A Critique Radical Feminism and the Anti-Vaccine Movement
When the Danish TV 2 Thursday, March 26, 2017 send the documentary ”The Vaccinated Girls” about young women who are convinced that they had got serious side effects from the so-called HPV Vaccine, it immediately raised colossal debate on the internet, on television, in newspapers and on social medias.
The myth about side effects has caused an enormous fall in the number of girls, who are vaccinated against cervical cancer.
The TV 2 documentary ”investigates” whether the girls´ suspicion to the vaccine is justified, and is at the same time ”revealing” how the authorities are hiding a line of warnings, they have received from ”experts”.
The documentary is a journalistic shipwreck.
Who are these ”experts?” In the following I will go deeper into this question, and claim that it is the scaremongers and internet trolls of the Matrix Conspiracy, especially in form of radical feminists from the anti-vaccine movement.
Also abroad we see the same. On Saturday, April 22, 2017, The Irish Time published the following revealing article ‘Uninformed nonsense’ about HPV vaccine is endangering lives, by Martin Wall and Paul Cullen:
“Uninformed nonsense” about the safety of the cervical cancer vaccine is interfering with medical efforts to save lives, according to Minister for Health Simon Harris.
Mr Harris said it was time to “take on the scaremongers” who were misinforming people about the HPV (human papilloma-virus) vaccine against the cancer.
Acknowledging there is a problem with falling vaccination rates, he urged doctors at the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) annual conference to “come out fighting” by providing clear and accurate information about the benefits of vaccination.
HPV vaccination rates among young teenage girls have dropped from 87 per cent to 50 per cent due to opposition from a campaign group that has linked the Gardasil vaccine to a range of alleged health harms. Scientific research has failed to established any link between the vaccine and the alleged side-effects.
Mr Harris said he took his medical advice on vaccinations from his chief medical officer, the European Medicines Agency and the World Health Organisation “not from random social media accounts”.
“If you want to give medical advice on vaccinations, become a doctor. If not, get out of the way and stay away from our public health policy.”
“We have vaccines in this country that can prevent death. We have a vaccine that can prevent girls from dying of cancer. And yet we have uninformed nonsense interfering with medical efforts to save lives. Shame on them.”
His views echoed those expressed earlier by IMO president Dr Ann Hogan who blamed “fake news” and social media for a significant decline in take up of cancer-protecting HPV vaccination amongst young girls.
In her address, Dr Hogan said: “Uptake rates for the HPV vaccine amongst young girls are declining to a worrying extent on the back of fake news stories about non-existent risks from vaccinations. As a result, we are putting the future health of young women at risk of cervical cancer and other ailments.
“It is unfortunate that we are living in an age where there has never been such hostility to expertise and facts. This anti-expert bias has been a real issue in politics internationally over the past 12 months.
“But are we in Ireland immune from this phenomenon? I think of the attention given to ridiculous scare mongering about risks with vaccination and the insidious campaigning against, for example, the HPV vaccine which has directly impacted on uptake levels for this vital cancer-preventing vaccine and I wonder how vulnerable we are to this anti-expert hysteria.”
In her speech, Dr Hogan also warned that the working environment in the Irish healthcare system was literally making doctors sick.
She said the reality was the health service provided an unhealthy working environment with insufficient resources to enable the frontline professionals to do the jobs they were trained to do.
She said the Irish health service itself had moved into a state of chronic illness.
“The health service is not suffering from a temporary illness.It is suffering from a long term, persistent and severely debilitating illness caused by under-resourcing over decades and like any patient with chronic illness, the outlook is very difficult.”
Dr Hogan said that while vision and reforms were required, what was much more urgently needed was money”to enables to treat the patients waiting for our help today, to resource our health centres and GP surgeries to deal with the additional workloads which have been foisted on us even as the budget for respective services have been slashed.”
Dr Hogan is a specialist in community medicine and said budgets in this area, like in other parts of the health service, had been steadily reduced.
“Colleagues have left without being replaced, promotions have been withheld from other colleagues even as they have been tasked with doing the work and carrying the responsibility of more senior posts,” she said.
“And at the same time out workloads have increased.”
In a wide-ranging speech to the conference on health issues, Mr Harris said the 10-year plan being drawn up by the Dáil future of healthcare committee must be realistic, and conscious of cost and timelines.
Negotiations on drawing up a new GP contract will take some time but “real progress” could be expected this year, he said.
As mentioned: the scaremongers are the internet trolls of the Matrix Conspiracy (see my article The Curse of the Internet Troll). And central among these internet trolls are radical feminists.
In an article from Skeptical Inquirer, March/April 1995, the American female philosopher Noretta Koertge, writes about her worries for the development of feminism.
She writes that a Rip Van Winkle of feminism, who might have fallen asleep in the 1970s, would have been astounded over the opposite attitude, which is dominant among academical feminists today. The thick-skinned and strongly armed Rosie Riveters (reform feminism) have become replaced by moralizing Sensitive Susans (radical feminism), who individually are trying to find new ideological splits in the so-called “patriarchal, racist, colonistic, eurocentric, cultural dominion discourse”.
They are in progress with a systematic undermining of the intellectual values of the free education. Young women are being made alien towards science in many ways. One of the strategies consists in redefining, what counts as science. Instead of for example telling about great female researchers such as Emmy Noether, Marie and Irene Curie and Kathleen Lonsdale and their struggles – and triumphs, the radical feminists, in their account of the history of science, now accentuate the contributions to it from midwifes and from the claimed arts of healing, which herbal cultivators and witches mastered. Instead of motivating young women to prepare themselves to a line of technical subjects by studying science, logic and mathematics, they now teach the students in womens studies, that logic is a tool, which men use to dominate with.
These women refuse rationality and critical thinking, and claim that this is inconsistent with ”womens way of knowing”. These feminists characterize themselves as ”subjective knowers”, who are characterized by ”a passionate rejection of science and male scientists”. These ”subjectivistic” women regard the methods, which you use in logic, as ”alien territory, that belongs to men” and consider ”value-intuition as a more safe and productive path to truth.”
I claim, that all this is a part of a much more superior totalitarian ideology, which is about to become introduced in all educations on EU plane. I call it The Matrix Conspiracy (see my article The Matrix Conspiracy). In my article – The Sokal Hoax - I describe the tragic consequences of the feminist postmodern intellectualism on the universities. About the postmodern intellectualism as such: read my article Constructivism: the postmodern intellectualism behind New Age and the self-help industry.
And it is a tragedy to see the devastating effects, which you see in all the young women (and a great deal of men also), who follow radical feminists´ attack on rationality and science.
