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News Link • Vaccines and Vaccinations

The MMR vaccine:

• by Jerome Burne and Sally Beck

I have a confession. I am one of those people who has been radicalised by a preacher of hate; someone in the same league as the cleric with a hook Abu Hamza. At least that is how the Times described those who attended the first UK screening of the documentary Vaxxed (about the dangers of the MMR vaccine) last week.

A large proportion of those present were parents who either believed that a vaccine had damaged a child of theirs or were agonising over whether to vaccinate or not. The preacher of hate was of course Andrew Wakefield, a doctor, who proposed a link between the vaccine and autism via the guts nearly 20 years ago. Since then Wakefield has had his license to practise withdrawn and the link declared disproved; raising the issue of safety has become a sure way to invite abuse as a believer in pseudoscience.

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