Question for the anti-vaxxers who are having a hissy over the Nature study

If we can accept the science that shows, according to Gluckman and Hanson (2006), that obesity is influenced by "an estimated 250 genes and because of many influences in the environment" (Berger, 2008), then why are the anti-vaxxers not willing to accept the science that shows that many, many genes are implicated in the expression of autism (and the concomitant realization that of course the environment contributes to the expression)?

Oh, that's right.

1. They really don't understand science, especially the idea of the rich interplay between genes themselves and the rich interplay between genes and environment.

2. They probably would reject the 250 genes argument for obesity if they were aware of it. And argue that the Snickers manufacturers bought the researchers off.

I'm just saying. The folks over at AoA engaging in some hellaciously stupid rhetoric right now over this Nature study prove that they really, really, really don't understand the science, see conspiracies everywhere and are now hypothetically arguing that no one should move to Canada because some of the 120 researchers (as Scherer himself said) are from Canada.

Thelma, with whom I've been discussing this, says, concisely, in her own blunt way: dumbasses.


Two potential sources for Gluckman and Hanson in 2006 (Berger lists two, but doesn't specify which of the two she's referring to, so both, most likely): Developmental Origins of Health and Disease and Mismatch: Why Our World No Longer Fits Our Bodies.

Berger (2008). The Developing Person Through the Lifespan 7th Edition.


farmwifetwo said...

What about the pro-vax people that are having a hissy fit over the study??

Geez... help those with autism become independant.... evil, evil... Sorry, about the "aborting" issue they harp about... stop voting left and start voting right b/c abortion is legal and has been for years.

KWombles said...

Are they having a hissy fit over the study based on where the authors are from and who they work for?

It's one thing to want more research to happen on therapies and treatments that will help autistic children and adults now, to want funds to create programs specifically geared to those who are developmentally delayed. Who doesn't?

It's another to believe that this is a zero-sum situation where I have x dollars and if I spend it on this, I don't spend it on that.

Genetics research may not come at the expense of the other kinds of programs.

The way studies are funded are too complex to place it as a zero-sum situation.

And the hissy fit over looking at the genetic interplay in autism because it means prenatal tests will be created, well, the fact that there's so many genes involved, makes that ever more unlikely. It also appears to be a waste of energy to scream on about that.

Lyn said...

*sigh* You know, no one is really saying that helping autistic people become independent is evil. Autistic people need a lot of support, like anyone else in society. Will voting right really give them that?
Man, I hate the whole abortion issue anyway. It irritates me deeply. Some of the folks who are against it are too... pusilanimous when it comes to handing out condoms, giving birth control and giving useful sex education instead of saying DON'T DO IT. Urg. As if politicians would really put to rest their favourite pet issue.
But this is a digression. How about we change the attitudes about autism in such a way that folks won't want to abort should such a genetic test come down the pike? Let's stop thinking about it as a miserable tragedy and something to work with and understand with compassion? How many times must I wave that flag? My arms are getting tired, but still... *Continues to wave it*

KWombles said...

Waving the flag right along with you, Lyn. We won't stop until folks get it, either.