When it comes to distrust of government and opposition to mandatory vaccinations, there’s a new Tea Party in town.
Call it the Herbal Tea Party. Because its politics owe more to Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Bill Maher than to GOP leaders such as Chris Christie or Rand Paul.
Now, the latest outbreak of headlines has targeted Gov. Christie and Sen. Paul because each has said parents have some rights regarding mandatory vaccinations.
But the real resistance to basic vaccination — such as the classic mumps-measles-rubella shot — is coming from the New Age-y left.
Author Seth Mnookin put it this way: “I talked to a public health official and asked him what’s the best way to anticipate where there might be higher than normal rates of vaccine noncompliance, and he said take a map and put a pin wherever there’s a Whole Foods.”
Meanwhile, a reporter for The Washington Post’s Wonkblog describes anti-vaxxers as an “overprivileged group of rich people” who “overwhelmingly” voted for Obama.
They’re right. In conservative Mississippi, just 0.3 percent of kindergartners weren’t fully vaccinated. By contrast, in big blue California, that figure is 7.7 percent.