John Oliver Tears Into the Rise of Anti-Vaxxers

”This atmosphere of confusion about vaccines has caused real problems.”

In the latest installment of Last Week Tonight, John Oliver discussed the rise of vaccine skeptics in America and the dangerous pieces of misinformation that have contributed to the anti-vaccine movement. 

“Despite their success, small groups are both skeptical and vocal about vaccines—which is nothing new,” Oliver said. “But these days their voice has been amplified by the human megaphone that is the president of the United States.”

He then played a clip of then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump supporting alternative vaccination schedules that spread out the periods between required inoculations. Despite the obvious reasons why one should avoid taking medical advice from President Trump, Oliver noted that the alternative schedule idea has gained popularity as some kind of compromise between science and skeptical parents.

“The problem is that it’s the middle ground between sense and nonsense,” he continued. “It’s like saying, ’It would be crazy to eat that entire bar of soap, so I’ll just eat half of it.'” 

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You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

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