Send A Message To PBS Frontline! What Frontline Covered Up In Their Biased Report On “The Vaccine War”

May 4, 2010
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Accomplished pediatrician, author, and teacher Dr. Jay Gordon has a commonsense approach to vaccinations– and an unwillingness to be coerced into either the “pro” or “anti” vaccine camps. PBS Frontline recently interviewed the noted pediatrician at length for a show called “The Vaccine War.” Although Dr. Gordon spent hours interviewing with Frontline, PBS producers omitted not only 100% of his interview but the entire “third camp” approach to vaccinations. It is obvious that PBS wanted to create a simple tabloid news piece with the all-knowing doctors on one side vs. crazed parents on the other.

This is disturbing. It is even more disturbing given the level of financial support provided to public television by drug and related companies. You won’t easily find information about drug company support for public television on the internet. But you can find some of it on a fundraising website run by WGBH, the public station that produces Frontline:

ANH-USA reprints Dr. Gordon’s letter to PBS Frontline in its entirety for your review, because it provides excellent information on whether to vaccinate your children, and it serves as a reminder that the media cannot be trusted to report accurately on this issue. PBS’ actions are inexcusable. Please join us in telling PBS Frontline that the show’s biased presentation on vaccines is totally unacceptable and that the show has an obligation at least to put Dr Gordon’s information on the website. Take action now.

Shame on PBS Frontline, ” The Vaccine War”, by Dr. Jay Gordon

“Last night, PBS aired a show called “The Vaccine War.” I was interviewed at great length and in great depth about vaccines and my point of view and expressed my ambivalence about the polarization of this issue and the need for more calm reasoned discussion about the number one question that new parents have. I told Kate McMahon, the co-producer of the show, that there was a large group of doctors and others who cannot be dismissed with the facile label “anti-vaccine” because we still give vaccines and see a place for them in the practice of medicine, but we do not agree with the current vaccine schedule nor the number of vaccines children receive all at one time.

A few days ago, Ms.McMahon emailed me to tell me that the decision had been made to omit my interview from the show. There would not be one word from me. She didn’t tell me that she had also omitted 100% of Dr. Robert Sears’ interview. And that any other comments from physicians supporting the parents on the show in their ambivalence about vaccines or their decision to refuse all vaccines would also be omitted.

She left this as a show with many doctors commenting very negatively, very frighteningly and often disdainfully and dismissively about vaccine “hesitation” as they called it.”

Below is my email response to Kate McMahon.

Dear Kate,

The “Frontline” show was disgraceful. You didn’t even have the courtesy to put my interview or any part of the two hours we spent taping on your web site.

You created a pseudo-documentary with a preconceived set of conclusions: “Irresponsible moms against science” was an easy takeaway from the show.

Did you happen to notice that Vanessa, the child critically ill with pertussis, was not intubated nor on a respirator in the ER? She had nasal “prongs” delivering oxygen. I’m sorry for her parents’ anxiety and very happy that she was cured of pertussis. But to use anecdotal reports like this as science is irresponsible and merely served the needs of the doctor you wanted to feature.

No one pursued Dr. Offit’s response about becoming rich from the vaccine he invented. He was allowed to slide right by that question without any follow up. Dr. Paul Offit did not go into vaccine research to get rich. He is a scientist motivated by his desire to help children. But his profiting tens of millions of dollars from the creation of this vaccine and the pursuit of sales of this and other vaccines is definitely not what he says it is. His many millions “don’t matter” he says. And you let it go.

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205 Responses to “Send A Message To PBS Frontline! What Frontline Covered Up In Their Biased Report On “The Vaccine War””

  1. Daryl Jackson says:

    I also have deep reservations towards the over usage not only of vaccines but antibiotics and fluoride as well. Both sides must be represented and the issue must be discussed, science always remains skeptical until something is proven. This piece shows only that PBS is biased and certainly has supported the pharmaceutical industry agenda.


  2. Ginnie says:

    The indoctrination vaccine special challenges your credibility on all issues. There are countless doctors and researchers that support the statements of the parents that are concerned with vaccine safety that you selectively aired. The fact that you wouldn’t air these doctors that you interviewed will lose your audience. Unless there is another compensatory special, you’ve lost another audience member.


  3. Sheldon Gilbert says:

    We are entitled to a fair presentation of the facts regarding vaccinations. For example mumps need not be part of the MMR vaccination. It is better to get chicken px when one is young than to get it later on inlfe. Is the measles vsaccine a matter of life and death?


