Many people use the Theory of Herd Immunity as a reason to mandate vaccines. So exactly what is herd immunity? And does it really exist? Let’s find out!
Before I begin I want to state that this post does not deal with vaccine safety. It is not pro or anti vaccines. It is simply discussing vaccine efficacy and the theory of herd immunity.
Vaccinating vs. not vaccinating is a very personal choice – a choice every parent should have.
Vaccination is a medical procedure and the government should never be allowed to make that decision for us. If our freedom to choose whether or not to vaccinate is taken away or prohibits us from education or a career, then we no longer live in a democracy, in the land of the free. We live in a dictatorship.
I am passionate about children’s health. And parents should be able to make decisions in the best interest of their children’s health. Always. This includes making decisions about vaccines.
People have different beliefs on safety, religion, morality, etc. The right to choose must be maintained.
But some people feel it’s ok to take away that individual right “for the good of the group.” The theory used to back up this claim is called the Herd Immunity Theory.
Note the word theory.
The theory of Herd Immunity is not a proven fact. And it’s NOT a valid reason to mandate vaccination.
So just what is a theory?
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a theory is: “an ideal or hypothetical set of facts, principles, or circumstances” or “a plausible or scientifically acceptable general principle or body of principles offered to explain phenomena.”
A theory is not proven. It is hypothetical. It is a possible solution given to explain things.
What is the Herd Immunity Theory?
According to vaccines.gov:
When a critical portion of a community is immunized against a contagious disease, most members of the community are protected against that disease because there is little opportunity for an outbreak. Even those who are not eligible for certain vaccines—such as infants, pregnant women, or immunocompromised individuals—get some protection because the spread of contagious disease is contained. This is known as “community immunity.”The principle of community immunity applies to control of a variety of contagious diseases, including influenza, measles, mumps, rotavirus, and pneumococcal disease.
In simpler terms – if enough people are vaccinated, the disease can no longer spread.
The theory of Herd Immunity seems like it makes sense. It is a “plausible general principle.” But let’s take a closer look.
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