Archive for the ‘Freedom of Religion’ Category

Why should there be exemptions to vaccines,even for health workers?

November 26, 2017

I am a retired medical researcher and physician/scientist.  My work was in immunology and immunopathology, so I know a lot of science that the general public has no understanding of and has great ignorance. Therefore, this opinion piece is well-informed, but just my opinion.

Where to take a vaccine should be personal choice. Hugh Fudenberg, who was one of the leading immunologist in the country was ostracized because he found a correlation between the number of flu shots a person gets and the chance of getting Alzheimer’s disease (increase with more flu shots was nearly linear).

Remember in Illinois alone, just one shot brings big pharm a profit of at least $33 million-15 years ago, so there is a big money interest biasing the national and state committees that determine whether to mandate a vaccine. I discovered that at one point at least 1/2 of the committee had financial connections with big pharm.

Personally, I had the Hong Kong flu, so I know I am immune to a certain strain of flu and it is rational to not take the flu vaccine when that type of influenza is circulating and the vaccine is for that type of influenza. (you can look up the strains and the strains vaccines are made to in a particular year at the CDC web site) More research is needed as I believe Dr. Fudenberg was correct. Perhaps a lawsuit is in order to protect such individual choice to lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

There are families with a genetic tendency towards life-threatening reactions to certain vaccines. I know of one family where the first and second child died within 24 hrs. of DTP vaccine administration. When the mother refused vaccine for the 3rd child, child protection tried to take custody and force the vaccine. Only because Illinois State Senator O’Malley intervened was this prevented. His daughter suffered a severe vaccine reaction with fever and stopped breathing. He performed CPR, but she remained mentally impaired for life due to hypoxic brain damage (caused by lack of oxygen due to the respirator arrest).

When a family has lost a child due to complications of vaccinations, then they likely have a genetic problem making them susceptible to these rare complications and they should not be forced to have their other children vaccinated. These families should be exempted until we understand how to identify the genes that permit such bad reactions and exempt such people carrying such genes. We need to devote more money to vaccine genetic research to solve this problem. Therefore, for a small number of people getting a flu shot is actually Russian roulette. They would be perfectly happy wearing masks during flu season and being vigilant about hand-washing.

The facts about the numbers of injured children and the federal compensation system are generally not told to the public and I believe messaged due to influence by Big Pharm and corrupt politicians and their accomplices.

All vaccines are different. All infections are different. They have different modes of infections, different hit rates or “infectiousness”, different types of immunity that the body uses to fight them. You should not generalize and make the same statement about all vaccines. Some are live virus and some dead virus vaccines. Live virus vaccines can endanger those with autoimmune disease and cancer or inherited problems with immunity.

Vaccination laws must have exceptions that protect those that are vulnerable to their complications or family members who are vulnerable to complications. Complications include death and brain damage. Making vaccine laws without exceptions are like making a law that everyone has to have their right hand amputated if they have cancer, despite the type of cancer they have. It is pure insanity.

Most measles deaths (145,000 annually) are in undeveloped countries where children have malnutrition. Without malnutrition, very few die of measles.

Most chicken pox deaths are actually deaths from overwhelming infection with bacteria that invade an open sore. Even this can be greatly reduced with education, hygiene, and vigilance.

On the other hand, polio is an overwhelmingly disastrous infection for the overall population and most people should get the polio vaccine if traveling abroad or show proof of it if entering this country until the all clear is given around the world. However, most baby boomers are not aware that the first few batches of polio vaccine injected were contaminated with a monkey virus that increases chances of cancer, so all is not well, even with this vaccine. In addition, the first rotavirus vaccines were pulled off of the market due to increased numbers of acute abdomens (life-threatening ) due to intussusception, which requires emergency surgery.

Tetanus is a horrible way to die and more common than one likes to see when no vaccines were available, so this vaccine falls into the probably should get it category for me. To the layman who is a natural health enthusiast. Please NEVER use any cosmetic mud for an umbilical cord (bellybutton) open wound on a baby as this often contains tetanus germs and has killed many babies over time.

I am one of the few physicians who would treat kids of parents who refused vaccinations. This is because there are some idiosyncratic reactions that can kill a child. I was often able to convince parents to give some vaccinations on a more prolonged schedule, but never would kick them out of practice for not vaccinating their kids. In addition, if the vaccines are required, they should be free. Some could not get them from local health departments and the cost was excessive.

I also believe that certain vaccines are unnecessary such as the hepatitis vaccine, unless you live in Asia, inject illicit drugs, or have unprotected sex with multiple partners.

