Normally, these days I greet the month of October with a mixture of anticipation and dread. The anticipation stems from October’s position as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Now that somehow I’ve managed to have a variety of responsibilities with respect to how breast cancer is managed at our cancer institute, suddenly I find that I’m sometimes called upon to do media appearances, and Breast Cancer Awareness Month is one time we can use to get our message out about breast health and breast cancer detection and treatment, not to mention to highlight for the local media some of the cool research that goes on here. Every year (or so it would seem) the quacks, cranks, and haters of science-based medicine come out of the woodwork to use October as an excuse either to attack “conventional” medicine (particularly anything related to breast cancer), promote quackery, or both.
In 2014, here we go again.
It would appear that in the wake of their ridiculous #CDCwhistleblower campaign, antivaccinationists have decided to infest Twitter in a big way. This time around, they appear to have foolishly decided once again to try to co-opt with Breast Cancer Awareness Month by trying to co-opt October as “Vaccine Injury Awareness Month” with their usual pseudoscience, persecution complex. It’s something that appears to have started in 2010 and has been resurrected every year since then. This year, antivaccinationists are trying to deluge Twitter with ridiculous hashtags such as #CDCwhistleblower, #hearthiswell, and #VaxTruth. For example:
Unfortunately, it’s just as ridiculous now as it was then. Still, it might be fun to tweak antivaccinationists during their Twitter tempest in a teacup with some actual science. Or not. Either way, I’m guessing this latest Twitter tantrum will work about as well as previous antivaccine Twitter tantrums, as in not at all.