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Should vaccinated have right to sue unvaccinated?

post #1 of 360
Thread Starter 
If you can get past his name-calling (i.e. "selfish," "stupid") he does raise some interesting questions.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41839495/

Any thoughts?
post #2 of 360

There was a case where a man was found guilty of knowingly infecting women with AIDS. So, it is possible that they will use the same argument for those of us who don't vaccinate.

post #3 of 360

I agree with some of the commenters.  Where WOULD you draw the line?  Sue the guy who gave you the flu?  Would the un-vaccinated also be able to sue the vaccinated for putting them at risk with possible viral shedding?

 


The BIG difference with measles and HIV is that without a cure HIV is very likely to significantly shorten your lifespan.  Most people who catch measles won't die because of it.

post #4 of 360

I am not reading the article....

 

Quote:
The BIG difference with measles and HIV is that without a cure HIV is very likely to significantly shorten your lifespan.  Most people who catch measles won't die because of it.

 It is also only spread through a few specific intentional acts. You can't catch it from casual contact.

 

 

 

Quote:
Would the un-vaccinated also be able to sue the vaccinated for putting them at risk with possible viral shedding?

 

yeahthat.gif  - It goes both ways. Live vaccines can spread disease as well. And how would one prove that they caught the disease from the other?

 

 

 

post #5 of 360

It depends.  I really don't think ANYONE, regardless of vax status, should travel when ill, and i do kind of think if one is unvaxed one should be mindful of the vulnerable when one is travelling and not ignore symptoms until they are really bad.  BUT i do think that "the right to sue" is excessive.  I mean, if you don't KNOW you're sick, how are you supposed to avoid spreading it.  And what if vaccinations were given but didn't take?  You're infectious, despite vaccines, are you still liable if someone else gets ill?

 

TBH i vax, and a big part of why, for us, is because of the possibility of infecting someone with a weakened immune system (i had a friend die of measles as a child, she had recently had chemotherapy when she was infected).  She was infected by an unvaxed child BUT it was due to hospital error, not the fault of the other child or their family at all.  No one got sued, it was the 80's, in UK back then suing was for rich people with nothing better to do.

 

But even having said that i do think it's kind of excessive to force vaccination on people with the threat of litigation.  The "swinging fist" analogy in the article is disingenuous - NOT being vaxed doesn't automatically mean the person is a danger to the health of others.  It's more like not being allowed to have a fist at all lest you one day might accidentally hit someone with it.

post #6 of 360

Absolutely not.

 

Bodily integrity is a basic human right, and that extends to one's immune system as well.  If one chooses not to accept the risk of vaccines for whatever reason, that is their fundamental right.  After all, NOT vaccinating is the biological default.  Should I be able to sue the parents of the kid in my son's class who eats Doritos and Lunchables with a soda every day, and is always sick and gives my son his colds?  It wouldn't even cross my mind to do so.

 

I will never understand why people think they should be able to dictate what health risks others should undertake.

post #7 of 360

I am curious as to who would bear the burden of responsibility if someone who was vaccinated and came down with the disease due to primary or secondary vaccine failure (no vaccine is 100% effective).

 

I do think that people who knowingly spread disease should be held responsible regardless of their vaccine status.

 

If you are not going to vaccinate for measles, it is prudent to quarantine yourself if you come down with a cold/fever after knowingly being exposed to for measles. If you do not know that you have been exposed, it would be impractical to quarantine yourself for every cold/fever.

 

I am sure it could be a lot more complicated than that though, in a court of law.

post #8 of 360
Quote:
Originally Posted by ema-adama View Post

I am curious as to who would bear the burden of responsibility if someone who was vaccinated and came down with the disease due to primary or secondary vaccine failure (no vaccine is 100% effective).

 

I do think that people who knowingly spread disease should be held responsible regardless of their vaccine status.

 

If you are not going to vaccinate for measles, it is prudent to quarantine yourself if you come down with a cold/fever after knowingly being exposed to for measles. If you do not know that you have been exposed, it would be impractical to quarantine yourself for every cold/fever.

 

I am sure it could be a lot more complicated than that though, in a court of law.


