“How the Left is Leading the Country Toward the Land of Make-Believe” Speaker Makes Believe That Immigrants Spread Whooping Cough

Andrea TantarosWelcome, Andrea Tantaros! The conservative radio host is in town to present the Leadership Program of the Rockies' lunch keynote tomorrow, entitled "America, Let's Play Pretend: How the Left is Leading the Country Toward the Land of Make-Believe." 

Andrea's been practicing for her big speech by pretending that unvaccinated immigrants from Mexico and Latin America are responsible for recent outbreaks of pertussis (aka whooping cough) in the United States. On her 2/21 radio broadcast, Tantaros agrees with a caller who blames immigrants for "over 1000 cases" of whooping cough in the caller's allegedly previously pertussis-free county. (Fast forward to about 1:34:30 to hear the relevant segment.)

All those undocumented immigrants probably couldn't afford to be vaccinated, and are bringing germs into the country, getting responsible Americans sick and bringing back previously eradicated diseases. Makes perfect sense, if you're already a person who considers immigrants a gross, unwanted underclass. 

The problem is, it's, yes… make-believe. There's literally no scientific evidence for this theory. As it turns out, it's mostly our own fault, grownups who were immunized, but whose immunity has worn off over the years. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

It is often suggested that pertussis outbreaks can be attributed to people "importing" the disease when they come to the U.S. from other countries, but this is not the case. Prior to vaccination, there were upwards of 200,000 cases and 9,000 deaths from pertussis every year in the U.S. alone. While we have greatly reduced the burden of pertussis through vaccination, it was never eliminated. It is always present in our communities. Further, reduction in the burden of vaccine-preventable diseases, including pertussis, is one of the great successes of public health. Every country vaccinates children against pertussis, and in the Americas, every country has achieved pertussis vaccine coverage of 78 percent or higher. While all people should be vaccinated on time according to the recommended schedule, under-vaccination is not the cause of the current outbreaks…. we usually find that most pertussis occurs among vaccinated people. This does not mean that the vaccine doesn't work, it just means that most people are vaccinated but protection wears off.

And Mexican immigrants are likely more immune than people immunized as Americans:

Mexico does a great job vaccinating for pertussis. Until just a few years ago, Mexico was using the whole-cell vaccine,  which is probably more effective than the acellular vaccine that has been used in the U.S. since the 1990s.

Wow, that makes it kind of hard to blame Mexicans for whooping cough, doesn't it? What a shame for the people who like to–wait for it–play make-believe that the old "Dirty Mexican" stereotype is actually just a sensible, prudent reaction to germy immigrants.

But please, Ms. Tantaros, tell us more about how the left is leading the country toward the land of make-believe. Just give us a second, first. We need to use our hand sanitizer and pop some Airborne before you start talking. As a vaccinated American adult, you're a whole lot more likely to give us a pertussis infection than are most immigrants, and with a disease like whooping cough, you just can't be too careful.


About ProgressiveCowgirl

Colorado native, young professional, progressive cowgirl. 4-term FPE (aka masochist).

7 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. ElliotFladen says:

    The interesting thing here is that LPR is an organization that prides itself on teaching how to do better messaging to other conservatives and libertarians.  I'm a graduate of the program and enjoyed my time going through it.  However, having Tantaros as a keynote speaker just a few months after an election defeat where we may have gotten only 10% of the Hispanic vote in Colorado (see here: http://www.latinovote2012.com/app/ ) seems to be an unforced messaging error. 

    I still think though that many of the other speakers LPR has obtained for this event look outstanding.   

  2. davebarnes says:

    "While all people should be vaccinated on time according to the recommended schedule, under-vaccination is not the cause of the current outbreaks"


    Jenny McCarthy had no effect with her idiocy?

    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

      That was actually my first thought, too, but apparently the CDC is finding most cases of pertussis are in adults who were vaccinated as children. Very few people have had the recommended booster as adults, whereas 95%+ of children get at least some of their childhood shots. The thing about diseases like pertussis is that one infection in a previously immune adult can allow it to mutate and infect other vaccinated people with varying degrees of immunity years and years after vaccination.

      Yes, unvaccinated children are at a much higher risk, but there are also very few of them in all and most are protected by the fact that they interact primarily with vaccinated children. Adults who have lost immunity, on the other hand, are interacting mostly with other adults who were immunized as children and not boosted as adults, so they have a lot more exposure chances. Most outbreaks apparently are traced to adults who believed they were immune.

      After researching this post I will be getting the booster…

  3. allyncooper says:

    And here I thought they only spread marachi music, burritos, and low riders.

  4. MADCO says:

    hmm….does this mean that all those Colorado parents who opt their kids out of vaccines are hurting us all?



  5. bullshit! says:

    But wait! She is attractive and racially ambiguous!

    That means she can spew whatever hate filled shit she wants and righties lap it up.

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