The several-month-old report by the Masters of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims on the “Omnibus Autism Proceeding” is old news, but I thought I’d put an oar in, by saying that this is something that the courts got right. There is a large body of evidence that demonstrates, to a level of near-certainty, that the mercury compound used as a preservative for a baby’s immunization injections does NOT cause autism. Perhaps in part because the onset of autism commonly occurs over the time window in which these shots are administered, the popular myth that may be the source of an increase in autism incidence has grown, even in the face of a very large body of evidence to the contrary.
I have earlier argued that the ‘red herring’ of mercury has distracted scientists and the informed public from seeking and understanding the REAL causes of the increase in autism incidence. It’s not like we have a great shortage of possibilities! Let’s sort it all out, and do something about THEM.
I also earlier argued that I thought that the Courts got it tragically wrong, when they declared that children could not be prevented from purchasing violent video-games, because it has not been demonstrated that they have any (negative) impact on them. “Images of hundreds of thousands of repetitions of bloody and gory mayhem don’t seem to affect Junior,” says the Court! Judge, I’ll bet my house against yours that if YOU were exposed to the same massive load of sadistic crap I could show that YOU would be behaviorally and neurologically affected by it. Because where, after all, do you think the refined sensibilities that define the person that you are COME from? The air? The Creator of the Universe? Leaping out of your genes? Or, just maybe, via brain plasticity, from your experiences in life?!
If you think that hundreds of thousands of little doses of violence have no impact on young brains, you have to explain a) why children learn to love them so much; b) whether all of this training will help children learn how to be nicer, Praise the Lord; c) or maybe something different.
Our Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, recently announced that California will appeal this decision. “Way to go, Arnold.” This citizen thanks you for not caving in, when this silly ruling came down. For the sake of America’s children, this citizen hopes and prays that, given another chance, the Courts can get this one right, as well.