A woman’s Facebook post showing her Halloween costume, which mocks measles, has sparked a tense debate online about vaccines.
Heather Simpson shared a photo of herself with red spots all over her body with the caption, “shots fired.”
“Was trying to think of the least scary thing I could be for Halloween … so I became the measles,” she wrote.
Simpson’s snarky post was in response to another viral Halloween costume shared by the Facebook account of Autumn Dayss, who posted a picture of herself and a skeleton that was meant to take a dig at anti-vaxxers.
“Going to a costume party tonight as Karen and her non-vaccinated child,” Dayss wrote.
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Despite Simpson’s attempt to defend her anti-vaccine stance, many online were outraged and accused her of being misinformed.
“You know measles has killed people right?” one person commented, to which Simpson replied, “You do know strep and the common cold has, too, right?”
One commenter, claiming to be a medical professional, called her a “horrible person” and “possibly a sociopath.”
“Would you like to accompany me on my rounds?” the commenter replied. “You can tell our measles encephalitis and viral sepsis patients, the ones in comas and seizures and high fevers, that their suffering isn’t all that bad and is just being exaggerated by ‘Big Pharma’ and clueless quacks who ‘HaVeNt DoNe ThEiR rEsEaRch’ like me.
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In another post, Simpson posted a chart graph that she claimed showed that “the death rate from measles went to nearly 0 before the vaccine was even introduced.”
Despite doubling down for her anti-vaxxer stance, however, Simpson eventually apologized for the measles costume because it “wasn’t Christ-like.”
“It wasn’t meant to be a jab at babies who have died from the measles. Literally at all. Every single baby’s life matters. So the post really did not reflect my heart,” she wrote. “What I’m NOT sorry for, is that I don’t fear the measles.
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“My post, as rude as it may have been, is a call to re-examine what we live in fear of. Our fear of the measles has caused us to literally beg the government to take away our bodily autonomy,” she added. “I would not call you heartless and cruel if you were unafraid of the common cold even though it HAS killed people. Yet most called me heartless and cruel for not being afraid of the measles.
“Even still, the way I presented it was mean and insensitive and not how I want to portray my heart for Jesus, so I truly am sorry.”