Just to give an example: traditional feminists (reform feminists) often talked about the misogynistic elements in Freud´s theorizing, and pointed out weaknesses in his methods – the case Dora was a typical example on, how Freud was bullying his clients in his attempts on discovering the repressed memories, which he ”knew” where there.
There is a painful irony in the fact, that our days feminists so uncritical have affiliated the methods, which hypnotherapists and psychological counselors pretend can uncover repressed memories from childhood about sexual abuse and more bizarre things such as satanic rituals, cannibalistic orgies, alien abduction, past lifes etc.
I know no better demonstration of, how dangerous the naive faith in subjective attitudes and rejection of scientific methods and content can prove to be for all, who are involved in these things.
You can mention a vast number of other crazy New Age therapies, which are taken at their face value. Or just try to follow an Oprah Winfrey show. These people are often breathtaking in their combination of self-confidence and absurdity, where they with no hesitation are bullying highly educated experts and scientists if they are critical. Subjectivism and relativism namely opens them for the danger of magical thinking and Ego-inflation.
A long line of these theories and methods are approved on EUs list of education, lifelong learning, and pedagogic altogether. Personally, I know, that there on the Danish social and health-educations (which traditional is an area of women) directly is teached and examined in Nonviolent Communication and NLP, and it is on the whole impossible today to be trained, and have a permanent work, without being more or less forced to work with all this. It is a philosophy, which especially many women more or less are advocating, because it also is the main philosophy of women´s magazines.
Subjectivism and relativism create an attitude, which says: “What people think, and the reasons they produce, may not be the real reasons at work!” Then it is easy to become suspicious on the motives of everyone as being individuals with psychological problems to solve. The removal of genuine rationality from the stage leaves open the possibility of accusations of rationalizations for ulterior motives. This form of analysis (leading to think of groups or individuals as “what is in it for them?”), is not only corrosive of trust in society. It is bound eventually to undermine itself. Why are such views themselves being propagated? What are those spreading them going to gain? – read more in my article The Hermeneutics of Suspicion (the thought police of the self-help industry) and why I am an apostle of loafing.
Daphne Patai is a feminist scholar and author. She is a leading critic of the politicization of education, in particular of the decline of free speech on college campuses as programs conform to pressures from feminists and other identity groups.
After spending ten years with a joint appointment in women´s studies and in Portuguese, Patai became highly critical of what she saw as the imposition of a political agenda on educational program (The Matrix Conspiracy). Together with the above-mentioned philosophy of science professor Noretta Koertge she wrote the book Professing Feminism (1994). The book analyzes practices within women´s studies that the authors felt were incompatible with serious education and scholarship – above all, the explicit subservience of education to political aims.
Patai´s thesis is that a failure to defend the integrity of education, and a habit of dismissing knowledge and research on political grounds, not only seriously hurts our students but also leaves feminists helpless in trying to defend education against other ideological incursions.
Prominent among Patai´s concerns are what she sees as draconian sexual harassment regulations as implemented in the academical world. She argues that contemporary feminism is poisoned by a strong element of “heterophobia”: a pronounced hostility to sexual interaction between men and women and an effort to suppress it through micromanagement of everyday relations. This thesis is developed at lenght in her 1998 book Heterophobia: Sexual Harassment and the future of feminism.
Daphe Patai is the inspiration to my thesis about the development of a new Puritanism, where traditional religious confession-techniques have been transformed into psychotherapy. This new Puritanism has from Christianity inherited and taken over a very characteristic religious worldimage. Sex is sin. Sex is in the highest a necessary evil. Therefore the destructive, the subversive, again is becoming overlooked. But because it is such evident a fact, the radical feminists have to do something about it. Like in Christianity they have therefore suitable handed the destructive over to the Devil. And in this worldimage they have got the Devil, the evil, the destructive, and the sexual weaved together (read more about this my article Spiritual Vampires).
As mentioned there are namely a painful irony in the fact, that our days feminists so uncritical have affiliated the methods, which hypnotherapists and psychological counselors pretend can uncover repressed memories from childhood about sexual abuse and more bizarre things such as satanic rituals, cannibalistic orgies, alien abduction, past lifes etc. In this way they paradoxically come to remind about earlier times´ Christian inquisitions.
There is another aspect of this, which might seem like an opposition to the New Puritanism of radical feminism, but which is a part of the same Matrix Conspiracy: because those of the New Age worshippers who today call themselves witches or sorcerers are often anti-Christian, pagan, and woman-centered, or satanic. New Age often exalt whatever the Church condemned (such as egoism and healthy sexuality in adults whether homosexual or not) and condemn whatever the Church exalted (such as self-denial and the subservient role of women).
The problem is, that the reductionist aspect of The Matrix Conspiracy does, that no one will take the responsibility for their part of the sexuality, and therefore for their part of the destructive (see my article The pseudoscience of reductionism and the problem of mind).
So the Ego, the desire, the violence and the power, are combined in the dark collective primordial images and fantasies: incest, sado-masochism, homosexuality, group sex, cannibalism, sacrifice, death-images – all these archetypes lie underneath the common sexuality, and constitute the dark astral underground in the collective time. Often illustrated in the Gothic tale, first by Edgar Allan Poe in his Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque (1839), later by for example Henry James in his The Turn of the Screw (1898), which dealed with the corset tight Victorianism. I will also whisper my own favorite: Karen Blixen (see my article The philosophy of Karen Blixen). Today we perhaps see the works of Tim Burton as a respond to our time´s Puritanism.
When you bind yourself in the one pole of an opposition, yes, then you create a resistance, and therefore a force to, and a dependence of the opposite pole, which causes, that the mind, the sexuality, is becoming anchored in, and determined by these basic mechanisms. And finally the energy will swing over in its opposition, the evil, the wrong, in order to balance an imbalance. Compensatory karma.
An effect of this is that we perhaps now see a direct suppression of boys in the school system. So believes the editor-in-chief for the Danish newspaper Weekendavisen, Anne Knudsen. She directly speaks about the outragerous condition of boys in a school system, which appreciates, promotes, praises, expects and rewards a behaviour, which corresponds fine with the special identity markers of girls, and in return with hard hand fights behaviour, which marks the typical boy.
Another documentary by Danish TV 2 called The Girls against the Boys is a complete confabulation about the competition between girls and boys in high school, where the conclusion already is known: the girls are much better than the boys. Another example of a journalistic shipwreck (see my article The Confabulation of Trump). TV 2 is obviously directly in the hands of The Matrix Conspiracy.
