Bernard Rimland's "Do Children's Shots Invite Autism?" (Commentary, April 26) starts off with "First, do no harm," from Hippocrates' ancient dictum, and then proceeds to do a great deal of harm to the health of our children by making irresponsible statements about autism being caused by vaccinations. He presents no scientific evidence to back up his statements but just uses words such as "probably would" and "might have" to make the connection.
Our society doesn't need more irresponsible statements getting high-profile distribution and decreasing the vaccination rate to the point where major epidemics are again a public health problem. Blaming autism on something like TV, with its flashing images overloading the developing brain, is just as valid as blaming it on vaccinations, but parents restricting TV doesn't do the significant harm that our society will experience from the deaths of thousands of children from preventable diseases.
DALLAS E. WEAVER
I've read this information before and have received information from Rimland. I cry every time I think of the days and trips to doctors' offices in which they told me those vaccinations were to protect my daughter (now 5 years old and autistic) from disease. Instead, I helped them to give my daughter autism. I assisted in making my poor baby go through countless problems, therapy and hardships.
Damn those creators of dream-killers. I damn them for both of my daughters, because if anyone thinks that it's the child with autism who is the only one suffering, they are severely mistaken. I damn them for my marriage and myself. Damn the government and its "safe guidelines." Nights of tears at what could have been should be anger at doctors and their "hypocritical" oath.
Parents unite! Don't be slaves to doctors, HMOs, school boards (that do not allow us to send our children to school without these vaccines) and government (local and federal).
JOAN A. BALLINGER