New Jersey Governor Chris Christie recently triggered a tsunami of liberal press criticism when he said that parents have a right to determine which vaccinations their children will receive. “There has to be a balance, and it depends on what the vaccine is, what the disease type is, and all the rest … Not every vaccine is created equal, and not every disease type is as great a public health threat as others,”
I generally support the right of parents to raise their children as they see fit, so I appreciate Christie’s comments. But he didn’t mention the worst example of mandatory vaccination: hepatitis B and HPV. The primary means of spreading these infections is the practice of immoral lifestyles. Hepatitis B is spread primarily by promiscuity (especially male homosexual behavior) and intravenous drug abuse. Genital HPV infection is typically caused by sexual promiscuity. Yet all states except Alabama, Montana, and South Dakota require the hepatitis vaccination before entering school, usually at the pre-school level. The District of Columbia, Rhode Island, and Virginia require middle school students to have the HPV vaccination.
There are still many parents who labor to teach their children to avoid immorality, especially extreme sins such as drug abuse and pre-marital sex. State governments that require children to be vaccinated against hepatitis B and HPV are visibly assuming that these parents will fail in their efforts, and that their children will choose grossly immoral lifestyles.
I’m still waiting to hear a politician bring up this aspect of the vaccination controversy.