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vaccinated children -vs- unvaccinated:  is it possible to do a study that would please everyone?


Vaccine Studies

Back in the 1300’s one of Oxford University’s most brilliant scholars / professors / theologians was a man by the name of John Wycliffe.  Because of his desire to translate the Bible into the “common language” (English) so that one did not have to read or understand Latin to grasp its meaning, he was targeted by the Church and eventually branded as a heretic. 

Although he died of a stroke before he could be burned at the stake in similar fashion to one of his more famous followers, Jan Hus; 43 years after his death, the Church dug up his remains, burned them to ashes, and dumped them into the nearest river in hopes of removing his memory from history (as well as hoping to obliterate his body to the point it could not be raised up on The Last Day).  How did that work out?  Today, the organization bearing Wycliffe’s name has translated the Bible into thousands of different languages all over the world. 

I bring up Wycliffe’s history only to provide a metaphor of the treatment scientists who come out against the vaccine establishment can expect to receive.  I’ve written about some of these individuals in the past (HERE for instance), persecuted and hounded at every turn because they failed to toe the line, continually raising issues about both the safety and efficacy of certain vaccines (as my bro recently has for his scientific opinion of flu vaccines — HERE).  In fact, this phenomenon is so pervasive that I recently addressed it in a post called IS QUESTIONING FORCED VACCINATION POLICIES UNSCIENTIFIC?

The latest to suffer this fate is DR. ANTHONY MAWSON.

Mawson, a past professor of pediatrics and medicine at the University of Mississippi, as well as a researcher, epidemiologist and biostatician at Walter Payton’s alma mater, Jackson State University, led the team that published two studies comparing groups of homeschooled children that were either fully vaccinated, partially-vaccinated, or non-vaccinated (Pilot Comparative Study on the Health of Vaccinated and Unvaccinated 6 to 12 Year Old U.S. Children and Preterm Birth, Vaccination and Neurodevelopmental Disorders: A Cross-Sectional Study of 6 to 12 Year-Old Vaccinated and Unvaccinated Children). 

As would be expected, the backlash was immediate and brutal.

One of the first things detractors brought up was that the study was funded by several groups that are against mandatory vaccination (the dreaded “ANTIVAXXERS“).  While there could be a FINANCIAL COI here, this rather seems like a case of the pot calling the kettle black.  I have shown you over and over again in my posts on EVIDENCE-BASED MEDICINE (and especially MEDICAL GUIDELINES) just how absurdly conflicted many (many would argue most) medical studies actually are. 

The problem is so bad that 18 ago the editor of the New England Journal of Medicine raised the question in one of the world’s most prestigious peer-reviewed publications, IS ACADEMIC MEDICINE FOR SALE?  Unfortunately, no honest person could argue that the problem has gotten better in nearly two decades since.  Which brings me to point two.

How can this sort of research ever get done if the industry-funded and controlled medical community is not allowed to do it?  In a TYPICALLY VITRIOLIC POST (Two (Now Retracted) Studies Purporting to Show that Vaccinated Children are Sicker than Unvaccinated Children Show Nothing of the Sort), Dr. David Gorski of Science Based Medicine admitted this when he said….

“Antivaxers, at least the ones who retain a bit of reason with respect to medical ethics, have grudgingly come to realize, if not accept, that a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of vaccinated versus unvaccinated children is considered so utterly unethical that it can’t be done. The reason is, of course, that such a study would leave half the children unprotected against vaccine-preventable diseases. Antivaxers might not actually accept just how mind-blowingly unethical such a study would be, but they do realize that scientists do consider such a study unethical; so they talk the talk, even if they don’t believe it.”

The pertinent question that needs answered is not whether vaccines prevent children from getting measles, mumps, chicken pox, whooping cough, etc, but whether vaccinated children have a different profile of long-term sequelae from being vaccinated on our modern schedule?  Although there have been a few studies like this done in the past (three years ago Thoughtscapism carried an article called Myth: No Studies Compare the Health of Unvaccinated and Vaccinated People), the comment sections often show the serious flaws and shortcomings in these studies (example to follow shortly).

Another area that Mawson was derided for concerning these studies was “scientific bias” — specifically this statement from his study. “The aims of this study were 1) to compare vaccinated and unvaccinated children on a broad range of health outcomes, including acute and chronic conditions, medication and health service utilization, and 2) to determine whether an association found between vaccination and neuro-developmental disorders, if any, remained significant after adjustment for other measured factors.” 

Although the study certainly had some bias (most studies do whether overt or covert), this statement is not proof of that (“if any“).  But in the minds of forced vaccination’s most ardent defenders, simply asking the questions puts you in the same category as Wycliffe.

As is often the case, the best part of the myriad of articles attacking Mawson’s studies were the comments.  While there were enough to write a book, one of the best came in response to Maki Naro’s interesting cartoon, Vaccines Work; Here are the Facts (Naro is a cartoonist and blogger for Popular Science).

“Sanitation, not vaccination, saved the world from disease. Now instead of a cartoonist, let’s listen to a doctor.  My name is Tetyana Obukhanych. I hold a PhD in Immunology. I am writing this letter in the hope that it will correct several common misperceptions about vaccines in order to help you formulate a fair and balanced understanding that is supported by accepted vaccine theory and new scientific findings.  Do unvaccinated children pose a higher threat to the public than the vaccinated? 

