Debunking The Polio Vaccine / AIDS Link

Some conspiracies are pernicious. Rather than let the beliefs simply stand on their own, their proponents manufacture new, supplemental conspiracies to add seeming validity to the arguments at the core of the theory.

An example of this is the Polio / AIDS theory. This is an offshoot of the “vaccines cause autism” theory, and while it does nothing to promote the baseline of that view, it provides further “proof” that vaccines are evil.

The basics of the theory are such:

It is believed that a contaminated batch of polio vaccine was distributed in Africa in the 1950s, which transmitted the first strains of the disease to humans. The immunodeficiency virus then spent time spreading before finally coming to public awareness almost thirty years later.

The belief is bolstered by some circumstantial evidence: some chimpanzees were used in the initial trial which carried an HIV-style virus, and the origins of AIDS were tracked to the locality of the polio trials.

This evidence was enough to cause some respected researchers to posit the possibility of the vaccination trial accidentally causing AIDS to jump to humans. From that, others immediately took up the banner by declaring it as a certainty.

There are two major hurdles to accepting the theory as even remotely possible, however:

  1. The chimpanzees used in the trial were infected with an HIV-style virus… which is to say, a virus. But the virus, studied, bears little similarity to HIV. It transmits similarly but has no similar effects beyond the immune system attacks, as reported in The Scientist magazine. This is akin to saying that a cold is the same thing as the measles because they both transmit easily through similar vectors.
  2. Researchers have determined that the earliest known human cases of HIV appeared roughly thirty years prior to the polio vaccinations, as explained in the journal Nature.

The reasons for the popularity of this myth are twofold. First, the reason common to nearly all conspiracy theories; that those “knowing the truth” are somehow special because of the unique knowledge they possess. Second, it demonstrates that vaccines are evil, and therefore bolsters the belief of many that they can be heroic by simply refusing to take an action.

As covered in the precious vaccine thread, there are some people who have severe allergic reactions to vaccines. They are not completely safe. The people who have adverse reactions are rare, however, and it’s not AIDS or autism which are concerns.

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About AlienMotives 1991 Articles
Ex-Navy Reactor Operator turned bookseller. Father of an amazing girl and husband to an amazing wife. Tired of willful political blindness, but never tired of politics. Hopeful for the future.