There are many things the doctors, drug companies, and government do not tell you about vaccines, such as the enhancing antibody effect that may actually increase the chance of chronic active hepatitis B and liver cancer if your anti-hepatitis antibody titers drop and you are exposed to hepatitis B. The average person’s titers drop with time. This is an immunological phenomenon where a person who is given a cancer vaccine develops increased rather than decreased cancer growth if too little antibody is given (low zone enhancement). I believe this is the yet unknown mechanism by which babies of mothers who are hepatitis B carriers get infected and both are later susceptible to increased cancers. The vaccines are all quite different and do not necessarily give lifelong immunity as the diseases do. If you get the hepatitis vaccine, I would suggest you get your titers checked every ten years and get boosted if they drop – for at least the hepatitis B vaccine if you choose to get it.

Bottom line is that I don’t like the public being used as guinea pigs unless the evidence of risk versus benefit is overwhelming and the illness has such a high serious complication or death rate that the vaccines are rational. So, show me the data for each one over several decades. Not just the messaged data from Big Pharm. There is a long history in this country of hiding facts from the public for profit, such as in the tobacco industry and the weed killer industry.


Is a Frozen Embryo “Life” or Just Living Tissue?

March 14, 2009

In the United States we have the Constitution with the 1st Amendment granting freedom of religion. Why should those who believe there is no “life” until there is a functional brain be forced to believe that “life” exists in a ball of cells. Is the ball of cells or early embryo just living tissue or is it “life”. Science will never tell us as science cannot prove or disprove the concept of soul. This is a religious belief and a matter of faith. Some believe “life” starts at conception. Others believe “life” starts when there is a functional brain. Under the First Amendment in the United States government is forbidden from deciding this question due to issues of religious freedom.

I can transplant a frog skin cell nucleus into a frog enucleated ovum and produce a frog. This can be done by with any living creature. Does this mean that skin cells are all “life” and that amputation of an arm is murder, just because ALL cell nuclei can be used to produce “life”, though artificially prepared?

Shouldn’t we stop trying to shove one person’s religious faith upon another? Please show respect for the religious beliefs of others who do not believe that a ball of cells (an eight cell embryo for example) is “life”. Those that do not believe an embryo without a functional brain is “life” have no problem with “aborting” or destroying this non-“life”, not non-living ball of cells. Skin cells and other human tissues are alive but are not “life”.

Many believe “life” is a soul and cannot be without a functional brain. Souls do not reside in dead bodies or in lumps of tissue. That is why brain death is defined and it is legal to unplug someone from a ventilator who is brain dead. To bar this across the board would be making a religious decision.

There is a problem with misuse of terms and rhetoric that disrespects religious freedom. Religious freedom is guaranteed in this country. I respect those that believe “life” starts at conception. They are free to refuse to allow their embryos to be used for stem cell research. They are free to refuse to have an abortion at age 12 after being raped by an uncle or when they are carrying an anencephalic fetus (congenital absence of brain). They are free to keep a brain dead relative on a ventilator until the body rots at their expense.

We shouldn’t expect the entire world to be subject to the specific religous dogma of a portion of the population that believes “life” begins at conception and ends when the brain dead body’s heart stops beating even when on a ventilator.

I don’t believe that in a country with freedom of religion where I do NOT believe that a ball of cells is a human life or that a twitching pre-heart vessel in a 7 week embryo (some falsely call a beating heart) that does not yet have a developed brain is “life” that I should be FORCED to have this “religious faith” that some others possess. This is NOT religious freedom. This is government imposed religion.

An anencephalic 35 week fetus (no brain or skull but just a space where you can look at the back of the face and sinuses and the top of the oozing spinal column) is not life to me either because without a functioning brain, there is no life. We call this brain death (or lack of brain) and yet an anencephalic fetus has a beating heart, hands, feet, and a body and fact that twitches with spinal reflexes! Someone who is brain dead has a beating heart but no one argues the right to pull the plug! Phrases such as “I saw the beating heart” or “I saw the arm twitch” mean nothing in the definition of life. Life to me is a functioning developed brain where thought is possible. A chicken with its head cut off flaps around for a few minutes due to spinal reflexes.

As to stem cells. Adult stem cells and stem cells derived from skin or umbilical cords have not yet proven to have as much potential to develop into all organs of the body as embryonic stem cells, which are still the gold standard. You must use the gold standard to prove that the adult stem cells, umbilical stem cells, and skin derived stem cells have the same potential and use as the gold standard. This has NOT yet been done, despite the rhetoric of those opposing stem cell research.

