the complications of friendship

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A friend moved away recently.  I wasn’t able to go say goodbye in person, and so I decided to make a gift to send as a ‘welcome to your new home’ kind of thing.  It was a cross stitch I designed, stitched, fussed over…procrastinated over…finally framed it and set it aside to be mailed.

The whole process took several months.  And at the end of it, I realized a few unexpected facts about the friendship.  The biggest one?  We weren’t on the level of friendship I thought we were.

That’s weird, right?  How did I not realize that?

Fact is, she had already walked away from the friendship during the time I was stitching away.  So I clearly had a lot more invested in that connection than she did.  How does that happen?

But it does.

I think it’s a bit like the kerfluffle we’ve seen on varied social media networks where we connect to people as “friends.”  They’re not.  It takes more than the click of a button to become friends with another person.  And I’ve been on the other end of this thread more than once, where I’ve had someone insist on a strong friendship connection and the reality is we only ever saw each other at conventions, or at social events maybe once a year.

That’s an acquaintance.  And that’s important in its own way.  Years ago, a convention friend looked at me and said, “We’ve traveled around the country together with this convention.”  That statement made me stop for a moment and really think about these threads of connection we have as a result of the events we attend.  People become such a huge element of the event, it gives us a sense of home in a lot of ways.  If I go to, say, Arisia, I will feel at home because there are people there that I only see there and if they weren’t there, I would not feel as comfortable or connected.  The community is part of what makes the convention appealing for me.

Is that a friend?  It’s a degree of friend, sure.  But, at least for me, that title has to be about more than 30 minutes or so during a weekend once a year.  Even if those 30 minutes or so time happen once a year for a decade…there’s more to the job description of ‘friend’ than that.  In a lot of ways, you’re seeing someone at their social best, so just like any other relationship, you can’t get to know them unless you’re actively involved in each other’s lives.

So how did I miss that we weren’t matching those criteria?

I’m not sure.

As a very wise friend pointed out to me, it’s instinctive to put energy into a relationship you can see needs some help, and that only works well when you’re both defining things the same way.  Which is why it feels like a smack on the nose with a newspaper when you realize that the energy you’ve been putting into a connection isn’t reciprocated.  And that’s something I hadn’t considered when I’ve been on the other side of this ‘wait you thought this was a friendship?’ fence.

Does it change anything in my day to day life to not have this person I defined as a friend say, in effect, “sorry, that’s all you”?

No.  No, not really.

But I think it’s important that we really see ourselves.  In this case, I was doing something that I haven’t understood when other people did it to me.  Kinda funny.  Kinda frustrating.  Definitely an ‘opportunity for growth,’ as they say.

I’ll probably get it wrong again.  So I’m putting it in writing to let PresentMe tell FutureMe, “HEY!  You knew better!”

…Here’s hoping that works. 🙂

a dashcon story that also very much needs to be heard

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Here’s the story of what happened to one person that was friends with Dashcon main staff and became the person in charge of the vendor room.  (Dashcon has stated, “Any “official” information found on any other blog should not be considered true or accurate without first checking with the actual DashCon staff.”  Based on this, you may, in all confidence, read the following story and know it’s true as well as accurate.)

http://mjhellscream.tumblr.com/post/93196609316/our-experience-at-dashcon-2014

I know, I know.  Who the hell cares about Dashcon at this point?  Read it anyway.

Take-aways:

* Dashcon mgt paid $3K for this couple’s flight from Australia to the US.  At that point, these were just attendees, not con staff.  This money was paid in late 2013/2014…well after the Indiegogo campaign had ended and after payments were being made to the Dashcon hotel.  Looking at those numbers, it seems reasonable to assume Dashcon was not concerned about money..perhaps not until the weekend of the con.

* This woman was not aware she would be expected to be staff until July, days before the Dashcon event.  This is another example of the poor management of the staffing of Dashcon.

