If You're Going to Say Something, Make it Matter

Carly Fiorina was the CEO of a major technology company whose products aimed to improve human life. In that role she was an advocate of innovation and technological process. While most people think of electronic devices and space technologies as synonymous with innovation, vaccines are indisputably on par with such conventional examples as they have transformed the life of the average human tremendously. Indeed, most advances in public health from sanitation to disease detection are the result of technological advances.

Accordingly, I was shocked to see Ms. Fiorina countenance the positions of those who seek to endanger children by prohibiting vaccination against diseases that remain clear and present dangers in this country.

While it has become commonplace to hear politicians and public figures of all political persuasions make statements that cast unwarranted doubt on vaccines, it is inexcusable for someone of Ms. Fiorina's stature and she knows it (and Governor George Pataki correctly pointed out). Hence, her nuanced position which affirms the rights of school operators to exclude the unvaccinated.

Further when Ms. Fiorina references esoteric vaccines it is clever trick that allows her to play both sides of the issue. When I hear that term "esoteric vaccines" the vaccines against yellow fever, Japanese Encephalitis, smallpox, and anthrax spring to mind. However, my context is radically different from that of the average voter she is attempting to court who may erroneously think of the vaccines against human papilloma virus, hepatitis B, and chickenpox as "esoteric."

It should be an asset to a candidate to be pro-technology and all embracing of a tool that has literally added decades to the lives of all humans, not something that requires spin. It is never a good thing pander to the primitive to be a viable candidate.

It is only through an intransigent defense of vaccines that all vaccine-preventable diseases will become esoteric.