"Pox Parties" not bad enough, now people are shipping active pathogens in the mail

"Pox packages," child abuse, and the violation of federal law from "Respectful Insolence" blog.

I have to say: As someone who has never had chickenpox, and who never received the vaccine, the idea of contracting the disease from a piece of mail that just happened to be sorted alongside one of these nutjobs' packages gives me the screaming heebie jeebies.

What kind of lunatic responds to "This is a federal offense to intentionally mail a contagion." with "Tuck it inside a zip lock baggy and then put the baggy in the envelope Don't put anything identifying it as pox."?

Ugh.

First off ... Get the vaccine... No need to be a child to get it.

Secondly... this is sick.

I got chickenpox as a child during Christmas Vacation... ruined the vacation for me.

From the article:

But it's worse than that. Near the end of the report from the local CBS affiliate above, there is a post from a parent looking for measles, which is much more dangerous than chickenpox. Her reason? This:

Dad is threatening to take it to court and getting exposed is the only way not to get the vaccine without possibly losing custody.

If you want an example of how far the irrational fear of vaccines will drive some people, you have no further to look than this story.

You know what? That should be sufficient evidence to have that woman lose custody of her child. WHAT THE f*ck.

"Born in the United States before 1980"

I'm probably fine. It still gives me the heebie jeebies, though. And yeah, I should probably get vaccinated anyway.

Farscry wrote:

WHAT THE f*ck.

Yeah, not much more to say here.

I'm hoping this is like those "Kids who play dungeons and dragons are MURDERERS!" news reports in the 80's and blown way out of proportion or something.

Mex wrote:
Farscry wrote:

WHAT THE f*ck.

Yeah, not much more to say here.

I'm hoping this is like those "Kids who play dungeons and dragons are MURDERERS!" news reports in the 80's and blown way out of proportion or something.

Children who drink milk grow up to be murderers too.

I've been saying for years that those cows have it in for us.

I had my family before the vaccine, but I didn't have to purposely expose my kids - a kid they knew took care of that for us. But I was purposely exposed to my sister who picked it up at school back in my time.

But that was in 1975 and there was no other option to manage the problem. Not today, when they've had a stable vaccine for over a decade.

When I was younger we had a family friend who suggested similar. My mom calmly said that I was going to get vaccinated later that week. The family friend lost her sh*t about vaccines are evil.

Now, my mom had been working in special education for about 10 years at this point. She had a pretty good grasp on the whole autism thing. She was not amused. It was pretty funny to watch her drop some science on the mad lady.

Mex wrote:
Farscry wrote:

WHAT THE f*ck.

Yeah, not much more to say here.

I'm hoping this is like those "Kids who play dungeons and dragons are MURDERERS!" news reports in the 80's and blown way out of proportion or something.

Ha! My mother didn't want me to play D&D because she heard it was devil worship.

I brought a DM Guide over and ran a tutorial scenario right in front of her to set her straight.

So does the chicken pox vaccine also then prevent you from getting shingles later in life?

I don't know, but there is a specific shingles vaccine. My mother has to get it.

momgamer wrote:

I don't know, but there is a specific shingles vaccine. My mother has to get it.

Yeah, it's supposedly only effective for senior citizens (my doctor's phrasing, not mine).

gregrampage wrote:

So does the chicken pox vaccine also then prevent you from getting shingles later in life?

It's supposed to, yeah.

Also messed up: postal workers that might have lupus, AIDS, or other immunossupressant conditions, or anyone using immunosuppressant drugs would be lethally vulnerable to infection.

Yeah. There's a whole boatload of reasons that mailing biohazards is a crime.

gregrampage wrote:
momgamer wrote:

I don't know, but there is a specific shingles vaccine. My mother has to get it.

Yeah, it's supposedly only effective for senior citizens (my doctor's phrasing, not mine).

Boo. I've had shingles twice despite never having a noticeable case of chicken pox as a kid. The first time I got it was one of the most painful experiences of my life. I assume most of the pain came from the inflammation it caused in my shoulder because it was a very mild case (only like 5-6 sores). I would gladly get a vaccine for it if I could to avoid getting it again.

I saw that this morning. So nuts.

Hypatian wrote:

What kind of lunatic responds to "This is a federal offense to intentionally mail a contagion." with "Tuck it inside a zip lock baggy and then put the baggy in the envelope Don't put anything identifying it as pox."?

