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Do You Believe Vaccinating Your Children Is Safe?

A new feature to help generate discussion and find answers for Belmont parents.

Moms Talk is a new feature on Belmont Patch that is part of a new initiative on our Patch sites to reach out to moms, dads, parents, caregivers and families.

Belmont Patch invites you and your circle of friends to help build a community of support for mothers and their families right here in Belmont.

Each week in Moms Talk, we will take your questions, help solicit advice from our readers and share solutions.

Moms, dads, grandparents and the diverse families who make up our community will have a new resource for questions about local neighborhood schools, the best pediatricians and the thousands of other issues that arise while raising children.

Moms Talk will also be the place to drop in for a talk about the latest parenting hot topic. Do you know of local moms raising their children in the Tiger Mother's way and is it the best way? Where can we get information on local flu shot clinics for children? How can we help our children's schools weather their budget cutbacks?

This week's question, submitted by a reader, considers why a growing number of educated, middle class parents in places such as Southern California are delaying or foregoing altogether vaccinations for their children.

Q: Do you consider all vaccinations safe? Have you fully vaccinated your children?

Brian March 25, 2011 at 10:53 PM
Educated parents all over the country, not just in Southern California, are delaying or foregoing vaccines for their children. To be exempted from the school vaccination requirements in Massachusetts, the parent or guardian should state "in writing that vaccination or immunization conflicts with his sincere religious beliefs." http://www.malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartI/TitleXII/Chapter76/Section15
David Chase March 26, 2011 at 12:06 AM
Not getting your kids vaccinated is a bad idea. The risks of vaccination are extremely low (and blown out of proportion by fraudulent research and glory hounds). The risks of not getting vaccinated are high, and the more people who choose to avoid vaccination, the higher the risks, and the higher the risks to infants and the immune-compromised who either have not yet been vaccinated, or cannot maintain immunity. It's antisocial to avoid vaccination, and it's not even a very intelligent sort of self-interested antisocial behavior, since the largest risks reside in the fevered imagination of a former Playboy centerfold. I've met a couple of people disabled by polio, from back before the days of the vaccine. Diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough are all killers. As a kid, I knew a girl, disabled because her mother had contracted German measles during her pregnancy. Smallpox is one of the more risky vaccines out there, but without vaccination, it would still be killing people. Everyone over 40, has had the smallpox vaccine; it's the one that leaves the dime-to-quarter-sized scar on your upper arm. And I really think it's a bad idea to encourage fraud on the part of parents.
Bonnie Friedman March 29, 2011 at 04:40 PM
Well put David!

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