Polio And The Good Of The Many

1507 Words7 Pages
For the Good of the Many In less than 20 years, worldwide cases of polio dropped from 350,000 in 125 countries down to just 2,000 infections in 17 countries (CDC, HHS)(Vaccine Programs…). Pertussis once claimed the lives of over 9,000 Americans every year. In the decade of the 2000s, it claimed only 181 lives. Just 50 years ago, Rubella caused the death or miscarriage of over 13,000 infants in this country. Another 20,000 were born blind, deaf, and/or mentally retarded. Tetanus, today in 2015, will kill 300,000 newborns and 30,000 mothers worldwide, mostly in developing counties. Yet virtually every Americans can remember their last tetanus booster shot, their last immunization. These are just a handful of examples of diseases which we have, in our modern times, pushed back to the brink of near extinction. Entire generations of Americans have grown up without seeing their childhood friends paralyzed by Polio, or blinded by Rubella, or lost entirely by any number of diseases. It is important to have context as to how many of our friends and neighbors, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters are living full and productive lives because of the scientific wonderment of immunization. It is also important to realize the very real, crippling, life altering reality that comes from a society not immunized, capable of being ripped apart by an onslaught of pestilence. In order to preserve the health and welfare of the American population, the federal government needs to mandate that
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