Vaccines are liquids, nasal sprays, pills, and injections that an individual takes to teach the body’s immune system to identify and protect against specific infectious diseases. They provide an active acquired immunity to the body. Vaccines have always had a surrounding of controversy caused by uncertainty. People are hesitant to get vaccinations for themselves and their children due to concerns of the safety of the vaccines. IN previous decades, this uncertainty was overridden by the seriousness of illnesses such as the small pox. People now live in a world of zero small pox cases due to vaccines but yet the number of people uncertain of vaccines is still increasing. Research suggests that a different approach should be taken in the debate on vaccines to progress. An article “Medical Anthropologist Explores ’Vaccine Hesitancy’”- Audi Cornish’s Interview of Elisa Sobo and another article “Why the Controversy? Vaccines save Lives” by Adam Ruben discuss new approaches on the progress the vaccine debate. This document discusses the new approaches towards the debate such as thinking rationally on the benefits of vaccines that outweigh the risks and avoiding stereotyping those uncertain about vaccines as uninformed because they include highly-educated and well-read people.
First body section
The new approach to stalling debates should involve a civil discourse. A civil interaction allows individual to develop clarity on areas they disagree. This helps to better delineate the difference points and enable individuals to better outweigh the different angle points of the argument. It comprises of the values of mutual respect, compromise, and open-mindedness. Civil interactions allow necessitate participants to learn about all sides of the argument. This involves listening to different interpretations, weighing the information’s veracity critically, analysing the new alternative information, and being open to change the initial perceptions. However, altering of the initial perception should only be grounded on the reliability of the evidence and argument. Civility goes a long way in settling debates. It allows individuals to pay attentions to other people’s line of thought making then feel appreciated and valued. Acknowledging people’s concerns and being respectful reduces feelings of defensiveness and the need to win in the debate.
It is critical to approach topics from a broad range of perspectives to grasp the whole picture. By doing this, individuals can better find the root issues and develop better approaches and solutions that are all-inclusive of everyone’s feelings and needs. Successful conflict solving largely depends on an individual’s ability to understand the opposing affective and cognitive perspectives. It is critical that all parties understand how the viewpoint of the opposition. Failing to understand the opposing perspective limits the problem solving ability. Civility promotes identifying root causes of the differences hereby creating productive solutions for the debates.
Second Body section
Demonstration of respect
The first author demonstrate awareness on the stalling of vaccines debate. Sobo understands that the people uncertain of vaccines have a right to do so and appreciate their efforts of knowledge seeking. Sobo states that a significant number of the people uncertain of vaccines are not the “Looney tunes, crazy people wearing, you know, tin-foil hats and reading all these conspiracy theories and blogs on the internet….” (Sobo, pg 6)She acknowledges that there have been a significant amount of assumptions surrounding those against vaccines as being un-educated or ill-informed. Sobo mentions that this is not the case. People against vaccines include smart people, highly-educated, and also well-read people (Sobo, pg 6). Additionally, these people are ignorant according to Sobo because her studies found that they care deeply about their children. Sobo mentions that these population uncertain of vaccines was not always like that since the practice of hesitation evolved. They have similar concerns of their families as pro-vaccine populations. Considering this perspective helps identify areas of concern in the debate and how to address them.
Sobo’s respect and empathy is also portrayed in Ruben’s article. However, unlike Sobo, Ruben mentions his empathy and respect for populations that support vaccines. He states that he would understand why getting a vaccine is beneficial even if he was not a disease and vaccines specialist. He offers an example of small pox and how its vaccination has led to zero cases in the present day. He states “I’m not trying to dismiss anyone’s fears or concerns,” and gives an example of how flying might cause feeling s of unease but flights are 99.9 percent safe with millions flying safely every year (Ruben, pg 9). Ruben mentions how he considered the uncertainty of vaccines as being caused by information at first before noting a much deeper problem with complex emotional elements. Ruben first airs out his concern of vaccines not always being 100 percent risk-free. He acknowledges the concerns of parents who are not willing to risk their children to adverse effects of vaccinations. He mentions that these are very understandable concerns.
Sobo identifies that the current debate on vaccine sis stalling and that a new approach is required. The new approach she mentions should not try to identify a group as being wrong or right but rather shift the argument towards a productive conversation Sobo identifies the assumptions surrounding people against vaccines. She identifies that pro-vaccination population views opposers as being ill-informed, uneducated, and ignorant. The assumption proposes that people supporting vaccination are smarter and care more about their individual health and that of their families. Sobo found that this is not the case. People avoiding vaccinations are, as she states “really smart people, they’re highly, highly educated….” (Sobo, pg 6)She mentions that this population was also supper concerned for their children’s health and since they read a lot, they did a significant amount of researching and hence were better informed than the general population. She also mentions that a major reason for parents avoiding vaccines for their children is the anxiety that comes with giving a number of vaccines to their children.
Sobo’s findings are similar to Rubens. Ruben also recognizes the need for a new approach in the debate one that does not take a pro-con position. Like Sobo, Ruben understands the rationality of people opposing vaccines. Ruben mentions that it is not an issue of being ill-informed but rather, more complex emotional issues(Ruben, pg 8). The people avoiding vaccinations are aware of the benefits similar to supporters but go a step further in researching for any adverse effects. As such they are smart people, well-read, and highly educated as mentioned by Sobo. The concerns of those against vaccines are valid and not misinformed as assumptions portray. Ruben mentions that the parents against vaccines have valid concerns since even though side effects are rare, they are real and could have serious implications. Both Ruben and Sobo state that parents are afraid of being actively involved in harming their children because of the emotional trauma that would follow. Ruben mentions that A parent who vaccinates the child and the child develops adverse effects would not be able to forgive their selves as Ruben mentions. The common grounds highlight main issues needing urgent addressing on the debate
Sobo states that the new approaches towards the debate should not focus on the opposing side or the proposing side. The new conversation on vaccines should focus on shifting the debate from being whose and right and who’s wrong to airing out and trying to understand the concerns of each side. She describes a civil interaction and the numerous benefits it will have to progress the debate for better outcomes. She first mentions the demeaning common assumptions surrounding people who are against the vaccine and how they significantly affect the debate. She mentions that people form an identity for those who are against vaccines which becomes profiling based on small part of their characteristics which is wrong (Sobo, pg 7). The profiled people now have to deal with being attacked and not their views on vaccination which stalls the debate. Stereotyping derails the conversation and does not help in the debate. Sobo states that people should focus more on information rather than make assumptions of their opposition. She states that going forwards, the public health should consider profoundly the needs of vaccine-hesitant populations and develop practices that speak to their needs.
Ruben also shares similar concerns on the approach surrounding vaccines debates. He states that a new approach is required that does not supress the concerns of anti-vaccines populations. Ruben states that it is critical to respect the concerns of both sides and even more importantly to consider the overall benefits of vaccines. He states that people who are hesitant of getting a vaccine should not be disrespected for doing so but they should consider the well-being of those without vaccination options. He states that the new approach should consider the low risk and high benefit of vaccines(Ruben, pg 9). The new approaches will help settle the issue of being for or against vaccines
In conclusion, the two articles provide insightful information on the vaccine controversy. They identify common issues such as assumptions surrounding people who support vaccines as mentioned above. The two authors also state new approaches such as avoiding stereotypes, considering benefits of vaccinations and respecting the concerns of others. The new approaches will create a productive approach with positive outcomes.
“Medical Anthropologist Explores ‘Vaccine Hesitancy’” — Audi Cornish’s interview of Elisa Sobo
“Why the Controversy? Vaccines Save Lives” by Adam Ruben
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