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Study: Vaccination against measles may have other benefits

In this 2015 file photo, pediatrician Charles Goodman vaccinates 1-year-old Cameron Fierro with the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine, or MMR vaccine, at his practice in Northridge, Calif.

I’ve read about measles outbreaks and modern parents deciding it’s too risky to vaccinate their children. I’ve thought about generations of mothers who came before, willing to do anything and everything to protect their babies.

I stumbled on a Huffington Post article by Kari Nixon, entitled “I’m A Mom And A Vaccine Researcher. Here’s Why You Should Vaccinate Your Children.” You should read her brilliant article yourself.

Among other things, she wrote:

"Life is risk. To live means to be at risk of dying, and since we will all die, we can only choose how we will live ― in collaborative community, or in fear and isolation.”

" … Trust people to strive for the common good alongside you and to develop concern for all children along with you. Trust that we have centuries of stories about how horrible these diseases are, even if you haven’t seen it with your own eyes.

" ... Trust the urgency of these historical narratives, urgency from mothers long dead, but whose experiences were very real and often very tragic; these are the experiences that resulted in vaccine technology and gave us the privilege of living in a world with drastically lower infant mortality rates."

In my own family, as children growing up in the '40s and '50s, we all got sick from measles, chickenpox and mumps. Three of the five kids in my wife’s family and mine contracted polio.

As I think about moms and families who suffered before vaccines, I’m sad to see how today’s parents can be misled by so much misinformation being promoted for political reasons.

It shouldn’t be so hard for our moms to lean on each of us, to trust each of us to make good collective decisions that show we care about all the world’s babies, including our own.

Jim Boucher, Valley

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