This systematic discrimination has grown in the later years without any actual opposition. In 1993, it was only every third boy, who continued in the school after the public school. And already in 1996, 70 percent of the new students in the gymnasiums (senior high schools) were girls. Now 14 years later the girls have educations and jobs, while the boys are fighting with unemployment.
And the tendency becomes worse and worse, without any changes.
As Anne Knudsen says, then it is obvious that the boys escape from a system where they shall pretend they don´t compete, while competition in reality just happens after rules, which not are formulated; where they shall lay bare their feelings on the slightest occasion, and where they in the name of equality shall tolerate collective bullying under the head line ”typical boys!”
The school system is arranged, so that it is a handicap to be a boy, and this handicap is even understood as a self-inflicted, moral defect; therefore the system don´t need to take this social problem into consideration.
What they have introduced in the pedagogy is namely the so-called Nonviolent Communication, which follows The Matrix pedagogy about, that cognition and moral not only have to become psychologized and subjectified, but also emotionalized, since it is the individual´s feelings, which determines the moral quality of something. Moreover that the moral has to be therapized, so that it can be considered to be a personal defect, and not a social problem, if you don´t do precisely as the pedagogy says (see my article Nonviolent Communication is an instrument of psychic terror).
This pedagogy claims about itself to be a “loving, tolerant, nonjudgmental, therapeutic permission to be different.” Peculiarly, since boys precisely not are allowed to be different. The problem is that ”the theory” (which in reality is hard bitten ideology – in lack of better I call it The Matrix Conspiracy) in extreme black and white way directly has made lists about what is good and bad behaviour, and in the schools they arrange so-called giraffe-language groups, where the children get hats on, either as giraffes or wolves. And guess who is sitting with the wolves-hats?
In this way stupidity goes its triumphal progress in the schools of today, and no one dares to protest in fear of collective bullying.
The German philosopher Jurgen Habermas claims, that an instrumental reason (technical reason) today has conquered territory from a communicative reason (a philosophical/spiritual reason). An aspect of this consists in, that we in connection with human problems treat each other as means or as items, which have come on the wrong course (the treatment society).
It is interesting, that New Age, which actually should be a spiritual alternative to this, and be an advocate for a communicative reason, on the contrary is one of the most aggressive advocates for the instrumental reason. This is due to their psychologizing of philosophy. They are possessed with all kind of self-invented forms of treatment, and with pseudoscientifical attempts to justify them as science. Often they manipulative use instrumental/scientifical inspired terms about their methods, but which are without any scientifical meaning at all. It is just a rhetorical trick to persuade people to pay the fee.
It is also interesting to compare the characteristic traits of New Age with Aldous Huxley´s novel Brave New World. This novel foresees the end of democracy in a pseudoscientifical, technological fixated meritocracy. The novel is about a totalitarian state, which keeps psychological and genetic control with everybody, so that they surrender to the claimed “blessings” of the progress of the instrumental or technical reason; that is: through the reductionisms of psychologism and biologism.
Everything, also humans, and human problems, are treated instrumental or technical. Psychology and genetics are controlling people down to the smallest details, children are being born and “growed” on bottles, brains are being trimmed, characters are being converted after the needs of the dominant state. (Notice the similarities with the New Age product called NLP - see my article Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) and Large Group Awareness Training (LGAT)), which are about programming your brain so that you can become a success in society; that is: so that you work in favour of Consumer Capitalism.
The people in this meritocracy are considered as being happy. If they experience some kind of negativity, they are in large quantities supplied with the drug Soma, which makes them “happy” again. All religion, philosophy, literature and art have been removed. Science is strictly political controlled. The entertainment is so-called sensitivity-entertainment. You can go to sensitivity-parties, or you can watch sensitivity-movies, etc. Everywhere the people are meeting sensitivity-influences.
Somewhere in the novel there is a discussion between the main character Johannes and the President about the lack of truth and beauty in this society. The President argues that it might very well be that there isn´t any truth and beauty, but the people are happy. Johannes objects, and says that the whole society is completely meaningless. The President continues: “Yes, but the people are happy!”
When I read this novel I remember the quote from a nonviolent communication coach, whom I had a discussion with: “Would you rather be right, than happy?”
The politicians in Denmark – which is one of the most secularized, management-oriented and coaching-controlled countries in the world – have had scientists to make an investigation, that shows that the Danes are the most happy people in the world. A bit of a paradox, because other investigations also show, that they are the largest consumers of Prozac in the world. Prozac is in Danish called “lykkepiller”, which directly translated to English means Happiness-pills.
The fact is that every society always is runned by some kind of ideology. An ideology is a malfunction in the human mind, which function with the implied instrumental assumption, that the end justifies the means (Machiavelli´s notorious assumption), and where the means to get there is to make people into slaves for this goal. Today people undoubtedly are being made into empty consumer machines. There are no doubt either, that we are being supplied with some kind of virtual reality through psychological theories, that seems to justify Machiavelli´s famous and notorious assumption – for instance through elimination of critical thinking.
It is a fact, that we today see an ideology behind the democracy, where true spirituality, philosophy and science systematical are seeked destroyed; that is: the destruction of the best tools Man has in his love for wisdom, and quest for truth.
The main theory of this ideology is relativism. There both exists an individual version of relativism, and a collective version. The individual version is called subjectivism. This version is often connected with a right-wing liberalism. The other version is a collective relativism, cultural relativism, which often is connected to a left-wing socialism. However both are common in distorting both science and human rights. Both are demanding “alternative” views of science, and for example also human rights. And both are introducing intellectual apartheid in different ways, by seeking to eliminate critical thinking.
Both subjectivism and relativism claim, that there doesn’t exist any objective truth. Truth is something we create ourself, either as individuals or as cultures, and since there doesn’t exist any objective truth, there doesn´t exist any objective scale of truth. Therewith they also say, that we live in a Matrix, a dream, a kind of virtual reality, we have created ourselves, and that there is no chance of getting out of this. Therefore the best is to be interested in finding ways of getting on in this world, rather than being interested in finding ways of discovering the truth.
To teach people this, is the main job of what I call the Sophists of the Matrix Conspiracy: Management theorists, New Age coaches, Nonviolent Communicators, Neuro-linguistic Programmers, Law of Attraction gurus – the scaremongers and internet trolls of the Matrix.
In the Mass Media they have closed down the professional editorial offices, where there were people with knowledge about their areas. In the Mass Media the level of entertainment is higher valued than objectivity, so that all points of views are seen as equally good, and the contempt for professionalism goes from top to bottom.
