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The Flawed Logic of Hepatitis B Vaccine Mandates

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Summary:

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  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that newborn babies receive the hepatitis B vaccine on their first day of life.
  • The infants, toddlers and young children receiving this vaccine face little to no chance of hepatitis B infection, but the vaccines impose significant risks, including the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, autoimmune illness and even death.
  • In the 0-1 age group, there is at least a 20:1 ratio of reported vaccine injuries/deaths associated with hepatitis B vaccines compared to cases of hepatitis B infection.
  • The constitutionality of hepatitis B vaccine mandates in these populations where there is little risk for disease is arguably questionable.
  • Hepatitis B vaccination mandates fail to honor young children’s liberty, equal protection, and health.

Unless their mothers harbor the virus (determined by routine prenatal blood testing), newborns are probably the least likely human beings on the planet at risk of actually getting hepatitis B.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) strongly recommend that newborn babies get the hepatitis B vaccine on their first day of life. About 12 million doses are administered to American babies in any given year. However, unless their mothers harbor the virus (determined by routine prenatal blood testing), newborns are probably the least likely human beings on the planet at risk of actually getting hepatitis B. Infection risks are also extremely low for young school-age children, but—in all but two states (Alabama and South Dakota)—three to four doses of hepatitis B vaccine are not only recommended but mandated for preschool attendance, K-12 education or both.

New cases of hepatitis B were low in the 1970s; they began climbing in the early 1980s (coincident with the HIV/AIDS epidemic) but then started falling again. Although the CDC first began recommending hepatitis B vaccination on a limited basis in 1982 for the small population of at-risk adults (and infants of infected mothers), the agency attributes the decline in hepatitis B cases during the 1980s and early 1990s to “reduction of transmission among men who have sex with men and injection-drug users, as a result of HIV prevention efforts.”

At the time, hepatitis B was a relatively “obscure” infection of “little direct relevance to most Americans,” but in the early 1990s the “picture of hepatitis B being held up before Americans” changed, as the CDC began promoting a more comprehensive hepatitis B vaccine dragnet. With a stark shift in policy emphasistoward universal vaccination for all newborns (1991), adolescents (1995) and children through age 18 (1999), “a vaccine with a limited initial target population [came] to be accepted as compulsory for every child in the country.”

Whereas the young people being vaccinated face little to no chance of hepatitis B infection, the vaccines impose significant risks

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A questionable rationale

From the beginning, hepatitis B vaccines have had their critics, who question the public health logic of across-the-board hepatitis B vaccination for infants and children. Whereas the young people being vaccinated face little to no chance of hepatitis B infection, the vaccines impose significant risks, including the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, autoimmune illness and even death. In the decade from 1991 to 2001 (when hepatitis B vaccines contained the mercury-based preservative thimerosal), vaccine exposure in early infancy resulted in an estimated 0.5-1 million U.S. children being diagnosed with learning disabilities, representing lifetime costs in excess of $1 trillion. Other hepatitis B vaccine ingredients (including aluminum adjuvants and yeast) as well as the vaccines’ use of recombinant DNA technology have been linked to a variety of adverse outcomes.

In 1986 (five years before the CDC began pushing for vaccination of all newborns), the nation documented fewer than 280 cases of hepatitis B infection in children under age 14; by 2006, the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) had received over 23,000 reports of adverse events related to hepatitis B vaccination in the 0-14 age group, including nearly 800 deaths.

In congressional testimony in 1999, the father of a five-week-old who died immediately following a hepatitis B shot described a 20:1 ratio of VAERS reports compared to cases of hepatitis B infection in the 0-1 age group (likely an underestimate due to VAERS underreporting). Given that the vaccine has been shown—by the CDC itself—to wear off well before the age of any likely exposure to hepatitis B virus, the father concluded that hepatitis B mandates for newborns represented a “teaming up” of “ravenous corporate greed and mindless bureaucracy” against “common sense.”

The out-of-date legal context for mandates

The legal framework that seemingly permits compulsory childhood vaccination, including hepatitis B vaccine mandates for preschoolers, is astonishingly out-of-date. The U.S. Supreme Court has not addressed compulsory vaccination “in any depth” for over a century and has not revisited the issue at all since 1922, despite the fact that “the contours of the vaccine issue have changed fundamentally since the early 1900s.”

