May 5, 2017

"Anti-vaccine activists spark a state’s worst measles outbreak in decades."

An interestingly sanitized headline for a WaPo article that is all about the low acceptance of vaccination among Somali immigrants.

62 comments:

MadisonMan said...

Who knew Somali immigrants were such activists about Vaccines!!

I Callahan said...

Professor,

Is it sanitized? That's pretty much exactly what happened.

Dave from Minnesota said...

The liberal cartoonist for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune did a cartoon on this. But he showed the anti-vaccine person being a white male. Yes, the bizarre world of the left where you actually change the facts of the issue at hand to bash white males.

Sydney said...

Is it sanitized? That's pretty much exactly what happened.

In reading the article, it seemed the Somali-American community already had an anti-vaccine stance and brought in the activists to confirm their beliefs. It didn't seem like they were persuaded by American anti-vaccine activists to forego vaccines.

Bay Area Guy said...

It's racist to require Somali immigrants to get vaccinated, because we must embrace their culture and not impose our culture and our science and our medicine on them.

YoungHegelian said...

I'm really suspicious that the explanation given to the credulous WaPo, i.e. fears that the vaccines cause autism, is the sanitized explanation that the more assimilated Somali community spokesmen peddle to us non-Muslim, non-Somali outsiders.

I suspect that an explanation like this is closer to what's really going on in the minds of the Somali community. The Somalis probably learned long ago that telling your doctor that you don't like vaccines because of what you learned from that brilliant Hollywood scientist, Jenny McCarty, goes down better than telling him that your imam told you the kafir are trying sterilize all the Muslims.

tcrosse said...

Last I looked there was no shortage of white anti-vaxxers in the Twin Cities. You'll find them wandering the aisles at Whole Foods.

Mary Beth said...

Proof that our past immigration policy has been too lax: Andrew Wakefield lives in Texas now.

Virgil Hilts said...

The autism rate is say 1 out of 150 (which I think is lower than estimates) so that out of 4,000,000 toddlers of the same age, you would expect 27,000 of them to develop autism. If all of them get the measles vaccine and the timing of autism onset is random, then you would expect as a matter of probability that at least many hundreds (if not more) of children who develop autism each year will do so very shortly after they have been vaccinated. Is that really so hard for these anti-vac morons to understand?

Sydney said...

According to this article, the MMR vaccine was accepted in the community until 2008, when Somali immigrants started noticing that more of their children were in special classes at school for autism. They did online research and figured it was caused by the MMR vaccine. After all, they weren't immunized universally against MMR in their own country, and they didn't even have a word for autism in their language. In the past 20 or so years we have broadly expanded the definition of autism, so it isn't surprising they would see an uptick in the number of kids labelled as such. So the medical community may be in some way responsible for the rejection of the MMR vaccine by the Somali's.

Original Mike said...

Vaccination should be a requirement for immigration.

Gahrie said...

Vaccination should be a requirement for immigration.

And should be done immediately, at the point of entry.

rhhardin said...

When I was a kid there was no outbreak, just measles.

cubanbob said...

Deport them as a public health menace. They will suddenly have a change of opinion.

Original Mike said...

"And should be done immediately, at the point of entry."

Absolutely.

rhhardin said...

We get back at the Somali culture by imposing chemtrails on them.

James Lileks said...

The liberal cartoonist for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune did a cartoon on this. But he showed the anti-vaccine person being a white male. Yes, the bizarre world of the left where you actually change the facts of the issue at hand to bash white males.

Well, the anti-vaxxer who showed up to "inform" the community was a white male, so perhaps that might have been what the cartoonist was referring to.

gspencer said...

Yet again, Muslims causing troubles in the Western world. And what does the left do, this time the WP - it makes excuses for them.

Islam has gotta be the most fu_ked-up religion/political system that's ever come along.

And the left is bound and determined to give us more of it.

Dave from Minnesota said...

Thank you for the clarification Mr Lileks. I did not know that part of the story.

Larry J said...

Perhaps it's time to reconsider quarantine policies. When I visited the Mediterranean several years ago, I learned about how quarantines came about. Sailors traveling from port to port were spreading all sorts of diseases, so many cities implemented a 40 day quarantine isolation. A ship could dock but no one was allowed to enter or leave for 40 days.

