Conspiracy Theorist Candy
I’m blogging today from Rock Creek Stables, where my daughter is taking a riding lesson, which brings me to the latest manure from the medical conspiracy world. A new legal drama, “Eli Stone,” depicts an heroic lawyer, remorseful for all his years spent defending the evil pharmaceutical industry, doing a turn for the good guys by representing a woman who believes her son became autistic because of the mercury-containing preservative thimerosal (they call it “mercuritol”) in his vaccines. It is clearly impossible to drive a stake through the heart of this theory, which is mind candy to conspiracy lovers everywhere. Although science has buried it and the real-life courts don’t seem to be buying either, the idea of an evil government-drug company plot to poison a generation of kids is just too strong for celebrities to resist. Participant Productions has optioned David Kirby’s lurid 2006 book Evidence of Harm, which foisted the theory on thousands of parents of autistic kids to begin with. Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Don and Deirdre Imus, Donald Trump and neuroscientist (just kidding) Jennifer McCarthy are among the celebs who buy into the bad vaccines theory. Tracking the vaccine zeitgeist has grown tiresome; no matter how much good science is out there (here’s a recent example), this is the Pamela Anderson of conspiracy theories. It may be a bimbo, but it’s just too sexy to ignore.