In his New Years speak the then Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen (current Secretary General of Nato) thus said, that you shall not believe in experts, and today the public debate is characterized by coarseness and vulgarity from people without education, knowledge or experiences, who nonetheless uncontrolled express themselves about everything from quantum mechanics to medicine.
The result is that any professional, who dares to express himself in public shall be prepared for collective bullying. We don´t see any dialogue anymore. Any attempt on reply are looked at through the eyes of the hermeneutics of suspicion (for example Flemming Rose), where the thoughts you think, and the reasons you produce, can´t be taken seriously, because there must be some other real reasons at work, reasons which the Matrix Conspiracy itself have produced. Knowledge is stamped as snotty. Prejudice is confused with liberalism.
There is a need for a dialogue from where there can be talked with authority. Such a dialogue has been removed. The platform, from where the public debate is being lead, is controlled by the Matrix Conspiracy.
In a true dialogue you focus on, what cooperation and conversation require of you in order to that you at all can exist: that you speak true (don´t lie), that you are prepared to reach mutual understanding and agreement (don´t manipulate), don´t make an exception of yourself (but treat others as equals).
From this rises the eternal moral values (as for example that it is wrong to lie), and generally our ideas of right and justice: the so-called human rights, the idea about the individual person´s autonomy and dignity: you shall treat the other not only as a mean, but also as a goal.
In such a dialogue you use objective argumentation. Objective argumentation is an ethical way to convince others about your views, because it in reel sense shows what is appropriate or inappropriate about a case. Objective argumentation contains some of the following elements: summary or abstract, informations, description, reason, concrete choice of words, nuanced objective statement. You use critical thinking in order to explore, re-structure and change thought distortions.
But this dialogue has been replaced by a culture of debate (débat, from débattre, struggle, quarrel). The culture of debate is the common used form of communication in the whole of society today. Just try to follow the American Fox News, the new feminist Sarah Palin and the Tea Party movement.
In debate people all the time work against each other and are seeking to show each other's flaws. They often only listen to each other in order to find flaws and defend their arguments. They more and more harden their own perspectives, because they are so busy judging the positions of others. They defend their own positions as the best solutions and eliminate others´ solutions. They fundamentally seen have a closed attitude, which is due to a fixed decision to be right. They wholehearted invest in their own conceptions, and they therefore calculate others´ positions, without being aware of feelings or relations, yes, they even often happen to play down and offend the other person.
This debating attitude is unethical, and leads to violence and war. Why? Because it is based on subjectice argumentation. Subjective argumentation is an unethical way to convince others about your views, because it doesn't show, what in reel sense is appropriate or inappropriate about a case, but manipulates with it.
Subjective argumentation contains some of the following elements: innuendoes, distortions, generalizations, over-/understatements, sarcasm, satire, irony, postulates, emotional affections, coloured choice of words, choices and exclusions, subjective style.
People who use subjective argumentation don´t hesitate using thought distortions in order to manipulate, for example using adhominem moves, hermeneutic of suspicion, Giraffe language, setting up a strawman, etc., etc. (see my book A Dictionary of Thought Distortions). Personally I have stopped having face to face discussions with this kind of people, and I am withdrawing as soon as I sense this kind of communication. In my article The Sokal Hoax, you can read about the kinds of abuses I personally have faced. I also really feel sorry for the husbands/boyfriends of the numerous number of women, who have adopted the whole of this philosophy of women´s magazines/the Matrix Conspiracy (read more about the philosophy of women´s magazines in my article Self-help and the Mythology of Authenticity).
In the following I will therefore show how left-wing radical feminists, and other cultural oriented relativists, for example support extreme Islamists, and therefore can be seen as a part of the threat against freedom of speech, and the rise of terror.
These relativists are fighting against Western science and human rights, which they consider as an expression of a patriarchal, racist, colonialistic, Eurocentric, cultural dominion-discourse. Why? Because subjectivism and relativism claim, that there doesn’t exist any objective truth. Truth is something we create ourself, either as individuals or as cultures, and since there doesn’t exist any objective truth, there doesn´t exist any objective scale of truth. All truths are therefore equally true and equally valid, and if one person´s truth, or one culture´s truth, try to intervene in the truths of other individuals or cultures, then this is considered as an aggression.
This ideology is penetrating everything. Today, after the celebration of the 100 year of womens´ day it is interesting to see how this ideology also has penetrated Western feminism, which must be considered as playing a leading role in the Matrix Conspiracy.
Political freedom (the right to vote, to run as candidate for election, and to express yourself freely), economical freedom (the right to education and paid work) and sexual freedom (womens´ right to conduct the privacy they want) are the conquests, which traditional feminism achieved for the women of the Western worlds. This kind of feminism could, as mentioned, be called reform feminism. The conquests were achieved rather quickly in the previous century.
But the progress, which the large majority of women in the West enjoy, is standing in glaring contrast to the different reality, which women without the West live in.
In the Arabic-Muslim world most women are refused access to an education. The figures for womens´ reading ability are depressing low. Their sexuality is controlled by a patriarchal system, and they have only limited possibilities for achieving economical independence.
Many places in Asia the prejudices against girl children still flourish, and the result is that embryos of girls are miscaried, or that small new-born girls are put out. Moreover, Asian girls and women in disproportionate degree are suffering under the discusting sex traffic with women – the modern kind of slavery.
Poverty and civil wars affect girls and women in Africa in ways, which men are spared from, because mass rapes lead to unwanted pregnancies and infections with hiv and aids. Moreover, a shocking large number of girls die under births, because their bodies not yet are mature enough to give birth, or because disfiguration of their genitals causes, that they die of a birth fistula, one of the most painful ways to die in, that you can imagine.
Here there seems to be a giant task for Western feminists. Unfortunately, there is completely silence, because the Matrix Conspiracy (both through education and the propaganda of women´s magazines) has programmed them what to think. They have now, as mentioned, become what you could call radical feminists. Reform feminists have become replaced by moralizing Sensitive Susans, who individually are fighting against Western science and human rights, which they, as mentioned, consider as an expression of a patriarchal, racist, colonialistic, eurocentric, cultural dominion-discourse.
The radical feminists (for instance Sandra Harding – but also New Age worshippers of all kinds) see themselves as liberal givers of charity to their non-western sisters/non-initiates. They see their charity towards their sisters/non-initiates as a loving, tolerant, nonjudgmental, therapeutic “permission to be different”. They try to “decolonize” the minds of their sisters by trying to make them repudiate Western science and human rights. But their invitation to be different is in reality an expression of intellectual apartheid, and a justification of intellectual apartheid. They dehumanize their sisters by denying them their ability to critical thinking, and this has, as expected, already contributed to a rather uncritical adoration of the nation and its traditions in many parts of the Third World.
