Sunday, June 10, 2012

AVN hack accuses grieving activist parents of being vaccine shills

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Dana McCaffery
Dana McCaffery

As if the paradoxically-named Australian Vaccination Network weren’t already despicable enough, it’s managed to sink to new lows in actually attacking the motives* of parents who speak out against the anti-vaccination lunacy that’s responsible for the death of their infant:

Grieving parents who lost a baby to whooping cough have lashed out at a University of Wollongong researcher who questioned their motives for going public with their story.

Judy Wilyman, a PhD student and former Illawarra high school teacher, questioned whether Toni and David McCaffery had been paid to promote the whooping cough vaccine.

Ms Wilyman said the State Government was using four-week-old Dana's death and "the mantra of seeing sick babies gasping for air" to push the vaccine.

Dana died of whooping cough, or pertussis, in March 2009. Her parents have since worked with health authorities to raise awareness about the infection and gave permission for their story to be used on a NSW Health Department campaign.

On the Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) website, Ms Wilyman said she was "concerned to know if the McCafferys have received any money either directly or indirectly for promoting this cause".

"Can you assure me that the McCafferys have not received any money from the skeptic groups or any other lobby group for vaccines?" she asked.

Because the only logical reason why mourning parents would want to do everything in their power to raise awareness regarding what killed their child is that they’re in the pockets of Big Pharma and Big Government.

My, the AVN sure knows how to make friends, doesn’t it?

(via @BadAstronomer)

* There’s apparently a browser pop-up blocker or some such that prevents some from viewing the article at the link. Just use another browser; Google Chrome worked fine for me.