WE'VE FIGURED IT OUT
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4th year med student reporting in.
Had a rotation with a pediatrician where we ended up in the classic
encounter with an anti-vaccination parent.
This lady was a conspiracy theory magnet. She casually mentioned
everything from 9/11 to chemtrails. Of course she loved the idea of
the vaccine conspiracy as well, opting to not protect her one year old
to stick it to big pharma.
I relayed all of this to my attending after my exam (I would see the
patient first, gather history and do my exam to present to my
attending physician). He got this sort of lazy smirk on his face that
screamed “watch this”.
We go back into the exam room and we cover all of the important
bits of a well-child encounter. Growth charts, behavioral milestones,
And then we get to vaccines. She lists approximately 15 reasons
why vaccines are more dangerous than the disease they protect
against (lol) in addition to the various evils of the pharmaceutical
My attending listens quietly until she’s done with her soapbox (about
one eternity later), and then interjects with:
“Have you considered the possibility that anti-vaccine propaganda
could be an attempt by the Russians or the Chinese to weaken the
health of the United States population?”
In a moment of catastrophic cognitive dissonance, I swear I heard a
strange popping noise as her brain misfired. It actually broke her.
The allure of the increasingly ridiculous conspiracy theory was just
She ended up agreeing to a modified vaccine schedule. I was
flabbergasted. My attending just grinned at me in response. To this.
day I'm not sure the medical ethics of the situation are totally
palatable, but goddamn the result was amazing.
@NuclearTess fuck yeah
@NuclearTess This is a typical feel-good propaganda story; I suggest you take it with a grain of salt. Do you really believe the anti-vaxxer's delusion could be so easily corrected?
This exact same formula is used all the time, where a strawman bad guy is set up, an effective counter-argument offered, leaving the misguided fool schooled and enhancing the feeling of smug superiority of the listener.
Very commonly found in Christian propaganda stories against atheists/"evolutionists".
@NuclearTess god dayum
@NuclearTess except it's not a comspiracy, it's a fact:
Weaponized Health Communication: Twitter Bots and Russian Trolls Amplify the Vaccine Debate
@NuclearTess "strange popping noise as her brain misfired" is where I lost it
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