Mothering Forums

Mothering Forums (http://www.mothering.com/forum/)
-   Vaccinations (http://www.mothering.com/forum/47-vaccinations/)
-   -   Selfishness? (http://www.mothering.com/forum/47-vaccinations/1401768-selfishness.html)

Turquesa 05-09-2014 06:14 PM

The argument that I frequently here is that people who don't vaccinate on schedule are committing an act of selfishness by relying on the vaccine-induced immunity of others to avoid vaccine-targeted diseases, as well as by potentially exposing the immuno-compromised to vaccine-targeted diseases.

Could we also argue that it is an act of selfishness to expect absolutely everyone around you to engage in compulsory or coerced altruism through the medical risk-taking that is vaccination?

Does the argument of selfishness among non-compliant parents hold much water for tetanus? Food-born illnesses? Vaccine failure, such as acellular pertussis? The sheer fact that there are a multitude of NON-vaccine-targeted illnesses to which the immuno-comromised could be exposed?

I would argue that the selfisheness argument, as outlined in the first paragraph, is simplistic and somewhat black-and-white. Without resorting to finger-pointing, judgment, or name-calling, (use the word "selfishness" instead of "selfish," for example), what is your take on the issue?

ma2two 05-09-2014 06:44 PM

If we thought we needed to rely on "vaccine induced herd immunity" to protect our unvaccinated children from harm and death, it wouldn't be in our best interests to share our concerns about vaccines with anyone else. In fact, doing so would be the opposite of selfishness.

 

And yes, it is wrong to ask or expect anyone to risk harming their children for the sake of others, when they don't feel comfortable doing so. 


beckybird 05-09-2014 08:20 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Turquesa View Post

Could we also argue that it is an act of selfishness to expect absolutely everyone around you to engage in compulsory or coerced altruism through the medical risk-taking that is vaccination?

This is such a great point!!


applejuice 05-09-2014 10:18 PM

When my husband's oncologist told me to keep recently vaccinated children away from him, that is what I did. I did not expect everyone in the neighborhood to stop vaccinating because of him - we just stayed by ourselves and family in our home. Period. Why do people want to run around and change everyone else because of their personal misconceptions? 

 

And if there was an outbreak in the school or community, state law stated that my unvaxed children stay home. That makes sense, since the vaxed should be protected and be able to go to school. 


kathymuggle 05-10-2014 06:36 AM

It is selfish to rant about the selfishness of others when the goal of said ranting is to try and:

 

-guilt them into changing their minds and doing as you want them to do

-turns others agianst them, isolate or vilify them, so societal pressures will be exacted against them to do as you want them to do

 

More in a few….


prosciencemum 05-10-2014 09:13 AM

Definition of selfish:

(Of a person, action, or motive) lacking consideration for others; concerned chiefly with one’s own personal profit or pleasure

(From: http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/american_english/selfish)

It is against the UA here to say any MDC member is being intentionally selfish.

applejuice 05-10-2014 10:14 AM

Who said any mdc member is selfish? Do not put words in any one's mouth. 

 

The methods of coercion used by many followers of the AAP  and CDC are classic bullying, threatening, isolating, and harassment.

 

Amanda Peete, for one, has publicly referred to nonvaxers as parasites. That is quite mean and pointed.

 

I have done my research. I am quite libertarian, live and let live, with my decision. 

 

To learn who rules over you, simply learn who you are not allowed to criticize. 


rachelsmama 05-10-2014 10:52 AM

All of the parents that I know who did their research and made a concious decision about vaccinations chose the option that they had reason to believe would give their children the best possible shot at optimal health (and all were aware there are no guarantees).  Some chose to vaccinate fully, some selectively or delayed, and some not at all, but all have the goal of raising the healthiest possible children, who will grow up into the healthiest possible adults.  Society needs healthy adults and society needs people with critical thinking skills, so I really don't see any selfishness there.

