PREFACE BY WILLIAM TEBB TO TESTIMONIES OF MEDICAL AUTHORITIES ON VACCINATION
THE opposition to compulsory vaccination is based mainly upon two propositions. First, that vaccination, which was claimed by JENNER and his immediate followers to afford immunity from small-pox for life, does not afford immunity either for life, or for any portion of life, and secondly, that the operation is always attended with danger, and is sometimes fatal. The first proposition formed the subject of the tract issued by the LONDON SOCIETY FOR THE ABOLITION OF COMPULSORY VACCINATION, entitled: " Testimonies of Medical Men on the Protection Supposed to be Afforded by Vaccination, from 1805 to 1881." These testimonies demonstrate that the failures of vaccination to protect were coincident with the introduction of the JENNERIAN rite, and it is no longer denied that numerous cases of small-pox were discovered amongst patients who had received virus from JENNERS own lancet. MR. WHITE has shewn in his "Story of a Great Delusion," published in the pages of the "Vaccination Inquirer and health Review," the subterfuges which were resorted to for concealing, denying, and explaining away these oft-recurring examples of post-vaccinal small-pox, JENNER himself giving the mot dordre to his professional brethren "to be slow in publishing such cases." The second proposition, that vaccination is the means of introducing serious disorders into the human system, is treated of in the following pages, which consist solely of evidence furnished by members of the profession. Some of these testimonies have been reluctantly tendered by believers in the protective efficacy of the operation. Others are avowals by heads of small-pox hospitals, medical practitioners at childrens hospitals, public vaccinators, medical officers of health, and general practitioners ; the admitted results of a large experience, which they could no longer conscientiously withhold. The alleged unanimity of the faculty concerning vaccination is often quoted as an invincible argument in its favour, but many of these testimonies (which are only a few out of hundreds of others of like character before us) prove that this claim is utterly opposed to the truth. By adroitly concealing their conflicting opinions from the public, the medical faculty gains the advantage of a unanimity which is apparent hut not real. Medical Journals as a rule refuse all criticism of orthodox theories, and the exclusion is most rigidly enforced against the opponents of the state-endowed preservative. Indeed, the conduct of the press on the vaccination question goes beyond prejudice and rises into anger.
When MR. HIBBERT, M.P. for Oldham, the under-secretary to the Local Government Board, stated that the reason for introducing the Government Bill in 1880, for abolishing cumulative penalties, was the occurrence of cases of syphilitic contamination following vaccination, the "Lancet" gravely charged the Government with playing into the hands of the anti-vaccinators. And there can be little doubt, that if a tenth part of the cases of injury and death caused by vaccination were disclosed by the faculty, the whole superstructure would crumble under the weight of public indignation. What the faculty conceal, with a view, to use the words of MR. MAY, Medical Officer of Health, (see page 34,) "to save vaccination from reproach," the parliamentary returns disclose and the following official figures shew the deadly results of this pernicious practice. The increase of infantile mortality from inoculable diseases, it will be seen, is concurrent with the more rigorous enforcement of the vaccination law.
Return No. 392, Sess. 2, 1880, made by the Registrar-General to the House of Commons, shewing the annual average death-rate of infants under one, per million of births, from five causes syphilis, scrofula tabes (internal scrofula), skin diseases, phlegmon (boils), and pyaemia (blood-poisoning), also from the causes of bronchitis and diarrhoea during the septemial periods under-mentioned.
|Average Annual Proportion (7 years) per Million of Births||Syphilis||Scrofula||Tabes Mesenterica||Skin Disease||Phlegmon & Pyoemia||Aggregate. 5 causes. Inoculable||Bronchitis||Diarrhoea||Two other causes apparently Vaccinal|
Prior to vaccine Legislation
Vaccination made Compulsory
Compulsion more stringent, /67
more legislation, /71
The last given (four years)
The annual average increase from the five causes which are directly inoculable, and may therefore be produced by vaccination, is 3627 per million of births and from the two indirect causes, 16209or 20000 together, concurrently with enforced vaccination under three months old. The inclusion of children above one year might multiply the result.
DR. CHARLES PIGEON, of Fourchambault, France, maintained at the Cologne International AntiVaccination Congress, that if doctors were made responsible for damages arising out of vaccination, they would refuse the risk, and the system would be speedily abandoned otherwise the profession would be financially bankrupt.
The cases of injury arising from this medical prescription are now so common, that every practitioner of experience has seen them, and none will venture to deny their possibility. Hence the cry all along the line for fresh supplies of "bovine virus," "calf lymph," or humanized virus with but few removes from the original heifer stock, whereby what SIR THOS. WATSON describes as the ugly blot," may be extinguished. The alleged cowpox in adult cattle, has always been a mystery to the farmer, and while its value has never been proved, its dangers have already been established. In opening the Vaccination Discussion at the Annual Meeting at Ryde, last August, the Chairman, MR. ERNEST HART, declared that a great change had come over the medical profession in respect to arm to arm vaccination. DR. WARLOMONT says, we must have a stock which, like Caesars wife, is above suspicion. The medical Opinions here collected, will show that the new demand is for an impossibility there never has been such a vaccine virus. The poison was always poisonous, and one proof of the risks attending vaccination is the invariable refusal of medical men to take the responsibility of the operation. They know the peril, and wisely decline the risk ; which they would accept, were it like taking a bath, or any other sanitary preservative against infection. A Railway Company which inadvertently injures or kills a passenger, and, under recent legislation, a manufacturer who inadvertently injures or kills an employee, incur legal liability. Why, then, should not the doctor who recommends an operation be held liable in like manner? The London College of Surgeons issued a report as early as 1806, before any genuine cowpox virus could have had time to be contaminated with the results of a nations vices, admitting bad consequences of vaccination in 66 cases of eruptions of the skin, and in 24 cases of inflammation of the arm, whereof 3 proved fatal. (See page 11.)
Many of the testimonies which follow, refer to the dangerous results of animal virus by those who have tested it, and there is therefore no alternative but to abandon the practice altogether, which, alike in its original form and in its latest fashionable transmutation, is productive only of evil.
In the meantime, although the laws whenever possible are rigidly enforced, and the consciences of thousands of upright and honest citizens are coerced, the number of intelligent and unbending recusants is daily on the increase. In the town of Leicester last year, there were 1229 prosecutions for non-vaccination, the popular instinct judiciously preferring the pains and penalties of the law without cow-pox, to the costly risks with it. In Keighley, according to the latest return issued by the Board of Guardians, no more than 12 1/2 per cent, of the births are vaccinated, and yet we are told there has only been one case of small-pox for 5 years. How long will the constituencies connive at injustice, by continuing to send Members to Parliament, who persistently shut their eyes to the facts, and ignore the plain teachings of 80 years of vaccinal suffering and wholesa1e distribution of useless and unmerited disease, based on no scientific fact, and contributing no share in tile lessening of tile national death rate?W. T. London, March 1882
[Medical Testimonies] [Tebb]