Avoiding vaccinations

The threat of communicable diseases is one of the arguments being used against minors who crossed the border. In reality, if a danger like this exists in the United States, it is related to myths and fears about vaccinating infants and not to immigrants.

The beginning of the school year revealed a larger number of parents throughout the country who have requested exemptions to avoid vaccinating their children. There have always been these types of cases based on health issues. However, the numbers have grown into the thousands for philosophical or religious reasons.

As a result, diseases that were virtually wiped out, like whooping cough and measles, have reappeared. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned that anti-vaccine beliefs threaten public safety nationwide.

Religious groups that do not believe in medicine have existed for a long time. A 1998 British study linked the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine to autism, creating a new anti-vaccine movement. Although the study was proven to be wrong, it increased the number of measles cases in the United Kingdom, which became the second highest after Romania.

Unfortunately, in the U.S., this mistaken report found many followers, who mistrust medicine for various reasons. It is precisely among the non-immunized population that diseases that were considered a thing of the past are coming back.

It is worth pointing out, in contrast, that this problem does not exist among Latino immigrants, who get here with a solid culture that values immunizations. This was the conclusion reached in Santa Cruz County, California, which reported 70 cases of whooping cough; 45 of these cases were among Anglos and 25 among Latinos, in an area that is 60% white and one third Hispanic.

The United States is a vast, diverse country with a tradition of people who are capable of believing the most improbable conspiracy theories. Immigration is an area that lends itself for people to believe in lies and exaggerations. In this case, the spread of childhood diseases is associated with ignorance and falsehoods, but immigrants have nothing to do with it