We know that there is no science to support the anti-vaccine movement.
History isn’t on their side either.
So what’s left?
How do they push misinformation and myths about vaccines to scare parents away from vaccinating and protecting their kids?
Slogans of the Anti-Vaccine Movement
In addition to their celebrities and a relative handful of ‘experts,’ the modern antivaccine movement makes effective use of very catchy slogans to scare people away from getting educated about vaccines and vaccinating their kids.
If there is a RISK, there must be a CHOICE.
This is one of the more recent and also one of the more powerful slogans that we have seen. It implies that the choice over skipping or delaying vaccines is being taken away and that the only risk comes from the vaccines themselves.
But like most slogans used as propaganda tools, there is little behind it.
Parents nearly always have a choice on whether or not to vaccinate their kids, even if they live in a state without non-medical exceptions.
Vaccine mandates are laws that say you must be fully vaccinated to attend school. Instead of homeschooling their intentionally unvaccinated kids, some parents think that they must have even more choices though.
In addition to overestimating the risks from vaccines, these folks greatly underestimate the risks of getting a vaccine-preventable disease from skipping vaccines, both to their own kids and to the rest of us in the community.
They are simply increasing our risk and limiting our choices to keep our own kids safe and healthy.
You can always get Vaccinated, but you can never get Unvaccinated.
This slogan is likely a surprise to all of the folks who push (sell) regimens that claim to detox kids of their vaccines, or more specifically, all of the “toxins, poisons, and chemicals” that were supposedly in the vaccines they got.
It is also a sad reminder to all of those families who skipped or delayed a vaccine a little too long – long enough for their child to get a life-threatening vaccine-preventable disease.
This slogan really just highlights the fact that anti-vaccine do not really understand the risks of delaying or skipping vaccines. That’s despite the fact that studies have shown that following a non-standard, parent-selected, delayed protection vaccine schedule simply puts kids at risk for vaccine-preventable diseases, without any benefits of fewer side effects.
And for the record, you can get unvaccinated. It is one of the reasons that herd immunity is so important. Just ask the parents of any child who has had to have chemotherapy or a bone marrow transplant and is now immunosuppressed.
Green Our Vaccines.
Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey led the “Green Our Vaccines” rally back in 2008.
Although they always claimed they were not anti-vaccine, they helped pushed the idea that vaccines were full of toxins.
Vaccine ingredients are safe.
Too many, Too soon.
Jenny McCarthy can likely also be credited with creating with idea that kids get too many vaccines at too early an age.
Our kids certainly do get more vaccines than they did in the 1970s and 80s, but that simply means more protection from vaccine-preventable diseases that used to be killers, like Haemophilus influenzae type b and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Vaccination is not Immunization.
This idea is pushed by a chiropractor, who also talks about “pure blood.”
If you believe that vaccination is not immunization, then how did vaccines help eradicate smallpox and how are they helping to eliminate and control other vaccine preventable diseases, like polio, measles, and rubella, etc.
And that’s the whole point. Many anti-vaccine folks don’t really believe that vaccines work. That helps them justify their decision to skip or delay vaccinating their kids.
Even if you thought that vaccines had too many side effects, if you also admitted that they worked to protect your kids, then your anti-vaccine views would likely produce a high level of cognitive dissonance. So instead you cling to these types of slogans. And if your kid does get a vaccine-preventable disease, you’ll still feel okay, because you will blame it on shedding from someone who just got vaccinated.
I’m not anti-vaccine, I’m pro-safe vaccine
The problem with this slogan, and in general, using it as an anti-vaccine argument, is that vaccines are safe. They are not 100% safe, but no one claims that they are.
Serious side effects from vaccines are very rare though.
People who rally against already safe vaccines, claiming that they say are full of ‘toxins’ and wanting even safer vaccines before they will vaccinate their kids, are not really pro-vaccine.
Neither are any of the folks who push these slogans, all of which are pure anti-vaccine propaganda.
What to Know About the Slogans of the Anti-Vaccine Movement
Catchy slogans are one of the ways that the anti-vaccine movement uses to push misinformation about vaccines.
More About Slogans of the Anti-Vaccine Movement
- Anti-vaccine slogan being pushed – close but no cigar
- Green Our Vaccines: science, slogan or smoke screen?
- Antivax 101: Tactics and Tropes of the Antivaccine Movement
- 15 Common Anti-Vaccine Arguments and Why They are a Load of Crap
- Battling misinformed consent: How should we respond to the anti-vaccine movement?
- Not anti-vaccine, except when he is anti-vaccine
- Toxic myths about vaccines
- What does “anti-vaccine” really mean?
- The difference between being antivaccine and “pro-safe vaccine,” explained using J.B. Handley
- Is NVIC Anti-Vaccine?
- The Greater Good: Pure, unadulterated anti-vaccine propaganda masquerading as a “balanced” documentary