* Yes, Dashcon told the hotels to take hotel rooms off its bill and yes, that included staff as well as invited guests.  It’s still unclear as to whether or not volunteers and con attendees were also affected by this, or if keys just were being faulty.  What is clear is that there was zero communication with those affected by Dashcon mgt’s decision to do so.

* This woman considered one of the three main organizers of Dashcon to be “a close, personal friend.”  The following quote is from the above blog post:

“… a person who my wife considered a close, trustworthy, personal friend left her high and fucking dry when she was needed the most.”

So my previous repeated opinion that the attendees of Dashcon were mistreated by the event and that ANY event that turns to its attendees and demands a financial bailout at the event is NOT  an event one should support? I’m amending that to, “You do not treat your close, personal friends this way, either.”

* We already knew that Dashcon didn’t staff its event in a well-thought-out way.  But.  JESUS, people.  If you don’t have the common sense to NOT put children and inexperienced people in charge of shit – and no, you didn’t, because you DID – and if you don’t have the ability to keep track of what previous con management was doing- and NO YOU DIDN’T, as your own public apology stated – GET YOUR DAMN SELVES SOME EDUCATION.

Seriously. It’s out there.  You do NOT have to recreate the fucking wheel.

SMOFCON.   THIS DECEMBER.  “Smofcon is an annual conference for the planners of science fiction & fantasy (SF&F) and other genre conventions. Attendees discuss and share insights into many aspects of convention planning at the local, regional, national, and international levels.”

INTERVENTIONCON.  THIS AUGUST.  “Intervention is different from every other event you have ever been to. Our name is the combination of the words “Internet” and “Convention” but the significance is deeper than that. The entire idea of this event is to Intervene and Inspire everyone to live a more creative, geeky, and fun life within the welcoming scope of a traditional geek convention.”  These are the kinds of people you need to be talking to.  Go get inspired…and find out how to do a con the RIGHT way.

because i still have questions (big surprise)

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* http://thegeekiary.com/dashcon-follow-up-random-acts-partnership-didnt-exist-but-was-it-really-a-scam/14786

One of the data points that’s floated around a little about Dashcon was that the event had a partnership with charity group Random Acts.  The stated intent of Dashcon was to collect money to donate back to Random Acts.  It’s a cute idea, though I personally think it sounds a little confusing, but the fate of these donations is one of the things we’ve actually not heard about in the kerfluffle updates.  It does speak to the good intentions of Dashcon, and I hope the final news shows that some money did make it back to Random Acts.

* http://www.nerdandtie.com/2014/07/14/dashcon-a-perfect-storm-of-incompetence/

This article is by yet another person with a lot of convention experience and it breaks down the money numbers as well as ‘here’s how hotel contracts work.’  One quote I found very useful:

‘Now say only 500 people were there. That’s the low number I’ve seen tossed about for Friday, and someone correct me if I’m wrong. Well, $50 time 500 attendees is $25,000. If the higher figure of 1000 attendees were there, that’s $50,000. This does not include the higher rates paid by Vendors and Artists.

My point is, really, how were they not able to pay their bills? I’ve run conventions larger than that with a lot less money than $50,000.’

There’s no info there about the room block question I personally  have, however.  After some more thought, it wouldn’t surprise me at all to learn that the reason invited con guests found themselves paying for their own rooms was that the con staff might have assumed those rooms were included in the debt owed for the room blocks – in short, they might have thought they’d already paid for those rooms when the hotel said, “You didn’t fulfill the terms of the contract – pay up.”  This seems the most likely reason, rather than my initial thought which was that the con staff panicked and pulled those rooms off their credit card so they could pay off the hotel.  This is of course assuming that they used the same PayPal card used to pay the hotel and that this card isn’t a debit card.

