Thursday, January 03, 2008

PARADIGM: Not just for Creationists anymore!

While researching a bit for a future NOM NOM NOM, I came across a bit of surprising and nice information:

She has won a Golden Globe (forAlias) and the heart of husband Ben Affleck. But actress Jennifer Garner's big concern this flu season is to protect the health of the couple's 2-year-old daughter, Violet."One in three children get influenza, and more than 100 children die every year from this disease -- these are facts that no mother or parent wants to hear," said Garner, 35.She spoke to reporters in New York City on Monday as the new national spokeswoman for the American Lung Association'sFaces of Influenzaeducation campaign."I want to help make sure that all moms across the country understand that influenza is serious and that vaccination should be a family priority," said Garner...

... Actor Dean Cain, 41, who soared to fame as TV's Superman inLois & Clarkin the 1990s, was also on hand to urge people to get the flu shot this year.Cain, a former pro footballer, said even healthy adults can be laid low by the virus. He's especially vulnerable, because he also has asthma, he said."Asthma puts me in a high-risk group, because if I were to get the flu, guess where it's going -- right to my lungs," Cain said. A prior bout of flu once left him unable to work for almost two weeks, he said, but "my number one concern is the health of my family" -- specifically, son Christopher, age 6.


I found another interview where Cain really does a great job:

Do you have any personal hopes for what people will gain from the campaign?

Dean Cain: Well, you know, I fight this even within my own family. With my mother, in fact, just doesn’t believe in getting a [flu] vaccination. You know, people forget about polio, chickenpox, measles...the things we get vaccinated for. They forget that these diseases have basically been eradicated through vaccinations. And so it becomes a non-issue. Well, if we stop getting vaccinated, people are going to start getting those diseases again as well. As far as the flu goes, be smart about it, vaccinate yourself, vaccinate your children. It’s not some crazy conspiracy to make money. They are giving these out free in so many places. You can get free flu shots wherever you go. It saves the economy a lot of money because we won’t have so many people hospitalized from it. You don’t have to deal with so many people dying from it. It is a fantastically easy and wonderful thing to do to protect your family and yourself.

Now, of course I really wish the general public was listening to, oh, I dunno, physicians and scientists about vaccines, but its refreshing to see celebrities using their position for public education! And not... you know... ummm...

But no good deed goes unpunished!
Byron J. Richards, Founder/Director of Wellness Resources:

...Vaccinations of all types remain the centerpiece of the public health herd-mentality paradigm...

Fear of disease is the driving force behind all public health campaigns. Fear is the great motivator of blind compliance. Jennifer Garner, celebrity and young mother, is now on a soapbox encouraging mothers across the country to have their children immunized with the flu vaccine. Earth to Jennifer Garner: How many infants will your misguided propaganda injure?

{snip list of usual anti-vax, anti-science claims}
Go ahead. Read that whole article. I literally LOLed at his comments about Jonas Salk.

But I couldnt find any anti-vaxers bashing Cain. I tried really hard, cause I wanted to quote them here, but I couldnt find anything. Google 'Dean Cain vaccine'-- he has really been out and vocal about vaccinations of all kind, yet Gardner gets attacked? Maybe its because she is a 'bigger' star right now, but I feel as if its a sexist thing too. Women and mothers seem to be the target of Professional Anti-Vaxers... hmm...

13 comments:

Tyler DiPietro said...

"Paradigm" has been a staple of the woo-woo lexicon for quite some time. Thomas Kuhn deserves to be retroactively erased from history for opening up that pandoras box.

Ian said...

I suspect that both are true - Jennifer Garner gets attacks both because she's a bigger star (and Juno was a great movie), and because she's "just a woman". Women aren't supposed to have opinions, they are supposed to obey men. And, by calling your advisor bossman, you're being part of the problem :p

VGG project Enschede said...

Ah nice article, since it adresses some of the things I've been poundering about. Now first of all, I'm no anti-vaxer. (on the contrary) I'm studying the care for the elderly and since a few years the flu vax has become like a standard thing to do for the elderly. I think have evidence based information is critical here. Can you advice me on some research carried out on the flu vaxing (for the elderly) and its effect on mortality by the flu?

I myself am quite reluctant getting a vaccination for something that hasn't put me down seriously for the past 10 years (I guess). But for the elderly, I'd like to get things figured out really good. There's enough nonsense being spread to these people. (I'm NOT saying vaxing is nonsense, I just want to see some evidence, so I know what I'm talking about) I get preached over working evidence based as a nurse all the time, without EVER seeing a bit of research, if I'm not looking for it myself. My fellow students don't even KNOW pubmed exists...

Thanks in advance!

Bram

Reynold said...

snip...My fellow students don't even KNOW pubmed exists...

God, I hope that's just some wild exagerration there. These are people studying in the medical field, right?


Oy.

VGG project Enschede said...

@ reynold.

No it isn't. I'm sorry. Although we did have a very tiny course on finding information in certain databases in the first year, that's about it. It just isn't common sense. I once asked people what a doubleblind randomized trial is, and they looked at me wondering if I was speaking some foreign language. Only to find out later that I myself had been wrong on some aspects. (/shame)

A general lack of knowledge is persistent in nursing education here in the Netherlands, if you ask me. (for crying out loud, most don't even know who wrote 'notes on nursing' or what is in it...)

In the mean time I found some flu vax related shizzle myself. Seems I've been wrong about not getting one. (since I work with the elderly)

scripto said...

Nothing like getting the flu to get you in line for next year's shot. I thought I was done for.

James said...

You guys may be aware of this already, but the BBC have a story about successful preliminary trials of a universal 'flu vaccine: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/7171118.stm

The Factician said...

scripto,

I totally agree. I've had the flu *once* as an adult, and it knocked me flat on my ass for nearly 2 weeks. It was hideous. I now get the flu vaccine nearly every year (I've somehow missed it this year).

ERV,

Have you read "Vaccine" by Arthur Allen? It's interesting to see that the anti-vaxxers haven't changed much in the last 150 years. The same arguments they made in the 1800s are being made now (and in the meantime, vaccines have effectively wiped out polio, diptheria, MMR, etc, etc).

Highly recommend the read (I'm about half the way through).

Robb said...

I took your advice and read the Richards article for its entertainment value. The first half was definitely entertaining. It read quite a bit like the usual conspiracy theory-paranoid delusion.

The second half spoiled the entertainment. It was just technical (and sane) enough to sound like he might know what he was talking about, to a casual reader.

Zach Kessin said...

The company that I work for offered the flu vaccine this year. It was free to me and took 5 minutes out of my day. So worth it. I guess they figure if one person doesn't get the flu they have made up what they spent. But I didn't ask.

I won't knock anyone for trying to promote public health! If it takes an Ex Football star to get the ball rolling lets be thankful that there is one on hand to do so.

Reynold said...

I know this is slightly off topic, but when it comes to creationists, you may be interested in this cartoon of Dembski...

Splotty said...

Fear of disease is the driving force behind all public health campaigns. Fear is the great motivator of blind compliance.

The irony is how true this statement is. Disease is really nasty. It is something we ought to be afraid of. Those who aren't afraid of disease or serious illness should go and work in a hospital for a while, and see how miserable it is to be truly sick.

I'd also point out that fear of disease is a great motivator of open-eyed compliance.

Bayesian Bouffant, FCD said...

Jennifer Garner is wicked smart. I want to bear her children.