It's tragic that it took something like the literal life-or-death of her entire family to make anti-vaxxer mom Tara Hills completely change her mind.
The Hills Family.
Last week, former anti-vaxxer Tara Hills posted a blog entry to The Scientific Parent titled "Learning the Hard Way: My Journey from #AntiVaxx to Science." In it, she writes:
The Hills Family.
I’m writing this from quarantine, the irony of which isn’t lost on me. [...]
All seven of my unvaccinated children have whooping cough, and the kicker is that they may have given it to my five month old niece, too young to be fully vaccinated.[...]
We had vaccinated our first three children on an alternative schedule and our youngest four weren’t vaccinated at all. We stopped because we were scared and didn’t know who to trust. Was the medical community just paid off puppets of a Big Pharma-Government-Media conspiracy? Were these vaccines even necessary in this day and age? Were we unwittingly doing greater harm than help to our beloved children? So much smoke must mean a fire so we defaulted to the ‘do nothing and hope nothing bad happens’ position.
Unfortunately for the Hills family, they would learn just how dangerous the 'do nothing and hope nothing bad happens' position would be.
For those unaware, Whooping Cough (aka pertussis) is a highly contagious and potentially deadly bacterial infection.
And if you're wondering why you don't hear of many people being afflicted with it, that might have something to do with the fact that the incredibly effective vaccine for pertussis has been around since the 1930's.
Now Tara Hills is pleading for both sides to be a little more understanding.
While she has shifted camps and is now urging anti-vaxxers to learn from her mistakes (rather than gambling with the lives of their own children), Hills is also begging pro-vaxxers to be a little more understanding of those who might be on the fence-- rather than simply attacking them for being ignorant, and subsequently driving them to make defensive and uninformed decisions.