Why would it matter if they used a debit card?
Because it’s standard policy for hotels to put a hold/deposit on such cards.  Here’s one article explaining whyHere’s another, that explains luxury hotels may put a charge on the debit card that is more than the room cost would be because they include incidentals as well as the room. And yet another article talks about the very real possibility of accidental overdrafts.  We already know from con staff that the hotel had agreed to let the staff use the PayPal card and take payments in $3K increments, because of the limit on the card…which, personally, makes me wonder:  If the hotel already knew it wasn’t going to get $17K Friday night, did all this chaos really have to happen in the first place?  Agreeing to wait shows they were willing to negotiate…and they’d have to wait anyway for funds to clear, which (as those of us that use PayPal know) needs a few days to happen.

Anyway.  It’s probably a moot point, because no charges appear to have been put on the con PayPal card, because the guests were being expected to pay.  Which leads me back to the hopeful thought that maybe the con assumed these debts had been included in the $17K/$20K/whatever they actually owed the hotel.

* http://lielabell.tumblr.com/post/91674359898/the-deal-with-dashcon

This is one con attendee’s review.  Unlike what Twitter reports, not all attendees were kids – “Lielabell” is in her 30s.  She also headed up one of the panels.  This is a pretty balanced bit of writing, IMO.  She also talks about people being locked out of their rooms, which is not new information.  Nor is it unique to Dashcon.  In general, I’m surprised when my key card works, no matter what hotel I’m in or for what reason.  Turns out there’s a few different reasons why that can happen, and some of them are news to me.

Mentalfloss.com reports:

Any arriving guest should receive what are referred to as initial keys, which are programmed to reset the door lock when they are first inserted, deactivating all previous keys. Not until the keys expire or a new initial key enters the lock will the keys fail to work. With a “key bomb,” I cut one single initial key and then start over and cut a second initial key. Either one of them will work when you get to the room, and as long as you keep using the very first key you slipped in, all will be well.

But chances are you’ll pop in the second key at some point, and then the first key you used will be considered invalid.

Tripadvisor.com says:

I found out on my cruise last year – because my card kept having to be reprogrammed – that the culprit is often a woman’s purse that has a magnetic clasp. You pull the card out, pass it over the magnetic clasp, and voile!, non-working key card.

The Toronto Sun suggests you take a look at the colour of your key card (?!?):

A key card with a brown stripe on the back — the kind used by most hotels — is the one most likely to give guests trouble, and prompt a return to the lobby to have it re-encoded, Portuguese says. These are the cheapest cards to make, and easily become de-activated if they’re placed too close to anything magnetic.

ask.metafilter.com goes into a fairly lengthy discussion about all the things that can turn off a hotel key card, including celphones, and talks about how common the issue is, but this quote is maybe the most telling:

I have worked in the hotel business and have made, at a guess, eleventeen million key cards for guests.

You must keep in mind that these cards are pretty flimsy pieces of plastic with a single, not-especially-robust magnetic strip, and they have been used by dozens or hundreds of guests before you. They do not hold a charge particularly well: imagine a video or audio cassette that has been taped over for the 245th time — how good is the signal? They cease working for any of a dozen reasons, simple wear and tear being the most common. From the point of view of the designers of the keycards and the hotels, this is a feature, not a bug….

in a perfect set-up, your card runs out at noon (or whatever the hotel sets it so) on your date of checkout, not every day. You check in Monday, you leave Thursday. If you come back Friday with the same card, it will be inert. There is no value for anyone in making your card stop working on Tuesday or Wednesday. (Note, of course, that the hotel can cancel a keycard at any time for emergencies — say you neglected to sign your credit card slip when you arrived or something — having to return to the front desk to get a new card means they can also get you to sign the slip).
In light of that and the money issues around Dashcon..is it possible the hotel turned off the key cards to staff rooms because they wanted to make sure the rooms were being paid for?  Yes, it’s possible. It’s not the most LIKELY reason, but it’s possible.  I had to really search for that quote above, leading me to believe key cards being turned off by the hotel over money issues is pretty uncommon. I think it far more likely that the lack of information and the issues around the con combined with faulty key cards to convince people the hotel was being shady, despite an overwhelming amount of stories circulating around the internet that hotel staff and security was both nice and bewildered by what was happening.

