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The following is presented as part of The Columbian’s Opinion content, which offers a point of view in order to provoke thought and debate of civic issues. Opinions represent the viewpoint of the author. Unsigned editorials represent the consensus opinion of The Columbian’s editorial board, which operates independently of the news department.

Letter: Support vaccine programs

By Dino William Ramzi, Washougal
Published: February 12, 2019, 6:00am

The bill to restrict personal belief vaccine exemptions for school entry, HB 1638, will receive its first committee hearing Feb. 13 in Olympia. The anti-vaccine circus, fronted by the so-called “Informed Choice Washington,” has invited high-profile demonstrators from out-of-state along with imports from Vancouver, British Columbia, and as far afield as Australia.

Children will be paraded to leverage sympathy for the “vaccine-injured.” Medical tragedies occur with or without vaccines. Those who point out that vaccines cannot cause that type of disability will be abused as sub-humans denying a parent’s suffering.

Kitchen-table warriors armed with Google “research” push misinformation onto young, panicky moms wanting to do the best for their babies. Raising unsubstantiated fears about vaccines while reassuring that the corresponding diseases are benign is the worst form of scare-mongering.

Vaccines are the safest and most effective tools that exist in health care. There are important legal and policy issues to be discussed regarding the limits of school mandates and the liability of those who ignore them. Instead, we see the uninformed screech falsehoods at the quiet majority.

Let your legislators know that you support vaccine programs and the elimination of as many non-medical exemptions as possible.

We encourage readers to express their views about public issues. Letters to the editor are subject to editing for brevity and clarity. Limit letters to 200 words (100 words if endorsing or opposing a political candidate or ballot measure) and allow 30 days between submissions. Send Us a Letter