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I didn’t watch the presidential debate last night because I was at a more interesting event – Science Cafe NH started its fall season, more about which anon – but I understand that the two physicians who are running for the office waffled on a topic where they should have thundered.

So, to be very clear: Vaccines don’t cause autism. That has been shown conclusively, with no room for debate. Autism can be a horrible, tragic event,  but endangering the lives of other children by keeping them vulnerable to disease doesn’t change that.

There is also no evidence that “spacing out” vaccinations, as was sort-of supported during the debate, does any good – and it definitely can do some harm, increasing the period at which children are vulnerable to disease, among other problems. To support spacing out is just empty pandering, tossing a bone to the fearful without taking the effort or time to understand and dispel their fears.

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