(Along this line:  Did you know the hotel had (a) listed Dashcon on its website under ‘Events’ months in advance – meaning that other events would in theory know there was a convention that weekend – and (b) there was a non-refundable one night room charge for all reservations?  Link here.)

So, as far as people saying that the hotel did those kids wrong?  I remain unconvinced.

* a statement from the owners of Dashcon is coming

If that statement does anything other than take responsibility for what happened….WITHOUT trying to blame the hotel, the guests, the bank, the deflating ball pit, whatever….and offer some sort of accounting for the money…….they shouldn’t bother.  Of course, in my far from humble opinion, this statement is already too late.

* random twitter stuff that has been bugging me for days

As the Dashcon kefluffle went down, I was watching Twitter.  There was some really stupid, nasty, unnecessary stuff flying around out there bashing the attendees – completely unnecessary – and poking fun at  all these ‘white kids’ being taken for $17K.  I still fail to understand why things got racial.  I’ve heard that the crowd was fairly mixed, which I would believe..just as it’s obvious the con was not just attended by teenagers.

A lot of crap was said, of course, like the claim that underage attendees were being let into 18-and-over panels.  (The very presence of such panels should negate the claims that it was just a kiddie con, but that may be too much logical thinking to expect from trolls.)  The bit I didn’t get at all was the repeated, “I am suffering second hand embarrassment from Dashcon.”  I gather that this is now a thing.  A ridiculous thing that makes me want to slap people.

Dashcon staff suggested, at their Sunday Q&A panel, that attendees not read any of these tweets and such.  Considering the troll activity going on?  I can understand that bit of advice.  I can certainly understand attendees being very emotional about their experience.  There was, and is, a lot to react to.  Frankly, seeing the tweets from the con from kids cheering themselves on for saving their convention…again/yet/still, something that should NEVER have happened.  But mocking attendees for loving an event?  Low blow, trolls.

It really does infuriate me that the attendees of this con – the attendees of ANY con – are mocked for being at an event celebrating something they love and meeting like-minded people.  I have zero ability to understand such mean-spiritedness.  What I’m seeing is that a lot of the attendees don’t seem to have the lifeskills to be able to handle dealing with that nastiness, and part of the reason I’m still writing about this trainwreck of a convention is that I worry about those younger members of fandom.

I keep saying this…no convention should ever ask its attendees to pay for the con’s financial woes.

Hand in hand with that?  Just because you had a great time at a convention doesn’t mean the convention treated you well.  A weekend-long chance to meet other fen is a good time.  No doubt.  It doesn’t mean that you give money to these con organizers again.  They haven’t proved worthy of your trust OR your money.

Don’t let the trolls get you down.

Do find an event that deserves your support.

and then there’s Lyme (worse than measles/no vaccine)

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A friend posted a link to this article about the CDC’s top 5 health threats for 2014.  The bit that stood out to me appeared early in the article:

1. The emergence and spread of new microbes

While it’s rare, CDC scientists do come across new diseases each year. In 2013, the new Heartland virus carried by ticks was confirmed in northwest Missouri. Federal health investigators collected samples in the state after two farmers from St. Joseph were sickened by the virus that carried a novel genetic profile.

Huh, I thought.  That sounds like Lyme.

Lyme disease is something I find personally frustrating..not in a ‘wow I’ve had it and it friggin’ sucks’ way – though it does friggin’ suck.  I find it frustrating because it’s relatively easy to treat..if you get it diagnosed quickly enough and if your doctor believes you might have it.  That point sounds odd, until you start to do some research and you realize that the symptoms of the disease are so much like so many other things that it can be wicked hard to identify the culprit of your sickness as being Lyme.  I’ve personally heard stories of doctors refusing to test for Lyme because there are no reported cases in that area.

