You don’t say.
For the record, she actually abandoned the movement BEFORE they all got whooping cough, but abandoned it too late. There’d been a breakout of measles in her area that caused her to reassess, and she and her doctor had already drafted and started a catch-up vaccination schedule, but her kids caught whooping cough just before it could be started. Then she wrote a blog post for The Scientific Parent explaining how she and her husband had come to wrong decisions in the first place, how they changed their mind, the consequences they suffered as a result, and asking other parents to please vaccinate their kids. And now she’s an activist for destroying the misinformation of anti-vaxxers, and reaching out to anti-vaxxers because she’s understands their fears but knows their kids deserve better.
She was trying to the best for her kids and just didn’t know how to interpret the validity of information or its sources, an actual skill that can be actually difficult and that is under-taught and a necessary first step to being able to trust vaccination research, so chose no action over taking an action she wasn’t sure of. She kept looking into it with family and friends and even eventually came to the right conclusion before her kids became sick, but it was still too late.
Honestly it was pretty brave of her to publicly admit she was wrong. She could have just quietly vaccinated her kids and not become a national news story, but instead she spoke out, even saying “I’m writing this from quarantine, the irony of which isn’t lost on me.” and also “I am not looking forward to any gloating or shame as this ‘defection’ from the antivaxx camp goes public, but, this isn’t a popularity contest. Right now my family is living the consequences of misinformation and fear. I understand that families in our community may be mad at us for putting their kids at risk.”
She understood the consequences and still put herself and her story out there.
You know what, it does take a big person to admit they were wrong so publicly and work to undo the harm. I believe I made fun of her in the past, but timemachineyeah changed my mind.
Interpreting validity of information and what sources to believe is fucking hard. I was never taught it. Literally nobody that watches Fox News unironically – and that’s a good forty percent of Americans – was ever taught it. It is drastically under-taught, and it’s the first step towards being able to make well-researched decisions.
in brief this commentary is a good and yes thank you
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