Re: “Maine bill seeks to halt surge in vaccination avoidance” (Dec. 30):

The issue at hand spans two deep and complex subjects that each deserve attention:

Are vaccines the panacea of disease prevention that orthodox medicine and the government tout them to be?

 Do parents have the right to refuse them for their own children, without consulting a doctor?

The first point has been well researched and written about. The books “Dissolving Illusions,” by Suzanne Humphries, M.D., and “Immunization: The Reality Behind the Myth,” by Walene James, are two excellent sources to start with.

It is the second point, however, that all – pro-vaccine or not – need to pay attention to.

One’s individual freedom to make decisions for his or her children – be it schooling, religion or medical intervention – is a fundamental right.

Orthodox Western medicine is no less of a belief system and institution than religion or public schooling. Many alternative approaches to disease prevention and treatment are available, clinically verified and do so under a completely different paradigm of human health.

For example, homeoprophylaxis – disease prevention using homeopathic medicines – has been practiced in Cuba, Brazil and India in large-scale public health campaigns with undeniable success. For a timeline and history of homeoprophylaxis, see

Alternative medicines, diet and other holistic approaches are minimal or nonexistent in traditional medical education, yet the proposed Maine bill places the burden of oversight on physicians to “sign off” for parents who have chosen an alternative path.

Parents who refuse vaccines for their children have taken on the responsibility to educate themselves and choose accordingly. They have a right to do so.

Kelly Callahan

classical homeopath