Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Paul Offit sued for "Autism's False Prophets" - VERY LONG

I had already started thinking of a blog this morning in the shower, before reading about the lawsuit against Paul Offit. Last night I was reading Age of Autism's articles on the recent proceedings of the GMC regarding Andrew Wakefield. Here is the story:


If you don't know who Andrew Wakefield is and you are touched by Autism, you should. The Reader's Digest condensed version is he is a gastroenterologist who did a study in the UK on kids with severe gut issues who also were on the Autism spectrum. He did biopsies and had them (independently) tested and was the first to show vaccine strain measels embedded in the gut lining of these kids. Vaccine strain, not community acquired. You see, vaccines can go a little haywire when you bypass the "normal" immune response of acquiring a virus through mucous membranes (mouth, nose, eyes, etc). When it is injected, the body doesn't always know what to do with it and sometimes the viruses can do things viruses do, wreak havoc in the body. So, anyways, he was the first to put the connection together between the MMR vaccine and Autism. He was (is) vilified and tried both in the press and the courts.

Smells a lot like the Valerie Plame-Wilson affair here. Remember Valerie Plame-Wilson? She was the CIA operative who was "outed" by our own government because her husband exposed a lie that former President Bush told about weapons of mass destruction. Joe Wilson was a former ambassador who was asked to do some recon work while on an unrelated trip to Africa (I believe, all facts should be double checked, my brain is full and tends to forget small details that are not immediately necessary). So, when Bush went on to have a press conference about weapons of mass destruction supposedly being bought by Saddam Hussein, he lied about the threat level. Since Joe Wilson was the one to provide the real data to the CIA/White House officials (that the threat was absolutely empty, no such transactions were happening), he wrote an editorial exposing that lie. Well, in return for his service to our country, he was vilified, his wife outed and potentially exposed, their lives and safety were threatened, they were professionally black balled and all clients of Joe Wilson's business were "encouraged" not to do business with him. Old school Mafia style here. All because he was exposing a lie that was fed to the American people. Now I have to say, I hate that kind of thing. The big guy squashing the little guy when he has truth on his side to cover up and make sure their cash cow doesn't dry up. Some members of our government tried to shut them up by these coercive techniques. It didn't, they held their ground, and suffered for it. God bless them. Many would not have had the fortitude to withstand what they did. Read her book "Fair Game" for a much better account than I gave.

This whole business with Andrew Wakefield, and now Paul Offit, sounds very similar. Why is Paul Offit being sued? He used a fabricated email "conversation" in his book, "The False Prophets of Autism". He puts together two things that never really happened together for the purpose of making a pro-biomed parent/activist look like a raving lunatic. Read more here:


He needed a juicy plot and since he didn't have one in real life, he created one. You know, this guy is the co-inventor of Rota-Tec, the rotavirus vaccine. Do you think he will say anything other than vaccines are safe??? So, this all started when a member of Generation Rescue posted data about the school she worked for on the Generation Rescue message board (a private board btw). She did not use her name, her school name or any children's names. She just used statistical data about Autism rates at the school where she worked. However, someone took it upon themselves to track down personal info about her, her daughter, her daughter's therapies, and presented the info all to her employer. They tried to say she had questionable judgement as an employee and as a mother. The co-founder of Generation Rescue found out about this and was understandably upset. Generation Rescue was fonded by parents of a child with Autism intent on helping other parents who want to use a biomedical approach. They pair people up in their areas so they have a mentor so to speak. You can read the rest of what happened in the link above.

I am asking my fellow Autism blogging mamas (and dads too!), how would YOU feel if someone read your blog, disagreed and then decided to track down personal info about you, your child, the rest of your family and tried to jeopardize your career and your family? We are all at risk with these dirty, shameful tactics. All in the name of protecting the already soiled name of vaccine safety?? Really????? We cannot stand for this. We are an ever-growing community. We need to stick together. This pisses me off. To think someone would question someone's parenting for using biomedical treatments???? What next, banning Centrum and vitamin C from Wal-Mart shelves??? Why are so many children progressing after years of stagnation on "traditional" pediatric advice (get some speech and ABA and hope for the best)? Why is Jenny McCarthy's son healed and no longer diagnosed with Autism? Whether you like her or not, impressive what she has been through with her son. And my own friend, a Generation Rescue Angel whose story I shared recently on my blog, what of her son who also has lost his diagnosis? IS THIS NOT SCIENCE????? Is my son not proof enough?????? A year ago he was screaming with anxiety and fear of going NEAR the integrated class and now he is a fully participating member, no extra assistance required. The only change? Biomedical treatment protocols overseen by a LICENSED PHYSICIAN whom I trust. Replenishing your child's needed vitamins and minerals and understanding the normal detox pathways and encouraging them rather than clogging them with toxins should be the norm, not the unusual. Understanding the role of yeast, viruses and bacteria in the gut process and how they can hinder brain function is not a crime!! Why is the statement "you are what you eat" so scary? Why is removing certain offending foods from our children's diets (without ANY harm or nutritional deficits) criminal? I would wager that my children are healthier than most American children based on what I have learned through this journey with Autism. I do not say that in arrogance, but with humbled thanks at how much I have learned about ingredients in the mainstream food supply. Why are there more preservatives and chemicals in food today than real whole food ingredients? What happened to meat, veggies and fruit? Why must this movement be vilified? Because it defies "conventional" doctrine? Because it may cut into vaccine profits? Shame on you, those who engage in this kind of villainy.