 

Also, the closer we get to 100% compliance for vaccinations, the harder it will be to identify when there's a problem with a vaccine or combination of vaccines.  There is a small, but real, possibility of quality control problems, or unidentified long-term safety issues with vaccines, and due to the extensive use of these medications, the stakes are pretty high; having a group of healthy individuals who voluntarily forgo some or all vaccination has the potential to be hugely beneficial to society.


kathymuggle 05-10-2014 11:46 AM


 

 

For kicks, a few quotes on selfishness:

 

“Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.” 
 Oscar Wilde

 

“Selfish— a judgment readily passed by those who have never tested their own power of sacrifice.” 
 George Eliot

 

“Nothing resembles selfishness more closely than self-respect” 
 George Sand, Indiana

 

http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/selfishness


applejuice 05-10-2014 11:50 AM

As a nonvaxer, I prefer the words of fellow nonvaxer Mahatmas Gandhi who said, "Be the change you want to see in the world."

 

That is NOT being selfish. It is setting the example.


kathymuggle 05-10-2014 11:52 AM

One more for now….I thought this link on selfishness was interesting.

 

http://www.projecthappilyeverafter.com/2011/06/9-signs-that-you-might-be-selfish/

 

Here are her first three points, and I agree with all of them:

 

  1. Everyone is selfish sometimes. Unless you are a canonized Saint or an enlightened being, then you are probably a lot like me. Sometimes you behave selfishly. Other times you behave selflessly. Refusing to admit this is both selfish and misguided.
  2. If you think you deserve to be canonized as a Saint, then you are selfish. The desire to have others know you, revere you, and recognize you is a self-focused desire. You will be truly selfless if someone offers to canonize you and you turn down that offer by saying, “Oh, no, this other person deserves it and would benefit from that a lot more than I would. Please give this other person the honor. I do not deserve it or need it.” This holds true for any title of recognition.
  3. It’s selfish to call someone else selfish. By accusing others of being selfish, you are attempting to bring others down and peg and yourself up a peg. This is, by nature, a self-focused action. You are motivated by concern for your own reputation and not by your concern for the well-being of others.

For what it is worth, and maybe this isn't ok with the Op or the mods, but I would prefer to discuss selfishness in general (philosophy - yeah!)  than have another round of vaccine-centric flame-fest polarisation (flames - boo)

 


Turquesa 05-10-2014 12:09 PM

To review from the OP:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Turquesa View Post

Without resorting to finger-pointing, judgment, or name-calling, (use the word "selfishness" instead of "selfish," for example), what is your take on the issue?

 



Are we up to the challenge? thumb.gif

sassyfirechick 05-10-2014 06:05 PM

I don't expect anyone to change what they do to accommodate me or my family.  Unless of course I lived next to a gmo cornfield and had to worry about overspray from pesticides then I might expect some accommodation :wink But nope, we don't at all rely on those around us to keep us healthy because honestly unless you ask everyone you meet, you have no way of knowing which people are assuming they fall into that herd immunity.


moderatemom 05-11-2014 07:10 PM

I couldn't and wouldn't make a blanket statement about the selfishness of people who don't vax.  I personally believe it is a civic duty to do so, similar I guess to paying taxes.  Those who can should, and those who can't may take advantage of the system.  In regards to vaccination, I leave it up to the conscience of the individual whether they fall into the "can't" category or not. 


Taximom5 05-11-2014 08:27 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ModerateMom View Post

I couldn't and wouldn't make a blanket statement about the selfishness of people who don't vax.  I personally believe it is a civic duty to do so, similar I guess to paying taxes.  Those who can should, and those who can't may take advantage of the system.  In regards to vaccination, I leave it up to the conscience of the individual whether they fall into the "can't" category or not. 

That's pretty much what I used to believe.

I dutifully got all the vaccines, and agreed to all the vaccines for my children. What changed my mind:

1) My children had severe adverse reactions to vaccines.

2) I learned that these reactions are not nearly as rare as we have been led to believe.

