I chose to start a family; we wanted a child. When The Boy was born I vowed to myself that I would do everything in my power to protect him and keep him safe, if not forever, then certainly until he grew up into a happy and healthy adult who could care for himself and his own family.
And there in lies the crux of the matter.
I am able to do this; I am able to ensure that he is healthy, well-fed, vaccinated against illnesses which could otherwise kill him. I've read two blog-posts this week about vaccinations, one of them (Reluctant Housedad) was centred around receptionists' attitudes, and the other (Thinly Spread) is focused on a child's right to not die from a preventable illness.
Last year, I ranted and raved to a friend of mine when she was considering not having her child immunised with the MMR vaccine. Quite frankly I cannot understand why anyone would not have their child immunised against these three diseases. This friend wasn't sure if she should or not, but was unable to provide a valid reason why she shouldn't. I think she was afraid of saying "because of autism" and quite rightly so. There has never been a proven link between the MMR vaccine and autism, and the doctor that suggested it (for his own gain) has since been struck off. In 2009 more than 100 people (mostly children) contracted the measles virus in mid and west Wales. How many of those children hadn't been vaccinated? How many need not have suffered?
We live in a country where we are fortunate to have free healthcare on tap, and where our children are vaccinated against the world's deadliest diseases as a matter of course. It is our responsibility, as parents, to ensure that our helpless offspring are protected and able to grow into healthy and happy adults.
What about children who live in a country where there is no free healthcare? Where there is no little red book dutifully listing weight, height, head circumference and immunisations? What about them? Don't they have the same right as The Boy?
On June 13th, one day after The Boy's 2nd birthday, there is a Vaccine and Immunisation Conference in London. We have a chance to persuade world leaders to save 4 million lives in 4 hours. Twitter has been in the news a huge amount this week, all based around silly little superinjunctions. But what if we were able to use twitter, Facebook and our blogs for a more important message: that all children deserve the chance to actually grow up! Linked to the Save The Children campaign is an online petition which takes about 30 seconds to complete, please do so.
Now I have been tagged by the lovely Christine from Thinly Spread in a meme, started by Maggy at Red Ted Art and Josie at Sleep Is For The Week. This meme gets my contribution most definitely. The very simple idea of it is:
If you give a child a chance to grow, what will they be?
Now Christine reckons that the challenge is simple. I would like to point out to her that her youngest child is a lot older than nearly two like The Boy. However, she tagged me and I can't refuse because it's Christine and she is a goddess.
1) Get your child to either draw or craft a self-portrait of themselves now or in the future. Check out Maggy’s self-portrait post for some tips to get the littlies interested!
Now, I do not hold up much hope with The Boy's contribution. I suspect if he understood the question then he would say i-time-Pod tester (yes he means the iPod) or landscape gardener (he loves playing outdoors). I could waffle on about what I want him to be but that's not the point. So I had to get him to draw a picture of what he wants to be when he's older. This has proved interesting (he may have had some assistance).
I helped him to draw the circle and pointed at the areas where to draw the eyes, mouth and hair; he did the rest. I've no idea what he wants to be when he grows up and neither does he. He doesn't even know what 'in a minute' means, let alone in 20 years. However, it does show that he will have a well dodgy haircut.
2) Sign the Save the Children petition and then pass it onto your friends
Did that earlier in the week when Christine blogged about how she has been chosen to follow 'The Cold Trail', a route that a vaccine takes once it has left the city and reaches its destination in a rural community.
3) Write a blog post about it as soon as possible, including info about Save the Children and the petition. We want as many people linked up AND signed up the petition by Sunday 29th May 2011.
You're reading it.
4) Tag 8 fellow blogger friends
6) If you have time, visit each other posts and say hello!
So, I'm tagging:
The Blog Up North
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