These are some of the points made by New York University legal scholar Mary Holland in a far-reaching discussion of hepatitis B vaccine mandates in the Yale Journal of Health Policy, Law, and Ethics, published in 2013. As Holland explains, the 1905 Supreme Court decision that set the stage for vaccine mandates (Jacobson v. Massachusetts) did so in response to the “markedly different” one-disease-one-vaccine context of smallpox. Although the Court upheld smallpox mandates, in most cases, noncompliant individuals faced no worse than a “relatively small monetary fine.” Subsequent courts, however, “have used Jacobson to justify results that the original decision did not condone: vaccination mandates exclusively for children with no imminent disease outbreaks and with serious penalties for noncompliance”—not just forfeiture of the right to an education but also outcomes such as “social isolation, parents’ loss of custodial rights, child-neglect sanctions against parents, and, even, forced vaccination.”

Neither the federal government nor states have alleged that (hepabtitis B) transmission among preschoolers is a serious threat to public health.

Holland finds the constitutionality of hepatitis B vaccine mandates for preschoolers questionable, particularly in light of other legal precedents. What might happen if today’s Supreme Court were to evaluate a legal challenge to a state’s hepatitis B mandate? Although the Court’s historical track record displays a legal tug-of-war between limits set on individual liberty and support for individuals’ “fundamental claims to bodily integrity and autonomy,” Holland suggests that the Court’s fairly reasoned answer to each of the following six questions ought to be a clear “no”:

  1. Is there a sufficient public health necessity to impose a preschool hepatitis B vaccination mandate?

Holland observes that “neither the federal government nor states have alleged that [hepatitis B] transmission among preschoolers is a serious threat to public health.”

  1. Does a vaccination mandate for preschoolers constitute a reasonable means of addressing hepatitis B in broader society?

At least two factors undermine the presumption of reasonableness, including shockingly inadequate safety testing in the targeted age groups (infants and young children) and poor long-term efficacy. The prelicensure clinical trials for GlaxoSmithKline’s Engerix-B vaccine monitored about 5,000 subjects (“adults and children”) for just four days following administration of the vaccine, without disclosing the proportion of subjects who were children or their ages. The pediatric prelicensure trials for Merck’s Recombivax HB vaccine involved a grand total of 147 infants and children “monitored for five days after each dose.”

  1. Is a hepatitis B vaccination mandate proportionate to the risk of disease (i.e., do disease risks outweigh vaccine risks)?

Holland states that “this would be very difficult to prove since incidence of the disease in the preschool population is exceedingly low, yet the risks of adverse events from the vaccine, including anaphylaxis, encephalopathy, and death, are well-documented.”

  1. Does the government provide for harm avoidance and offer a fair process for allowing medical exemptions?

Medical exemptions were one of the “core requirements” established by the 1905 Jacobson decision. A federal policy that arm-twists parents into vaccinating their newborns—whose medical history is largely a blank slate—“makes harm avoidance almost impossible.” 

  1. Is the hepatitis B vaccination mandate non-discriminatory?

A mandate imposed on young children “not primarily for their benefit” can be construed as “arbitrary” and discriminatory in application.

  1. Do parents have a “liberty interest in being able to refuse an unwanted medical intervention”?

Holland notes that the Court has “repeatedly acknowledged that the right to bodily integrity and to refuse unwanted medical treatment is deeply rooted in the historical traditions of the United States.”

Prescient Justices

Holland’s conclusion is straightforward: The hepatitis B vaccination mandate “has failed to honor young children’s liberty, equal protection, and health.” In support of this conclusion, she cites comments by three past Supreme Court Justices over the century since Jacobson:

  • Justice Harlan foresaw, in 1905, that mandates “might be exercised…in such arbitrary, unreasonable manner, or might go so far beyond what was reasonably required for the safety of the public, as to authorize or compel the courts to interfere for the protection of such persons.”
  • In 1942, Justice Jackson cautioned that “There are limits to the extent to which a legislatively represented majority may conduct biological experiments at the expense of…a minority.”
  • And in 1990, Justice Stevens discussed the “sanctity, and individual privacy, of the human body” as “obviously fundamental to liberty,” adding that “every violation of a person’s body is an invasion of his or her liberty.”