3) I learned that both the vaccine manufacturers and the US government lied about safety/efficacy of vaccines (and other medical interventions as well), and that pediatricians have no time to research this issue, relying instead on the vaccine industry and government for their information.

4) I learned that there is absolutely no screening for known predisposition to severe vaccine reactions,

5) I learned that neither the medical community, nor the vaccine manufacturers bear ANY responsibility if you or your child have a vaccine reaction.

CarolBondi 05-11-2014 08:38 PM

Anyway, when did the word 'selfish' become so taboo?

 

Isnt the very essence of our role here - life sustenance  - essentially a selfish one?

If I dont make myself #1 priority, everyone I love suffers.

So am I selfish?


applejuice 05-11-2014 08:39 PM

Quote:
5) I learned that neither the medical community, nor the vaccine manufacturers bear ANY responsibility if you or your child have a vaccine reaction.
 
 

That factoid should be on those little pamphlets that are handed out to parents when the children are brought in for WBVs.

"Trust vaccines and if something goes wrong the authorities will take care of you or your child." 

http://www.ageofautism.com/2014/05/open-letter-to-michael-gerson-re-the-disease-of-vaccine-denialism.html

 

Oh, those antivaxers are up to it again!  They want to sue! http://www.livingwhole.org/the-vaccination-litigation/


CarolBondi 05-11-2014 08:40 PM

Moderate Mom: my parental duty precedes my civic duty my a mile! 


prosciencemum 05-11-2014 10:33 PM

Most of us here are moms trying to do the best for our kids. Not my definition of selfish.

kathymuggle 05-12-2014 05:40 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ModerateMom View Post
 

I couldn't and wouldn't make a blanket statement about the selfishness of people who don't vax.  I personally believe it is a civic duty to do so, similar I guess to paying taxes.  Those who can should, and those who can't may take advantage of the system.  In regards to vaccination, I leave it up to the conscience of the individual whether they fall into the "can't" category or not. 

 

I don't think civic responsibility ever extends to risking ones health.  Examples:  I do not think people should have or not have babies due to population issues, I do not believe in military conscription.  I don't think taxes hold either, as they are involuntary.  Vacines are voluntary.
 
I am reminded of maslovs pyramid, again.  (probably the image i post the most)

 

Health and security of the family come well before concepts such as selfishness/selflessness or civic responsability - both of which would be in the purple/blue area.

 

moderatemom 05-12-2014 06:39 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

 

OK, I don't know how that contradicts what I said though. 

 

ETA:  I also don't know why the content of your post didn't show when I quoted it!  Weird. 


samaxtics 05-12-2014 07:54 AM

Political leaders and policy makers are not always of sound mind.  There are many examples historically of where required or expected civic duty was totally devoid of morals/ethics.  Actually there are enough present day examples (the stop and frisk policy being one).

 

I think that in a more enlightened time (when more is known about the immune system and diseases) the previous and current vaccines will be seen as quite barbaric (from the ingredients, to how they are produced, to the timing of the delivery).   Consequently I do not feel that declining this practice is selfish in any definition of the word nor would I equate this practice with the duty to pay taxes.


kathymuggle 05-12-2014 07:56 AM

Moderatemom: I have had the copy paste issue before. It is weird.

I wasn't quoting you to disagree with you (how can I disagree with what a person individual sense of civic responsibility entails?) more just as a jumping off point for further conversation.

Turquesa 05-12-2014 08:48 AM

I'm not speaking for any other parent here but myself.

One selfish option I could take would be the easy path. It would make MY life a lot easier if I obeyed orders to vaccinate on schedule. I wouldn't have to fight battles with manipulative pediatricians. I wouldn't have to fight the State or the health department every time they take both overt and sneaky steps to intimidate parents into compliance, like nanny state re-education, scary and inflammatory bad mommy forms to sign, and some pointless rigmarole process, (e.g. notaries, "sincerity" interrogations in NYS, or making parents pick up exemption forms in person at the health department when we all know damn well they can be available online). I wouldn't have to battle pissy school officials. I wouldn't have to pour hours of reading into this topic. I wouldn't have to network frantically to find a doctor who will work with our decision. I wouldn't be the target of all of the hate speech on pseudo-skeptic sites and even mainstream media.

