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Opinion

Letters to the Editor: SB 276 opponents condemn violence, advocate for vaccine choice

SB 276
Opponents of SB 276 speak against the bill on childhood vaccination at the state Capitol in Sacramento last April.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: The overwhelming majority of parents who rallied at the state Capitol against Senate Bill 276 are peaceful and respectful. Using an isolated shove to a lawmaker to paint the movement advocating for full parental rights on vaccination as violent is like blaming all those who dislike animal cruelty for the occasional, high-profile lab break-in. It’s too broad a brush. (“Anti-vaxxers can’t traffic in violent language then claim ignorance when someone gets hurt,” editorial, Aug. 23)

So is the hackneyed implication that we are “anti-science.” We are, in fact, pro-principle.

Although small, an injection is a medical procedure. If government can dictate what medical procedures people can or can’t have, what happens to a woman’s right to choose?

SB 276 is particularly damaging because it interferes with the doctor-patient relationship. Even the U.S. government acknowledges that certain small numbers of children react horribly to vaccines, and it has established a special court to compensate families when this occurs. Doctors should not be punished for exercising discretion on vaccines.

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Finally, it’s dispiriting when society brands us as outcasts when one even questions the orthodoxy or the circumstances that created it. We are not crazy, nor are we violent. We are a principled movement of parents who swiftly and overwhelmingly condemned the shoving of the lawmaker who wrote SB 276.

We have chosen forums like this to raise our concerns, and those concerns should trouble you as well.

Christina Hildebrand, San Jose

The writer is president and founder of A Voice for Choice Advocacy Inc.


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