Holland also reminds us that the millions of doses of hepatitis B vaccine administered to babies every year represent “a substantial annual income stream” for vaccine manufacturers—in this instance, Merck and GlaxoSmithKline. Vaccine companies’ freedom from liability for injuries and deaths related to childhood vaccines also creates “manifold” financial motivations to continue to expand vaccine recommendations and mandates, even when the latter do not lead to “optimal or even rational public health outcomes.”

Encountering pushback from concerned parents, legislators and the medical/pharmaceutical establishment are restoring to threatening tactics that include forced vaccination, apparently heedless of the fact that all vaccines and medicines, including hepatitis B vaccines come with sizeable risks.

Honoring young children’s liberty, equal protection, and health

Across the country, state legislatures are introducing vaccine mandate bills requiring all vaccines for all children, even threatening to go after the medical exemptions that the Jacobson decision insisted were vitally important. Encountering pushback from concerned parents, legislators and the medical/pharmaceutical establishment are resorting to threatening tactics that include forced vaccination, apparently heedless of the fact that all vaccines and medicines, including hepatitis B vaccines, come with sizeable risks. For the sake of children’s present and future health, we must keep up public pressure to resolve financial conflicts of interest, insist on the highest standards of vaccine safety and persist in questioning both the overt and underlying premises of unjustifiable vaccine mandates.

Sign up for free news and updates from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. CHD is planning many strategies, including legal, in an effort to defend the health of our children and obtain justice for those already injured. Your support is essential to CHD’s successful mission.

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Awareness

Johnson & Johnson Found To Have Knowingly Allowed Asbestos In Their Baby Powder

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Johnson and Johnson have recently lost lawsuits for negligence in knowingly allowing carcinogenic substances in their talc-based hygiene products.

  • Reflect On:

    Are we starting to turn the page on an era where human health and safety are not the prime considerations in the manufacturing of consumer products?

We are starting to awaken to the fact that it seems to be the rule, and not the exception, that large Western corporations put profits above human health considerations. The only time they seem to give any regard to human health concerns is when their forecasts of potential lawsuits down the road would likely exceed the cost measures needed to ensure the safety of their product.

Johnson & Johnson is just one of a long line of corporate perpetrators who believed that covering up and lying about known health concerns would make better business sense than taking the time and resources to actually address those health concerns within their products.

Contaminated Baby Powder: The Height Of Indignity

One would think, regardless of an understanding that the bottom line is a priority for most private companies, that the health and safety of a nursing mother and her newborn child would be sacrosanct for any industry. The reality is that this is simply not the case, even though J&J could have mitigated this problem from the start.

Companies that mine talc are required to take extra steps to ensure the absence of asbestos in their talc. Instead, J&J allegedly went to great lengths to fake it.

Not only did the company know about the asbestos contamination, evidence suggests, but J&J also failed to warn its customers about the link between Baby Powder and cancer or replace its talc with a safer alternative. As a result, J&J guaranteed its customers’ exposure to asbestos.

And regardless of their size or numbers, asbestos fibers are lethal at any capacity. As the World Health Organization (WHO) has stressed repeatedly, there is no safe level of exposure. (source)

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The Testimony of Scientist James Webber

Baby Powder’s contamination with asbestos (a mineral that naturally occurs near talc) has long been the subject of lawsuits. But only in recent years has evidence begun to unravel J&J’s defense – that the company had no idea – and threatened its success in lawsuits to come.

In March, a California jury awarded $29 million to Terry Leavitt, a woman who said that asbestos in Johnson & Johnson’s talcum-powder-based products caused her terminal mesothelioma. Environmental scientist James Webber testified in her high-profile California trial and made these observations:

During several hours on the stand, Webber explained how he ran tests that showed “clear” evidence of asbestos contamination in the mines from which J&J sourced talc.

“The testing I have seen [shows] that it was present at least as early as 1971 and up through the late 1990s,” said Webber, who ran an asbestos laboratory in New York state.

Despite denying it publicly, J&J had observed this contamination in internal memos. Its notes dismissed the amount of asbestos in its talc as “but a trace,” Webber alleged. But that was just an optimistic interpretation of superficial testing, he said: the tests used methods too weak to detect microscopic asbestos fibers. Webber insisted the actual tests results revealed there could be millions of asbestos fibers per gram of talc.

