"Frontline: Vaccine War": Wake-Up Call for Anti-Vaccination Activists

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I’ve written about the upcoming Frontline episode, The Vaccine War, a few times already.

Reviews are in the press already. It looks to be an interesting show. Jenny McCarthy, Generation Rescue, the (self-named) National Vaccine Information Center will get some air time. But, they are there to demonstrate the current problem. It is not a program about how they are fighting the good fight.

That said, don’t expect a full body slam. Don’t expect a Respectfully Insolent takedown of those who oppose vaccines.

Because of that, I expect some groups to claim some level of victory from tonight’s show. I expect to hear how they got their message out to a few more families. How they are that much closer to instilling fear and “bringing the vaccine program to its knees”.

The fact of the matter is this: So far, the U.S. hasn’t seen the large outbreaks of diseases like Measles. But if there are in the future, the “autism community” and, specifically, groups like Generation Rescue will carry some blame. Future editions of shows like “Frontline” will be harsh.

One review of the Frontline episode is at Entertainment Weekly: Should kids be vaccinated? ‘Frontline’ and science say ‘yes’; Jenny McCarthy and a lot of selfish Gen X’ers say ‘no’.

Intro paragraph:

Tonight on Frontline, “The Vaccine War” presents both sides of the controversy over whether young children should be vaccinated for diseases such as measles and polio, and in a rare display of TV-news common sense and independence, one side is shown to be — sorry — wrong. Frontline‘s documentary will, I hope, leave any sensible viewer feeling that you’d have be deluded or selfish not to have your kids vaccinated.


What makes this Frontline — “The Vaccine War” is written, produced, and directed by Jon Palfreman — so compelling is seeing the smugness of the vaccine-deniers contrasted with the facts and figures of the historical record and current studies being down about the efficacy of things like the MMR triple shot.

Other reviews are not so harsh on the vaccine rejectionists.

But, this is a wake-up call for the army working to “bring the US vaccine program to its knees”. If successful, don’t expect to avoid blame.

It is a wake-up call. I expect they will hit the snooze alarm.