The problems with that include a) it’s not taking vacation travel into account, and b) it’s assuming the CDC information is correct, when that info is a little misleading.   The CDC reports Lyme is not found nationwide. Well, if you count Hawaii’s zero count as being cause to say it’s “not found nationwide,” I guess that’s correct.  But I think it’s a little (?) misleading.  Recent news stories state that the number of Lyme cases is around 300,000.

“Usually, only 20,000 to 30,000 illnesses are reported each year, making it the most commonly-reported tick-borne illness in the country. For many years, CDC officials have known that many doctors don’t report every case and that the true count was probably much higher.” (taken from the link above)

So we have a disease that could be treated with antibiotics if caught early, but it’s often misdiagnosed and it’s very under-reported. If it’s left untreated – or mistreated – this curable condition becomes a crippling one.

To give some perspective, we have people up in arms about measles in the US.  We had 222 cases in 2011.

222.

We have roughly 300,000 cases of Lyme per year.

So there must be a vaccine, right?

Well…there was.  “It was discontinued by the manufacturer in 2002, citing low demand.”  Not ‘it wasn’t safe’..not ‘we didn’t have enough cases being reported’…just low demand.

Even at 20,000-30,000 reported cases a year…low demand?

Well, maybe it didn’t work.

No, it did.  And folks used it.  “Between the time of its licensure in 1998 and July 31, 2000, about 1.5 million doses of the vaccine were distributed.”  Yes, there were reports of adverse reactions.. “After examining the reports, researchers “did not detect unexpected or unusual patterns of reported adverse events.”  This report says that lawsuits are the reason the vaccine was taken off the market – that,  and, bad press.  Also, it wasn’t on the recommended vaccination schedule, so it wasn’t protected against lawsuits the way things like the measles vaccines are.

This all makes for a complicated situation.  Without legal protection against lawsuits, this vaccine went away.  But you don’t know that without doing some digging, because the CDC just says, “Oh, no one wanted it.”

Is the answer to just try to force everyone to get this vaccine, should the newest version be released later this year as predicted?   Does that mean we add one more vaccine to the 40 or so kids are already getting?  Can it be an optional one?  What about the concern of mercury being used in vaccines?  (Mercury is wicked bad in general, but REALLY wicked bad if you have Lyme.)  Ideally, of course, someone getting the vaccine is healthy…but I find myself raising an eyebrow here.

And to bring it back around..Lyme is a Big Bad.  It’s not fatal.  It can be life-crippling…I’d go so far as to say devastating, which is why I would personally like to see a vaccine created for this disease.  Yes, it can be treated with antibiotics, and the better answer, perhaps, is to create better tests and have a medical community better educated about the disease and more willing to test for Lyme.  My personal opinion – I’m not a doctor, and I don’t play one on TV – is that there’s a bunch of other autoimmune stuff being wrongly diagnosed as everything but Lyme, and people are suffering wrongly because of their misdiagnosis.

But the CDC is apparently worried about a disease that has had two cases reported thus far.  That made it into the #1 concern for 2014…not the rising number of Lyme cases.  Maybe there’s not enough money to be made, if you look at the CDC site.  If you look elsewhere..wow, is this an expensive disease to treat.  What looks to be the most effective drug costs around $2k and is often not covered by insurance.  If I’m reading this right, the vaccine only ran about $100.

…I don’t like where that thought takes me.

a question of vaccines

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I do not describe myself as someone who’s anti-vaccine.

Honestly? I’m not sure what I think about them.  I keep up on my tetanus shots because, between critters and Halloween, I run enough of a risk of injury that I’ve never questioned whether or not I should have the shot.  (Ironically, it’s a shot I’ve asked my doctors for and have never had one suggest that I get a booster.)

So let it be noted that I’m not anti-vaccine, especially for things like polio, smallpox, and tetanus. In fact, I used to not think much about them at all.  At some point, I remember posting a link to the Penn and Teller video about vaccines.

