When it comes to letdowns, the anti-vaccination community is largely immune (pun intended). We’ve lost legislation bills; we’ve been defeated by “scientific experts,” we’ve struggled for years to receive rightful payouts via vaccine injury claims. We’ve been accosted at PTA meetings. Our kids have been sent home and quarantined. We’ve been bullied at the office for refusing a flu shot. We’ve been fired from our jobs for refusing a flu shot. We’ve been told that our children are ticking time bombs and ruthless savage killers.
And through it all, we’ve been ardent in our journey to seek out the truth and to live free. But it certainly doesn’t mean we haven’t been hurt. We have.
However, I must say, Mr. De Niro, that you ripped our souls from our throbbing chest more ruthlessly than anyone else has before. No, you didn’t pass a law and nor did you send my child home for quarantine, but tonight, it sure feels like what you did is much worse.
What did you do?
You got our hopes up. You gave us this 24-hour run that felt as though the real change was on the horizon. Robert De Niro, one of Hollywood’s most iconic leading men, refused to back down from vengeful pharmaceutical companies. Robert De Niro couldn’t be bothered with greed and cronyism. Robert De Niro was a man amongst men.
You gave us hope. You became one with every mother and father who ever struggled with vaccines, from those who reject them entirely to those who want to delay vaccine schedules. You became a voice for parental rights and liberty. You became an anti-fascist. A promoter of differing points of view.
Until you didn’t.
Until you went from THIS.
“Grace and I have a child with autism and we believe it is critical that all of the issues surrounding the causes of autism be openly discussed and examined. In the 15 years since the Tribeca Film Festival was founded, I have never asked for a film to be screened or gotten involved in the programming. However this is very personal to me and my family and I want there to be a discussion, which is why we will be screening VAXXED. I am not personally endorsing the film, nor am I anti-vaccination; I am only providing the opportunity for a conversation around the issue.”
“My intent in screening this film was to provide an opportunity for conversation around an issue that is deeply personal to me and my family. But after reviewing it over the past few days with the Tribeca Film Festival team and others from the scientific community, we do not believe it contributes to or furthers the discussion I had hoped for.
The Festival doesn’t seek to avoid or shy away from controversy. However, we have concerns with certain things in this film that we feel prevent us from presenting it in the Festival program. We have decided to remove it from our schedule.”
You led us down the path of freedom and liberty and then stabbed us in the heart when we thought we’d reached our final destination. And for that reason, you hurt us worse than most of the others. You see, we expect most of the politicians to desecrate the Constitution. We expect mainstream publications to act as slaves to pharmaceutical advertising revenue. We understand that Doctors often regurgitate pharmaceutical canned verbiage. But you, you were different. You came from this sincere place of empathy. You connected with us when you told us of your autistic child. You inspired us when you told us you wanted to provide an opportunity for conversation around the idea that vaccines might not be a good thing in all cases.
And then you folded. And you left us in no other position than to feel despair for the fact that we now have to see you just like the rest of them. The 24 hours was great, but it most certainly wasn’t worth the agony.