Rick DeKnoop: Do your part, get your shots | SummitDaily.com

Rick DeKnoop: Do your part, get your shots

Rick DeKnoop | Other Voices

I’ll start today with a few words that many today might not know much about. Diphtheria, mumps, pertussis, tetanus, tuberculosis, poliomyelitis (polio), small pox, pneumonia. I left rubella off the list because even the anti-vax people can remember the infamous Disneyland outbreak from a few years ago. This should have awakened some of them to what an epidemic can be.

One or two people showed up at Disneyland with measles, and because some people who thought they knew it all and didn’t need to be vaccinated were there, too, causing measles spread to every corner of the country by plane, car, bus and train. Thank goodness the measles met a brick wall presented by enough of us vaccinated types that the outbreak was very short-lived.

I am in my 78th year, and those from my generation know what it was really like before vaccinations. We had a real fear of those aforementioned diseases and more. We were all at high risk from them, but over the next 20 or so years vaccines came for all of them, and we took them.

Because we did, all you anti-vax people didn’t have to worry until enough of you went unvaccinated that the Disney tragedy occurred. Folks should have awakened to the risks but instead they turned it into a fight over freedom.

Folks, it is one thing to not take the vaccines yourselves, but to put your own children at risk for these diseases based on the famous (infamous) British doctor, Andrew Wakefield, and many unproven and ridiculous rumors and mainly anecdotal evidence that these vaccines are not safe. Doctor Wakefield use flawed and phony research to publish his now infamous Lancet article equating vaccines with autism.

The British medical boards were so unimpressed with his BS that they barred him from practicing medicine in his own country. It was OK, though, because he came here to the USA to propagate his theories to a waiting crowd of conspiracy theorists and still managed to make a nice living out of scaring the crap out of folks with lies and quack medicine.

Without those vaccines, these diseases would also be plagues of the present. You are forcing your own kids to sneak around to get those shots because many of them realize how important they really are.

Please, I’m not saying that all anti-vax people are the devil. Most really probably mean well. The one vaccine I wish someone would develop is one to give some the gift of common sense to help them realize how really important it is that we all pull together to put a stop to the coronavirus. It has shut us down all these months.

It is up to all of us to protect our future generations from these and many new diseases that will inevitably come our way in the future. I love all of you enough to have gotten my vaccinations and I will continue to wear a mask for your benefit so please join me and do your part, too. Your kids will thank you in the long run.

Rick DeKnoop lives in Grass Valley.

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