If we can't sue the manufacturers of the vaccines for vaccine damage, we certainly shouldn't be able to sue each other for vaccine-related issues.

 

post #9 of 360


Quote:

Originally Posted by Bokonon View Post


If we can't sue the manufacturers of the vaccines for vaccine damage, we certainly shouldn't be able to sue each other for vaccine-related issues.

 


This is an interesting point. 

 

As a related question, should non-vaxed persons be required to cover the costs of controlling an outbreak if they are the index case? 

 

post #10 of 360
Allowing vaccinated people to sue non-vaccinated people would smack in the face of the "informed consent" medical laws. It is a human right to not have medical procedures done on us without our informed consent--i.e. we are informed of the risks/benefits of the procedure and allowed to make our own choice to submit or not submit to the procedure. Vaccinations are not without risk. To force them on people would be unethical.

The article OP links to makes it seem like non-vaccinators are a bunch of crazy zealots with no regard for public safety and only care about their own eccentric ideas:

"The scientific case for the importance of vaccines is overwhelming and beyond any dispute (and most worries about safety rest on fear and lies). But still, most states by law permit parents to opt out of vaccination requirements by invoking religious or philosophical objections no matter how zany those may be. "

First, the "scientific case" supporting vaccines effectiveness and safety, is in fact, in dispute. To claim peoples questioning as based on "fear and lies" is a gross misrepresentation. Most of the non-vaccine advocates are advocating for improved safety, more access to accurate information regarding vaccine data, and for patients to be truly "informed" before making the choice for themselves or their children. They are not advocating for blind faith in some fanatical cult. Many of these people are the parents of children who have suffered harm or death from vaccines, and sincerely wish to inform others of the risks.

If the woman mentioned in the article is to be sued, it would be for her negligent exposing others to measles rather than staying home, (if she in fact was aware she had measles), not for being a non-vaccinator. Common sense should have told her if she is ill, to not get on a plane and expose others to her illness. Unfortunately, many people these days feel pressured to go to work/send kids to school when sick. Rather than encourage lawsuits against those who are trying to make good choices for their family, why not reassess our societies demands on people and allow room in our busy lives for time to stay home due to illness?

I, for one, will not vaccinate my children since I have had vaccine reactions in the past, and I STRONGLY suspect my handicap sister as being vaccine damaged (she is in her 40's, still in diapers, still being cared for by my parents). For someone to be able to sue me for my choice regarding this, would be outrageous. Obviously I'm also not the sort of person to traipse around the airport knowing I have a highly contagious disease.
post #11 of 360
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama Metis View Post


Quote:


This is an interesting point. 

 

As a related question, should non-vaxed persons be required to cover the costs of controlling an outbreak if they are the index case? 

 


That would be ridiculous as well, IMO.

 

We are all bearing the increased costs healthcare due to exploding chronic conditions like autoimmune disorders, diabetes, allergies, etc.  Should we require formula-feeding parents to pay higher premiums than breastfeeding ones, when the data are clear that breastfeeding helps prevent many of these conditions and many cancers as well?

 

Where would you draw the line?  What if someone was vaccinated and still a vector?  Or vaccinated but hadn't had a booster in many years?  I've never heard of a single adult that I know talking about getting their MMR or polio boosters, but I know when they get their flu shots.

 

post #12 of 360
Quote:
Originally Posted by rush2ady View Post

Allowing vaccinated people to sue non-vaccinated people would smack in the face of the "informed consent" medical laws. It is a human right to not have medical procedures done on us without our informed consent--i.e. we are informed of the risks/benefits of the procedure and allowed to make our own choice to submit or not submit to the procedure. Vaccinations are not without risk. To force them on people would be unethical.

