News Jenny McCarthy is joining daytime’s The View was a bit surprising, given the number of fervent detractors the star has, and how closely linked her name is with an anti-vaccine faction.
Indeed, backlash was swift and vocal, arguing Jenny McCarthy’s mere presence on The View posed a danger to public health. The journal PLoS‘s blog rehashed some long ongoing research into the star, quoting some of the new age “woo” the star had spouted on her son Evan — the child she believes developed autism due to vaccines:
“I would not accept this negative label they were trying to put on my son and found out that he mirrored Indigo [child] characteristics… Once moms educate themselves, and find out what other mothers of Indigos do for behavior issues, we generally find the answers and solutions for everything.”
Blogger Seth Mnookin said first:
“… this is an extremely unfortunate move on ABC’s part: It’s giving the network’s imprimatur to someone who has worked, methodically and relentlessly, to undermine public health.”
A pediatrician opined separately:
[Jenny McCarthy] aligned herself with pseudoscience. She mistook ‘mommy instinct’ for fact. She partnered with the debunked Andrew Wakefield and has been an ardent spokesperson for Generation Rescue. She directed families away from life-saving vaccines and pointed them towards costly and unproven treatments like chelation for learning and behavioral challenges. In sum, she created fear.
“The View is entertainment, of course, but the public has a very difficult time deciphering the lines between science education, information, news, and entertainment.”
The New Yorker opines that those hoping McCarthy’s anti-vaccine views won’t make The View should be wary:
She is not subtle: McCarthy once essentially threatened the actress Amanda Peet, who has often spoken out about the obvious benefits of childhood vaccinations, by warning Peet that she had an angry mob on her side. When people disagree with her views on television, McCarthy has been known to refute scientific data by shouting ‘bullsh*t.’
Do you agree with the mag and others that Jenny McCarthy’s The View gig represents a “strike against reason and progress and hope?”