There is a story that is pretty appropriate here:

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package. What food might this contain? The mouse wondered - he was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap. Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning: There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, "Mr.Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me." " I cannot be bothered by it."The mouse turned to the pig and told him, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!" The pig sympathized, but said, I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. "Be assured you are in my prayers." The mouse turned to the cow and said "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!" The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I'm sorry for you, but it's no skin off my nose." So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer's mousetrap alone. That very night a sound was heard throughout the house -- like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey. The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught. The snake bit the farmer's wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital, and she returned home with a fever. Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup's main ingredient. But his wife's sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig. The farmer's wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral, the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them. The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness. So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn't concern you, remember -- when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk. We are all involved in this journey called life. We must keep an eye out for one another and make an extra effort to encourage one another.

When one is threatened, we all are threatened. Are the days coming with vaccinations at gun point? Will CPS be called because we give our children supplements? What next? Our civil liberties and our abilities to care for our precious children must not be taken away. Meet a "warrior" mom or dad and you will meet a parent with fire in their hearts and eyes to help their child(ren). They will stop at NOTHING to ease their child's pain and suffering from unseen causes. They will stop at NOTHING to heal their child and give them the chance every child in this world deserves, a healthy body and normal development not marred by toxins. You can tell us by the bags under our eyes from sleepless nights from being up with their child who will not sleep, or from researching and reading more ways to help our children once our child(ren) finally do sleep. We carry the weight of the world on our shoulders after watching our children slip away or never progress as expected at all. We have cried the tears that come from hope that starts to slip of the future we envisioned for our children. And then we cry even more tears at the idea that those futures ARE just as bright as we first thought, just with more work involved to get there. We struggle with stares and frowns when our child melts down in public because their sensory system is too overwhelmed, others chalking it up to bad parenting. We endure criticism from the very group designed to help us, our mainstream pediatricians. We look "outside of the box" out of necessity. We read research which takes us weeks to really understand. We learn neuro chemistry as our side job. We become experts of our children. We know our children in ways others will never. Do we need to preface our blogs with "These are my own personal statements and do not reflect the feelings of anyone else and please don't twist them and use them against me to the detriment of the very people I am attempting to help in this journey". All families touched by Autism should be watching what happens.


Anonymous said...

Regarding Handley's message, IT HAPPENED. Here's the link:
As far as I know, the only thing Handley is denying in his suit is that he directed it to Kathleen Seidel.

Terri Burges Hirning said...

Right, as I read it from Age of Autism, Paul Offit took two separate accounts and put them together as one "conversation" that never happened. Paul Offit is saying Handley wrote that to Seidel after she "kindly" asked him to stop engaging in harmful treatment (I assume biomed here, could be wrong though) and Handley's message was to whoever was lurking on their group and stirring up trouble, not Seidel. So, it made Seidel look like a calm, rational person and made Handley look like a hot head who responded irrationally to a kind request. He didn't say that to her about her "request", he said that to someone lurking who had been making trouble.

Anonymous said...

Of course Andrew Wakefield is going to say MMR causes autism - he was part of a class-action lawsuit against the vaccine maker and was developing his own version of the measles vaccine. Good lord, he has something in common with Offit: they both were interested in creating vaccines to save lives. Shocking.

Things are never as simple as they seem.

Terri Burges Hirning said...

Andrew Wakefield says MMR causes Autism because he had many parents of children with Autism suffering from the same GI issues who came to him for help and he found evidence of such. Do you know Dr. Wakefield? And better yet, do you have a child benefitting from his work like I do?

Terri Burges Hirning said...

Oh and by the way, Andrew Wakefield was NOT developing his own VACCINE. He was developing a version of transfer factor, to offset the negative effects of vaccines.