Scenario 1, India: Frederique Apffel Marglin has recently declared that the eradiction of smallpox from India using the modern cowpox-based vaccine is an affront to the local custom of variolation, which includes inoculation with human smallpox accompanied by prayers to the goddess of smallpox, Sitala Devi.
Ashis Nandy has branded those who protested a recent incidence of widow immolation (sati), as modernized Westernized elites who denigrate authentic folk practices. Not surprisingly this has found a sympathetic audience among right-wing Hindu fundamentalist parties.
Scenario 2, Pakistan: Though the Matrix Conspiracy systematical is trying to eliminate critical thinking and science, then it, in its manipulation, is extremely scientifical, technological and instrumental fixated. As it says, then modern science must be replaced with so-called “alternative” sciences. This has caused a boom in all kinds of pseudoscientifical theories; what I call the “Illuminati” aspect of the Matrix Conspiracy. One of these “sciences” is for instance the “investigations” of the biology of Western Men; investigations, which sounds like Fascism (read more below). And so-called “investigations” have concluded, that womens pain under birth is a social construction created by Western Men, and that it thereby is necessary to eliminate this construction.
In Pakistan and other Islamic countries, notably Egypt and Saudi Arabia, we now see the state-sponsored movement of “Islamic Science” (for instance around Ziauddin Sardar, a Pakistani émigré living in Britain, and Munavar Ahmad Anees, a US-based biologist and Islamist).
This movement tries to “Islamicize” science, and create a new universal science in which the facts of nature would be different, derived solely from the conceptual and ethical categories of Islam. They find attempts by modern science to bring modern science to bear on specific values and problems of Muslims as misguided, if not actually a crime against Islam. Explicitly they are citing the work of Western radical feminists.
In turn, Sandra Harding cites Sardar and associates among the “progressive” postcolonial critics of science.
Recently, demands for specifically Islamic (and also Hindu, Confucian, and African) conceptions of human rights have also been put forth.
Scenario 3: China: The protesters at Tiananmen Square demanded democracy, human rights and science together. Tragical for the dissidents, the Chinese government saw it differently and sent in the tanks. The Deng regime, though anxious to cultivate modern science and technology for economical development, treated any attempt to relate scientific ethos to antiauthoritarian politics as a sign of the “spiritual pollution” of China´s socialist values – using the same phrases as the Matrix Conspiracy.
Especially China is gradually adopting this rhetoric (which could be taken out of George Orwell´s novel 1984), and are demanding special Chinese interpretations of science and human rights, where scientists and advocates of human rights must be civil obedient; that is: state sponsored. For instance we already see some special state sponsored versions of NGOs. And when China discover how the “spiritual” education-instruments of the Matrix Conspiracy are supporting their ideas, we will probably also see a state-sponsored kind of “New Age-spirituality”, which will cause a boom in followers. But all kinds of civil disobedience will still be eliminated.
Add to this, that China now has adopted Consumer Capitalism into its own ideology (Communism), whereby it has created a curious hybrid, you could call The Matrix Hybrid. In the Matrix Hybrid the two ideologies have economical interests in common, and therefore we might gradually see how the West more and more is allowing China to violate human rights.
The future scenario is that Consumer Capitalism and Communism are melting together. The West might gradually be more and more fascinated by China´s growing consumer culture (right now especially seen in Shanghai), and might adopt it more and more. And then we have the Illuminati scenario: a “New World Order” where all countries are led by a global government, which will try to create a world with no class barriers and religions.
With this Matrix Hybrid we have something, which could develop into Aldous Huxley´s Brave New World. And this is the ideology behind the anti-vaccine movement.
Vaccine controversies have occurred since almost 80 years before the terms vaccine and vaccination were introduced, and continue to this day. Opponents question the effectiveness, safety, and necessity of recommended vaccines. They also argue that mandatory vaccinations violate individual rights to medical decisions and religious principles. These arguments have reduced vaccination rates in certain communities, resulting in outbreaks and deaths from preventable childhood diseases.
Evidence surrounding vaccination shows that prevented suffering and death from infectious diseases outweigh any adverse effects. Immunization programs depend on public confidence to be effective. Safety concerns often follow a pattern: a potential adverse effect is hypothesized; a premature announcement is made; the initial study is not reproduced; and finally, it takes several years for the vaccine to regain public confidence. A modern and notable example involved Andrew Wakefield's discredited claims of MMR vaccines causing autism.
Public reaction has contributed to a significant increase in preventable diseases, notably measles. In 2011 the vaccine-autism connection was described as "perhaps, the most damaging medical hoax of the last 100 years".
Early attempts to prevent smallpox involved deliberate inoculation of the disease in hopes that a mild result would confer immunity. Originally called inoculation, this technique was later called variolation to avoid confusion with cowpox inoculation (vaccination) when that was introduced by Edward Jenner.
Although variolation had a long history in China and India, it was first used in North America and England in 1721. Reverend Cotton Mather introduced variolation to Boston, Massachusetts, during the 1721 smallpox epidemic. Despite strong opposition in the community, Mather convinced Dr. Zabdiel Boylston to try it.
Boylston first experimented on his 6-year-old son, his slave, and his slave's son; each subject contracted the disease and was sick for several days, until the sickness vanished and they were "no longer gravely ill". Boylston went on to variolate thousands of Massachusetts residents, and many places were named for him in gratitude as a result.
Lady Mary Wortley Montagu introduced variolation to England. She had seen it used in Turkey and, in 1718, had her son successfully variolated in Constantinople under the supervision of Dr. Charles Maitland. When she returned to England in 1721, she had her daughter variolated by Maitland. This aroused considerable interest, and Sir Hans Sloane organized the variolation of some inmates in Newgate Prison. These were successful, and after a further short trial in 1722, two daughters of Caroline of Ansbach Princess of Wales were variolated without mishap. With this royal approval, the procedure became common when smallpox epidemics threatened.