"The word "quarantine" originates from the Venetian dialect form of the Italian quaranta giorni, meaning 'forty days'. This is due to the 40-day isolation of ships and people before entering the city of Dubrovnik in Croatia. This was practiced as a measure of disease prevention related to the Black Death. Between 1348 and 1359, the Black Death wiped out an estimated 30% of Europe's population, and a significant percentage of Asia's population. The original document from 1377, which is kept in the Archives of Dubrovnik, states that before entering the city, newcomers had to spend 30 days (a trentine) in a restricted place (originally nearby islands) waiting to see whether the symptoms of Black Death would develop. Later, isolation was prolonged to 40 days and was called quarantine."

Source

Ann Althouse said...

I had measles. Every kid I knew growing up, I think, had measles. Measles, chicken pox... it was like having badly skinned knees and lots of splinters and mosquito bites. It was what we did. It was who we were.

mockturtle said...

rhhardin recalls: When I was a kid there was no outbreak, just measles.

Yep. My brother and I had measles, mumps and chicken pox.

Peter said...

According to the CDC,

* As many as one out of every 20 children with measles gets pneumonia, the most common cause of death from measles in young children.

* About one child out of every 1,000 who get measles will develop encephalitis (swelling of the brain) that can lead to convulsions and can leave the child deaf or with intellectual disability.

* For every 1,000 children who get measles, one or two will die from it.
Measles may cause pregnant woman to give birth prematurely, or have a low-birth-weight baby.

Which is why it's unfortunate that our public health apparat has become so squeamish about using quarantine as a means to protect public health.

Vaccines are always less than 100% effective, which is why even those who have been vaccinated are at risk when there's an outbreak.

And since vaccines may be low-risk but are seldom zero-risk, their use presents a sort of prisoner's dilemma in that the best solution for any individual will always be if everyone else but you is vaccinated.

YoungHegelian said...

Measles is apparently one of the most contagious human diseases, & apparently the most contagious of the group of "childhood" diseases.

Measles is one of the most contagious of all infectious diseases; approximately 9 out of 10 susceptible persons with close contact to a measles patient will develop measles. The virus is transmitted by direct contact with infectious droplets or by airborne spread when an infected person breathes, coughs, or sneezes. Measles virus can remain infectious in the air for up to two hours after an infected person leaves an area.

Source

Krumhorn said...

Just another validation of the process of natural selection that, over the great span of time, brought us out of the trees and caves and into Starbucks ordering a Triple, Venti, Soy, No Foam Latte.

- Krumhorn

exiledonmainstreet said...

Krumhorn, I spotted Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer going into a Starbucks just a few weeks ago.

Bruce Hayden said...

@Peter - depending on herd immunity. Turns out my partner's mother was an anti-Vaxer from way back, and her kids didn't get vaxinated until much later in life. Herd imminent ty protected them. Partner has had Shingles in recent years, but hopefully the vaccine from that (which she, of course, reacted badly to it) will help in the future.

Supposedly a true story - a couple decades ago, there was a whooping cough outbreak in Boulder, CO, one of the most highly educated places in the country. Parents were apparently worried about the vaccine causing autism (should have worried about that with their assortative mating, which is very likely much more a cause of autism). So, they figured that herd immunity would protect their kids, and opted out of immunizing them for it. Unfortunately, they lost their bets, the percentage of kids vaccinated dropped too low (thanks to all the concerned, highly educated, parents opting their kids out), the disease swept through a couple elementary schools, and kids died.

This is one of those places where my partner and I cannot have a rational discussion. She just doesn't understand my argument that for many of these childhood diseases, vaccination is a public health issue, and depending on herd immunity is free riding.

Which brings up a strange association. I was sitting here thinking that we knew kids with polio, and she is enough younger, that she probably did not. Then, I got almost a whiff of chlorine, reminding me of seeing one of those neighbor kids, in braces, from polio, at the neighborhood pool. Probably 60 years ago now. Memory is a weird thing.

Balfegor said...