I still think there’s some good food for thought there. But I also think there’s more stuff to consider.  And the more I think about it, the more I think we should all be asking more questions.

When I was a kid, we were only given about 7 or 8 vaccinesAn example of the immunization schedule for 1974 is here, and it looks pretty minimal. I don’t have kids of my own, and – just as I had NO idea how much school security has changed since my childhood (I graduated from high school in 1987) – I had absolutely no idea how many vaccines are on a kid’s schedule today.

That’s…a LOT of vaccines.  For really young kids.  And..hepatitis is on the schedule?  The flu shot?  Chickenpox?

The CDC reports that of course vaccines are safe.   The website says, “Immunizations, like any medication, can cause adverse events. However, a decision not to immunize a child also involves risk. It is a decision to put the child and others who come into contact with him or her at risk of contracting a disease that could be dangerous or deadly. Consider measles. One out of 30 children with measles develops pneumonia. For every 1,000 children who get the disease, one or two will die from it. Thanks to vaccines, we have few cases of measles in the U.S. today. However the disease is extremely contagious, and each year dozens of cases are imported from abroad into the U.S., threatening the health of people who have not been vaccinated and those from whom the vaccine was not effective.”

So there’s pressure there to get the vaccine, although it might not work and although measles isn’t common.

What happens if you don’t get all those vaccines?  What if you think that your baby doesn’t need to be vaccinated against hepatitis?  Blogger Matt Walsh found himself under attack because he decided against getting his baby this vaccine.  (Please do read the blog. It’s fascinating.)

As it turns out, Matt had some damn good reasons to not want this vaccine for his child.  Babies have died from itThe vaccine can cause liver damage.   The common response to these points is, “Parents are told of the possible risks of vaccinations.”  That’s not true.  Ian’s story is just one example.

Let’s say you opt out of the chickenpox vaccine.  Well, now you’re putting your child at risk of being affected by flesh-eating bacteria. Which is true.  Ya know what also does that?  Insect stings.  Rashes.  Surgeries.  An open cut coming into contact with salt water.  And the CDC does point out that even with this vaccine, you may still get the chickenpox. This vaccine inspired parents to willingly expose their children to the virus rather than have their children immunized.

The Gardasil vaccine has been pretty popular for the past few years.  HPV is one of those diseases that’s pretty common and in most cases will clear up by itself..and, oh, it’s sexually transmitted, so, ya know, not SO easy to contract for a kid (which I say with the knowledge that kids are not always making smart choices, but..dude, if your kid’s having unprotected sex at age 11, you have more to worry about than HPV)…but it might also cause cervical cancer. So a vaccine is Of The Good, yes?  Maybe not. A lot of people think not.  Additionally, please note that although all of the immunization schedules say to wait until a kid is 11 or 12, Merck says 9 year olds can receive this medication. And yeah, that vaccine isn’t going to save your kid from all strands of HPV…which you probably know.

No wonder there’s confusion out there about what is and isn’t safe.

The vaccine I’m most familiar with is the flu shot.  We’re all told to get it.  Does it work?  Well…maaaaybe, according to the CDC.  Here’s the problem that *I* certainly didn’t know until I looked into the subject.  The flu shot is a guess.  The producers guess which flu strains might be the most common, and they include 3 different varieties into the shot.  If you get the shot and you don’t come in contact with that shot, you’re still going to get sick.  You might get sick just after getting the shot, for varied reasons.

My personal opinion about vaccines is that I don’t see a reason to get a vaccine for something like chickenpox or the flu because I don’t personally see them as being anywhere as serious as, say, polio.  I’ve yet to see a good enough argument to change my mind.

What I *have* run into is the argument that by not getting all of the vaccines and boosters the CDC recommends, I am putting other people’s health at risk.  And here’s my opinion about that:

I don’t buy it.