Religious arguments against inoculation were soon advanced. For example, in a 1772 sermon entitled "The Dangerous and Sinful Practice of Inoculation", the English theologian Reverend Edmund Massey argued that diseases are sent by God to punish sin and that any attempt to prevent smallpox via inoculation is a "diabolical operation". It was customary at the time for popular preachers to publish sermons, which reached a wide audience. This was the case with Massey, whose sermon reached North America, where there was early religious opposition, particularly by John Williams. A greater source of opposition there was Dr. William Douglass, a medical graduate of Edinburgh University and a Fellow of the Royal Society, who had settled in Boston
Fewer youngsters worldwide are dying of childhood diseases now than at any other time in history. About 80% of children today are vaccinated against such deadly illnesses as measles and polio, compared with 20% in the early 1980s.
There were an estimated 30 to 40 million cases of measles in 2000, causing some 777,000 deaths.
Immunization can be credited with saving approximately 9 million lives a year worldwide. A further 16 million deaths a year could be prevented if effective vaccines were deployed against all potentially vaccine-preventable diseases.
Health officials say aggressive efforts to vaccinate young children against measles have resulted in a 74 percent global decline in the number of deaths due to the illness [between 2000 and 2007]. Experts say the biggest decline, 90 percent, occurred in the Eastern Mediterranean region."
In England and Wales, measles cases increased 36% in 2008. Measles cases more than doubled from the year before during the first half of 2008 in the United States.
Amy Wallace says:
"Before smallpox was eradicated with a vaccine, it killed an estimated 500 million people. And just 60 years ago, polio paralyzed 16,000 Americans every year, while rubella caused birth defects and mental retardation in as many as 20,000 newborns. Measles infected 4 million children, killing 3,000 annually, and a bacterium called Haemophilus influenzae type b caused Hib meningitis in more than 15,000 children, leaving many with permanent brain damage. Infant mortality and abbreviated life spans — now regarded as a third world problem — were a first world reality."
The anti-vaccination movement (AVM) is at least two-pronged: one prong denies a causal connection between vaccines and the eradication or significant reduction of diseases like smallpox, polio, measles, and rubella; the other prong perceives vaccines as causing diseases, e.g., it claims that the MMR (mumps-measles-rubella) vaccine causes autism. Either way, the AVM proponents oppose vaccination against disease.
One might consider a third prong of the AVM to be those who advocate homeopathic "vaccines" or isopathic preparations for such things as meningococcal disease, the "flu", childhood illnesses, malaria, and HIV. Such people offer magic water in place of an actual vaccine developed and properly tested by scientists. They believe the water has been energized and has a selective "memory" of molecules long gone in the homeopathic dilution process. Most homeopathic vaccines are nothing but water or inert substances and cannot protect anyone from anything. They endanger people's lives when they are offered as protection against diseases like malaria. They are sought out by people who do not trust real vaccines and who live according to the principles of vitalism and magical thinking. Thus, we might well say that those who recommend homeopathic vaccines are part of the AVM since, in effect, they oppose real vaccination against disease.
One thing that unites these three prongs of the AVM is that each is selective in its picking of evidence to support its viewpoint and to denigrate one of scientific medicine's major contributions to public health.
Robert Mendelsohn, M.D. is one of the leading opponents of vaccination. He claims that there is "no convincing scientific evidence that mass inoculations can be credited with eliminating any childhood disease." He thinks nobody knows why diseases such as polio have almost been eliminated, though improved living conditions might have something to do with it. Quackwatch calls this misconception #1 about immunization.
Mendelsohn reasons that inoculations are ineffective because the diseases diminished not only in the U.S. when vaccinations were widespread but also in Europe even though no mass immunizations took place there. I don't know if this is true, but it should be. In isolated populations with little immunity to a disease, one would expect an infectious disease to either kill people or make them immune to further infection. In any case, whether infectious diseases diminished without inoculation is irrelevant to the causal effectiveness of vaccines. What is relevant, for example, is that the incidence of measles certainly went down due to vaccination programs in the U.S. and the U.K. (Now that a significant number of parents do not have their children vaccinated, measles outbreaks have occurred in both the U.S. and the U.K.)
There is ample and compelling evidence that vaccinations do work, despite what a few contrarians might argue. (See, for example, the Centers for Disease Control's page on vaccines and immunizations.) The evidence, of course, must be understood against the background of immunization theory, going back to Edward Jenner's reasoning about milkmaids and small pox. For example, we know what happened in Japan when the vaccination rate for pertussis (whooping cough) dropped 70% from 1974 to 1976. In 1974 there were 393 cases of pertussis and no deaths. In 1976, there were more than 13,000 cases and 41 deaths.
Another example that vaccines work is the success of the Hib vaccine for meningitis caused by the bacterium Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib). When the vaccine was Introduced in the U.S. in 1990 there were about 15,000 cases and 400 to 500 deaths every year from this bacterium and those numbers had been steady for decades. "After the current Hib vaccine was introduced, the incidence of Hib meningitis declined to fewer than fifty cases per year!" If considered in isolation, these examples might look like post hoc reasoning. But they are not isolated; they are presented within the larger context of our understanding of how the immune system works.
Anita Petek-Dimmer is another opponent of vaccination. She writes:
Switzerland was affected by a mumps epidemic from Autumn 1999 until Spring 2000. The Swiss Federal Office for Health (BAG) eventually admitted, upon the pressure of the medical profession, that more than 75% of those who contracted Mumps had been fully up to date with their vaccinations. No further comment is necessary here!
Actually, a comment is in order. Vaccinations are not 100% guaranteed to prevent a disease in everyone who is vaccinated. The Institute of Child Health says:
After one dose of MMR, approximately 90-95% of children are protected against measles, over 95% against rubella, and 85-90% against mumps. After two doses, almost 100% of people will be protected against all three diseases. Because the diseases are so infectious, it is necessary to have very high levels of immunity in the population to control the diseases. It is only possible to do this, if children receive two doses of the vaccine. For this reason, almost all countries, recommend two doses of the vaccine. Those countries that have a high uptake of two doses of MMR vaccine have been most successful at eliminating the diseases.
If everybody in a population is vaccinated, the chances of contracting the disease is near zero. But the more people in a population who do not get vaccinated, the more the whole population is jeopardized. Imagine a robust individual who is not vaccinated and gets mumps. Before his parents keep him home from school he infects half his classmates, some have been vaccinated and are not affected. Some have not been vaccinated and they get the mumps. Most recover. Maybe one of the non-vaccinated dies. There may also be a child who was vaccinated but who is not very robust and she gets infected by several people, some of whom have been vaccinated and some who have not. Both can be carriers of the virus. The weak but vaccinated girl dies. Does this mean the vaccine doesn't work? No. It means that if some people don't get vaccinated they can jeopardize those who do. On the other hand, if most people have been vaccinated, those in the population who haven't been vaccinated benefit from the actions of the others and get protection against the disease without being vaccinated. If too many people take this free-ride approach, the group suffers.
