Talk about not wanting readers to miss it, although now she's gone from calling it Dismissed to Frontline Retreats. I dissected the piece earlier this week, and since it's identical (other than the first part of the first sentence and the odd title change), there's no need to hash over the fact that they really don't like it when the science and media are against them.
I guess she's being clever and means that they retreated from presenting a false equivalency and the sense that there might be something plausible to the anti-vaxxers' side? You know, I think Frontline gave more time and more attention than necessary to the "tens of thousands" of parents who blame vaccines.
I think that Frontline gives plenty of attention to their side, especially on their website. There's a page with links to the anti-vaccine sites and relatively impartial language.
For example, Frontline writes that Age of Autism is: "An online newsletter with articles and blogs marked by a strong anti-vaccine sentiment. J.B. Handley and Dr. Andrew Wakefield are among the writers published."
See, if I were writing it, I'd have given it a blurb more along the lines of: An online blog dedicated to bringing out the worst in parents, to putting out sensationalized and factually incorrect posts by people who manage to blame vaccines for pretty much everything and who are willing to follow snake oil salesman all the way to the MB12 pops and mining chelators.
Frontline writes that DAN! is "An organization of researchers and doctors who believe autism is treatable. It advocates for alternative remedies, including chelation therapy and diet changes, to rid children of toxins from vaccines and the environment. Its parent organization is the Autism Research Institute, a non-profit that was established in 1967."
I'd have written that DAN! practitioners are primarily a bunch of quacks who've found a never-ending client base of people willing to throw their money at someone who spent two whole days to learn about quack and alternative treatments in the vainglorious belief that there's some woo out there that can give them the normal super-child they were dreaming of.
Really, who honestly thinks that autistic children can't be helped to learn and grow? What the hell is it exactly you're treating? Oh that's right, betcha most of the folks who go DAN! have bought into the AoAers' newfangled toxicity-Wakefield's version of autism rather than what the neurologists and psychologists who've spent decades conducting research into the spectrum have discovered.
Who can be DAN! provider? Just about anybody: "MDs, DOs, Naturopathic Physicians, Nurse Practitioners, and Physician's Assistants. RNs, psychologists, homeopaths, chiropractors, dentists, and pharmacists," oh my! And, hey, you don't even have to complete the workshop now to go on the DAN! registry:
"Attendance at an Introductory Workshop, general, or regional ARI/Defeat Autism Now! conference is not relevant for the Clinician Registry. Only the completion of the entire Nutrition Seminar or Clinician Seminars Levels I and II qualify an attendee for listing."
Frontline provides links to Barbara Loe Fisher's site, Gen Res, Handley's 14 Studies, and Buttar's site! Come on, really? And all without excoriating them. So, I'm going to say that, in all honesty, the anti-vaxxers and wackaloons got a much more even-handed approach than they deserved. Of course, that's not enough for them; they want you to buy their warped view of reality no questions asked. And it really, really pisses them off when you don't. How dare you question them and their facts? They know what they know. And hey, they know that mercury poisoning and autism are the same thing! And that the measles in the gut did it! And the lyme disease did it! No, wait, wait, the SV-40 did it! Damn it, it's a conspiracy! And it's aborted fetal cells and aluminum! It has to be, has to be, has to be!
There has to be a bad guy to fight, and the bigger, the better, the more conspiracy the better! If the media is now involved, well, you know PBS is connected to the government. It's just a matter of time until they buy Matt Lauer off, you know? They already got Snyderman and she's using mind control daily, whispering in Lauer's ear that he's got it all wrong, Wakefield is a farce, don't believe the parents.
But, but, but tens of thousands of parents can't be wrong! Can't be! They read it in an email that's been making the rounds, and you know, those are always 100% right.