Flu off the handle…

I got my flu shot a few weeks ago, but the reaction from others always surprises me. For some, my decision to get a flu shot is the most ridiculous thing I have done all year (even readers of this blog – who know my silly life).

Let me break in here and talk about my flu shot. I have gotten a shot many years in a row. I always go to a drug store. Normally they take me into a side room. But at the store in Kearney they came to me. The lady opened the needle behind the counter and then walked around – asking me to unbutton my dress shirt right in the middle of the store. I can only imagine how Meg would have felt!! Then as she is coming, she was asked a question and had to sign a document. Still, with my exposed needle in hand…

Which made me wonder if I was about to catch another disease. I stared at the sheet I was given on the VERY rare risks of allergic reaction. And I suppose this feeling is why so many folks avoid vaccines (nytimes article). They begin to believe vaccines might actually cause more harm than good. In a society without epidemics, it is easy to forget the millions who died from measles (not to mention viruses irradiated by vaccine like polio and small pox). Rather than rational science folks believe conjured up threats of autism** or that I Am Legend is prophecy rather than fiction.

BUT, this is not a push to vaccinate your kids. You should. I would assume you are already giving them the majors. As to the flu shot, it is not as important unless you visit older folks in the hospital or their homes (which is why I get it).

Here is the question: why are we apt to trust the fringe over the majority? This happens well beyond vaccines. Take politics. We will believe the craziest things that land in our inbox. More to the point, this extends to the religious world. Rather than love our brother and sisters we buy into the fringe. We believe rumors against other denominations, sometime even against those in our own church.

Jumping back to vaccinations. These shots benefit the whole community. When I am vaccinated I protect not only myself – but those around me. And in turn they protect me. UNLESS we listen to the fringe. In that case the whole of society is put at risk. (Consider Measles. It was nearly irradiated in the states, but has made a resurgence in recent years because so many avoid vaccination.)

Back to Chandler. When we listen to the fringe, when we trust the forwards in our inbox – rumors – more than we trust one another, then the whole community is at risk. Disease will destroy us.

But if our focus in on the cure. If we unite with those who declare Him Lord. Then we will bring healing beyond Chandler to the whole land.

** The supposed link to autism and the MMR vaccine has been widely discredited. The doctor who first brought the study was found to falsify the records (he has even lost his license to practice medicine – wsj article).

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