The previous paragraph indicates why immunizations are not optional in public school districts in the U.S. Because of our peculiar religious history, we make exceptions for those who have religious reasons for not getting their children vaccinated. We also make exceptions for those who have medical reasons for not being vaccinated. As long as the number of parents seeking exemptions for their children is small, school districts can tolerate some non-compliance with vaccination programs. But when the numbers get too large, as they have in some places, the school district will have to take action or the whole point of vaccination will be defeated and the threat of an epidemic becomes very real. For example, two months into the school year, school officials in Prince George's County, Maryland found that more than 2,000 students (out of 132,000) still didn't have their required vaccinations. School officials went to court and Circuit Court Judge C. Philip Nichols ordered parents in a letter to appear at the courthouse and either provide proof of vaccination, get their children vaccinated on the spot, provide an explanation for their failure to have their child vaccinated, or go to jail for up to 10 days. Even after a deadline had passed, there were still more than 900 students with no record of being vaccinated. A group opposing required immunizations protested the action. Charles Frohman was one of them. He thinks people should have a choice in getting their children immunized. This sounds reasonable but it isn't: those who don't get vaccinated jeopardize those who do and they prevent the eradication of the causal agent of the disease.
Some people seem to think that their children would be better off catching a disease than taking a risk with a vaccine. According to the Institute of Child Health:
If you allow your children to catch the disease, they run the risk of being seriously ill or even dying. On the other hand, the vaccines only rarely cause serious adverse effects. It is true that vaccines do not give long lasting protection 100% of the time but then neither do many diseases. For example, you can catch whooping cough, Hib, meningococcal disease and rubella more than once. However, even if a child does catch the disease after they have had the vaccine, the disease is usually milder. By giving the vaccine most children are spared the effects of the disease. Even if immunity from the vaccine wears off, if enough people are immunized, there will be herd immunity and so this should not be a problem. This will protect people who have lost their immunity.
So, no, the odds are that your child will not be better off if she gets measles, mumps, or rubella. She might end up deaf, paralyzed, or dead.
Do vaccines cause diseases? Most people who don't get vaccinated or don't have their children vaccinated, however, are probably in the camp of the AVM that thinks vaccinations cause diseases. One of the more widespread myths about vaccines is that the MMR vaccine causes autism, either by itself or by thimerosal or by the combination of the two. (Thimerosal has been used since the 1930s as a preservative to prevent contamination by microbes, but it has never been used in the MMR vaccine, nor has it ever been used in varicella (chickenpox), inactivated polio (IPV), or pneumococcal conjugate vaccines. In any case, one would think that if thimerosal were so harmful, we might have detected it before now.) This view that vaccines cause autism is growing, despite the fact there is no compelling evidence for it. This prong of the AVM has a strong parent-run lobby and has been aided by questionable medicine, celebrity and media propaganda, as well as by politicians like Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Denmark removed thimerosal from its vaccines in 1992. Other countries have followed suit, not because the evidence strongly linked thimerosal to autism or any other disorder. It was removed because of fear generated by anxious parents and the media, and the threat of lawsuits. A study published in Pediatrics magazine (2003) concluded that there is strong evidence from a study in Denmark that thimerosal is an unlikely contributor to the development of autism. The researchers examined data on 956 children diagnosed with autism from 1971 to 2000. The autism incidence rate climbed steadily from less than one child per 10,000 in 1990 to nearly 5 per 10,000 in 1999, seven years after thimerosal was removed from vaccines in Denmark.
"Thimerosal has been eliminated from childhood vaccines in most industrialized countries," said lead author Dr. Kreesten Meldgaard Madsen. "If indeed thimerosal was an important cause of autism, (autism rates) should soon begin to decline in these countries." Unfortunately, there was no sudden drop in autism spectrum disorders after thimerosal was removed from vaccines. (One report makes the claim that there was such a drop but it has been thoroughly refuted.) In 2004, a committee of experts appointed by the Institute of Medicine concluded an examination of scientific studies worldwide and found no convincing evidence that vaccines cause autism. In particular, no link was found between autism and the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine or vaccines that contain thimerosal.
Thimerosal was pegged as potentially harmful because it is a mercury compound and is metabolized in humans to ethyl mercury. It is possible that some in the AVM mistook ethyl mercury for methyl mercury, which is known to be harmful. Some parents subject their autistic children to chelation therapy to remove heavy metals from their blood. Chelation should not be taken lightly. There is even one case where it led to the death of an autistic five-year-old.
There are several anti-immunization websites and some of them are posting inaccurate information about the evidence of a causal connection between vaccinations and autism. Many of the websites have been set up by parents of children with autism. Dr. Michael Fitzpatrick, author of MMR and Autism, is concerned that some parents of autistic children believe their personal experience and research—most of which has been guided only by the desire to prove what they already believe, namely, that their children's autism was caused by vaccinations—qualify them as experts on both autism and vaccination.* As the parent of an autistic child, Fitzpatrick sympathizes with the desire to find something to blame for the autism. But, as Dr. Fitzpatrick notes, being a parent of an autistic child does not give him "any special insights into the question of what causes autism, or into any other aspect of the condition."
Fitzpatrick's concern, however, is not just that misinformation is being spread on the Internet but that
Any parent who looks to the anti-immunization campaigns for information will readily find strident condemnations of the government, the medical establishment and the drug companies. Anybody who defends immunization can expect abuse and allegations of corruption or conspiracy. The basic thrust of much of it is that the pro-vaccination party has commercial links with drug companies. Yet, perhaps not surprisingly, these anti-vaccination groups often have their own links with commercial interests.
He notes that a group that goes by the swell name of Jabs (Justice, awareness and basic support) has been in litigation against MMR for more than a decade. The legal firm of Alexander Harris cleared around £5m out of the total of £15m of legal-aid funding spent before the Legal Services Commission pulled the plug last October. Jabs' encouragement of parents to join this ill-conceived quest for compensation has had a demoralizing effect, not only on the families involved, but on the parents of children with autism, who have been made to feel guilty that by giving their children MMR they may have caused their condition.
