Vaccination law conflicts with personal choice


California Senate Bill 277 requires vaccinations for school-aged children without regard to parents constitutional rights.

By Emil G. Claes, Staff Writer

To make it mandatory for all parents to vaccinate their children clearly violates the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment, which protects the fundamental rights of a parent to make decisions concerning the care, custody and control of their children.

On June 30, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 277, which requires all California schoolchildren to be fully vaccinated in order to attend public or private school, regardless of their parents’ personal or religious beliefs.

“The science is clear that vaccines dramatically protect children against a number of infectious and dangerous diseases,” Brown wrote in his signing message. “While it’s true that no medical intervention is without risk, the evidence shows that immunization powerfully benefits and protects the community.”

I fully support children getting their vaccination shots. Statistics have proven that they are effective and have just about rid our communities of many dangerous and deadly viruses. My problem with SB277 is that mandating immunizations is in direct opposition to the First Amendment which clearly states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Certain religions and belief systems promote alternative perspectives toward vaccination. Religious objections to vaccines are based generally on the ethical dilemmas associated with using human tissue cells to create vaccines, beliefs that the body is sacred and should not receive certain chemicals or tissues from animals, and should be healed by God or natural means.Improved living conditions, clean food and water, and reductions in poverty strengthen peoples overall health and the bodies natural immune system to help fight infectious diseases

The state of California should not be able to just implement new law and take away the people’s constitutional rights when at this present time there is no crisis that can possibly justify this action. Giving the state the power to make medical decisions in lieu parents in my opinion, goes against everything that this great nation stands for. Other means could be taken to encourage the immunizations of our children without taking away our constitutional rights as parents. This country was built on the principles in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and that is what makes this country unique- what scares me about SB277 is how it can lead to other laws which can put other rights in jeopardy.

Your thoughts?