And J&J’s inaccurate reports were allegedly only the tip of the iceberg. In some instances, Webber said, photos attached to J&J’s reports revealed that “they had been seeing it and not reporting it.”  (source)

And It’s Getting Worse

The $29 million verdict, in California Superior Court in Oakland, was the latest defeat for the healthcare conglomerate facing more than 13,000 talc-related lawsuits nationwide. And things may be getting even worse for J&J, according to ZeroHedge:

Johnson & Johnson shares are down over 5% after Bloomberg reports that, according to people with knowledge of the matter, the U.S. Justice Department is pursuing a criminal investigation into whether Johnson & Johnson lied to the public about the possible cancer risks of its talcum powder…

Now, a grand jury in Washington is examining documents related to what company officials knew about any carcinogens in their products, the people said.

The Takeaway

It seems as though corporations have long been willing to take the calculated risk of short-cuts and denials instead of ensuring that their products are safe for public use. My suspicion is that a part of our collective awakening process will be issuing in a new business paradigm in which human health and safety become paramount.

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Awareness

Prescription Infant Formulas Found To Be Contaminated With Aluminum

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Multiple brands of prescription infant formula were found to contain high levels of aluminum.

  • Reflect On:

    Should we be questioning the quality of products that come from pharmaceutical production? Do we veer away from natural methods of raising children more than we should? At what cost?

You may not think aluminum is a big deal, but it is. For anybody who has looked into aluminum toxicology, it’s quite clear and apparent that it has no place inside of any living biological organism. Putting it simply, it wreaks havoc on our biology. High amounts of aluminum have been found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease, with experts in the field believing that aluminum brain accumulation may be one of the main causes of Alzheimer’s disease.

It’s also been discovered within the brains of MS patients, and some of the highest aluminum content ever recorded in brain tissue has also been discovered in people with autism. Aluminum is associated with several diseases. But an adult body can do a great job of flushing out aluminum.

Despite the fact that aluminum has no place within earth’s biota, it’s still present in many of our medications, our food, and even in the water that we drink due to contamination since the industrial revolution. Aluminum inside the body is a new phenomenon and still understudied. Again, there is a threshold, and aluminum that is injected via vaccines doesn’t exit the body–there is strong evidence that it remains inside the body and ends up in distant organs and eventually inside of the brain. If you want to access more studies on that topic, you can read this article I published that provides them and goes into more detail. You can also watch this interview with Christopher Exley, where he also points to that fact.

A new study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health has shown that multiple popular infant prescriptions are contaminated with aluminum. You may be asking how much aluminum, but the authors make it a point to stress that there are no safe amounts of aluminum levels that can be inside of a human body, let alone a newborn baby. That being said, the amounts found are listed within the abstract of the study:

Historical and recent data demonstrate that off-the-shelf infant formulas are heavily contaminated with aluminium. The origin of this contamination remains to be elucidated though may be imported via ingredients, packaging and processing. Specialised infant formulas exist to address health issues, such as low birth weight, allergy or intolerance and medical conditions, such as renal insufficiency. The aluminium content of these prescription infant formulas is measured here for the first time. We obtained 24 prescription infant formulas through a paediatric clinic and measured their total aluminium content by transversely heated graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry following microwave assisted acid/peroxide digestion. The aluminium content of ready-to-drink formulas ranged from 49.9 (33.7) to 1956.3 (111.0) μg/L. The most heavily contaminated products were those designed as nutritional supplements for infants struggling to gain weight. The aluminium content of powdered formulas ranged from 0.27 (0.04) to 3.27 (0.19) μg/g. The most heavily contaminated products tended to be those addressing allergies and intolerance. Prescription infant formulas are contaminated with aluminium.

Another very important point made right off the bat by the authors:

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Human exposure to aluminium is a serious health concern. Aluminium exposure in infants is understandably a burgeoning issue. While infant exposure to aluminium continues to be documented, its consequences, immediate and in the future, have received only scant attention and research is required to understand the biological availability of aluminium through formula feeding. For example, how much aluminium is absorbed across the neonate gut and its subsequent fate, including excretion.

There is already too much aluminium in infant formulas and herein we have measured its content in a large number of prescription formulas, products which are fed to vulnerable infants in their first months of life. Many of these products are heavily contaminated with aluminium.

