Cynthia A. Janak
Soccer moms are now dummy mummies in Australia
By Cynthia A. Janak
February 24, 2009

I just read an article from Australia that just about made me fall out of my chair laughing. I could not believe that the editors of The Sidney Morning Herald would even allow such, in my opinion, dribble to go to print. I mean, how could they allow any of their writers to call the educated, well read, nurturing mom, whose husband has a good job that allows them to stay home with their children instead of having a career a "dummy." Then they go on to state that the doctors in these suburbs are "too-old to be computer-literate or too lazy" to remember to write in their patients charts. It doesn't stop there either. The story goes on to call these educated moms "an older demographic of mothers who are conscientious objectors." This writer makes it sound like these moms are one step away from being called a terrorist.

As I write this I am still laughing because of the audacity of this so called journalist's comments.

Any woman that has taken the time to educate herself either by reading and studying or being fortunate to have a university education is now a dummy in the eyes of the Sidney Morning Herald because they are an at home mom. This is to me ludicrous and demeaning of the mothers that have decided to put the family first.

Here is the article that has me laughing. Selfish dummy mummies need consciences pricked, Adele Horin, February 21, 2009

What I am going to do is go through the article and show you everything that I find laughable so you can enjoy the joke with me.

Living in a suburb with lots of white, middle-class, educated mothers may be putting your child's health at risk. In such salubrious surroundings can be found dangerous concentrations of vaccine-resisters. These are women who spend too many hours on wacky internet health sites and become convinced immunisation is a giant conspiracy.

I would like to know the sources for this accusation. Did this journalist take a poll of the websites these mothers frequent? Did this journalist talk too any of the moms in these suburbs to validate this statement? No data or sources are mentioned.

It is possible doctors in these establishment suburbs are too old to be computer-literate or too lazy to record immunisation data as they are meant to do, with consequent under-estimates of the coverage in their areas. Also, parts of the eastern suburbs, such as Kings Cross, have their share of poor and transient families. But as Ray Seidler, medical director of the Eastern Sydney Division of General Practice, told me, these areas are home to "an older demographic of mothers who are conscientious objectors."

How does did they determine the age of the doctors in these areas? Did they do a telephone poll or did they somehow gain access to confidential information about these doctors?

This journalist tells you about Seidler but forgoes recognizing that this person does have a Dr. in front of his name, Opps. Because of this obvious error I wanted to find out who Ray Seidler is. This Dr. is a blogger on the blogosphere.

Dr Ray Seidler

  • Gender: Male

  • Industry: Communications or Media

  • Occupation: Addiction Medicine Specialist

  • Location: Kings Cross : NSW : Australia

What I find interesting about this is the fact, as you see above, "Industry: Communications or Media." He does not state anything about the medical field in this category. If you did not know his occupation you would think he was just some IT guy. I find this funny because the author of this article is relying on a blogger as his source of credible opinion.

Another thing I found of interest with this source is that he would rather email his patients their results "email consultation." He refuses to use a fax machine because he believes that the paperwork would just sit in a bin someplace for even the cleaning person to see. I wonder if this doctor understands that once a fax is sent that you need a follow-up phone call to confirm it was received and handled. I do that when I send a fax and I am not a Dr, PhD, etc. That is common communication practice, to me anyway.

Around the world, resistance to vaccination is strongest among the affluent and educated, leading Arthur Allen, author of the book Vaccine, a history of immunisation, to observe that "living in a place with a high percentage of PhDs is a risk factor for whooping cough."

I checked out Arthur Allen to find out his credentials. He is a writer and I did not have any success in finding if he was a Dr. or a PhD. The only thing I was able to find was that he is a Washington-based journalist. Because of my lack of success in finding his credentials makes me wonder if he has something against furthering one's education especially smart women.

Like all the pro-vaccine writers out there Allen does not state one fact and that is the true reason for the difference between the 1980's and 1994. First, this is what Allen states.

Probably the most damning epidemiological evidence against the vaccines-cause-autism theory, and another point that Kennedy gets wrong, is contained in the document that got critics started on their claim of a vaccine-provoked epidemic — a 1999 Department of Developmental Services report from California. Like reports from other states in the country, it shows a dramatic increase in autistic children seeking state services, from 2,778 autistics on the rolls in 1987 to 10,360 in 1998.

Like many pro-vaccine activists he does not state in this article the fact that a law was passed on October 1, 1988 called the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (Public Law 99-660) that created the National Vaccine Compensation Program (VICP). This law took the responsibility for vaccine injury away from the manufacturers to vaccine court, in my opinion. Because of this law there has been a 275% increase in childhood vaccinations that a child receives. But it seems to this writer this fact is not important enough to be a plausible reason for the increase in autism (brain damage, my opinion).

Another fact with this source is that he, like Offit, has a book to sell about how great vaccines are. No conflict of interest here and no PhD either!

Vaccine-resisters have a range of motivations. Some believe immunisation is unnatural. Others resent the nanny state telling them how to raise their children. Some distrust the medical establishment.

Again, I would like to know the sources for this assumption. I would like to know how many people he talked to and what that data showed. This is beginning to remind me of that guy Deer in the UK who writes about an issue that he created and is coming under fire for a conflict of interest. You can read about this conflict of interest here. A deer in the headlights, Melanie Phillips, February 16th, 2009.

Let us go back to the laughable article that I have been quoting.

