Bell and Shepard, who are parents to two daughters — Lincoln, 6, and 4-year-old Delta — both tweeted this week about the controversial proposed Senate Bill-276.
While the state requires children be vaccinated before attending public or private schools or daycares, the current law allows doctors to excuse a child from receiving one or more vaccinations for medical reasons. Lawmakers allege that some doctors are granting too many exemptions for insufficient reasons, endangering the health of others, and they want the California Department of Public Health to review exemptions for children who attend schools with high exemption rates and those written by doctors who frequently grant them.
Shepard gave his view.
I would have a hard time keeping my opinion to myself if someone was telling me their 8 month-old did not need a car seat. The same hard time I'm having currently with anti-vaxxers. #yourenotapediatrician #measeltov— dax shepard (@daxshepard) June 19, 2019
Bell later retweeted him and added her own take.
95% is the immunization threshold for preventing outbreaks in a community. Under #SB276, All medically valid exemptions will remain, so kids who are immunocompromised, who NEED to sit out, are protected. 1/1— Kristen Bell (@IMKristenBell) June 20, 2019
It will also work to safeguard those very kids by making oversight available in areas where the herd immunity falls below 95%. It will make it so Physicians won’t be able to charge for completing exemption forms. 2/2— Kristen Bell (@IMKristenBell) June 20, 2019
#Sb276 will ensure communities in CA are safe from vaccine-preventable disease. I want my kids and your kids to be safe and healthy at school. Let’s stop outbreaks and support science based public health policy. Join me at https://t.co/tOexnaMvzz to make your voice heard too.3/3— Kristen Bell (@IMKristenBell) June 20, 2019
While the Centers for Disease Control adamantly endorses vaccines, the comments on Bell’s post captured some of the criticism against them.
“The govt is taking control of our bodies. People are up in arms about the govt telling women they can’t have abortions but it’s ok for them to inject us with all this poison bc it makes them billions,” a commenter wrote.
Another replied, “Oh please. A woman having an abortion affects no one but herself but vaccine denialists can infect other people if they’re exposed to vaccine preventable disease & end up putting innocent people in the hospital, leave them with disabilities or even kill them.”
There was a lot of flat-out rejection of Bell’s statements, such as, “You popped out a kid, not a PhD.” An angrier reaction: “Won't be joining you and the hell it will. Say hi to Dax before you block me also. Cowards.”
Bell’s message was also called “disgraceful.” “Mothers are bawling right now while you're laughing and applauding,” one reader commented.
However, there was support of Bell’s words, too.
“Kristen, I could hug you right now. Thank you for saying this,” a commenter wrote.
Others replied, “Thank you so much! Vaccines are a medical miracle and have saved millions of lives!” and “What we owe to each other.”
Bell and Shepard’s stance on vaccines is nothing new. When their daughters were newborns, their friends could only hold them if they had been vaccinated.
"It's a very simple logic: I believe in trusting doctors, not know-it-alls,” the Good Place actress told The Hollywood Reporter in February 2015.
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