely to say vaccinating children should be a parental choice. Some 41% of 18-to 29-year-olds say parents should be able to decide whether or not their childgets vaccinated; only 20% of adults 65 or older echo this opinion. (Anderson,2015)Itis observable that this issue is controversial since the younger generationsare voicing that vaccinations should be a choice and not required by the law orstate.
For example, in Massachusetts, before preschool, children need 1-4 dosesof Hib, 4 doses of DTaP, 3 doses of Polio, 3 doses of Hepatitis B, 1 dose ofMMR, and 1 dose of Varicella. By the time children enter college inMassachusetts, a person would have received 1 dose of Tdap, 3 doses of HepatitisB, 2 doses of MMR, 2 doses of Varicella, 1 dose of Meningococcal, 4 doses ofpolio, along with other vaccines, such as the influenza vaccine. The amount ofvaccines required demonstrates that one’s immune system has to deal with somany triggers that can greatly affect their health in the first eighteen yearsof his or her life by either benefiting or hurting them. In the United States,there are vaccines which are recommended to take during the childhood yearsthat are said to protect against 15 separate diseases. These diseases includechickenpox, diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Hib, HPV, influenza, Japaneseencephalitis, measles, meningococcal, mumps, pertussis, pneumococcal, polio,rabies, rotavirus, shingles, tetanus, tuberculosis, typhoid fever, and yellowfever. First, one might ask what vaccinesare in the first place and how do they work. The Center for Disease Controlstates that:Vaccineshelp develop immunity by imitating an infection. This type of infection,however, does not cause illness, but it does cause the immune system to produceT-lymphocytes and antibodies.
Sometimes, after getting a vaccine, the imitationinfection can cause minor symptoms, such as fever. Such minor symptoms arenormal and should be expected as the body builds immunity. (“Understanding howVaccines Work” , 2013)The”infection” caused is an imitation of the disease, and once that’s gone, aperson’s body contains memory cells, that will prevent future diseases fromtaking over, since their body will be able to work and fight the actualdisease. The earliest history of diseasesthat have vaccines now was in 400 BC. In his writings, Hippocrates writes aboutmumps, diphtheria, epidemic jaundice, and other diseases that later led tovaccines.
In 1798, Edward Jenner observed that one can be protected from smallpox by producing immunity to the disease through the vaccination of the virus.He discovered this to be true when he was able to inject James Phipps, aneight-year-old, with the cowpox, and he survived. After the 1790s, people suchas Louis Pasteur, Robert Koch, Alexandre Yersin, Joseph Kinyoun, and so manyothers made new discoveries and research that led to the development of themultiple vaccines out in the world today. Through their efforts, they were ableto save millions of lives which could have been lost due to many diseaseepidemics that have occurred. II. Opposing Viewpoints:A.Yes, the government should mandate vaccines1. Vaccines can help save a child’s life Vaccines can help save a child’slife and prevent the spread of illnesses.
According to the American Academy ofPediatrics, “most childhood vaccines are 90% to 99% effective in preventingdisease… and it is rare for side effects to be serious.” Many diseases that canbe prevented though vaccines have serious illnesses and complications if notimmunized. These complications include “amputation of an arm or leg, paralysisof limbs, hearing loss, convulsions, brain damage, and death” (“Importance ofVaccines”, 2016). It is important to understand that the risks of not beingimmunized are greater than the small complications one might get if they getvaccinated. Before vaccines, there was a high child mortality, but that haschanged once developing medicine has discovered the effects of vaccines.Immunizations not only keep a child safe, but it also keeps the family,friends, and colleagues from becoming ill from a certain outbreak. 2. Adverse reactions to vaccines areextremely rare Adverse reactions to vaccines areextremely rare and in some studies, there is no evidence that there even areadverse reactions.
