Jenny McCarthy, frequent guest on The View, will become a co-host Friday, August 9, 2013 filling half the vacancy being left by the departures of Joy Behar and Elizabeth Hasselbeck. Ms. Hasselbeck will be going to Fox News where she will be in her element and where those who want to hear Ms. Hasselbeck’s peculiar views on everything can go.
I don’t watch Fox News or The View so all of this should have a net effect on me of zero. Except, it isn’t zero because of the selection of Ms. McCarthy and the potential damage she may do to children.
Jenny McCarthy has created some controversy around her frequent assertions that immunizations are linked to autism. This theory has been abandoned by Autism support groups because it has been debunked and because failing to immunize may expose children to serious and even fatal childhood infections.
Every Child by Two which encourages having every child vaccinated by age two has been very vocal about Ms. McCarthy’s choice by ABC to be a regular on The View.
If you don’t get your child immunized you may do them no harm, but you do society harm. Vaccination only works if all or almost all of the population is vaccinated. It’s the jar full of jelly beans scenario. If all of the jelly beans but two are white (immunized kids) and there is one black jelly bean (the sick kid) and one green jelly bean (the non-immunized kid), the one black bean will probably never meet the green bean when the jar is shaken. The larger the number of white jelly beans the less likely the meeting will be. But, if the percentage of green jelly beans keeps increasing the chances are that a green jelly bean will meet the black jelly bean. And then there will be two black beans and the risk of meeting a green bean doubles. Then it’s just a matter of time until nearly forgotten diseases like polio or diphtheria or smallpox make a comeback. I’m sorry, not smallpox. Smallpox has been eradicated unless Russia or the US unleashes it on the world
What would it look like if that were to happen; if smallpox reemerged? It would be a catastrophic occurrence because no one under the age of 40 has been immunized against smallpox. Fortunately, that has not been the case with diphtheria.
Most people have never seen a case of diphtheria. Most doctors have never seen a case. I was an intern in Phoenix in 1968-69 when an outbreak occurred. The victims were all Native American (Yaqui, who were not eligible for healthcare through the BIA then) or Hispanic kids who had never had immunizations. Diphtheria may cause no symptoms, mild symptoms of sore throat and fever or may be fatal. Aside from the lymph node enlargement, sore throat, malaise, fever and difficulty swallowing seen in most clinically apparent cases, there may be damage to heart muscle or nerves from a toxin produced by the bacteria. Damage to the heart may be fatal and damage to the nerves associated with breathing may require being maintained on a respirator for a period of time. About 1 in 10 cases has one of these severe complications.
One of the children I took care of died of heart failure. He was a strong healthy looking kid when he came in.
Ms. McCarthy, who says she has an autistic child, is misguided. It is understandable, having a child with a life changing condition may blind a person to reason, but what is not understandable is the irresponsibility of ABC. By hiring Jenny McCarthy the number of black jelly beans may reach a critical mass.
Photos and illustrations obtained from Google images. Individuals are not identified by name or facial features maintaining confidentiallity.