California lawmakers voted on Thursday to substantially limit vaccine exemptions for school children in the most populous U.S. state, an initiative prompted by last year’s measles outbreak at Disneyland that sickened more than 100 people.

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History repeats itself, especially in medicine.  


It is exactly 100 years since there was a significant outbreak of small pox in Niagara Falls, NY, a town that had just incorporated several years earlier.  


We have now we have gone full cycle on the reasons why Niagara Falls had such a memorable small pox outbreak–at least to some medical historians.  


The issue hand:  mothers decided not to vaccinate their children due to the anti-vaccination movement going on.  Animal Rights activists were its primary instigators.  Due to public pressure, New York allowed parents to decide on their own if theirs kids were to be vaccinated for a number of infectious diseases.  They called this ability to opt out–"compulsory."


Just a few years into this movement, 1914/5, a number of states had developed strong anti-vaccination movements, and large percentages of children began to attend school completely unvaccinated (85% to 100%).  In some towns, with strong religious leaders, in politics as well as the law, outbreaks ensued as a result of a lone infected person attending the same school  and coming down with the infection.  


A significant small pox outbreaks ensued in Niagara Falls due to this.


It is now 100 years later, and the Measles outbreaks of 2014 have just passed.  This outbreak started in California for much the same reason.  Once it took off, it quickly made its way back east to the same part of western NY where small pox made a brief stay.  


Ironically, both of these times we put Canada at risk, due to the same human behaviors in the U.S. and and the same economic geography and physical geography related reasons.  


So I wonder what Canada has to say about all of this!

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