Few things annoy me more than people who make bad decisions based on bad information (or the lack thereof) — and we live in a world where misinformation is not only prevalent, but also easy to access, thanks to the internet. Case in point: parents who don’t have their kids vaccinated because they’ve “heard” something bad about vaccines. How do we convince them otherwise? Unfortunately, whatever we’re telling them now isn’t working.
That’s the conclusion of a new study done by my America Weekend guest, Professor Brendan Nyhan of Dartmouth College. He explained that the impact of some of the messaging is actually counterproductive, in that it causes more people to avoid vaccines. We’re talking small percentages here, but if the pattern keeps up, we may approach risking herd immunity, which would put us all at risk.