I didn’t know who Senator Mark Green was until I saw a news article saying he thought vaccines caused autism. So I started looking into his background. Low and behold, he’s an actual doctor, and he inserted into Iraq with some of the initial SEAL teams as their medic. He talked about it in a great video here.
So this guy served with the military. If he didn’t want vaccines, well, that doesn’t fly. You get vaccinated for all sorts of stuff: Yellow Fever, Typhoid, Smallpox, and a whole bunch more. You don’t get to opt-out of these, so if Doctor Green had any sort of issue with vaccines, he wouldn’t have been going into Iraq.
And…he’s a doctor. He went to a good medical school, and he had to patch people up in some nasty situations. Going into Iraq, we were worried about biological weapons, so again, he would have been vaccinated and would be vaccinating people. So none of that adds up either.
So then I try to find his actual words. I found this video in a Tennessee news article. He says:
Let me say this about autism, I have committed to people in my community, up in Montgomery County, to stand on the CDC’s desk and get the real data on vaccines. Because there is some concern that the rise in autism is a result of the preservatives that are in our vaccines. So, as a physician, I can make that argument and I can look at it academically and make the argument against the CDC, if they really want to engage me on it. But it appears some of that data has been, honestly, maybe fraudulently managed. So we’ve got to go up there and stand against that and make sure we get that fixed, that issue addressed.
All of these words get pared down into headlines like:
Rep.-elect, who’s also a doctor, falsely links vaccines to autism at town hall!
Tennessee U.S. Rep.-elect Mark Green alleges vaccines may cause autism, questions CDC data
So if you ask for CDC data, because you have constituents that are concerned about preservatives in vaccines and a link to autism, and you want to analyze the data as a doctor…you’re a science denier.
What about that preservative? Thimerosal, a mercury based preservative, was looked at during a routine review of all mercury-based drugs (because mercury is particularly nasty to the human body) and US Public Health Service and American Academy of Pediatrics released a statement asking for thimerosal to be removed from vaccines:
The recognition that some children could be ex-posed to a cumulative level of mercury over the first 6 months of life that exceeds one of the federal guidelines on methyl mercury now requires a weighing of two different types of risks when vaccinating infants. On the one hand, there is the known serious risk of diseases and deaths caused by failure to immunize our infants against vaccine-preventable infectious diseases; on the other, there is the unknown and probably much smaller risk, if any, of neurodevelopmental effects posed by exposure to thimerosal. The large risks of not vaccinating children far outweigh the unknown and probably much smaller risk, if any, of cumulative exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccines over the first 6 months of life.
Nevertheless, because any potential risk is of concern, the US Public Health Service (USPHS), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and vaccine manufacturers agree that thimerosal-containing vaccines should be removed as soon as possible. Similar conclusions were reached this year in a meeting attended by European regulatory agencies, the European vaccine manufacturers, and the US FDA, which examined the use of thimerosal-containing vaccines produced or sold in European countries. The USPHS and the AAP are working collaboratively to ensure that the replacement of thimerosal-containing vaccines takes place as expeditiously as possible while at the same time ensuring that our high vaccination coverage levels and their associated low disease levels throughout our entire childhood population are maintained.
If you want a long rundown of how this all came together, read this article.
So USPHS and AAP removed thimerosal as a precaution. They didn’t say it caused anything bad (liability maybe?), but they based their recommendation on comparison to exposure levels of thimerosal, an organomercury compound that didn’t have an established “safe” level, to the exposure level set for methylmercury compounds. The two are completely different, but a room of smart people said we should be cautious.
We have an incoming Senator, who vaccinates his family, saying he wants data from the CDC so he can analyze the data. We have a situation where there may not be a lot of data, and there wasn’t as much study done at the time. And then we have conspiracy theorists, who see the rapid removal of thimerosal as a cover up by drug companies, coming into the fray.
It’s an ugly mess. I don’t blame Doctor Green for wanting data. We should encourage him to look at the data and provide an independent review. Assuming he comes back and says “Yes, I reviewed the data, and we should all be good with vaccines not causing autism,” then that is a big win.
Instead, we have media slamming him, likely because he’s a Republican.
The biggest lesson here for anyone choosing to make statements is that you should run your own website and put out your own videos and words. It was difficult to get Doctor Green’s actual words because they don’t fit the negative narrative being spun about him. If I was a Senator, I’d specifically have a YouTube channel that one of my aides updates anytime I made a public speech.
While I’m guessing this will blow over, voters in Tennessee will see yet another time that the media slammed a Republican without cause. Sure, someone at CNN might be gloating, but I’m guessing there will be more quiet voters who stop watching mainstream media and keep voting for outsiders in the coming years.
Please vaccinate your family, get your flu shot, and donate to Da Tech Guy!