Aided by the internet, anyone can bone up on their diseases and ask intelligent questions. And so they should — just as independent scientists should be properly funded to monitor a vaccination's side effects.

But these dummy mummies don't differentiate between fact and hocus-pocus; between a bona fide scientific study and pseudo science. Just as some people still think fluoride is dangerous, others cling to their anti-vaccine stand as a matter of faith, regardless of the evidence.

In these two paragraphs the writer is contradicting. On one hand it is okay to use the internet to research so the patient can "ask intelligent questions" but when a mother does the same about vaccinations they are called "dummy mummies." What an insult to the educated woman and mother.

I do have one comment for this writer about fluoride. They should check out their tube of toothpaste because they all have a warning label. I checked all the ingredients in mine and the only one that could cause harm is 'fluoride.' Check out the MSDS sheet. You will be surprised.

Then look at what the FDA has to say. Effects of Fluoride on Development of Bone "Various kinds of toxicity have been attributed to ingestion of fluoride, including dental fluorosis; bone fracture; reproductive, renal, gastrointestinal, and immunological toxicities; genotoxicity; and carcinogenicity."

You are going to love this one. This article states the following: But 8000 children in NSW got whooping cough last year, starting with an outbreak on the North Coast, a big increase on previous years. Many were babies exposed to the virus in the months before they could be vaccinated. Babies cough and cough, go blue or red, some stop breathing and need oxygen.

To validate the "dummy mummies" this author makes a big deal about not vaccinating but states that many babies were too young to be vaccinated against whooping cough. Then they go on to say; Tetanus is just a rusty nail away, and cases of measles are still recorded in Australia. I get the impression that there must be a lot of rusty nails around in these suburbs "with lots of white, middle-class, educated mothers."

Then this writer goes on to slam poor people by stating this; It's bad enough that ill-educated, chaotic, itinerant families fail to get their children immunised because they forget, don't know, or don't get round to it.

Then again they have to slam the educated moms with this statement; But when smart parents deliberately desist, it's wicked. So intent on not being duped by the "medical establishment," they allow themselves to be duped instead by the likes of Jim Carrey, Jennifer McCarthy, and garbage science.

Notice how they do not reference the doctors that are now stating that it is too many vaccines too soon and Robert Kennedy Jr.'s statements about vaccines. My new grandson's pediatrician believes in a flexible schedule and very few vaccines before two years of age. I have spoken with several moms and their pediatricians believe the same thing, interesting.

Here are what some doctors have to say and I am not taking this from a blogger. These comments were written in response to a special article written by Paul Offit and Charlotte Moser, "The Problem with Dr. Bob's Alternative Vaccine Schedule." Here is the link to the article and below is the link to the comments.

*Dr. Robert Sears, Pediatrician, I would like to take this opportunity to clear the record regarding The Vaccine Book and my own professional opinions on vaccines. I believe that Dr. Offit has greatly misrepresented the overall message of the book as being 'anti-vaccine.' In fact, the book encourages parents to vaccinate their children. In order to give parents a complete educational experience, while presenting all the 'pros' of vaccines I felt it was important to list the 'cons' as well by discussing the potential side effects from the vaccine product inserts (while emphasizing how rare any severe reactions are). I also discuss the reasons why some parents choose not to vaccinate so that the readers can understand what these parents' issues are. I don't condone such ideas, I simply present them. Without giving BOTH sides of the story, parents wouldn't trust the information. Conflict of Interest: Author of The Vaccine Book

*Dr. Jon S. Poling, Neurologist, As a physician, scientist, and father of a vaccine-injured child, I have many issues with Offit and Moser's critique of Dr. Sears vaccine book, particularly its authoritarian tone and content. Offit is certainly entitled to his opinion, but it must be recognized as that. We must stick to the science and recognize the open questions with regards to vaccine safety.

... In their assault on Dr. Sears, Offit and Moser confuse scientific methodology. Even more dangerous than not having an understanding of science, is the presumption that one does "grasp the scientific method." Actually, in designing an epidemiological study, one must have a good estimate of the effect size, in order to determine the power of a study. Offit misuses the statistical term 'power' to suggest that this allows one to "reject or not to reject the null hypothesis." This is incorrect.

*Dr. Joseph T. Malak, Pediatrician, Why did Dr. Offit write this "special article?" Why did the AAP publish it? Straightforward. They both are funded by Merck. That little conflict of interest was understandably not cited. Dr. Sears has credibility and integrity. His website gets 35,000 hits per day. That is where parents are going for advice. This attack will probably push that number higher. Conflict of Interest: AAP fellow, but also parent of two children

This is but a few of the comments and there are others that do not agree with Dr. Sears as to an alternate vaccine schedule. You can read all the comments by going to the link I provided. I believe that you should do your own research and educate yourself with quality websites.

My opinion of this article is one of disgust because they did not do their due diligence in reporting to their readers both sides of the story. I also take offence with the fact that they are calling women and moms "dummy mummies."

This type of journalism is why people like myself, who seek out the truth and present both sides of the issue, are becoming more popular to the educated individual. It is this type of media bias and derogatory comments that further push educated parents to distrust the medical establishment and mainstream media, in my opinion.

For more information about vaccines and my favorite topic Gardasil please visit my website

© Cynthia A. Janak


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Cynthia A. Janak

Cynthia Janak is a freelance journalist, mother of three, foster mother of one, grandmother of five, business owner, Chamber of Commerce member... (more)


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