Why should the man and woman who donated their cells to produce a frozen embryo be forced to follow the religion of others. Nothing says that if a man and woman who are “owners” of a frozen embryo who believe that it is a “life” cannot refuse to have it used for embryonic stem cell research. Nothing says that they cannot donate it to a woman who wants to try to carry it to term.

I just don’t want people who do not hold the religious belief that a frozen embryo is a life forced to follow the religious beliefs of others and forced not to donate it for stem cell research. I do believe there should be a ban on selling it for research.

I find it of utmost importance to uphold the right to religious freedom guaranteed by the constitution. Anything less is obscene to me.

Pro-Choice and Pro-Life Terms Toxic

March 9, 2009

In regards to the debate about the ethical use of discarded frozen embryos for stem cell research:

I find it obscene that many do not respect freedom of religion as guaranteed by the First Amendment. If one doesn’t support the First Amendment, perhaps they should move to a country that is controlled by religious zealots.

That is why I consider both the pro-life and pro-choice terms to be toxic and unconstitutional if used in the wording of law.

Many do not believe that a frozen embryo is “life”. It is religious faith that says life starts at conception. We don’t live in a country where religious dogma is allowed to be shoved down one’s throat.

I think all would agree that life occurs when a fetus is viable outside the womb which certainly happens at about 22 – 25 weeks gestation with intensive medical care. In the first eight weeks before the body is physically though not functionally partially formed, this is a matter of religious faith. It should not be a matter of law unless you want to revoke the First Amendment right to freedom of religion.

I do not believe life begins at conception. Although retired, I have practiced neonatology and my patients are in the Guinness Book of World Records 1997 ed (the Vincent triplets) as “the lightest set of triplets in the world” – combined weight 4lb 2oz. They are now healthy productive adults. Therefore, I believe I have a better understanding of biology concerning development than most people. I respect freedom of religion or faith. This means that I respect those that believe life begins at conception, but also expect them to respect those, like me, who believes that it does not. I don’t believe there is a human being with a soul until there is a thinking functioning brain. 

Electroencephalography suggests the capacity for functional pain perception in premature infants probably does not exist before 29 or 30 weeks; this study asserted that withdrawal reflexes and changes in heart rates and hormone levels in response to invasive procedures are reflexes that do not indicate fetal pain. Lee, S. J. (2005). “Fetal Pain: A Systematic Multidisciplinary Review of the Evidence”.JAMA: the Journal of the American Medical Association 294 (8): 947–54.doi:10.1001/jama.294.8.947. PMID 16118385.

The following gestational ages mentioned are just estimates as some development can be speeded up or slowed down depending on exposure to steroids or due to variable gene expression. Development is a continuum, not a discrete process where you can say for sure that in every case the stage was reached at the same time – so you may have a good looking heart that is not fully septated without a properly functioning conduction system at 18 wks for example. The heart is not septated and functioning as a mature heart with a mature conduction system other than a beating tube until around 20 wks. The lungs are not fully canalized until 26 wks – this varies according to how stress hormones of mother as lung development is speeded up with steroids (tubes start out as solid, then form a lumen, then the air sacs develop). The brain does not show reaction to pain until close to 29-30 wks and the movement, sucking, reflexes that are seen are primitive – some from the spine and some from lower brain levels. Thought processes in a primitive way, not yet mature evolve in a continuum and take the longest with the higher thinking brain even developing continually until past the teen years (that’s why children age five don’t understand time and teens have poor processing of consequences and control of impulses).

Therefore, there is a gray area between about 18 weeks and 25-26 wks where there is a very big question as to when a thinking, feeling brain actually is achieved. I have no problem or concern about abortions before about 20 wks or at any time if severe defects incompatible with life such as anencephaly (no brain above spinal cord or behind face) or extreme spina bifida with empty skull and brain sticking out of back of neck. I think therefore, that there should not be legislation dictating faith as science cannot answer the question of when life begins concerning the 18-25 wk period. I would for sure allow abortion before 20 wks. As brain development is a continuum, why should a woman not be allowed to abort a fetus with congenital defects that are NOT compatible with life at any point in the pregnancy when the defect is discovered.  I certainly would prefer an abortion at 35 wks in such a case than bringing a baby to term who is likely to suffer more while dying because the brain is more developed.

The only area where there should be some debate before laws are revised is the question of life between 18- 25 weeks of gestation. That is why I am pro-religious choice (including respecting atheism or no religion) and oppose both pro-choice and pro-life groups.

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