John Oliver Gets Surprisingly Personal During His Story on Vaccines


Oliver said on "Last Week Tonight" on Sunday.

Finally, there's a John Oliver video about vaccines that you can share with all those relatives whose Facebook status updates make you anxious for their children. He briefly addressed the suit at the beginning of his June 25 episode, but he wasn't able to discuss much with litigation underway, so he turned his attention to another threat to the health of Americans: skepticism about vaccines. And Donald Trump, "human megaphone that is the president of the United States", has only made matters worse by supporting an "alternative vaccine schedule".

It nearly sounds like a decent compromise to parents' fears, but Oliver was quick to point out it's really not.

"Opportunistic quacks writing books that fan the flames of people's unfounded fears don't cause a legitimate public health hazard except when they do".

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While Oliver understands why vaccines can creep people out ("pretty much every medical practice sounds terrifying when you break it down"), he spends the bulk of the segment breaking down all the false information about vaccines (like how there is no link between vaccines and autism) and ended the segment on a personal note. But I can also say that in the right hands and given vaccinations at an appropriate clip, you would be a fool as a parent not to protect your child from harmful diseases and conditions that can be eliminated with a vaccine. An appendectomy means removing one of your organs through stabbery. In this case, it's what Trump has said about vaccines. My point is the human body is a true carnival of horrors and frankly I'm embarrassed to have one.

Sun reported in May that a discredited theory that MMR vaccine triggers autism swept through Somali immigrant community in Minnesota. It's activists who want to compromise.

Oliver, himself the perpetually anxious dad of a prematurely-born son, knows that he's fighting against a whole lot of misinformation, outright quackery, and-most pernicious of all-the understandable terror of concerned, caring parents. Believe me, I'm someone who is literally scared of literally everything: "the dark, the light, heights, depths, confined spaces, wide-open spaces, strangers, intimacy, spiders, and a sudden and mysterious lack of spiders", Oliver said.

"If I can overcome the temptation to listen to the irrational shouting of my terrified lizard brain", he said, "then I believe that everyone can".