ENG 1201 HN1
2 May 2014
Recommended Dose of Destruction
Everywhere you turn now there are signs and people pushing you toward an influenza vaccine. It seems that this particular vaccine has become a huge part of our media every year at the start of “flu season.” Most people give into this scare tactic media and go get this vaccine strictly off the recommendations with no questions asked. Now not only is it being highly recommended for the general public, but mandated for those working in the medical field. Can this possibly be a good idea though? To me getting something injected into my body without questioning it and a little research on it is totally ludicrous. In fact after just a bit of research I, myself, would never let anyone close to me with needle. I think that, for several reasons, that this should not be forced upon anyone, or even recommended.
To understand why this vaccine is a bad idea one should know what the influenza virus is and how it is different than other things that have been eradicated by vaccines. The flu virus is a coded genetic string of RNA, which is the virus itself. The RNA is incased in a capsule of proteins like most virus are. What makes the flu particularly strong is that the capsule is incased in a protein envelope that is also covered in certain protein spikes that aid in it being able to attach to the host cells (Leboffe, 635-639). “Flu viruses are constantly changing and mutating. These changes can happen slowly over time or suddenly. Antigenic drift is when these changes happen slowly over time. These changes happen often enough that your immune system can’t recognize the flu virus from year to year. Antigenic shift is when changes happen suddenly. This occurs when two different flu strains infect the same cell and combine. This may create a new flu subtype. Because people have little or no immunity to the new subtype, it can cause a very severe flu epidemic or pandemic” (how)....