Many people worry that the schedule set for the vaccinesinterferes with the development of the children, but numerous studies, haveshowed no evidence that “the U.S. childhood immunization schedule is linked toautoimmune diseases, asthma, hypersensitivity, seizures, child developmental disorders,learning or developmental disorders, or attention deficit or disruptivedisorders” (Hinshaw, 2013). One study performed on 715,484 children who havereceived the MMRV or MMR+V between the age of four to six revealed that afterten days of receiving the vaccine, “that there would only be 1 febrile seizurefor every 15?500 doses of MMRV or 1 febrile seizure for every 18?000 doses MMR+ V administered” (Klein, 2012). These febrile seizures are very rare, and thereason why the happen is because some children’s immune systems have a hardertime adjusting to the “disease” so the body needs to fight it off somehowbefore creating the memory that will then be able to fight the actual disease.More importantly, vaccines strengthen the immune system, so one’s body will beable to fight a certain disease. According to Sanjay Gupta (2017), ChiefMedical Correspondent for CNN and practicing neurosurgeon, “you are 100times more likely to be struck by lightning than to have a serious allergicreaction to the vaccine that protects you against measles.
“3. Vaccines have destroyed many diseases Vaccines have destroyed many diseaseand immunizations are able to save around nine million lives each year. Vaccinescan provide protection against diseases that can be prevented by vaccines. Moredeaths could be prevented, but people either do not want to be vaccinates orthey do not have the ability to get them. Small pox and rinderpest (virus whichinfected cattle) have been already eradicated completely.
Polio,dracunculiasis, yaws, and malaria have been almost eradicated globally. Overtime, it is expected that the most majority of disease will be eradicated orpreventable through immunizations. 4.Vaccines are safe In continuation, it is important forpeople to understand that vaccines are effective, safe, and most of the timesharmless, according to research.
Vaccines go through many trials. Allvaccines undergo long and careful review by scientists, doctors, and thefederal government to make sure they are safe. Organizations such as theAmerican Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Family Physicians, andthe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention all strongly support protectingchildren with recommended vaccinations. (“Importance of Vaccines”, 2016)Vaccinationsseem to be the answer to preventing most diseases, even though, in this world,many people still die from diseases that they were immunized for. B.No, the government should not mandate vaccines1. Vaccines are known to cause severe sideeffects, and even death Even though vaccines are approved manyorganizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Centers forDisease Control, vaccines are known to cause severe side effects, and evendeath.
“According to the CDC, all vaccines carry a risk of a life-threateningallergic reaction (anaphylaxis) in about one per million children” (VaccinesProCon, 2017). Vaccines are known to cause brain damage, neurological damage,immune system damage, severe allergic reactions, seizures, convulsions,Guillain-Barre Syndrome, sensory impairments, bowel and blood disorders,diabetes, autism, and even death (“Wondering About the Safety”, 2017). Thereare even many doctors who believe that the explanation for many problems arethat vaccines are the cause. Doctor Kenneth Aitken, a British specialist onautism states that “When I was training, one in 2,500 children wereautistic. Now it is one in 250. At the moment, the only logical explanationfor this is MMR” (Ghafour, 2002). Even a doctor who specializes withautistic persons believes that vaccines are the cause to this outbreak ofautism. It seems that the government, organizations, and medics are treatingdiseases with vaccines to prevent them, while at the same time, they arecausing other major, irreversible problems.
It is not right for a child to dieby getting immunized. It definitely defeats the purpose of strengthening one’simmune system if they are already dead.2. The government should not get medicallyinvolved into people’s private lives A great majority of people believesthat the government should not interfere with medical decisions when it comesdown to private, medical decisions. This is an invasion of privacy.
Thegovernment should not mandate certain vaccinations which are required forchildren in order for them to be able to go to school. Parents should be ableto make medical decisions for their children. This takes away from one’s rightto do whatever they choose with his or her own body.
If the government mandatesvaccines, people no longer have power over what goes into their bodies. Co-founder of National Vaccine InformationCenter, Barbara Low Fisher, stated, “If the State can tag, track down andforce citizens against their will to be injected with biological products ofknown and unknown toxicity today, there will be no limit on which individualfreedoms the State can take away in the name of the greater good tomorrow”(“Barbara Speaks Out”, 2017). 3.Vaccine contains are made from corrupt ingredients Some vaccines are made from corruptand unsafe ingredients. Some of the ingredients are considered corrupt becausethey interfere with people’s beliefs and religions. In the 1960s, vaccines weremade in cells of two fetuses who were voluntarily aborted. Here, two lives wereended so they could save many others, but the fetuses had no choice in this.
Their lives were taken away involuntarily. For Christians, and some otherreligions, it is wrong to take someone’s life, and in this case, that is whathappened. ProCon.org also has some other examples of these corrupt ingredients.
