Science vs. Pseudoscience vs. Religion

Last April, a parent group sued the state over vaccination requirements for school-aged children on the grounds that it violated their First Amendment rights. Last week, data showed that that chicken (pox) had come home to roost: the Mississippi Department of Health announced that it had granted over 1,800 vaccination exemptions so far this year.

I have no idea what religious doctrines could possibly lead members of a denomination to conclude that vaccinations are sinful. I’m more concerned about the health crisis such exemptions will precipitate. What’s the best way to protect public health and respect legitimate religious tenets?

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8 Responses to Science vs. Pseudoscience vs. Religion

  1. Carter Scaggs says:

    I feel as though the best course of action would be to stop the spread of misinformation by giving parents proper, professional advice about vaccines. You could also use logical arguments such as “if God didn’t intend for us to use vaccines, did he intend for us to use electricity.” This way people will either give up their argument or become Amish. I am not sure if making vaccines required by law is the best solution, because then people will more likely feel oppressed and might gain more sympathizers. Still, I think the whole idea of not getting vaccinated is silly and harmful to children, but until people learn that there is no harm in them, I feel as though they will eventually trust vaccines.

  2. Aliyiah Richey says:

    The best way to protect the most important thing is our freedom of speech and also our health. Concerning vaccines, there is nothing religiously wrong with getting a child a vaccine. The standard put in place by out-of-book religion is ample in America, people force false beliefs.
    Taking these important and meaningful vaccinations for granted will be very inconsiderate to our children, who we should always CHOOSE to put first not because of duty but because simply this is YOUR human being.
    Even though I understand that it can be hard to trust the people of the US because of past events, protecting children and other’s livelihoods is important, but we have to realize that we are making the correct choice for multiple people and not just one.

  3. Kelvin Pool says:

    I believe that the best course of action would be to isolate the non-vaxxers from the vaxxers. If the parents want to let go and let God, put them kids in a room where everybody else feels the same way. If somebody catches something, It’s all a part of his divine ineffable plan.

  4. La’Shaunda Otis says:

    People who refuse to be vaccinated should be heard out and given one on one time to come to an understanding. These people don’t understand that what they are doing isn’t only affecting them but others as well which is sad. So, persuading theses non-vaxxers could potentially help in a calm manner.

  5. Myia Williams says:

    Even though I feel like we should have the freedom to do what we want, taking the vaccine or not. However, I also feel that we should consider other people’s health. We shouldn’t be pressed to do something, but it should be up to us to make a decision on our own. There’s a lot of foolish people that does not care about others health but we can’t do anything about that because we have freedom to do whatever. Also, I understand that it may be hard to trust.

  6. Audrey Guynes says:

    I will not force any vaccines onto others or the children of anti-vax parents. I do believe there should still be a choice in whether to vaccinate for religious reasons or other personal matters. It is not easy to take religious people out of their ways, as this is the belief on which they base their lifestyle. They should be able to continue their practices, and if they feel a medical overstep violates their faith, it should be waived.

    I am all for science. I am not saying that these parents shouldn’t be educated on medicine and informed by medical professionals, but that it should still be largely up to them. If there is a faith that denies such medical procedures, then this law would be infringing on their rights. The only flaw is that being anti-vax may cause harm to those who have chosen to be vaccinated. It puts others in jeopardy at the cost of your beliefs, but the answer is still not to enforce the law.

  7. Gracyn Young says:

    I agree with what many of the commenters say, that parents are entitled to the right to vaccinate their children or not, but as the prompt suggests, not vaccinating your children could lead to health problems in the future, putting not only their children but others at risk. I feel as if the best way to combat the non-religious aspect of this is to limit the spread of misinformation. As for the religious aspect, I feel as if there are many religious beliefs from a variety of religions that not only put the believers at risk “health-wise” but also in general. This is not, per se, a bad thing, however, it is something that someone should not impose on others, as everyone has a right to their own religious beliefs.

  8. Avary Bodmer says:

    As humans we should have the right to decide and make commitments to whatever we feel like, but since we do live in a designated country that idea does not work. The government is in most control and this is because they do not trust you to make smart decisions, like choosing to not vaccinate your child is not a smart decisions. Vaccinating your child if you believe your child does not need vaccination does not mean that decision will affect all children that child comes in contact with. In public heath we want everyone happy and healthy and the way to do that is to prevent diseases and lead to negative, major impacts.

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