Above is a picture of me at the age of five months, in December 1957. As you can see, I was fat and adorable.
A few months later, I was scrawny and miserable.
It was because the whooping cough (AKA pertussis). I almost died of it, because I became very emaciated and weak. I made it through; my body’s immune system apparently fought it off long enough to save me.
I was only six months old, so I don’t remember a thing about it, thank god, but it must have been pretty terrible. Imagine: you’re coughing continually, and you can’t keep down food or water, and you can’t sleep.
But – again, thank god – nowadays there is a vaccine.
But people like the idiotic Jenny McCarthy are telling you not to give your children the vaccine. It might make your children autistic! (This is ridiculous, of course. But a lot of people will believe a pretty (aging) blonde celebrity before they’ll believe their own doctor.)
A few years ago, one of my student assistants told me that, in her public health class, they’d played a recording of a child suffering from whooping cough. This, she said, was the greatest incentive they’d found to encourage parents to have their children vaccinated; once they’d heard the horrible reality, they were willing to tell Jenny McCarthy to go to hell.
Here, for those of you who are tough enough, is the sound of a child with pertussis. This was the caption on the sound clip: “[The patient] is three years old, and has a very severe case of the disease. She only coughs like this five or six times a day. She coughs until her lungs are empty of air and then you hear several whoops one after the other as she tries to take a breath in. She frequently finishes an attack with vomiting.”
If you have children, and they’re not vaccinated, go get them vaccinated right away.
Don’t make them go through what I went through.
And tell Jenny McCarthy to go to hell.