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Department of health and human services telling media outlets to be "pro vaccine"

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Well, not in those words exactly. But look at this interview. Is this scary/shocking to anyone else?

 

 http://www.rd.com/health-slideshows/h1n1-the-report-card/article174741.html

 

The part I'm referencing:

 

 RD:What can be done about public mistrust of vaccines?
KS:There are groups out there that insist that vaccines are responsible for a variety of problems despite all scientific evidence to the contrary. We have reached out to media outlets to try to get them to not give the views of these people equal weight in their reporting to what science has shown and continues to show about the safety of vaccines.

 

Thoughts?

post #2 of 10

I think it is awful but not really shocking. The mainstream media is FULL of all kinds of propaganda. It's really sad but true.

post #3 of 10

I agree with them about the "equal weight" thing. I don't think the public is served by having a blanket "equal weight" on issues policy in the media. It's the same policy that leads to horrible articles on circumcision and birth, IMO. It also leads to a lot of unsupported statements in the media.

 

 

I think weight should be given, in health/science stories, according to the evidence. So if you are reporting on vaccines and autism, more time/weight should be given to where there is more evidence. personal accounts have their place but should be tempered by the issues surrounding using such things as "data".


Edited by carriebft - 11/18/10 at 5:59am
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by littlec View Post

Well, not in those words exactly. But look at this interview. Is this scary/shocking to anyone else?

 

 http://www.rd.com/health-slideshows/h1n1-the-report-card/article174741.html

 

The part I'm referencing:

 

 RD:What can be done about public mistrust of vaccines?
KS:There are groups out there that insist that vaccines are responsible for a variety of problems despite all scientific evidence to the contrary. We have reached out to media outlets to try to get them to not give the views of these people equal weight in their reporting to what science has shown and continues to show about the safety of vaccines.

 

Thoughts?


Basically same old same old. Media outlets are already used by government entities ( and others) to form the opinions they want us to have. I rarely see medical issues covered in a neutral fashion in the media.

post #5 of 10

Yup.  The CDC's been in on it, too: http://www.cdc.gov/healthmarketing/entertainment_education/tips/immuniz.htm

 

The hand that rocks the media cradle is the hand that rules the world. 

post #6 of 10

I have heard radio personalities in the past discuss vaccines and been sympathetic to parents whose children were damaged by vaccines; these would be Ed Imus, Rush Limbaugh, George Nory, and Tammy Bruce.  I have not heard much about vaccines more recently on these shows, but I do know that other radio people more recently have maligned anyone who would suspect vaccines of damaging any one at all.  It seemed to me to be an organized assault on persons like Jenny McCarthy.  

 

Editted to add that I do recall Bill Maher making anti-vaccine statements.  


Edited by caned & able - 11/25/10 at 8:18am
post #7 of 10

 You know, it is somewhat interesting that media outlets choose to attack Jenny McCarthy.  If I'm remembering correctly, she's publicly said that she believes vaccines are necessary and that we need them.  I think it's because they feel she promotes the vaccine/autism connection theory because of her experiences with her own son. 

post #8 of 10

And this is surprising?  Mainstream media is always spouting things that are crap. 

post #9 of 10


I'm not sure I follow.... Do you mean that major media should not present the public with different views on a policy issue?

 

Whether popular culture should give "equal weight" to various policy issues issues--and whether Uncle Sam should be directly meddling in the speech and artistic expression of producers and screenplay writers--are two entirely separate questions. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by carriebft View Post

I agree with them about the "equal weight" thing. I don't think the public is served by having a blanket "equal weight" on issues policy in the media.

post #10 of 10

Both sides do not have "equal weight:" in evidence or science. Take circumcision: there is very little evidence on the pro side, even when we accept the UTI and HPV studies, these differences are so small that they do not change the minds of major medical organizations. Yet, when the media covers circumcision, they give "equal time" "equal weight" to both sides or they lean to the pro circ side, the side with less evidence.

 

With vaccines, there is the same problem. (though I think since the Chicago Tribune and many others have stepped up recently, this has been less of an issue) I think the Tribune did the right thing with their article series on Lupron and Autism. They gave very little credence to the side using this therapy. While we did hear some stories of "success", these were surrounded by the ethical issues, science/lack of science, etc. Yes, the articles ended up coming off "anti Lupron therapy to cure/treat autism", but that is where the evidence is.

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