Somevaccines for DTaP, Hep A, RV, Hib, HPV, IPV, flu, MMR, and chicken pox are madeusing animal products like chicken eggs, bovine casein, insect cells, CockerSpaniel cells, pig gelatin, and cells from African Green monkeys, making thosevaccines conflict with some vegetarian and vegan philosophies. Others considerit problematic that some vaccines are produced using human albumin, a bloodplasma protein. (Vaccines ProCon, 2017)Thereare as well some ingredients that make vaccines unsafe.
These ingredients areeither used for the preparation or the preservation of vaccines. “Merthiolate(Thimerossal), bensethonium chloride, methyl paraben, phenol red, pyridine,ethylene alcohol, and ethylene chlorohydrin” (Mason, 1971) are known to causesickening side effects which can alter one’s health.4.Many vaccines mandatory today are for diseases that areno longer an epidemic Many vaccines given today are fordiseases that are not of high risk for epidemic diseases. For example, thechicken pox “can be treated with acetaminophen, cool compresses, and calaminelotion.
The measles… can be treated with rest and fluids. Rubella… can betreated with acetaminophen. Rotavirus treatment is hydration and probiotics”(Vaccines ProCon, 2017). Parents should not be forced to vaccinate theirchildren, especially for diseases that can be treated with simple medicationsand rest. Sometimes vaccines have greater side effects than the symptoms forchicken pox, measles, rubella, and rotavirus. One should not have to go throughall the pain for vaccines that are not even worth it, and that can put one’simmune system at greater risks. III. Analysis: Looking through the opposingviewpoints, it is important to see that vaccines are a controversial topic thatkeeps people wondering what is better.
To conclude, it came to that vaccines canhelp save a child’s life, as well as causing severe side effects and even death,making the adverse reactions to vaccines not so rare after all. A vaccine cannotbe safe if it contains corrupt and unhealthy ingredients, and a vaccine should definitelynot be used if it’s no longer needed. Finally, the government should not be ableto get medically involved in people’s medical lives, since that takes away fromfreedom to do whatever with one’s body.For some people, benefits outweigh therisks, and vice versa. It is very obvious that vaccines have a lot of negativesand that is why parents would not want their children to be vaccinated, butthen it is not the parent’s choice if the state mandates the certain vaccinesin order for a child to be able to enter a school. Just as there are positivesto vaccines, there are also negatives. It is important to understand who ismaking the policy and based on which structures is the vaccine policyformulated on.
Each state makes its own immunization policy; therefore, itdifferentiates from state to state. These policies do not only have to apply tochildren who go to public schools and colleges, but to private schools as well.The vaccine policy is formulated based on the idea that “immunization is one ofthe most cost-effective means of public health promotion and diseaseprevention… State laws mandating vaccines are one strategy to controlvaccine-preventable diseases” (“Policy and Position”, 2017). The benefiters ofthis policy are everyone who gets the vaccinations, and become immune to thedisease; except those who become unlucky with severe symptoms and sometimeseven death.
The benefiters of this policy can also be the makers of thevaccines and the doctors as well. Vaccines cost a lot of money, and since theyare mandate, people are “forced” to pay and get immunized. In the United States, the sates havethe power in the vaccine policy. They mandate vaccinations, when to get them,and which ones.
Parents have no power, unless they are able to get a medical orreligious exemption. IV. Policy Prescription: A possible solution to the policyproblem should be that only the very important vaccines should be mandated, andif they have corrupt materials that go against one’s beliefs and lifestyle,they should be able to be exempt from them. Vaccines that are for diseases thatcan easily be treated with medications should be optional, so people would nothave to get them for no reason. Since the state is in charge, each state shouldmake the vaccine policy less mandatory and more optional. People should be ableto chose what they want to put into their own bodies or in the bodies of theirchildren.
The state should not have control over people’s bodies, therefore,people should not be “forced” to get vaccinations just so they could go toschool or work in a certain area. Restructuring would be of benefit. The stateshould not be mandating vaccines since vaccines are so controversial. Vaccinesshould be a person’s personal choice, not the government’s.
If a person believesthat he or she needs a vaccine, the person herself or himself should have the powerto choose whether he or she will get it. The only time the government should interfereand mandate vaccinations, should only be under the condition that there is a currentepidemic.