Need some advice about preparing for a public debate about vaccines?
“If you are invited for a public discussion you must first decide whether or not to accept the invitation.”How to respond to vocal vaccine deniers in public
Don’t do it.
Preparing for a Public Debate About Vaccines
Wait, why wouldn’t you want to have a debate about vaccines?
Remember, a good debate implies that there are two valid sides to the issue. Or at least that one side has some arguments that aren’t based on myths and misinformation.
What are you debating?
That vaccines are safe, with few risks, and that they are necessary.
What’s there to debate?
Don’t allow false balance to create a fake debate.
Think about it.
Should Robert F. Kennedy, Jr be given an opportunity to tell folks his opinions about the “perceived dangers” of vaccines, when those perceived dangers include that vaccines are associated with autism, have been untested on pregnant women, are sold by the CDC, and a lot of other conspiracy type stuff?
“They get the shot. That night they have a fever of 103. They go to sleep, and three months later their brain is gone. This is a holocaust, what this is doing to our country.”Robert F. Kennedy, Jr
Remember, Kennedy is the guy who published the retracted Deadly Immunity article. And he continues to focus on the dangers of mercury in vaccines, even though only a very small minority of flu shots still contain thimerosal and studies have shown that the thimerosal that kids have been exposed to in vaccines is not a danger.
He’s an environmental lawyer who continues to focus on vaccines in the age of climate change and as EPA regulations are being rolled back.
Neither Kennedy nor anyone else in the anti-vaccine movement should be given a stage to scare parents away from vaccinating and protecting their kids.
Update – Fortunately, they weren’t. The “debate” was canceled.
More on Preparing for a Public Debate About Vaccines
- Connecticut Rep. Josh Elliott: Unintentional false balance about vaccines in a legislative forum
- The Modern American Vaccine Debate
- VAXOPEDIA – Anti-Vaxxers Should Be Able to Answer These Questions Correctly
- VAXOPEDIA – Ask 8 Questions Before You Skip a Vaccine
- VAXOPEDIA – False Balance about Vaccines
- VAXOPEDIA – How Do Anti-Vaccine Folks Think?
- How to respond to vocal vaccine deniers in public
- Science deniers use false equivalence to create fake debates
- Avoiding False Balance: Vaccines in the Media
- The So-Called Vaccine Debate: False Balance in The San Diego Union-Tribune
- False Balance in the Media
- False balance about vaccines rises from the grave…again
- The effect of falsely balanced reporting of the autism-vaccine controversy on vaccine safety perceptions and behavioral intentions.
- Another Outbreak of ‘False Balance’?
- Jenny McCarthy’s Vaccination Fear-Mongering and the Cult of False Equivalence
- No need to offer ‘false balance’ to anti-vaxxers
- There is no other side to the vaccine debate
- For Our Family, There Is No Debate
- Vaccines cause autism debate – it only exists in the minds of vaccine deniers
- Facts vs. opinions: Beware of false balance in your reporting
2 thoughts on “Preparing for a Public Debate About Vaccines”
Why do parents refuse to vaccinate their children?
by Doctor Sam Eggertsen of WA State
There are contexts where debate is unavoidable. When a law is proposed, all opinions will be aired as part of the deliberative process, and pro-science legislators need to be prepared to respond. It may come up in a court context. But there certainly is no good reason to have it on a panel that aims to talk about the science.