Where on God's green earth do these people come from? Seriously? Each day I go over to AoA hoping to see that someone over there running that show has woke up that morning with a frigging clue. And each morning I am seriously disappointed. I mean really, are you kidding me?
The latest piece of complete horsewash to come out of there is an article by a woman named Cynthia Cornoyer and the level of complete utter rubbish continues to astound me; it really does. http://www.ageofautism.com/2009/06/science-vs-mothers-emotion-turn-a-lion-into-a-vegetarian.html Go on over and see if your head doesn't take a frikking spin around the corner. Here I am, come in from the hot West Texas summer after an hour bent over weeding, so that I can rehydrate, you know? Click on the web to just take a look around while I'm drinking my water and I find this. Come on, really? AoA, is it that you can't get any completely sane people to write for you? Is that the problem? Well, okay, it probably is. You've gone so far down the damned rabbithole you're left with nothing but Alice in Wonderland characters.
Snippets of the article to follow because if I went down this line by line I might not be the newer, gentler me.
"It’s not science vs emotions, it’s no science vs real science." Uh-huh. When we let emotions get in the way of making rationally sound decisions based on the real risks in a situation, then it is emotions versus science. Sorry, you're just completely frikking wrong on that one.
And the way she's written the sentence it would seem to imply that her emotions are the real science; did you notice that, dear readers?
"These mothers have no conflicts of interest or reputations to protect. It is easy for them to ask for a reasonable study of vaccinated vs unvaccinated children--to study whether adding vaccines to an already over crowded schedule is safe. Their pleas go unanswered."
Well, for the love of Pete, I'm pretty sure it's been explained the difficulties in getting a study like this through an ethics board, in terms of a double-blind randomized trial where the control group gets placebo vaccines. Let's say what she means here is she'd like for researchers (unbiased, of course, although she doesn't define what she means by that. Apparently all previous researchers of vaccines or autism are biased and therefore their studies are not honest) to find a population of completely unvaccinated children and compare the rates of autism in this population to one who has received all vaccinations recommended. There are tremendous hurdles in making sure each group is matched and all confounders taken into account. I doubt like hell even if we could find a large enough sample for statistical significance, match it down the line, get results that conclusively showed that there was no difference in prevalence or incidence, that the anti-vaccination folks would accept it. Then it would be we studied all vaccines, when we should have also take it one vaccine at a time, one booster at a time.
"So when emotional mothers ask for studies, simple studies, they are labeled anti vaccine."
They aren't simple studies, as has been explained above.
"If parents do not accept that vaccines are safe and forever safe, no matter how many are given, they are anti vaccine. No middle ground exists. When a child is damaged by a vaccine, parents want safety and real science. Absent that real science, emotions win out."
You know what? This is bullshit. Every reasonable person on the side who believes vaccines save lives admits that there are adverse effects. Not one scientist has even denied the risk involved with vaccination.
No middle ground exists because you deny its existence. Shouldn't you want the safety before the vaccine damage? Real science, I'm sorry, I gotta, versus Wakefield and the Geier's kinds of manufactured "science"?
There's a place for emotion, but it isn't when making medical decisions. If you went into the vaccination procedure without the awareness that there could possibly be an adverse effect, that's your fault. The CDC has handouts, the doctors have those handouts in their offices, and if you refuse to take the responsibility for being an informed consumer, that is on your head. Being bitter and emotional after the fact is an excuse for not dealing with the aftereffects of your decisions. It has not a single damn thing to do with science.
"The people who criticize the Fourteen Studies and offer real science and legitimate questions to counter them, are still mis-labeled anti vaccine."
Real science? Legitimate questions? First off, there are more than fourteen studies dealing with vaccinations and autism. Secondly, basing your decisions on the deconstruction of these studies by a non-scientist like Handley or Julie Obradovic instead of scientists, well that doesn't make you a particularly well-informed consumer. Let's leave it at that.
"I will choose the common sense of mothers over biased “science” any day. And I won’t be taking the easy way out. Observation is one primary aspect of the scientific method. What better witness than the mommy in the trench. Biased science or the most motivated, most accurate observers, with no vested interest other than the health, albeit, very life of one particular child? Easy choice."
By choosing the common sense of mothers over scientific method, you have chosen the fool's way out. Period.
The mommy in the trenches BS is just that. Anecdote isn't data and observation isn't science. It's a start. You are making the mistake of assuming you can observe, then form a conclusion and leave it at that.
Most motivated, accurate observers? Pick up an introductory psychology textbook and read about availability heuristic, affect heuristic and confirmation bias. Your post demonstrates these amply and this is why your post will be used as a teaching tool in my psychology courses and English comp courses. Thank you for brilliantly demonstrating all three of these heuristics to a tee.