The article OP links to makes it seem like non-vaccinators are a bunch of crazy zealots with no regard for public safety and only care about their own eccentric ideas:

"The scientific case for the importance of vaccines is overwhelming and beyond any dispute (and most worries about safety rest on fear and lies). But still, most states by law permit parents to opt out of vaccination requirements by invoking religious or philosophical objections no matter how zany those may be. "

First, the "scientific case" supporting vaccines effectiveness and safety, is in fact, in dispute. To claim peoples questioning as based on "fear and lies" is a gross misrepresentation. Most of the non-vaccine advocates are advocating for improved safety, more access to accurate information regarding vaccine data, and for patients to be truly "informed" before making the choice for themselves or their children. They are not advocating for blind faith in some fanatical cult. Many of these people are the parents of children who have suffered harm or death from vaccines, and sincerely wish to inform others of the risks.

If the woman mentioned in the article is to be sued, it would be for her negligent exposing others to measles rather than staying home, (if she in fact was aware she had measles), not for being a non-vaccinator. Common sense should have told her if she is ill, to not get on a plane and expose others to her illness. Unfortunately, many people these days feel pressured to go to work/send kids to school when sick. Rather than encourage lawsuits against those who are trying to make good choices for their family, why not reassess our societies demands on people and allow room in our busy lives for time to stay home due to illness?

I, for one, will not vaccinate my children since I have had vaccine reactions in the past, and I STRONGLY suspect my handicap sister as being vaccine damaged (she is in her 40's, still in diapers, still being cared for by my parents). For someone to be able to sue me for my choice regarding this, would be outrageous. Obviously I'm also not the sort of person to traipse around the airport knowing I have a highly contagious disease.


Well said!

 

And that's exactly why I won't read that article.  The pro-vax propaganda makes my blood boil.  Even the term "anti-vax" is so degrading and very often inaccurate.  I'm not AGAINST vaccines.  I am for safety and research of them.  I am FOR children's health.  And somehow that makes me crazy and fanatical?  When I'm the one who has to live with the consequences of my son's 5th DTaP shot, that triggered a chronic condition that we haven't yet figured out?

post #13 of 360

I'll modify his sentence a bit: "I don’t really don’t [sic] care to give lawyers more business but if the only way to get those who put other lives at risk by selfishly or stupidly not vaccinating is to sue them then so be it." http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41839495/

 

to,

 

I don't really care to give lawyers more business, but if the only way to get pharmaceutical companies to stop putting lives at risk is to sue them, so be it.

 

As to the question, "Should the vaccinated have the right to sue the unvaccinated," In the United States, anybody has the right to sue any person or any business, for anything, EXCEPT vaccine manufacturers.

 

Someone who sues someone for not being vaccinated is almost certain to lose, but if they are foolish enough to try, I'm not aware of any Congressional act or Supreme Court ruling saying they can't do so.

post #14 of 360

Well let's see for at least SOME of the vaccines it has ruined our natural immunity like measles. A lot people were immune to it before the vax came out. Not to mention a LOT of fully vaxed people get the diseases they are vaxed for. Vax is not 100% effective and never has been. Anyone remember that case in 08 in FL where 28 kindergarteners got measles and only 3 weren't vaccinated? 25 of them had been vaxed! As far as I remember it did not start from an unvaxed kid either.

 

What about religion? Where would that come in. I do not vax for several reasons and The Bible tells me that it is wrong (based on ingredients ect) to vax and that God has given us healing and immunity as a gift. So technically the vaccinated has ruined God's plans for us IMO. Can I sue all the vaccinated for ruining our natural herd immunity that He gave us? Of course not because it wouldn't be a Christian thing to do, but also b/c it would never fly in court.

 

post #15 of 360
Quote:
Originally Posted by rush2ady View Post

If the woman mentioned in the article is to be sued, it would be for her negligent exposing others to measles rather than staying home, (if she in fact was aware she had measles), not for being a non-vaccinator.

 

This is pretty much the heart of the matter, although vaccine status would certainly be relevant in demonstrating negligence if one knew that oneself had been exposed. And, in the latter case, recklessness can be enough to establish liability for intentional infliction of emotional distress, which could open up the playing field.

post #16 of 360
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama Metis View Post


Quote:


This is an interesting point. 

 

As a related question, should non-vaxed persons be required to cover the costs of controlling an outbreak if they are the index case? 

 


How can you prove someone is an index case..everyone gets it from somewhere.  Plus, with communicable diseases, you have no idea who's contagious and who's not.  They would have to prove that she was the ONLY contagious person at the airport that day, which I would think is not possible.