Well, f*ck. I got all paranoid about sending a bottle of Jameson in the mail to my Secret Stan victim last year. I guess that won't be a problem this year.

gregrampage wrote:

So does the chicken pox vaccine also then prevent you from getting shingles later in life?

Yup, it's supposed to, which is why the vaccine is a far superior immunization method than intentional exposure.

I say this as a guy who had the pox as a kid pretty severely, and then shingles twice as an adult.

Farscry wrote:
gregrampage wrote:

So does the chicken pox vaccine also then prevent you from getting shingles later in life?

Yup, it's supposed to, which is why the vaccine is a far superior immunization method than intentional exposure.

I say this as a guy who had the pox as a kid pretty severely, and then shingles twice as an adult.

Good to know. Thanks.

We had a kid in my elementary school whose mother exposed him deliberately at a chicken pox party. (This was in the '60's.) He got a lesion on his heart and died. Talk about bad luck...

Well, back in the 60s, it made a lot of sense to try to expose kids to chickenpox as early as possible, because they didn't get as sick. Chickenpox is one of the rare diseases that affects adults much worse than children. So heart-lesion-kid's mom was playing the odds, and unfortunately came up short. Taken across the whole population, that was the safest way to handle chickenpox, even though individual cases sometimes ended up being lethal.

But, fer chrissake, with the vaccine being out now -- you'd have to be all kinds of stupid to risk that disease deliberately. Vaccines have very occasional side effects -- diseases have symptoms. Measles mom in particular upthread is being appallingly stupid, raised in a time when she doesn't fear disease the way she should.

She fears vaccines because the herd immunity CAUSED BY vaccines have convinced her that vaccines aren't necessary. Vaccination is so effective that people actually think it doesn't matter.

Malor wrote:

She fears vaccines because the herd immunity CAUSED BY vaccines have convinced her that vaccines aren't necessary. Vaccination is so effective that people actually think it doesn't matter.

I get the impression people fear vaccines because of the unfounded links to autism and "mental retardation" ala Michelle Bachmann.

You really think Bachmann's mental state was caused by vaccines? Hmmm. Interesting.

I get the impression people fear vaccines because of the unfounded links to autism and "mental retardation" ala Michelle Bachmann.

Heh, that might explain a lot about Bachmann.

More seriously: yes, that's the direct fear being raised. But the reason they don't instantly dismiss it as irrelevant is because they have no experience with how horrific the underlying diseases are. In the absence of a real threat, they overreact about a false one.

I find it sort of darkly amusing that vaccines are so effective that they're, in effect, responsible for the belief that vaccines aren't safe.

As a kid I read The Velveteen Rabbit and the Little House on the Prairie books... that was enough to make me decide I never wanted scarlet fever or diphtheria, and whine slightly less about getting my boosters.

I remember my mom telling me about German measles parties like they were ancient history (now you, lucky child, can just get a vaccine for it!). It's unbelievable to me that chicken pox is not the same way now.

I hate society.

I blame Jenny McCarthy.

clover wrote:

As a kid I read The Velveteen Rabbit and the Little House on the Prairie books... that was enough to make me decide I never wanted scarlet fever or diphtheria, and whine slightly less about getting my boosters.

I remember my mom telling me about German measles parties like they were ancient history (now you, lucky child, can just get a vaccine for it!). It's unbelievable to me that chicken pox is not the same way now.

I hate society.

It's a good thing that there's a children's book that counteracts these clearly pro-vaccination propaganda rags now:

http://www.cafemom.com/group/4388/fo...

IMAGE(http://shop.avn.org.au/product_images/q/411/cover-front-new-web__76233_zoom.jpg)

How I WISH this were an Onion article. No such luck.

I head about this on the Skeptic's Guide to the Universe. The amount of crazy in this confounds me. Kids die from the measles. They can leave you horribly scarred, too. How the hell are measles wonderful?

I can't wait for the next book in the series, Stephanie's Stupendous Syphilis.

ruhk wrote:

I can't wait for the next book in the series, Stephanie's Stupendous Syphilis.

No, the next book is "The New Conspiracy: Why Did My Government Let My Children Die of Measles?"

On one hand Melanie looks to be happy and carefree, it almost makes me wish that I had gotten the measles so that I could experience the child like glee she is so obviously experiencing.

On the other hand her face is horrifying looking, is that a side effect of the measles?