Also, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, who sounded the alarm a few years ago about a possible connection between the MMR vaccine and autism and bowel disease in children, was paid more than £400,000 by lawyers trying to prove that the vaccine was unsafe. The payments were part of £3.4m distributed from the legal aid fund to doctors and scientists who had been recruited to support a now failed lawsuit against vaccine manufacturers. Thanks in part to Wakefield's false alarm, children in Europe began dying of measles again. Throughout Europe many parents stopped bringing in their children in for the MMR vaccination. Cases of measles in England rose to a 20-year high following the collapse in MMR immunization rates.* In 2007, the National Disease Surveillance Centre in Ireland issued a paper on controlling measles after immunization rates plummeted. Scotland, where Wakefield operates, also reported troubles with measles. (A detailed and thorough review of every claim made in Wakefield's book about vaccinations concludes: "I have shown that every major claim Wakefield makes in his book concerning vaccine safety is wrong." See "Wrong About Vaccine Safety: A Review of Andrew Wakefield’s “Callous Disregard”" by Joel A. Harrison, PhD, MPH in The Open Vaccine Journal, Vol 6, 2013, pp 9 – 25.)
According to Fitzpatrick, the anti-immunization websites provide links to private clinics offering alternative vaccines to MMR and to "mercury-free" vaccines. "These clinics have been major beneficiaries of popular anxieties about immunization, making 'substantial' profits by providing inferior vaccines at inflated prices, to parents whose fears have been inflamed by misinformation and scare-mongering journalism." One such beneficiary was Dr. David Pugh, whose clinics in Sheffield and Elstree, Hertfordshire, were closed down after allegations of unsanitary and fraudulent practices. Pugh, who faces trial on criminal charges, has been endorsed by a number of parent groups.
In the U.S., over 4,900 autism claims are pending. They've been piling up for about eight years (Novella 2007). In June 2007, nine cases were heard by three "special masters" of the Autism Omnibus, a U.S. Court of Federal Claims. The Court issues updates from time to time. The latest, as of this writing, was July 8, 2008. The plaintiffs are covering all bases, arguing three different lines of causation: MMR vaccines and thimerosal cause autism, thimerosal alone causes autism, MMR alone causes autism. How the court rules in the nine test cases will affect the outcome of the other 4,900 claims. Of course, if the Court rules that the evidence is not compelling for a vaccine-autism causal link, many of the plaintiffs will see "conspiracy" once again. The Court is in the pockets of Big Pharma. Or something like that. The fact is, there is no telling how a court will rule, no matter what the science actually says. (See Here’s How the Anti-Vaxxers’ Strongest Argument Falls Apart for the truth about this special court.)
There is evidence, however, that some vaccines do cause harm. In northern Nigeria, there was a polio outbreak in the summer of 2003 that was triggered by a vaccine designed to eliminate it.
Muslim clerics and disgruntled northern politicians banned polio vaccinations in the area, claiming that the drugs were a Western ploy to spread HIV and sterilize Muslim girls. The year-long mass boycott of the vaccine sparked a rash of new infections, and the virus jumped to about a dozen other countries — a devastating rollback for a polio eradication campaign that seemed finally on the verge of success....
...the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control revealed in early October  that 69 Nigerian children had been paralyzed by polio virus since 2005 — and had contracted the illness through exposure to the live virus found in the oral vaccine ....(Time)
Even so, vaccine coverage has doubled countrywide in Nigeria from 35% in 2005 to a high of about 76% in 2007. Rates of new infections have dropped dramatically. Nigeria no longer has the highest number of polio cases worldwide. In 2006, Nigeria accounted for 1,125 of the 2,000 polio cases worldwide. In 2007, there were only 198 cases through October. In 2008, however, there were 788 cases, prompting a vigorous campaign to encourage vaccination.* (For comparison, in 1988 there were 350,000 new cases of polio in 125 countries, most of them in the developing world.
"The campaign to eradicate the polio virus must be intensified," says Sheikh Ahmed Gumbi, the powerful chief imam of the Sultan Bello mosque in Kaduna [Nigeria's second largest northern city]. "The good job must be completed. The vaccine is safe and healthy, despite a few cases of vaccine-induced infections. The immunization should continue until Nigeria is polio free." (Time)
AVM proponents note that only 1 in 200 cases of polio causes paralysis. Fever, flu-like symptoms, or no symptoms are typical in those carrying the virus. We should remember, though, that only a very small percentage of those vaccinated with the polio virus will contract polio and that percentage will be much smaller than the percentage who will contract polio if there is no vaccination program. "The outbreak was caused by the live polio virus that is used in vaccines given orally — the preferred method in developing countries because it is cheaper and doesn’t require medical training to dispense." The Nigerian outbreak was not the first. In 2001, 22 children were paralyzed from polio in the Dominican Republic and Haiti. "The oral polio vaccine contains a weakened version of polio virus. Children who have been vaccinated excrete the virus, and in unsanitary conditions it can end up in the water supply, spreading to unvaccinated children.”
No vaccination is completely without risk. Public health officials require certain vaccinations in order to prevent outbreaks of contagious diseases, whose costs would be far greater than the costs incurred by vaccinating.
Finally, some people think that the immune systems of children are being weakened by vaccines, making them vulnerable to illnesses later on in life. Quackwatch calls this misconception #7. For example, some think that their child's asthma or respiratory problems may be due to "vaccine overload" on their immature immune systems.
In fact babies have an ability, right from birth, to cope with lots of different germs. The body is constantly surrounded by germs and has to react to them in different ways. The advantage of being immunized rather than catching the disease is that the vaccine uses only part of the germ, or, if the whole germ, it is either killed or toned down (“attenuated”). In this way, the challenge to the immune system is less than that from the disease, but it is enough to produce protection.
In 2002, the Immunization Safety Review Committee of the American Institute of Medicine made a detailed examination of all the evidence about the effects of multiple immunizations on a baby’s immune system. They concluded that there was no evidence to support the suggestion that multiple immunizations overwhelm the immune system. They strongly supported the continuing use of vaccines against multiple diseases....
If immunizations are delayed, a baby will remain unprotected for longer than necessary. This could be particularly dangerous for whooping cough and Hib. Very young babies, if they catch whooping cough, are likely to be much more seriously ill than older children and are more likely to need hospital care. Babies under a year old are more likely to catch Hib than older children Studies have shown that when the vaccines are given at the younger age, babies have fewer reactions such as fever, sore injection sites etc, while at the same time they are still protected.
There have been many well-designed studies that have examined claims that vaccines cause chronic diseases such as asthma, multiple sclerosis, chronic arthritis, sudden infant death syndrome, and diabetes. The studies have not found compelling evidence for any such links. That has not stopped some anti-vaccinationists from speculating that some children are "especially sensitive" to vaccines and that scientific control studies can't be refined enough to validate this claim.
You can find updates and commentaries to this article in The Matrix Dictionary entry: Feminism as Fascism