I write this in response to the YWN article bashing NYS Senator James Skoufis for “attacking all Jews” in a statement responding to news that a Jew in Rockland County had become infected with polio.
First of all, to clarify: he did not “attack all Jews.” What he said is that there is a history of noncompliance with vaccine schedules in SOME yeshivas in CERTAIN areas. If he would have been talking about kindergartens in Harlem, everyone would call him a racist. He is not. He is stating facts while trying to prevent a large-scale outbreak, r”l.
Now, to all those who think that pediatric vaccine schedules (polio, MMR, TDaP, etc) don’t apply to them: Where is your sense of responsibility? Why is it that we can have outbreak after outbreak of measles, meningitis, etc., and yet there are STILL people who refuse to protect themselves, their children, and their community?
What will you say to Hashem when He holds you responsible for children who were infected, maimed, or killed because of your selfish need to go against the establishment? Will you quote some phony studies? Will you cite some quack doctors or “rabbis”?
The vaccines that are meant to be given to every child are essential to protecting our children from diseases that caused widespread illness, disability, and death in previous generations. Barely 200 years ago, most children didn’t live to adulthood! Polio was a dreaded disease, and simply uttering the word struck fear in the hearts of every parent until about 50 years ago. Through vaccinations, it was eradicated from the United States entirely, yet due to the irresponsibility and selfishness of some people, it is making a comeback.
Measles can be deadly as well and has serious effects if contracted by babies and pregnant women, in particular. Meningitis can cause lifelong brain damage, disability, and death. Chickenpox, if contracted as a child, remains in the body as a latent virus and reemerges in later years as shingles, which can cause severe nerve damage. I could go on and on.
These vaccines exist for a reason!
Obviously, I am not talking about children who cannot receive certain vaccines due to weakened immune systems. But in fact, the existence of these children makes it infinitely more important for everyone else to be protected, so as not to spread these dangerous diseases!
If you are selfish enough to still refuse to give your child the standard schedule of vaccines, then be brave enough to stand up and tell me, tell your children, tell your community, and tell Hashem, “I threw away the opportunity to protect my kids in the name of selfish activism. I knowingly and selfishly endangered countless lives with this choice.”
NOTE: The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of YWN.
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