Re: Guest Post - End to personal belief exemption in CA?

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Frontline did a follow up episode on this where a kid with leukemia and his family spoke up at a school board meeting (maybe in Ashland, OR?) about how he couldn't get vaccinated while getting treatment, because his immune system was so compromised. He depended on others getting vaccinated for protection and he asked that the non-medical exemption be waived.

In MA, for college students, if you file an exemption, you have to leave the state in the event of an outbreak.

Some distant relatives of Tim's are Christian Scientists, but I don't know where they come down on the vaccine thing. One of them (now in her late 60's) never worked, because she had epilepsy that wasn't treated, but I'm pretty sure that she takes medication now.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 8:32 AM
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I got the most annoying email from Rascal's daycare:

"It's been a year since K's surgeries and so we're all wearing lime green PRAISE JESUS" (repeat for four paragraphs without explaining who K is or what the surgeries were.)

It turns out that K is the owner's daughter, who flipped her ATV and was not wearing a helmet or protective gear because those are for pussy liberals. They had no insurance because that's for pussy liberals too. They did tons of lime-green-themed fundraisers, because that's K's favorite color, leaning heavily on the parents of the kids who attend their daycare. And now, here they are a year later - PRAISE JESUS - with no lessons learned whatsoever. Lime green 4-evah!

Also K has a horrendously spelled name. (Kon/leigh)


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 8:42 AM
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Also K has a horrendously spelled name. (Kon/leigh)

Pronounced "kennel"?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 8:50 AM
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I hope so. Also, obviously the emails are bold comic sans brightly colored nightmares, with background patterns circa 1998.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 8:52 AM
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Seems like Jesus never gets credit for wrecking the ATV in the first place.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:13 AM
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Man, when did RFK Jr. become such an asshole? He came to my high school to speak one time, sadly about the environment not about sex ed, and didn't strike me as extreme.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:19 AM
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And now, here they are a year later - PRAISE JESUS - with no lessons learned whatsoever.

"What do you want? I sent three boats and a helicopter!"


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:19 AM
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I was thinking of the "you could at least by a lottery ticket" line.


Posted by: Miby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:21 AM
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7: that is a favorite joke of mine.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:24 AM
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God, whoever threadjacked in comment 2 is a total jerkface.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:27 AM
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Maybe the connection is that RFK Jr. is god and was an asshole for making the ATV overturn.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 10:35 AM
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Also, it turns out as of those articles, one senator on the education committee who was polled as undecided on the bill is my senator and that of many Mineshafters in my metro subregion. Send some emails! It comes for more votes next Wednesday.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 11:00 AM
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If it gets a religious exemption added back in, is there any point to it?

I hate smugness and in an exercise in practicing what I preach am trying to pay some attention to people I feel that certain flavor of contempt for, and the example that leapt to mind when I thought of it was anti-vaxxers.

I did hear something on the radio about this suggesting that it may have weird consequences if it passes because the thing that happens if you don't vaccinate your kids is they can't go to public schools, so perhaps everyone's just going to turn into deeply entrenched, outside-the-system, paraoid....well, there. I'm doing it.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 11:18 AM
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I wish that they would also have clinics at school so that parents who are struggling to find a doctor to vaccinate the kids could just line them up.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 11:20 AM
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I think keeping a religious exemption would still be a step forward. People would have to commit perjury if their reason wasn't actually religious, and that may reduce incidence among the non-hardliners. I urged my senator to support the bill in its current form with only medical exemptions.

Are people who are harried and low-income and can't get a convenient vaccination actually getting PBEs? That's another hassle in itself. I assumed they would have either fallen through the cracks or been unjustly punished, but not used PBEs as a backstop.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 11:26 AM
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14: My childhood vaccinations were mostly from the school nurse (1970s, St L). Are there still school nurses? Are they allowed to do anything but guard labor?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 11:37 AM
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Are there still school nurses? Are they allowed to do anything but guard labor?

My hypochondriac 8-y-o niece got a christmas gift from her school nurse. I figure it was in gratitude for keeping the visit stats high and providing job security.


Posted by: potchkeh | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 11:58 AM
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16: Re: nurses. Depends on the State. There was a NY Times piece about the rising costs of vaccinations and how some doctors shop for them online looking for bargains. IN certain places it can be hard to find a pediatrician who can do them, because they lose money giving them. One woman lied to a county health department to say that she was uninsured, because that was the only way that the clinic would vaccinate her kids.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 12:19 PM
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15: Oh, I don't think that they're getting PBEs. I just think that there's a big problem with the delivery of vaccinations in this country for lower middle income people--or anyone who moves to a new area and doesn't have an established relationship with a pediatrician.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 12:21 PM
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15.1 - Proving sincerity/religiousness of reasons is ... not easy. Even in the best of cases it's not like there's a fixed set of categories of religious beliefs that people have to choose between. ("No it doesn't count because you said you were Catholic. Only people who checked the box for Christian Science can claim this exemption...")


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 12:24 PM
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You could make a standard for sincerity based on non-vaccine medical care. If you're willing to bypass antibiotics, we'll believe you're sincere.


Posted by: Miby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 12:34 PM
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21: I have a friend who argues for a similar standard for folks who don't believe in evolution. Penicillin should be all they need, then, since obviously bacteria can't evolve resistance!


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 12:41 PM
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22: the creationists have an answer to that: they accept "microevolution" as fact, but reject "macroevolution" (either speciation in general, or speciation of Homo sapiens specifically) as mere theory.


Posted by: Knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 4:44 PM
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20: Agreed. To be clearer, people filling out a phony religious exemption wouldn't be prosecuteable, but they would still know it was perjury, which could have some discouraging effect.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 04-17-15 6:41 PM
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PBE data is interesting, if you're a big nerd: (1), (2).


Posted by: nareiK | Link to this comment | 04-19-15 7:27 AM
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Maybe they could have note at the bottom of the form: "Filling out a phony religious exemption is not prosecutable except as perjury. However, it does count as 'Lifehacking'."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-19-15 7:36 AM
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"If you put 'Christian Science' on the form and your child attends a Catholic school, we're telling the bishop."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-19-15 7:48 AM
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"Attention Redondo Beach Parent's Association: We have looked up 'Presbyterian' and did doesn't mean what you say it means. Try again."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-19-15 7:58 AM
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"Protip: Moonies don't call themselves 'Moonies' or have a position against vaccination."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-19-15 8:30 AM
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"Caution: Deidentified data will be publicly available and the public includes smart-ass sociologists at the Harvard of the South."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-19-15 8:37 AM
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