I . . . I thought we required immigrants to get vaccinations already. According to the State Department:

United States immigration law requires immigrant visa applicants to obtain certain vaccinations (listed below) prior to the issuance of an immigrant visa. Panel physicians who conduct medical examinations of immigrant visa applicants are required to verify that immigrant visa applicants have met the vaccination requirements, or that it is medically inappropriate for the visa applicant to receive one or more of the listed vaccinations:

Hepatitis A
Hepatitis B
Influenza
Influenza type b (Hib)
Measles
Meningococcal
Mumps
Pneumococcal
Pertussis
Polio
Rotavirus
Rubella
Tetanus and diphtheria toxoids
Varicella

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Vaccination should be a requirement for immigration.

And should be done immediately, at the point of entry.


It is. All immigrants need firm I-693. I assume these are children born in the US.

Rabel said...

Required fir immigrants.

Recommended for refugees.

Jim Gust said...

Following up on Dave from Minnesota and James Lileks, that cartoon had about 10 kids with measles, only one of whom was possibly somali. All the rest were white or hispanic.

So the cartoon really was alternate facts.

Rabel said...

fir = for

Jim Gust said...

See for yourself: http://www.startribune.com/opinion/

Balfegor said...

Re: Rabel --

Ah, I see -- we ought to tighten up the standards on refugees, then, since they can transmit disease like any other human.

And the problem in the Somali immigrant community is not the first generation, I guess, but their American children, who have not been immunized.

Krumhorn said...

Krumhorn, I spotted Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer going into a Starbucks just a few weeks ago.

Was he a big hairy ape of a man? I mean to ask, did his knuckles drag a bit over the threshold as he lumbered through the door to wait in line to hit on the barista?

I know just the guy you mean! It must have been that Federal judge in Seattle, Robart, who took it upon himself to ensure that our borders remain open to all sorts of 3rd world folks with odd ideas, our safety not being among them.

- Krumhorn

Fernandinande said...

The government is creating a comprehensive DNA database for every man, woman, and child born since the 1950s, and the genetic data has been secretly collected during measles inoculations.

Those millions of vaccinated people have been 'tagged' with a unique genetic variant of the virus. The tagging and genetic record-keeping has been carried out as part of Operation Paper Clip, a secret government project aimed at creating an alien-human hybrid.

I'm not allowed to say any more.

Fernandinande said...

When I was a kid, we were so poor that I got one measle.

Fernandinande said...

And one chicken pock.

Fernandinande said...

Couldn't afford a mump, though.

YoungHegelian said...

What I remember as being awful about measles was the eruption of the Koplik spots in my mouth. I remember that they made all food that I had to chew taste horrible. I also remember the doctor propping open my cheek with a tongue depressor so that a new nurse could see what they looked like for future reference.

Not the first nor the last time I've been used as a medical crash-test dummy.

Bay Area Guy said...

AA sez:

I had measles. Every kid I knew growing up, I think, had measles. Measles, chicken pox... it was like having badly skinned knees and lots of splinters and mosquito bites. It was what we did. It was who we were.

I totally buy this. I remember getting chicken pox in 9th Grade, and basically being quarantined in my room for 7 days, but nobody, I mean nobody, freaked out about it.

We have a culture that freaks out about common diseases and freaks about taking vaccines, and freaks when folks don't take vaccines!

tcrosse said...

When I was a kid, we were so poor that I got one measle.

At least it wasn't a herpe.

TosaGuy said...

"When I was a kid, we were so poor that I got one measle."

Conversely, Magic Johnson has so much money that he is down to one Aid.

Hagar said...

I had to be vaccinated against all those things before I left "the old country," so they loaded them all up in two large syringes and gave them to me all at once, one shot in each upper arm. It hurt for quite a while.

I think I remember the same thing from the army when they lost our shot records, or some such thing. I have a memory of the guy in front of me getting hit simultaneously from both sides while walking up to get shot and fainting dead away flat on his face.

Hagar said...

I think the army term for this was "roundhouse shots." I think the army syringes were smaller and the needles thinner than the ones in Oslo though.

Hagar said...

New Mexican military deployed to the Middle East have to show proof of vaccination against bubonic plague so that the will not bring plague infection to that area.

Balfegor said...

Re: Hagar:

New Mexican military deployed to the Middle East have to show proof of vaccination against bubonic plague so that the will not bring plague infection to that area.

Seeing how UN military deployed to Haiti caused a cholera epidemic that has killed almost 10,000 people so far, that is not an unreasonable precaution.