I get the idea behind “herd immunity.”  I get the idea that, because I have (I believe) a healthy immune system and should be able to get a vaccine without having an adverse reaction, I have a responsibility to do so for the sake of those who cannot do so.  (And to the parents of kids that have compromised immune systems?  Wow do you have some hard decisions to make.  Not much is known about immunizations and how they affect kids like yours. If you don’t get your kids the shots, you’re a bad parent.  If you do,

That said:  I also believe we are each responsible for our health.  Where do your rights smack up against mine?

So why not get all of those vaccines?  One concern voiced has been that mercury has been used in vaccine production. To be fair, we are also exposed to mercury in our diet (via fish) and in our dental work (our fillings..hence the push to have those metal fillings removed).  The concern?  Mercury is toxic. To quote that document: “Mercury is considered by WHO as one of the top ten chemicals or groups of chemicals of major public health concern.”  When it comes to vaccines, thiomersol, which contains ethyl mercury, has been used since the 1930s in vaccines. Is it dangerous?  WHO says no.  Why the concern?  Go back and look at what we know mercury can do to us.  Now consider vaccines being given to infants.  We know that the half life of mercury traces in infants is pretty shortThere are varied studies showing that no, there’s no danger. But there’s still a concerted effort to remove the chemical from vaccines because hey, mercury really isn’t that good for us.

Which makes the whole thing a little muddy.

Let’s move on to the hot topic of vaccines and autism.  Is there a connection?

In 1998, Dr Andrew Wakeland said yes, yes there is.  That conclusion has been dismissed, and people tend to assume that all protests to vaccinations stem from this one study.  Which isn’t true, but it sure does make for a great knee-jerk-reaction argument.  The concern about a possible connection goes back to at least 1985, and there’s been more than just one study done on the topic.  What it really all comes down to is this:  We see a disturbing rise in autism as we see a rise in immunizations for both pregnant women and infants.  There’s an overwhelming number of stories out there about parents saying multiple vaccines were given to their children at once – which isn’t recommended – and when their children had adverse reactions, their concerns were dismissed.

One thing I personally find disturbing is that, if you do have a complaint about a reaction you or your loved one has had to a vaccine, you have to take that to the “Vaccine Court.”  If you try to sue a drug company, you’re running into the very real possibility that your suit won’t go anywhere because vaccine companies are protected against such cases.  And if you want to think vaccines are safe?  The manufacturers make huge settlementsEven over autism.  Medicine is HUGE money.  If they can settle for those amounts, the mind boggles at how much they’re actually making.

My not at all humble opinion is that if you want to not believe there’s reason for concern, you’re going to dismiss any cautionary tales as being “anti-vax propaganda.”  And if you’re of that opinion, you haven’t read much of what I’ve linked to in this blog because you’ve already forgotten that I’ve said I’m not against vaccinations.  🙂  If you’re at all open minded, you’re going to look at the tons of information and think about what you’re putting into your body. Or your child’s body.

One of the more surprising stats I found while writing this blog was that more parents than you’d think are questioning vaccinations. NVIC is a great resource if you want to know more.  (And yes,they’re working with the CDC, so no, this isn’t a dismissable ‘anti-vax’ website.)  Among chiropractors, it’s commonly accepted that vaccines are maybe not the best idea, which means that are countless doctors saying no to vaccines.

To step away from vaccines…here’s some sobering info.

We are 49th in world health.  We’re also the country spending the most on health care. Says that article, “After citing statistical evidence showing that American patterns of obesity, smoking, traffic accidents and homicide are not the cause of lower life expectancy, they conclude that the problem is the health care system.”

Our children are not expected to outlive us.

We’re doing it wrong, folks.

40-ish vaccinations are not saving our kids.

It’s not just one thing. It’s not just obesity or genetically altered food or pollutants or bad medical practices.  It’s all of it.

And if you’re not looking around and asking why we’re doing the things we’re doing – eating crap, not getting outside, poisoning ourselves in a multitude of creative ways – I think you..and not the folks refusing to overvaccinate their kids..are the problem.