All that I have really done is chosen to delay a couple of the school-mandated vaccines until adolescence. What has resulted is a fierce and feisty battle to protect my children. Who knew that what should be a simple decision has turned into one of the most *selfless* acts of parenting??

moderatemom 05-12-2014 09:18 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

Moderatemom: I have had the copy paste issue before. It is weird.

I wasn't quoting you to disagree with you (how can I disagree with what a person individual sense of civic responsibility entails?) more just as a jumping off point for further conversation.

Well, I think it's obvious that personal needs tend to come first or be more important but I guess I don't understand the relevancy of it being voluntary or involuntary.  Taxes are not voluntary for everyone, that is my point.  Some people are not in the position to pay taxes, but they still operate as part of the system.  Even if you're not a taxpayer, you still get to drive on the roads and use the public school system, just like if you're a non-vaxxer you still get to take advantage of herd immunity .  Of course it's true that there are specific rules regarding who has to pay taxes, but that's because income is easily measured whereas whether or not a person can or should be vaccinated is harder to judge.  I don't think "civic duty" = "involuntary," I just think it's part of the responsibility of living in a society with other people. 


kathymuggle 05-12-2014 11:41 AM

Duty definition:

 

du·ty
ˈd(y)o͞otē/
noun
 
  1. 1.
    a moral or legal obligation; a responsibility.
    "it's my duty to uphold the law"
    synonyms: responsibilityobligationcommitmentMore
     
     
  2.  
     
     
    Taxes are obligatory, vaccines are not.
     
    Vaccines certainly are not a duty in terms of legal obligation but they  might be for you 
    in terms of morality as you see it.  

     


moderatemom 05-12-2014 12:05 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post
 

Duty definition:

 

du·ty
ˈd(y)o͞otē/
noun
 
  1. 1.
    a moral or legal obligation; a responsibility.
    "it's my duty to uphold the law"
    synonyms: responsibilityobligationcommitmentMore
     
     
  2.  
     
     
    Taxes are obligatory, vaccines are not.
     
    Vaccines certainly are not a duty in terms of legal obligation but they  might be for you 
    in terms of morality as you see it.  

     

 

Thanks for the definition!  Obviously, I was referring to a moral obligation and not a legal one. 


kathymuggle 05-12-2014 12:16 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ModerateMom View Post
 

 

Thanks for the definition!  Obviously, I was referring to a moral obligation and not a legal one. 

Bolding mine.  Not sure if you are being snarky or not :mischief - but using words differently trips people up a lot in these conversations, so I find definitions helpful.  


applejuice 05-12-2014 12:35 PM

The first rule in the Hippocratic Oath is to do NO HARM.

 

I do not understand how our obligation as citizens should be to undergo a medical procedure that is legally defined as UNAVOIDABLY UNSAFE of questionable benefit with less than 100% efficacy WHILE HEALTHY to prevent a disease. How can maintaining one's health and the health of their family be considered selfish? Vaccines have obvious side effects and dangers. It should be up to the individual to choose which risk they are willing to endure for themself and their family's health and welfare.

 

The very idea of undergoing a medical procedure while healthy has always been an ethical problem for vaccines and medicine.  Allergies, for example, were never part of the medical curriculum until the 20th century, but doctors figured allergies were a decent exchange for not getting smallpox.


moderatemom 05-12-2014 03:06 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post
 

Bolding mine.  Not sure if you are being snarky or not :mischief - but using words differently trips people up a lot in these conversations, so I find definitions helpful.  

 

No snark, but I do think it's kind of funny that you posted a definition that described exactly how I was using the word, so I'm not sure why it was necessary. 



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:52 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Resources saved on this page: MySQL 7.14%
vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.