Controversy Over Vaccinations


Vaccinations: Yes or No? Photo via Flickr from Zaldylmg under Creative Commons license

In recent months, there has been a serious epidemiological crisis in the United States concerning measles. The CDC reports, “The United States experienced a record number of measles during 2014, with 644 cases from 27 states…From January 1 to February 20, 2915, 154 people from 17 states and Washington DC were reported to have measles.” To put these numbers in comparison, from 2001 to 2013, the average annual U.S. measles cases was around 50 cases.

Unfortunately, most measles deaths are from children. An overwhelming majority of these cases occurred because the children were not vaccinated against measles, which is a deadly disease. Although it seems clear that parents should protect the health of their children, this issue has become an issue of controversy.

House Representative Republican Sean Duffy said, “As a parent…I know my kids best. I know what morals and values are best for my children. We should not have an oppressive state telling us what to do.”  According to the exact words of Duffy as spoken on MSNBC, the U.S. government is oppressing its citizens by telling people to vaccinate their children so that the children won’t die.

Researchers and scientists, however, strongly urge parents to vaccinate their children so that they don’t die from measles and similar deadly diseases. Even so, there are people who disagree with them.

When dealing with a life or death issue, there needs to be rules to keep people safe. Getting vaccinated isn’t a choice like picking between a Jolly Rancher and a Hershey’s bar. This is a very serious problem. Some parents think it is their freedom to choose not to vaccinate their kids. Making vaccinations voluntary means allowing parents the freedom to decide the life or death of their children.

Presidential Candidate Rand Paul said, “The state doesn’t own your children; parents own their children. I think this is an issue of freedom.” Vaccinating children is protecting them from deadly diseases. When one person isn’t vaccinated, he can spread the disease to others who physically cannot be vaccinated. It jeopardizes the safety of all of the people.

Vaccinations have saved countless lives since their invention. It is a medical innovation that has benefited mankind tremendously. Some people now view it as an invasive procedure. To stay safe against diseases, vaccinations are the way to go.