No, I don't think that anyone should be financially responsible for this kind of thing.  Not responsible to the "injured" party anyway because there's no way to prove where you got a disease.  If this woman knew that she was contagious at the time of her travels, that sucks of her.  It may be, like with chicken pox, that you're contagious before you know you have the disease..in that case, it's not really something she could have known.  If she's punished for warning people that she had this and they should look out for it, then that's really not right and people will be less forthcoming in the future.  I imagine that she was asked where she'd been in the last week or so.  She'd essentially be punished for telling the  truth.  (that is if she was diagnosed after the flight, rather than beforehand.)

 

post #17 of 360

The vaccinated have no right to sue the unvaccinated;  the whole idea is absurd.  Just because you're not vaccinated, you are not infected or contagious.  Supposedly the vaccinated people are PROTECTED!  Don't forget that in mothering magazine recently, it discussed the pertussis outbreak in California--almost all the cases were in vaccinated people.

 

I was vaccinated with MMR at 9 months old.  When I worked in the hospital years later, I had titers taken.  I was not immune to measles, so I had the single measles shot again.  Titers taken again.  Still, I am not immune to measles.  MMR was never studied in children under 18 months, but doctors and the manufacturer have pushed giving it younger and younger. The problem is that your immune system is not ready to respond at 9 months old, and it can actually make your immune system unable to respond to it in the future--that's my situation.  I don't live in fear of measles.  In fact, I never think about it except right now. 

 

As a devout Christian, I now understand that vaccines injected into our bodies is against God's word.  If they develop more oral or nasal vaccines, I'll consider them.  That's a natural route of immunity.  As the sister to a retarded woman, I look back at how normal she was up until age 3 when she lost all intelligible words, and I wonder if vaccines had a role.  I won't do that to my children.

 

As an American, I understand my right to individual liberty, and on that alone I stand that you cannot force me to immunize myself or my children.  I'm not crazy, I'm not stupid, I'm not irresponsible....I have simply made MY CHOICE.  If my child comes down with the measles, have no fears--I will quarantine him so as not to infect others, just as I do whenever he is sick.

post #18 of 360
Actually, I find the comments on the article infinitely more enlightening than the article itself. Lots of cool logic arguments, legal arguments and a surprisingly higher level of discourse than I tend to see in vaccination debates
post #19 of 360

I think if someone knew they had measels and purposely went out with the intent to give it to other people and one of those people became ill then yes, that person should be liable but that's pretty unlikely and it would be very difficult to prove. Just a run of the mill unvaxed person who doesn't know they're sick and infects someone - no way should they be sued, although it would be legal (in the us you can essentially sue anyone for any reason). If they made it legal to sue in this situation then it should be made legal to sue vaccine manufacturers and those to shed viruses after vaccination. 

post #20 of 360
Quote:
Originally Posted by rush2ady View Post


"The scientific case for the importance of vaccines is overwhelming and beyond any dispute (and most worries about safety rest on fear and lies). But still, most states by law permit parents to opt out of vaccination requirements by invoking religious or philosophical objections no matter how zany those may be. "


If the woman mentioned in the article is to be sued, it would be for her negligent exposing others to measles rather than staying home, (if she in fact was aware she had measles), not for being a non-vaccinator. Common sense should have told her if she is ill, to not get on a plane and expose others to her illness. Unfortunately, many people these days feel pressured to go to work/send kids to school when sick. Rather than encourage lawsuits against those who are trying to make good choices for their family, why not reassess our societies demands on people and allow room in our busy lives for time to stay home due to illness?
 


All this, yes, exactly.

 

What I would fear - in fact do fear - is an 'I'm vaxed, I'm fine' mentality that leads sick people to go to work and school and infect others. The science behind vaxes may or may not be clear, it depends on who you ask, but the science behind routes of transmission is crystal clear. That no vax is 100% effective is also crystal clear.

 

A better, and more thought provoking question would be should we sue people who knowingly infect others by going into public places when they are contagious?

 

 

 

 

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