If there already weren’t enough reasons to love Jimmy Kimmel now there is one more. Last week on his late-night talk show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, the host weighed in on the ongoing debate as to whether people should vaccinate their children after a recent outbreak in the United States left 70 people with measles, only 6 of whom where previously vaccinated.
Taking a pro-vaccination stance, Kimmel shocked viewers when he took such a serious subject to air. Aimed at parents who are “more afraid of gluten than smallpox,” the monologue and witty PSA video encouraged all parents to vaccinate their children and, in failing to do so, should consider the consequences. Kimmel made sure he focused his argument around the fact that he would not expect people to take his guidance but he would expect for them to “take medical advice from almost every doctor in the world”.
He continued: “See the thing about doctors is that they didn’t learn about the human body from their friend’s Facebook page, they went to medical school where they studied all sorts of amazing things like how to prevent children from contracting horrible diseases.” Unrelenting, Kimmel questioned all those who consider themselves qualified to make these decisions. “If you are one of those people who knows more than doctors that’s fine, no vaccinations, but you’re not allowed to go to the doctor anymore… You should also let your kids smoke. Why wouldn’t you? The only people that say not to are doctors.”
Kimmel then presented an accompanying video message from doctors who captivated the audience with the pros of vaccination. “Remember that time you got polio?” a doctor asks, “No you don’t, because your parents got you f—ing vaccinated.”
The broadcast divided his huge audience with an overwhelming amount of viewers applauding Kimmel for using his public position to highlight the severity of the issue, yet anti-vaccination groups remained unconvinced. This is not the first time the Emmy-winning host has caused controversy and on Monday night took again to his show to continue his crusade despite the backlash.
Taking an interesting spin on one of his own segments Celebrities Read Mean Tweets, Kimmel looked back in jest at some of the unpleasant tweets he received during the week. Stating “Some people are demanding that I apologise, which of course, I will not… A lot of these groups are insisting that I present both sides of the argument and I’m not going to do that either because, well for the same reason that I wouldn’t present both sides if a group of people decided that [eating] pancakes make you gay. They don’t. There is no point in discussing it.”
A father himself, Kimmel has a pretty solid argument. Still, it is disheartening to know that in LA where his talk show is based, some schools have as many as 20 per cent of children unvaccinated, leaving all those who are too young to have shots exposed and at risk. So to all the parents out there who haven’t vaccinated your children yet, maybe you should reconsider. The outbreak is said to have originated at Disneyland – so much for being ‘The Happiest Place on Earth”.
To see Jimmy Kimmel’s original message for the Anti-Vaccine Movement click here
To see Jimmy Kimmel’s response to backlash click here
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