Vaxxed The Movie was recently previewed in Kansas City. There was a lot of negative press about this movie, and I heard that Robert De Niro appeared to cave to pressure to pull it from his film festival. In addition it was reported that at screenings around the country mothers who had not even seen this movie were protesting outside of movie theaters objecting to it even being shown. I was curious to know what specifically this documentary said that might elicit such responses...so I went to see for myself.
I was shocked.
I'll be honest -- when I heard that Andrew Wakefield, a highly accomplished gastroenterologist/scientific researcher had directed it, I was skeptical at how good a movie it would be. How good would a scientist/doctor be at film directing, when he had never done something like this before? But the documentary turned out to be an engaging, professionally done, easy to follow and fast paced presentation that focused mainly upon one thing: A CDC senior scientist had come forward alleging the CDC had deliberately destroyed data from a study suggesting that African American boys given the MMR vaccine at 18 months DID show a highly significant increase in autism diagnosis, compared to those who received this vaccine after 3 years of age. The documentary also featured a number of families with autistic children who shared their stories of watching their once perfect and healthy little toddlers regress into Autism after being given the MMR vaccine. It was gut wrenching to think about what these parents had gone through, but it got even worse when you learned that after speaking out to try to prevent what happened to them from happening to others, they have been attacked and even vilified.
I thought this movie did an extraordinary job of presenting evidence from multiple sources, including credible doctors and scientists to back up their assertion that the CDC failed in their duty to protect Americans. They also suggested that the American media's failure to investigate -- even after Congress was alerted, is evidence of the power and economic influence of big pharma.
After watching Vaxxed, and seeing that the movie was not even advocating that people not vaccinate -- (as one would have thought based upon those who opposed it being shown) I looked on-line to see what the movie's detractors were saying. What could they possibly find so terrible -- had I been misled in some way that I did not notice?
And that is what I found so shocking. The criticisms did not point out any factual misstatements in the movie (leaving me to believe that they couldn't find any) instead all they did was attack the character of those in the movie -- in fact, one site began its review by first reminding readers that Andrew Wakefield had been professionally discredited and his paper on the MMR vaccine retracted. For those who might have found such ad hominem attacks compelling, be sure to read this essay about Dr Wakefield, which will explain the parts of the story, the mainstream media has chosen to not share:
Who is Dr Andrew Wakefield?
Then I hope that you will watch Vaxxed the Movie, and make up your mind for yourself about what is really going on here. If you know anything about science, then you know that a study that fails to find a link, can never be proof that a link does not exist – (which is what the media keeps alleging about the MMR vaccine and autism) but rather, it may in fact, just mean that THAT study was not designed in a way that could find a link! (And I can tell you that when I worked in the pharmaceutical industry -- I was in meetings between the marketing department and scientific department, where the first actually told the second what sort of data they needed for marketing purposes and the latter then suggested a university that likely would do the study and set parameters exactly as we needed to create the desired data-- if we gave them a nice grant for a new autoclave!) Furthermore, if you have common sense and a healthy amount of skepticism, consider why so many entities don’t want you to even see this movie – when all it's doing is questioning what happened at the CDC, and sharing the perspective of a scientist who suggested that autism risk might be reduced if we replaced the MMR vaccine with THREE individual vaccines given at THREE different times. What an outrageous and dangerous idea...right?