Big Mike said...

I can't see the article because it's behind a paywall. But if, as I gather, the Somalis don't want the vaccination part of Western medicine maybe they shouldn't be allowed to take advantage of Western medicine (doctors, hospitals) when their kids get sick. We're way too soft-hearted when people know better but do wrong anyway.

Drago said...

Krumhorn: "It must have been that Federal judge in Seattle, Robart, who took it upon himself to ensure that our borders remain open to all sorts of 3rd world folks with odd ideas, our safety not being among them."

Uh oh. Now you've done it.

There is no way "lifelong republican" Chuck is going to allow that dig against "brilliant" and "impeccable" Judge Robart to go unpunished.

I fear for your safety and strongly recommend tripling up on the shirts to mitigate the inevitable patented Chuckie "nipple torque".

Many a campfire song has been composed and sung in remembrance of this "lifelong republican" and his antics.

The Toothless Revolutionary said...

This must really make Supreme Leader Trump's orange head spin. He hates immigrants AND he hates vaccines! Who knew there would be an event that would put him on both sides of an issue?

Oh, that's right. He's on both sides of every issue.

Carry on, Stockholm Syndromers.

n.n said...

The problem seems to be the anti-nativists that forced immigration reform, while [class] diversitists simultaneously discourage assimilation. Also, Obama's CAIR, that saw the rate of immigration exceed the rate of assimilation and integration, presumably as a policy to manage demographic replacement of Americans lost in abortion chambers, because half the population believe in the fantasy of spontaneous human conception (a.k.a. "viability") and have normalized selective-child under their twilight faith and Pro-Choice quasi-religious doctrine.

n.n said...

So, half the population believes in spontaneous human conception. Half the population believes in the prophecy of Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming based on inference, extrapolation, and models (i.e. hypotheses). Half the population believe that Heather has two mommies or two fathers. At least half the population believes that vaccines are magical elixirs that prevent disease, and not only prevent but with no side-effects (e.g. inflammation, toxicity). I guess it's too much to explain to people that vaccines are part of a risk management protocol. Probably for the same reason that science education has been deprecated by sex education, scientific mysticism, and social activism.

EMyrt said...

I'm very pro-vaccine for many reasons.
My mom nearly died at 6 days old in the 1920s from measles. All they could do was pray and apply wet cloths for the fever. I'm sure in contributed to her deafness in her 80s.
I had measles in 1960 while my mom was birthing my sister. I was in quarantine at my grandparents. Koplik spots, 105 degree fever, delirium. All they could do was keep me cool with ice water until the fever broke. They gave my younger bro gamma globulin. Not a trivial disease, although your genetic mileage may have varied.
My mother was an RN during WWII and saw the full range of extant infections. She made sure we got all the vaccines as soon as they were approved.
I remember standing in line for the Salk polio shot, and then a few years later for the Sabin vaccine on sugar cubes. I have a smallpox vaccine scar. My parents grew up in Chicago and Detroit and saw childhood friends die or become paralyzed during the polio epidemics.
I was in home quarantine, thanks to mom being an RN, for scarlet fever. A million units of penicillin either saved my life or prevented rheumatic heart damage. An ex-boyfriend nearly died of diphtheria.
The younger folks have no idea what it was like, so they can kid themselves that the diseases are less risky than the vaccines.

stlcdr said...

Lack of integration into American culture.

While that may not be the panecea it is intended, the fact that a lot of these foreign cultures leave them vulnerable to, unfortunately, the vultures of American culture.

Presumably, immigrants and refugees come to the US because they want to escape the failing of their original culture or life. It's not always the case, but on the whole this should be true. Why isolate yourself and maintain the original culture? At most, you bring the best bits of your own culture to the US and leave the bad behind. To be otherwise is to be a leech.

SDN said...

"I . . . I thought we required immigrants to get vaccinations already. According to the State Department:"

You make the bad assumption that a government run by open borders cultists like TTR enforce laws like that....

Inkling said...

I get every vaccine I can, so I'm certainly not anti-vaccine, having even gotten one for yellow fever. When a vaccine for Zika is widely available, I plan to get that too.

But there is a disturbing tendency in public health and the news media to demonize those who don't vaccinate. All too often they talk numbers and contrast costs, blind to the personal tragedies that do happen. And they do so without listening to the reasons of anti-vaxers or answering their questions. That's irresponsible and unprofessional.

