Contrast this with your gut reaction to chicken pox. Many of us endured this in our childhood, and while it certainly wasn’t fun, outbreaks at school didn’t make news headlines and send people into mass hysteria.
While the two illnesses aren’t exactly the same, they have a lot more in common than you might think. In fact, measles used to be a pretty common medical issue that might have been annoying but certainly wasn’t life-threatening, much like chicken pox. It typically starts with a high fever and is marked by a cough, red eyes, a runny nose, and those tiny red spots you might already be familiar with that start at the head before spreading to cover the whole body. Like many common illnesses, it can lead to pneumonia and other serious problems in rare cases. But if the scientific evidence isn’t swaying enough for you, a look at how it was addressed in the pop culture of the time can be very telling.
The David Knight Show recently took a look at some video clips from the 1950s and 1960s illustrating how nonchalant people were about the illness at the time.
Take the example of an episode of The Donna Reed Show from the 1950s. “It’s not serious,” the doctor says upon diagnosing her son with measles. “If your boy takes it easy, he’ll be as good as new in a few days. He’s only got measles.” His father even says, “It’s kid stuff, they’ll laugh at us.”
The Flintstones was equally blasé about it in an episode from the 1960s. Fred comes home to find that his wife Wilma and her friend Betty had broken out in measles, preventing them from appearing in a TV bake-off.
“Don’t worry, Fred, measles don’t hurt,” his pal Barney says. The biggest concern of all involved is the women’s inability to appear in the bake-off; no one is worried that their lives are in jeopardy. In fact, Fred and Barney dress up as women and take their place in hopes of salvaging their chance at the bake-off’s $10,000 prize.
The Brady Bunch gave the measles a very laid-back treatment in 1969. “If you have to get sick, you sure can’t beat the measles,” Marcia says as the children enjoy staying home from school with the illness, while Mom and Dad talk about how happy they are all the kids have now had it.
Contrast that with the dramatic portrayal post-vaccine America gave the issue on Law & Order: SVU. In an episode entitled, “Granting Immunity” that first aired in 2015, an outbreak starts at a local high school, and it’s traced to a mother who runs a lifestyle website promoting herbal treatments. She falsified her son’s vaccination records out of concerns over autism and got other parents to do the same, and she finds herself in court as viewers hear a doctor talking about how deadly the disease is. She ends up being sentenced to three months in jail for reckless endangerment.
While measles can be quite contagious, research has shown that vaccinated people can also spread it to others and even contract it themselves, which is why many people don’t see any point in taking on the risks of the vaccine for such questionable benefits. Every day, it looks more and more like profits are the real culprit here.
People in older generations will tell you that when they found out kids in the neighborhood had measles, many parents would send their own children to play with them so they’d all get sick at once to get it over with and acquire immunity to it. Now people are scared to death and imagine it as being a death sentence. The truth is that people are just blindly accepting whatever hype the Big Pharma-funded mainstream media tries to stir up and not taking a moment to question what is really going on and look into the facts of this illness and the vaccine.
Sources for this article include: