California Vaccine Bill Stalls in the Face of Determined Opposition

The Disneyland measles outbreak wasn't enough to overcome anti-vaccine forces.

Childhood Vaccine

I just returned from two days in the state capitol of Sacramento as part of an advocacy team on behalf of the California Medical Association. One of the biggest issues we focused our efforts on is the vaccine bill, SB277, which removes the personal belief exemption that currently exists. If it passes, children would need to be vaccinated to be able to attend public schools. Unfortunately, due to significant opposition, final voting on this bill has been delayed.

LA Times (“Vote delayed on California bill seeking to toughen vaccine mandate“):

A proposal that would require more children to be vaccinated in California ran into trouble Wednesday amid objections that it would force thousands of non-immunized students out of public schools.

The measure’s author, Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento), agreed to delay a vote on it after being warned by the Senate Education Committee chairwoman that it would not win the panel’s approval in its current form.

[…]

The senators say the bill, which would remove the “personal belief” exemption from the state’s vaccination requirement, would mean that students whose parents refuse to immunize them would be barred from public schools.

“The penalty for not immunizing their kids is you either have to home-school or take your kids out of public schools, and I don’t think that’s a solution to the problem,” [Carol] Liu said during the hearing, which lasted more than two hours as hundreds of parents and children testified.

The concern that many kids would be relegated to home-schooling is real, but only became a problem recently with the rise of the anti-vaccination movement. The reemergence of vaccine-preventable infectious diseases is a matter of concern to all medical practitioners everywhere, and the outbreak of measles in Disneyland was the impetus for the development of a bill to strengthen vaccination requirements in California.

Unfortunately, the bloc opposed to vaccines is a very vocal minority. Even during my short time in the capitol, the phones in the legislators’ offices were ringing off the hook with constituents calling to register their opposition to the bill. Lawmakers also told me of people energetically protesting and yelling in the streets outside their offices.

The arguments the protestors use range from expressions of personal freedom (“I’ll decide what to do to my kid”), concerns regarding side effects (“My friend’s child had a bad reaction”), to doubts about the effectiveness of vaccines in general (“I’ve gone unvaccinated myself without any issues”). So far, due to their outspoken nature, they’ve managed to cobble together a coalition of Republicans staunchly opposed to state overreach in private matters and swing district Democrats fearful of a public backlash. Interestingly, the lawmakers most opposed to the bill represent wealthy districts such as Orange County (the epicenter of the measles outbreak) and Marin County (where there is a new-age fascination with alternative medicine). Those familiar with California politics may recognize these two counties as being on polar opposites of the political spectrum. Apparently, wealthy people of all persuasions want to opt out of vaccines.

From my perspective, the mere fact that we are discussing this issue reflects how much vaccines have become victims of their own success. Elderly patients that I see are the most supportive of vaccines in general, in part because they recall how debilitating and prevalent diseases such as polio and measles were when they were growing up. Even a 1 in 10,000 risk of a reaction to the vaccine was acceptable to avoid a life of disability. In contrast, young moms today are largely unexposed to the consequences (and fear) of vaccine-preventable diseases. Instead, they are surrounded by vocal opposition in the form of celebrities, websites, message boards, and certain friends. Many become skeptical of vaccines just from hearing the same message so many times. My observation is that this trend came into vogue at the same time that alternative medicines, herbal supplements, and naturopathic medicines became popular.

The pro-vaccine bloc has unfortunately been weak in countering the movement. That is partly because there is no main proponent of vaccines. Pharmaceutical companies don’t make significant profits from vaccines, so they have no incentive to promote the product. Public health organizations are notoriously understaffed and have been preoccupied with more pressing issues recently (e.g. Ebola). Physician opinion is only heard in the medical office, and many are hesitant to challenge their patients who are staunchly opposed to vaccines.

As for the concern with personal freedom, there is a track record of governments restricting freedom when it is in the public good. Eminent domain is the best example of this. For vaccines, some people cannot receive them for medical reasons (e.g. immunosuppression) and rely on herd immunity to avoid being infected. Public health agencies estimate that the benefit of herd immunity starts to wane when community vaccine rates dip below 80-90%. That was the impetus for the original requirement of vaccines for public school enrollment. The current problem emerged only recently, when enough people started claiming personal belief exemptions to threaten the threshold of herd immunity effectiveness.

FILED UNDER: Health
Richard Guo
About Richard Guo
Richard Guo is an internal medicine physician who has long been interested in politics, economics, public health, and the intersection of technology and society. He holds degrees in electrical engineering and molecular cell biology from UC Berkeley as well as an M.D. from the University of Minnesota. He guest posted at OTB in 2015.

Comments

  1. gVOR08 says:

    A lot of this nonsense is new age, the low visibility of the threat, and having outsourced government to lobbyists. But a chunk of it is the forty years of constant drumbeat from Republicans that government is the problem, jack booted thugs, you did build that, science is a socialist conspiracy, the main stream press is biased, and experts can’t be trusted.

    And I’m failing to see the horror of not letting the kids into school. It seems to me a logical and necessary consequence of the parent’s inaction, easily rectified by the parents.

  2. stonetools says:

    Instead, they are surrounded by vocal opposition in the form of celebrities, websites, message boards, and certain friends. Many become skeptical of vaccines just from hearing the same message so many times. My

    Indeed. What did Goebbels say? ” A lie, repeated often enough, becomes true. ” Another problem? “We prefer to to believe what we prefer to be true”. People like to believe that there are simple, “natural ” solutions to complex health issues ( chiropractic can cure migraines, for example) that we would accept but for the obstructionism of Big Pharma. Finally, scientific truth is often counterintuitive(vaccination itself is an example of this).

    The pro-vaccine bloc has unfortunately been weak in countering the movement. That is partly because there is no main proponent of vaccines.

    This is a big problem all around. When truth doesn’t have a constituency, it tends to lose out to an untruth that has a well funded constituency. ( see, for example, Obamacare, the gun lobby, climate change-the list goes on). Vaccination has a small, well funded, vocal consistuency that proceeded virtually unopposed because the medical community did not feel that it was necessary to organise to advocate for the truth. All that was needed,they felt, was to state the truth once, and everyone would accept reality. That isn’t how it works these days ( if it ever worked that way.)

  3. gVOR08 says:

    Obama would not have gotten the ACA had he not gotten the insurance lobby on board. Maybe we should cut out all the middlemen in our political system and go straight to the chase. Next time CA pushes a vaccination bill, add a $5 a shot fee and pay it straight to a lobbying shop.

  4. James Joyner says:

    @gVOR08: Actually, no, as I document in my post on “The Anti-Vaccination Thing,” this is by no means a left-right, Republican-Democrat issue. Indeed, vaccination rates are higher in Alabama and Mississippi than in Maine and Vermont. Beyond that, it’s mostly not even about the government but a general, irrational fear of how vaccines work combined with a general innumeracy amongst humans on dealing with risk.

  5. Bob @ Youngstown says:

    Parents that are so adament in their anti-vaccine beliefs, thereby placing other’s children in jeopardy, sould not be permitted to participate in public schooling.

    If your not going to “follow the rules” , you should not be able to play the “game”. When did parents loose sight of that?

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Let them opt out… Of society. Nobody, and I mean nobody, has the right to unnecessarily endanger another person. As for these legislators, they need to either grow some numeracy themselves, or some balls. Do the math on the number of unvaccinated children, count their parents, divide by 2, and that is the approximate # of voters you will lose. Might be a problem around the edges in Orange and Marin counties, but for the rest of state? You p!ss off more voters than that farting in the bed.

  7. Mu says:

    Anti-vaccination ideology is mainly an affluent phenomenon. People who have jobs with family sick leave, good insurance and no issues to take care of a kid home from school for a couple weeks. The only way you get those people to change their mind is threatening their pocket books by making them responsible for any hospital expenses. If a week in the ICU with encephalitis from measles can cost them a quarter million, that whole ” we don’t need to care about anybody else” will quickly disappear.

  8. Loviatar says:

    @James Joyner:

    Actually, no, as I document in my post on “The Anti-Vaccination Thing,” this is by no means a left-right, Republican-Democrat issue.

    Stop BSing, thats not what @gVOR08 is saying. He is saying you and your party since Reagan (40+years) has made the Government the whipping boy for all real and imagined faults. You have conditioned a subset (27%) of the population to automatically reject all non-military governmental policies (“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help”). When that subset is joined with other nutjobs you’ll have a significant enough minority in place to derail even drastically needed governmental health policies.

  9. Gavrilo says:

    @Loviatar:

    You have conditioned a subset (27%) of the population to automatically reject all non-military governmental policies

    Did you really just cite a 10 year-old post on a blog called Kung Fu Monkey as your source? And, you’re accusing Joyner of BSing?

    Really?

  10. jd says:

    No worries. This is a self-correcting problem.

  11. al-Ameda says:

    And … We still have a significant number of those opposed to vaccination citing the long-disproved “vaccinations cause autism” study. People believe what they want to believe.

  12. Loviatar says:

    @Gavrilo:

    James is BSing because he took what @gVOR08 said

    But a chunk of it is the forty years of constant drumbeat from Republicans that government is the problem, jack booted thugs, you did build that, science is a socialist conspiracy, the main stream press is biased, and experts can’t be trusted.

    and attempted to twist it into a bland both sides do it comment. Its not, one side – Republicans – have spent 40+ years decrying the government and setting the stage for the anti-vaccination crowd.

    Additionally as a supposedly intelligent person with several advanced degrees and an expanded worldview James continues to support and articulate for ideas which have proven to not only be false but barren. When an intelligent person does that in my book they’re either a BSer or a liar. I’ve given him the benefit of the doubt and chose the less defaming descriptor.

    —-

    Also, nice attempted defense of James, its good to see the old Rove playbook in action, attack the messenger not the message.

    The new Republican mantra: Ideology and party before country.

  13. superdestroyer says:

    @Loviatar:

    I guess you have not noticed all of the anti-law enforcement (which is part of the government) coming from the left. If one watched MSNBC all day, one would believe that all police are corrupt, all police cannot be believed, and that the leading cause of death of black males between 18-40 is white law enforcement officers. To claim that only Republicans are anti-government is laughable.

  14. Gavrilo says:

    @Loviatar:

    Ah, yes. California–hotbed of anti-government conservatism–where Democrats can’t pass a vaccine mandate even though they contol the state legislature nearly 2-1 and have a Democratic governor. Got it.

  15. grumpy realist says:

    Dump them in Africa without vaccines for a few months. They’ll either change their minds or be dead. Good riddance.

  16. Loviatar says:

    Notice James’ bedfellows/defenders, Gavirilo and superdestroyer.

    If you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas. SMH

  17. Loviatar says:

    @Gavrilo:

    Ah, yes. California–hotbed of anti-government conservatism–where Democrats can’t pass a vaccine mandate even though they contol the state legislature nearly 2-1 and have a Democratic governor. Got it.

    You must have flunked out before they got to reading comprehension at the home school you attended, because I actually addressed that exact point in my initial comment.

    You have conditioned a subset (27%) of the population to automatically reject all non-military governmental policies (“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help”). When that subset is joined with other nutjobs you’ll have a significant enough minority in place to derail even drastically needed governmental health policies.

    The new Republican mantra: Ideology and party before country.

  18. @gVOR08:

    Yes, clearly this bill’s failure is a result of the stranglehold Republicans have on state government in California.

  19. Loviatar says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Republicans have conditioned a subset (27%) of the population to automatically reject all non-military governmental policies (“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help”). When that subset is joined with other nutjobs you’ll have a significant enough minority in place to derail even drastically needed governmental health policies.

  20. al-Ameda says:

    @superdestroyer:

    I guess you have not noticed all of the anti-law enforcement (which is part of the government) coming from the left.

    Yes, it’s appalling that many on the Right are happy with the fact that recently police officers have killed people while exercising poor field judgment.

  21. gVOR08 says:

    @Stormy Dragon: What I said was:

    A lot of this nonsense is new age, the low visibility of the threat, and having outsourced government to lobbyists. But a chunk of it is the forty years of constant drumbeat from Republicans…

    This is largely a pampered preppy thing, not left-right thing, so please note I didn’t say it was left-right. Do you think this flood of right wing propaganda hasn’t shifted the Overton Window right? Do you think it has no effect on center and left individuals. Libertarianism crosses left and right. The stereotype is counter-culture libertarians in Marin County and Tea Party libertarians in Orange. Do you seriously believe the constant exposure to anti-government, anti-expert propaganda from the right hasn’t had some effect on everybody?

  22. Gavrilo says:

    @Loviatar:

    Seriously, you need to give it up. Your “27% subset” comes from a 10 year-old blog post on a site called Kung Fu Monkey. A blog post, that as far as I can tell, consists of an imaginary lunch conversation in which one guy tells the other guy that Alan Keyes got 27% of the vote in the 2004 Illinois Senate race, therefore, 27% of the electorate is crazy. It’s not a factual statistic. It’s ridiculous!

  23. DrDaveT says:

    @Loviatar:

    Stop BSing, thats not what @gVOR08 is saying. He is saying […]

    Shorter Loviatar: Republican ideology doesn’t just hurt Republicans; it breaks America.

  24. DrDaveT says:

    @superdestroyer:

    I guess you have not noticed all of the anti-law enforcement (which is part of the government) coming from the left.

    Nope, I haven’t. Because there isn’t any.

    Only Republicans believe that the only possible solution to broken/dysfunctional government services is to eliminate them entirely. Democrats believe that the solution is to FIX them. Police services fall squarely into that category — essential services that are broken, and need to be fixed. It isn’t “anti-law enforcement” to want more better law enforcement.

  25. Ken says:

    @Mu: Anti-vaccination ideology is mainly an affluent phenomenon.

    This is incorrect. There hasn’t been a lot of research done on the demographics of anti-vaxxers, but what research there is shows no significant differences due to race, gender, income, education, parental status or political ideology

    The only demographic category where a significant difference in attitudes can be seen is age. This is touched on in the article, and is confirmed by recent research – 41% of people in the 18-29 demo think that parents should be able to decide whether or not their child gets vaccinated, compared to 20% of folks 65 or older

    The folks who’ve never someone in an iron lung, or forced to use crutches or a wheelchair their entire lives because of a crippling case of childhood polio are more than twice as likely to believe that parents should be allowed to decide. And while there’s no research to back it up, I have no doubt at all that this disparity will continue to grow until there is a serious outbreak

    This is why vaccination shouldn’t be discussed as a personal health issue, but a public safety issue

  26. PD Shaw says:

    @gVOR08: I’m not sure your holding the right stick here. Christian fundamentalistm has a strong streak of science skepticism, but the vaccination rate is generally much higher in the Deep South than the North and West. Mother Jones There appears to be more of a granola-cast to opposition. And in places like California it has gotten worse recently:

    In California, the percentage of kindergartners who get their full set of shots has been dropping since 2008, while the rate of personal-belief exemptions jumped by nearly a percentage point in that time. Given that the national average exemption rate is 1.8 percent, that’s a big increase. During a California outbreak of pertussis in 2010, more than 9,000 cases were reported, and 10 infants died. It was the worst outbreak of whooping cough in 60 years.

    The article also points out that the highest rates of whooping cough are in the Northern counties of Marin and Nevada. MoJones is pointing to the prevalence of personal belief exceptions, which are generally viewed as extensions of religious exemptions. Perhaps the difference here is that vaccine-skepticism is not a feature of major U.S. religions, and anti-modernistic tendencies in some of those religions still operate within a high framework of social conformity and authority values. The personal belief exceptions is a different entirely autonomous framework.

  27. superdestroyer says:

    @DrDaveT: Do you really think people like Coates are calling for a fix of the police or for such massive changes that law enforcement will barely exist in the U.S. in the future. Do you really think that the left is calling for a fix to the NSA or for it to be eliminate or changed so much that is does not really exist anymore? The left is always calling for a fix that actually just amounts for something to be eliminated.

    What is amazing is how much blacks to not trust the government but then call for massive expansion of regulations. I have always suspect that they think they are clever enough to avoid the regulation or just have no plans to comply anyway.

  28. @Loviatar:
    @gVOR08:

    Clearly this is all Emmanuel Goldstein’s doing. Damn The Brotherhood!

  29. Loviatar says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Almost coming in for same level of disgust and disdain are those who still pretend both sides are equal and all things are equivalent. I can understand James or Doug lying to themselves in order to justify their choices, however I can’t understand how those who putatively consider themselves to be independent/moderate/above all it all, can make that same claim.

    Is it so they can see themselves as contrarian or is that they really don’t understand how bad are the modern Republicans?

    Your routine is getting old, your routine has allowed those with no concern for social norms to abuse the political process, your routine has become a hindrance and a harm to the country. You and those like you have given cover to the Gavirlo and superdestroyer of the world to run wild because “both sides do it”. Until we get a rational and non-evil Republican party both sides don’t do it.

  30. Beelzebub says:

    Praise be to the Promoters of Disease and Death!
    Bring the little ones to me.
    See you in Hell!

  31. Loviatar says:

    @PD Shaw:

    Christian fundamentalistm has a strong streak of science skepticism, but the vaccination rate is generally much higher in the Deep South than the North and West.

    Again, you’re doing the classic blame shifting technique of focusing solely on the individual action so you can deny any cause and effect from your particular hobby horse (e.g. gun’s don’t drive the US’s abnormally high homicide/suicide rate its the individual’ fault).

    In this particular case, when we zoom out we see that one of the surrounding factors which have contributed to the anti-vaccination group’s strength is that there has been a 40+ year anti government campaign waged by the Republican party. This has given the anti-vaccination groups an ally (Republican politicians Chris Christie, Rand Paul) and a platform (Republican base) who typically wouldn’t join with them on this issue. It has in other words taken a fringe idea and given it legitimacy.

    I’ll repeat what I said upthread:

    Republicans have conditioned a subset (27%) of the population to automatically reject all non-military governmental policies (“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help”). When that subset is joined with other nutjobs you’ll have a significant enough minority in place to derail even drastically needed governmental health policies.

    I’ll also repeat what DrDaveT said since he put it so succinctly:

    Republican ideology doesn’t just hurt Republicans; it breaks America.

  32. grumpy realist says:

    @Ken: Yup. I’ve seen the problems with not having vaccines very personally (father had a bum leg due to polio, mother had difficulty carrying to term due to aftereffects of German measles, uncle was mentally disabled due to measles) and I think that people who don’t vaccinate their kids are absolute idiots.

  33. PJ says:

    @Gavrilo:

    Did you really just cite a 10 year-old post on a blog called Kung Fu Monkey as your source?

    You should watch The Librarians on TNT, it has been renewed for a second season. There’s also five seasons of Leverage.

  34. Grewgills says:

    @Loviatar:
    The Left fringe is right about as distrustful of science as the Right fringe. The anti-GMO, homeopathy loving new age folk are every bit as averse to scientific evidence as the anthropogenic climate change doesn’t exist crowd. The difference is that the anti-science Left fringe usually has no power. This is a rare exception to that rule aided by their alliance with the anti-science, drown the government in a bath tub Right fringe.

  35. PD Shaw says:

    @grumpy realist: My father got polio in his leg as well, and started to come down with post-polio-syndrome last year. Oddly, I didn’t get all of my polio vaccines, or at least when it came time to go to college and have our doctor sign that I had been given all the required vaccinations, there was no record of the last booster for polio. I think the doc just signed it anyway because it was too late to do any good and I’d never been out of North America.

    There appear to be far more parents that are rejecting certain vaccines or delaying the administration so their kids don’t have too many per visit. Chickenpox is most likely skipped because the parents had it (which I doubt would be true of polio).

  36. @Loviatar:

    Almost coming in for same level of disgust and disdain are those who still pretend both sides are equal and all things are equivalent.

    Equally disgusting is those unable to admit Democrats are anything less than perfect, preferring to conjur up shadowy conspiracies of Repulbicans using secret mind control powers to explain why a thoroughly Democratic state legilsature is unable to pass a bill.

    Pointing out Democratic responsibility for failure on a particular bill is not arguing “both sides are equal and all things are equivalent”.

  37. John425 says:

    @Loviatar: Actually, we Republicans just kind of liken BIG government to cockroaches. It’s not what they eat, it’s what they fall into and mess up.

  38. Loviatar says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Equally disgusting is those unable to admit Democrats are anything less than perfect,

    Please point out to me where I’ve ever said “Democrats are perfect”. In fact my description of the modern Democratic party is that they are stupid and corrupt. But I also say that I prefer the stupid and corrupt Democratic party to the evil and insane Republican party.

    —–

    preferring to conjur up shadowy conspiracies of Repulbicans using secret mind control powers to explain why a thoroughly Democratic state legilsature is unable to pass a bill.

    Again, point out where I’ve said anything about a shadowy conspiracy. Whats been said and repeated is that the fringe anti vaccination crowd has been aided by 40+ years of Republican anti-government propaganda. The fringe anti vaccination crowd has been abetted by Republican politicians looking to score points. The fringe anti vaccination crowd has been given legitimacy by the Republican party that controls 2/3 of the government.

    —-

    Pointing out Democratic responsibility for failure on a particular bill is not arguing “both sides are equal and all things are equivalent”.

    You have two men on either side of you, one with a 9mm glock pointed at your head about to squeeze the trigger and the other is pointing his finger at your head going bang, bang. They’re not the same, yet you would have us believe because sometime in the past both men only had their fingers that both men are still an equal danger. They are not, one man has moved significantly beyond the other in the danger posed and your refusal to admit that along with your constant harping on past equivalencies provides cover for the man with the gun.

  39. Loviatar says:

    @Grewgills:

    The difference is that the anti-science Left fringe usually has no power. This is a rare exception to that rule aided by their alliance with the anti-science, drown the government in a bath tub Right fringe.

    DING, DING, DING, we have a winner.

    This is what initially was being said by @gVOR08 in the first comment, but then we had a rush of “both sides do it” Republicans who were anxious to deflect away any blame from their party.

  40. @Loviatar:

    Anti-government propaganda isn’t just a Republican hobbyhorse. Remember the 60s counterculture, for example? Anti-establishment through it a component of both right wing populism and left wing populism.

  41. Just 'nutha' ig'rant cracker says:

    @superdestroyer: Well, I can’t speak for Dr. Dave, but my reading of work by Coates convinces me that he doesn’t want to live in a lawless dystopia with near non-existent law inforcement. I’m really sorry that you are so fearfull that you can’t recognize who is on your side.

  42. Just 'nutha' ig'rant cracker says:

    @Stormy Dragon: You had to go back fifty years for your counterexample? Really? Were you even alive then?

  43. Loviatar says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Remember the 60s counterculture, for example? Anti-establishment through it a component of both right wing populism and left wing populism.

    Yeah, well in 2014 the right wing populist is in control of both houses of Congress (247 seats in the House of Representatives and 54 seats in the Senate) and 5 votes in the Supreme Court. The left wing populist control what ???

    Dude this isn’t the 60s, it isn’t even the 70s, 80s or 90s, we’ve gone through the 00s. We’re in the teens of the 21st century and the two fringes are not the same, they’re not equivalent. The most that the left wing fringe can do is maybe ???, actually, they’ve been so marginalized, I can’t really think of anything they can do on their own. Now the right wing, whooo, thats another story, what have they not done, where should we start; Iraq War, Climate Change Denial, Citizens United, Voting Right restrictions, Terry Schivao, I could go on but you get the drift.

    Over the past 40+ years the right wing populist have gained power and pushed through their policy preferences while the left wing populist have been neutered and marginalized. If you can’t see difference between the two then there is nothing else I can say. SMH

  44. DrDaveT says:

    @grumpy realist:

    I think that people who don’t vaccinate their kids are absolute idiots sociopaths

    FTFY

  45. DrDaveT says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Do you really think people like Coates are calling for a fix of the police or for such massive changes that law enforcement will barely exist in the U.S. in the future.

    Seriously? I believe that everyone, including Coates, wants police “to protect and serve”. If you really can’t see a middle ground between what we have today and “law enforcement barely existing”, then… gosh, you must be a Republican.

  46. Tyrell says:

    “Very vocal minority”: such as things are now in this country, with activist judges and the ACLU working to thwart the will of the people. The American citizens work through the system to effect changes in majority votes. These actions are later overturned by judges in reaction to a small, misguided, vocal minority backed by the ACLU. Watch for this sort of thing to increase until everyone’s freedoms are gone.

  47. Matt says:

    @Tyrell: I for one am glad the ACLU is there willing to fight for the freedoms and rights of the minority when the “will of the people” are looking to stomp on them…

  48. ernieyeball says:

    …the ACLU working to thwart the will of the people.

    Which people Ty?

    ACLU Fights For Christian Denied TN Scholarship For Attending Worship Sevice During Mandatory Meeting

    ACLU Wins Right Of Christian to Read Bible in TN Public School

    ACLU of Colorado Supports Students Wearing Christian Symbols in the Colorado Springs School District

    ACLU-NJ Defends Christian Student’s Anti-Abortion Speech

    ACLU of Tennessee Defends Christian Students’ Right to Preach in Public Park

    ACLU of Virginia Defends Christian Students’ Right to Protest Against ACLU at Public School

    ACLU Defends Christian Students Wearing Anti-Islam Shirts to Florida Public School

    ACLU Fights For Christian Inmate’s Right to Preach

    ACLU of Northern California Fights Law that Got Quakers Fired Over Loyalty Oath

    ACLU Defends Christian Librarian Disciplined for Refusing to Promote Harry Potter

    ACLU Defends Right of Individual Christian to Display Nativity Scene on Public Property

    ACLU Defends Christians Protesting Gay Rights in Florida

    ACLU Champions Religious Freedom Of Mormon College Student

    ACLU Fights for Christian Church’s Mission to Feed the Poor

    ACLU Fights for Christmas Tree

    ACLU Files Suit to Protect Free Speech Rights of Christian Protesting Wal-Mart’s Policy on Gays

    ACLU of Georgia and Baptist Church File Religious Discrimination Lawsuit

    ACLU of Rhode Island Files Appeal on Behalf of Christian Prisoner Barred from Preaching at Religious Services

    ACLU of Michigan Defends Catholic Man Coerced to Convert to Pentecostal Faith in Drug Rehab Program

    ACLU of New Jersey Joins Lawsuit Supporting Second-Grader’s Right to Sing “Awesome God” at Talent Show

    After ACLU Intervention on Behalf of Christian Valedictorian, Michigan High School Agrees to Stop Censoring Religious Yearbook Entries

    ACLU Helps Free New Mexico Street Preacher From Prison

    ACLU of WA Wins Right of Christian Minister to Preach in Spokane Plaza

    ACLU Fights for Baptist Preacher in Illinois

    ACLU Defends Rights of Christian Group to Make Religious Protest at Funerals

    ACLU Backs Christian Abortion Protester in Ohio

    ACLU of Oregon Defends Religious Liberty Of Adventist School Boys Basketball Players

    ACLU Backs Missouri Nurse Penalized for Wearing Cross-Shaped Lapel Pin

    ACLU Defends Christian Street Preacher in Las Vegas

    ACLU Argues for Legal Recognition of Small Christian Church

    ACLU of MA Defends Students Punished for Distributing Candy Canes with Religious Messages

    ACLU of Nebraska Defends Church Facing Eviction by the City of Lincoln

    ACLU Defends Church’s Right to Run “Anti-Santa” Ads in Boston Subways

    ACLU Defends Inmate’s Access to Material from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

    Following Threat of ACLU of Virginia Lawsuit, Officials to Agree Not to Ban Baptisms in Public Parks

    ACLU Defends Families Fighting Removal Of Religious Symbols from Florida Cemetery

    ACLU Supports Right of Iowa Students to Distribute Christian Literature at School

    ACLU Argument In Support of the Display of a Christian Cross in a Public Forum

    ACLU Defends Christian Worker Required to Remove Bible from Desk at Government Job

    ACLU Defends Free Speech Rights of Christians And Others On Main Street Plaza

    ACLU Defends Prisoner’s Rosary Beads

    ACLU Defends Christian Group’s Anti-Abortion Ads On Phoenix Buses

    ACLU Pledges to Back Church in a Zoning Battle

    ACLU of PA Files Discrimination Lawsuit Over Denial of Zoning Permit for African American Baptist Church

    ACLU Offers To Represent Private Prayer on Public Property and

    ACLU Joins Falwell To Fight For Church Incorporation Rights

    This page is maintained by Allen Asch. You can find email contact info at that link if you would like to suggest additions to the list or to make other comments. This page was last updated on March 20, 2015.

    http://www.aclufightsforchristians.com

  49. Tyrell says:

    @ernieyeball: Thanks very much for the information. I will not criticize the ACLU any more.

  50. Monala says:

    @Grewgills: I wouldn’t say the anti-science left has no power. RFK Jr. is pretty well connected, and he’s an anti-vaxxer. Personally, I think those of us on the left should stop arguing the way we are in this thread. The anti-vax movement is one of the few in which “both sides do it” is actually true. Admitting that isn’t the same thing as conceding that the “both sides do it” meme is usually false.

  51. Monala says:

    @superdestroyer: From a recent article by Coates:

    There is of course another way. Was Walter Scott’s malfunctioning third-brake light really worth a police encounter? Should the state repeatedly incarcerate him for not paying child support? Do we really want people trained to fight crime dealing with someone who’s ceased taking medication? Does the presence of a gun really improve the chance of peacefully resolving a drug episode? In this sense, the police—and the idea of police reform—are a symptom of something larger. The idea that all social problems can, and should, be resolved by sheer power is not limited to the police. In Atlanta, a problem that began with the poor state of public schools has now ending by feeding more people into the maw of the carceral state.

    Making the point that every issue is not necessarily one best resolved by police is not the same thing as saying that police are unnecessary. The late ’80s/early ’90s saw a spike in crime related to the crack trade. That spike in violence dropped significantly in many cities over the next decade, not because of some massive police response, but because of a lot of creative interventions. I remember many of the efforts in the city of Boston: gun buy-back programs, midnight basketball leagues, gang mediation summits, street workers who built relationships with kids to help them make better choices, etc.

    And as for this:

    What is amazing is how much blacks to not trust the government but then call for massive expansion of regulations. I have always suspect that they think they are clever enough to avoid the regulation or just have no plans to comply anyway.

    The vast, vast majority of African-Americans are law-abiding, so f**k off, you racist piece of s**t.

  52. Monala says:

    Since my last comment ended up in moderation, I’m trying again:

    @superdestroyer: From a recent article by Coates:

    There is of course another way. Was Walter Scott’s malfunctioning third-brake light really worth a police encounter? Should the state repeatedly incarcerate him for not paying child support? Do we really want people trained to fight crime dealing with someone who’s ceased taking medication? Does the presence of a gun really improve the chance of peacefully resolving a drug episode? In this sense, the police—and the idea of police reform—are a symptom of something larger. The idea that all social problems can, and should, be resolved by sheer power is not limited to the police. In Atlanta, a problem that began with the poor state of public schools has now ending by feeding more people into the maw of the carceral state.

    Making the point that every issue is not necessarily one best resolved by police is not the same thing as saying that police are unnecessary. The late ’80s/early ’90s saw a spike in crime related to the crack trade. That spike in violence dropped significantly in many cities over the next decade, not because of some massive police response, but because of a lot of creative interventions. I remember many of the efforts in the city of Boston: gun buy-back programs, midnight basketball leagues, gang mediation summits, street workers who built relationships with kids to help them make better choices, etc.

    And as for this:

    What is amazing is how much blacks to not trust the government but then call for massive expansion of regulations. I have always suspect that they think they are clever enough to avoid the regulation or just have no plans to comply anyway.

    The vast, vast majority of African-Americans are law-abiding. I won’t repeat the rest of my response, since I think that’s what landed me in moderation.