John Oliver took a poke at the anti-vaccine movement on Last Week Tonight. He argued that people seem to forget how well vaccines work, because people don’t bother posting Facebook updates like, “I didn’t get polio again today!” Now, while the vast majority of parents are making sure that their children get vaccinated on time, anti-vaxxers are getting louder — spurred on, in part, by President Trump — and the result is confusing parents.
According to Oliver, some parents are asking questions like, should you vaccinate? Should you eat the placenta? Should you let kids cry? “The answer is yes, no, and yes, because the more they cry now the more they’ll be prepared to watch This Is Us when they get older,” said Oliver.
After noting the rise in preventable diseases like measles, Oliver went through many of the alarm bells that anti-vaxxers like to ring, noting that there is absolutely no evidence that links the MMR vaccine to autism (and the only doctor to say there was is basically “the Lance Armstrong of doctors”) and noting that the FDA does not allow mercury of any kind in infant vaccines.
He also noted that 93% of pediatricians have been asked to spread out vaccines, despite the fact that the Center for Disease Control says spacing out vaccines puts children at risk for catching diseases, like measles, which according to Oliver, is “‘Happy’ by Pharrell infectious." Plus, while kids are getting more shots these days, those shots have fewer antigens and far fewer antigens than kids are exposed to on a daily basis, because as Oliver notes, “Children are f---ing disgusting.”
Oliver ended on a personal note, explaining that he is scared of everything (“the light, the dark, spiders, a sudden and mysterious lack of spiders”) and his son was born prematurely and despite all of that, he is still vaccinating his child on schedule.