For every reason an American has for being suspicious about vaccinations, many Africans have ten. The UN and foundation-funded rush to eliminate various diseases or drive down their numbers, has resulted in vaccination campaigns that would never be permitted in a more affluent, developed country. Africans, for instance, have questioned why giving only the live-but-attenuated (Sabin-oral) vaccine was the norm in Africa, when first giving the dead-and-inactivated (Salk-shot) vaccine became the standard in countries like the U.S.

Here's an illustration of that from the Journal of the American Medical Association. Note that there's been a "polio vaccine debate raging for more than 50 years" within medicine, and yet only in 2014 did the WHO concede that "only the oral vaccine" wasn't acceptable in some countries.
-----
The Global Polio Eradication Initiative’s strategic “endgame” plan calls for the introduction of inactivated polio vaccine by the end of 2015 in countries now using only the oral vaccine. “Both vaccines complement one another and should be used to interrupt the final chains of transmission to obtain a polio-free world in the most rapid and effective way possible,” coauthor Roland Sutter, MD, the WHO’s coordinator for research and product development, polio operations and research, said during the briefing.

https://newsatjama.jama.com/2014/08/21/salk-or-sabin-using-both-polio-vaccines-is-best-study-reports/
----

Africans aren't stupid. They can see that there's a double-standard, with 'good enough for Africa but not for the U.S. or Europe' being a factor in the decision making. And they bring those attitudes with them when they immigrate here.

I also question whether research on vaccines takes into account the complications that can occur in severely malnourished children. The same weakening of immune systems that comes with famines and often leads to epidemics may mean that poorly fed children have complications from vaccines that aren't seen in more affluent countries.

--Michael W. Perry, medical writer

LilyBart said...

Ann Althouse said...
I had measles. Every kid I knew growing up, I think, had measles. Measles, chicken pox... it was like having badly skinned knees and lots of splinters and mosquito bites. It was what we did. It was who we were.


For most, it was a right of passage. But some people died. Children's author Roald Dahl's little girl died of complications from a case a childhood measles. He wrote about it to encourage people to get vaccinated - so sad.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/02/02/the-saddest-story-roald-dahl-ever-wrote-about-his-daughters-death-from-measles-and-is-worth-reading-today/?utm_term=.25e714787638

Lin said...

A lot of muslims avoid vaccines because they believe they contain "non halal" ingredients. Also, muslims in some regions avoid vaccines because they believe non-muslims have manipulated the vaccine to render them infertile. I suspect these are the actual reasons for the resistance to vaccination among this crowd. The Somali community simply siezed upon the Anti Vacs research because they were disinclined to do it already for the reasons I indicated. The anti vac's angle is being played up in this story because it feeds into the Wapo's pro-immigrant/anti-Trump narrative.

SDW1953 said...

Those of us old enough to remember polio have very different perceptions about vaccines.

StephenFearby said...

BBC 20 April 2016
Pakistan polio: Seven killed in anti-vaccination attack

"Seven Pakistani policemen, three of whom were guarding polio workers, have been killed in Karachi, officials say.

Eight gunmen on motorcycles fired at a group of three police guards and later at a van containing four officers, officials told the Pakistan Tribune.

Islamist militants oppose vaccination, saying it is a Western conspiracy to sterilise Pakistani children....

In January, 15 people were killed in a bomb attack on a vaccination centre in the south-western city of Quetta."

"...Pakistan is one of only two countries, along with Afghanistan, where polio remains endemic. Militants have repeatedly targeted vaccination programmes, killing nearly 80 people since December 2012.

The country recorded more than 300 polio cases in 2014 - its highest number since 1999."

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-36090891

jeff said...

"All too often they talk numbers and contrast costs, blind to the personal tragedies that do happen." They do the same thing with powerball. Always pointing out the one winner and ignoring the millions of losers. "And they do so without listening to the reasons of anti-vaxers or answering their questions. That's irresponsible and unprofessional." That is simply not true.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Big Mike said...
But if, as I gather, the Somalis don't want the vaccination part of Western medicine maybe they shouldn't be allowed to be here.

FIFY

5/5/17, 4:48 PM