As for the specific infant formulas, you can refer to the study. The researchers obtained 24 prescription infant formulas via the Paediatric Clinic of Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley, United Kingdom. The ready-to-drink and powdered products were new, ready-to-be used and unopened samples. These formulas are for babies with some sort of growth restriction, like for preterm infants or infants who have poor weight gain. There were also powdered formulas for allergies and intolerances and powdered formulas with additional amino acids.

The authors contacted each manufacturer and expressed that they denied knowing that there was any aluminum in their products, which means it’s still a mystery as to their source. The authors hypothesize on a number of ways that aluminum could be entering into the formulas.

In their conclusion, the authors emphasize that:

Where possible, breast milk feeding should be prioritised, as the aluminium content of breast milk is invariably an order of magnitude lower than in formula feeds. Where infant formulas are the only source of nutrition for many infants in their first weeks and months of life, aluminium ingested in formula feeds will be the major contributor to their body burden of aluminium. The last thing that vulnerable infants fed specialised formulas for their specific nutritional/medicinal need is additional aluminium in their diet.

Detoxing

There is a lot of information out there on how a person can detox from aluminum and other heavy metals. There are multiple studies, and based on what I’ve looked into, water with high amounts of Silica are effective in draining aluminum out of your body and brain. Herbs like cilantro and substances like chlorella and spirulina are also great for removing some metals. The information is out there, so be sure to do your research.

The Takeaway

It’s concerning to think about what these corporations are doing. Again, aluminum should hold no place in our society, it should’ve remained well below our surface as part of the Earth’s crust for a reason. It wasn’t until humans began digging it out and using it for a number of things, irresponsibly I might add, that we started to see the health implications which still go largely ignored by the medical community.

In fact, heavy metal accumulation and detoxification of aluminum haven’t been addressed at all, which is odd given the fact that heavy metal accumulation is linked to a variety of diseases.

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Awareness

9 Studies You Should Be Aware of Before Trying The Ketogenic Diet

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The Ketogenic diet is a popular fad diet that promotes quick weight loss and symptom management for bodies that are dealing with poor lymph, kidney and digestion health.

  • Reflect On:

    Based on the studies that are emerging, is our desire for quick weight loss more important than living a long and healthy life? Are we learning about these diets primarily through those with strong ties to upholding these diets?

The ketogenic diet has popped up as a popular approach to weight loss in the last few years. Is it successful at that? Sure, it is. I’ve experimented with the diet myself years ago when I was looking to lose some belly fat. I was entering into ketosis in a different way than most, as I was not eating any animal products, but it does in fact work.

But like any animal product based diet, what are the consequences of eating so much food that does not truly jive with our human bodies? Not only that, is fast weight loss more important than keeping our morality rate down?

In the last few years, we’ve reported a lot on the Keto diet and the various ways it can be done. We have explored the studies, the results and in some ways, we supported it. But lately, I have been thinking about how supporting this could actually be encouraging people to jump into these diets, including the paleo diet, when in reality these diets increase mortality rates and are not healthy for the human body.

It became a thought in the back of my mind, I have always strived to put the best information out that I can through this platform to promote good health. And so we must look at that, even if that means upsetting some people who currently are on paleo or keto and are seeing some good weight loss or symptom management. The truth is, like the many people I’ve seen crash on these diets after a few years, I want people to know the truth of what’s going on out there. And how we can get beyond diets that symptom manage, and instead get onto diets that truly heal.

Anytime we have fad diets, which paleo and keto are, we see products and bias pop up all over the place to support the continuation of these trends. It becomes less about health and more about upholding an identity or a business.

So as I recently looked into what experts are saying about these diets, I came upon two important videos I think everyone should check out. Both have been embedded below. Remember, it’s not that I care what you choose in your own life, or that I feel there is a right or wrong, it’s that I believe we should be informed and I wish to use this platform to promote as best a message as I can.

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The Videos

Thanks to Plant-Based News for creating such a good channel and resource of information on YouTube.

In this video, several plant-based health experts talk through 9 nutrition studies that would be of interest to low carb keto diet proponents. To read the 9 studies, click here.

Next up, Dr. Kim Williams (past President of the American College of Cardiology) shares his insights about the ketogenic.

Related Articles

Diabetic Shares Why He Quit ‘The Ketogenic Diet’

Doctor Explains Why She Never Recommends The ‘Ketogenic Diet’

The Biggest Misconception About The ‘Ketogenic Diet’…You Don’t Actually Have To Follow It

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