by Barbara Loe Fisher
From flash to bang, it took the politically powerful corporate, medical trade and government lobbyists just six months this year to gut the human right to informed consent to medical risk taking and the civil right to a school education in California. They did it by enacting a new law (SB 277) signed by Governor Jerry Brown on June 29, 2015 that denies parents the legal right to file a personal belief exemption to vaccination for religious and conscientious beliefs so their children can attend school.
In order to sign the bill into law, Governor Brown had to abandon his long-standing legislative record as a champion of parental and religious rights and school education. NVIC called him out in a July 1, 2015 letter for failing to protect California families from segregation and discrimination based on vaccination and health care choices that parents make in the best interest of their minor children.
Brute Political Power Wielded by Government and Industry Fast Tracks Oppressive Bill Into Law
Consistently throughout the legislative process, the numbers of California citizens testifying in opposition to the oppressive bill vastly numbered those testifying in support. The ramming of SB 277 through the California legislature despite strong public opposition was an impressive demonstration of the brute power that can be wielded by the public-private partnership between government and industry dominating the U.S. health care system in the 21st century.
Disinformation about the measles outbreak at Disneylandand vaccine safety and effectiveness was used by mainstream media outlets to forward the forced vaccination agenda in the legislature in an attempt to neutralize the growing number of citizens standing up and defending their human and civil rights in our nation’s largest state. Even though thousands of men, women and children from all walks of life came again and again to Sacramento this year to attend public rallies and testify against SB 277 in Senate and Assembly committee hearings, the Senate voted 25 to 10 and the Assembly voted 46 to 30 to approve the legislation after contentious floor debates.