It is often stated that those who choose not to vaccinate their children for reasons of conscience endanger the rest of the public, and this is the rationale behind most of the legislation to end vaccine exemptions currently being considered by federal and state legislators country-wide. You should be aware that the nature of protection afforded by many modern vaccines — and that includes most of the vaccines recommended by the CDC for children — is not consistent with such a statement…”

While the same people picking on Mawson would characterize Obukhanych as the consummate “antivaxxer,” she brings up a fascinating (and accurate) point about what was most behind the dramatic decrease in mortality between 1900 and Y2K.  In fact, the CDC themselves verified Obukhanych’s assertion with a little graph that I stuck in a recent post on autism (HERE).  What’s most interesting is that this graph came from an article where our government was essentially bragging about what they had accomplished in the 20th century, not quite grasping the fact that they were destroying the heart of their argument.

To do a study like the one Mawson’s team did that would please everyone in the scientific community would require an act of Congress.  Why?  Because BIG PHARMA, the institutions doing their research (our nation’s university system), and the governmental watchdog agencies created to protect our citizens are all too often one and the same incestuous entity (HERE). 

While science’s mantra is to question everything, the unspoken rule is that if one values his / her career, it doesn’t apply to our nation’s vaccination policies (the other unspoken rule is DO NOT REPORT ADVERSE EVENTS).  In nearly three decades of practice, I cannot tell you how many times parents have told me that they talked to their doctor about various sorts of post-vaccination AE’s, only to be told that these had nothing whatsoever to do with the shots.  If AE’s are not reported to the proper authorities, they are never counted as statistics, making the drug / vaccine appear far safer than  it really is.

What about bias in medical studies? Back in 2010, LiveScience (Dark Side of Medical Research: Widespread Bias and Omissions) showed how bad things have gotten in the scientific medical community; a problem that has ONLY GOTTEN WORSE in the near-decade since. 

Many patients may not know the full story about their drugs or medical treatments because of a widespread problem involving unpublished or biased clinical trials, according to mounting evidence.  Oftentimes, medical journals or pharmaceutical companies that sponsor research will report only “positive” results, leaving out the non-findings or negative findings where a new drug or procedure may have proved more harmful than helpful.”  

But if not for bias, the previously-mentioned Dr. Gorski wouldn’t have a website.  The whole purpose of his ever-vitriolic Science Based Medicine is to debunk anything and everything coming from the field of natural (holistic / integrative) healthcare.


Let me tell you why even though the experiment may not have been pulled off in a manner that satisfied everyone, using homeschooled children was a stroke of brilliance simply because as a group, they we don’t historically do everything in lockstep fashion with government or medical recommendations.  As a homeschooler of four children myself (HERE — two are in college), homeschool parents are less likely to take their kids to the doctor for every little sniffle, sneeze, COUGH, or FEVER

I would also argue that they are probably more likely to visit “natural” practitioners (chiros included — HERE and HERE are common reasons we see pediatric patients in my clinic). But just because these children did not ‘officially’ have a doctor diagnose or treat them does not negate the fact that most of these children’s parents could tell you from memory each and every vaccine their children did or didn’t receive (it’s frankly quite simple).  

For instance, if parents take their child to the doctor regularly because they want them completely vaccinated, that’s easy to remember.  Likewise, if parents have not had their children receive any vaccinations, that’s easy to remember as well.  In my experience, parents who “partially vaccinate” their children have researched the issue and can tell you exactly which shots they did or did not have. 

For instance, “little Susie had everything but the HPV“.  Or, “The only shots we had little Johnny take were measles and polio“.  The average parent, let alone homeschool parent, could answer a vaccination survey (or for that matter, an illness survey) with an extremely high degree of accuracy (for the record, surveys are a common way of doing any manner of studies). 

At the very least, Mawson’s work should pique the interest of the scientific medical community to ask more questions instead of circling their wagons even tighter.  My point is, of course, biased.  I would never argue that vaccines are the only cause of neuro-developmental disorders such as autism (HERE), but instead that it’s statistically impossible for the such a large number of parents to be saying the same thing — something I have heard over and over and over again in my years of practice.  “My child was normal until they got their shots.”  There are far too many of these parents to to all be wrong / stupid / insane / money-grubbers / (insert the reason du jour reason here).

Once you begin to understand the fact that 80% of the immune system lives in the Gut (HERE), and that the mass quantities of chemicals we are exposing our children to (DRUGS / VACCINES / AG CHEMICALS / ANTIBIOTICS / SUGAR / etc. etc, etc) are causing issues with “INTERNAL HYGIENE,” it’s not a stretch to see that the ADJUVANTS found in virtually all vaccines could cause problems in those who are GENETICALLY SUSCEPTIBLE.  

In other words, it’s no longer enough to ask whether or not chicken pox vaccine causes fewer cases of chicken pox (I would never argue that it does not) but whether we might be trading largely harmless and self-limiting childhood diseases (short term) for CHRONIC DEGENERATIVE INFLAMMATORY DISEASES and AUTOIMMUNITY (long term)?

Be sure to stand up for your rights because most of you reading this still have the power to decide what healthcare you want your family to have  But as California has recently shown (VACCINE WARS ARE ON THE HORIZON), your capacity to choose is being slowly rapidly eroded away.


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