  4. Susan Nelson says:

    I wish I had seen the show as I am a very firm believer that the MMR vaccine given as it is all at once cannot be tolerated by some babies and leads to autism. I have talked to several mothers who have told me the babies they took to their pediatricians for that particular shot were not the same babies they brought home. Too many parents who are worried about this vaccine are avoiding getting their children inoculated at all which puts those children and others they come in touch with at risk. The fact that PBS chose not to broadcast any of Dr. Jay Gordon’s approach to administering vaccines is shameful. What a disservice to all those who believe and trust PBS to give us honest and unbiased information! This is a problem that is not going away. Too many childrens’ lives have already been ruined by the administration of this vaccine. It HAS to be spaced out differently and transparency exhibited on the practice. No more obfuscation! No more babies suffering! It is totally disgusting that this is allowed to occur. Shame on Kate McMahon but more honestly, shame on you PBS for allowing this cover-up.


  5. Laura says:

    Dr. Gordon’s interview should have been written exactly as it occurred, not modified to show a biased and slanted –and inexact– opinion. I expect honesty from PBS! Otherwise these interviews should not be shown at all, or listed as a piece of fiction.


  6. Diane Wilson says:

    We the people demand that you (FRONTLINE) present Dr. Gordon’s interview accurately and
    honestly on your website. Distrust is hard to overcome and is harmful to your objectives.


  7. Andrea Meyer says:

    As a mother of a two-year-old, I have spent a lot of time researching this issue, and it is certainly more complex than the show suggests. Parents who question the overuse of vaccines in this country have a right to learn more, and they also have a right to be treated respectfully by the media, rather than a hysterical bag of nuts. Many of us are educated and informed and all of us love our kids and seek the safest course of action. For me, that meant selective and slow vaccinating, hand-picking those that I feel are most important for my son. That decision was made after a ton of reading and speaking to professionals. Give us some credit and please offer unbiased information to other parents out there who have not yet put in the time but still want to make informed decisions and do what’s right for their kids. So far, you just haven’t done your job.

    Thank you,
    Andrea Meyer
    Journalist, Writer, Mom


  8. Rev Colleen Brown says:

    Please take heed and sort through the more expansive information above. We need clarity and vigilance in all of these matters. You do such a great ob usually– lets fine tune this one.


  9. Vincent says:

    Your story was a giant coverup. Stop being corporate shills for big pharma, big food, big agribusiness and all big corporations. It seems there is not a big corporation you guys are not shills for. Stop being corporate shills.


  10. Vince says:

    Coverup. Stop being corporate shills for big pharma, big food, big agribusiness and all big corporations. Stop being corporate shills.


  11. Luc Gagnon says:

    I was greatly surprised to read that PBS would Knowinly conceal infromations that is that important


  12. Robert Paggen says:

    It appears that even PBS has been tainted by drug money. There are many, many experts that are warning the lack of safety and the ineffectiveness of most vaccines. If anyone is ignoring science it is media like PBS. Their desire of money over honesty is obvious to anyone paying attention and more and more people are paying attention.. I will along with others will help spread the word about slanted journalism such as PBS’s biased piece on vaccinations.. PBS has probably sold out to the drug companies at the price of our childrens health. Shame on PBS. How do you sleep at night.


  13. H J Dezotell says:

    Doctors Linus Pauling PhD, Erwin Stone PhD, Dr F R Klenner and many others have proven over and over that ascorbic acid (vitamin C) not only cures any and all virus infections, but also prevents them from getting infected. Anyone with adequate Ascorbic acid and other vital nutrients supplied to our bodies immune system, disease just does not happen. That includes cancer, heart disease, arthritis and almost all other diseases. Only people who limit or destroy their immune system get diseased. Sugars in all its forms, white flour, alcohol, tobacco, drugs, including pharmaceuticals and vaccines, most cooking and salad oils, junk food, sugar and chemical laden soft drinks, canned food is loaded with sugars and oils, the list goes on and on. Add to that, include pasteurization, micro wave and lack of exercise. Healthy bodies require two to five grams a day, to stay healthy. Those with poor diets require ten or more grams of ascorbic acid a day. Bodies sick and diseased need fifteen to sixty grams a day or more. To find out how much you require, is simple. Take two grams a day. Add two grams a day until you get a mild diarrhea. Your body is saturated with vitamin C. Back off and keep a loose stole. Listen to your Body, it knows what it needs. If you buy food at the supermarket, you will need all the nutrients you can afford, which will be much less than health insurance. Ascorbic acid is the most important nutrient your body requires. Every cell in your body needs and uses it. No cell is made or replaced without ascorbic acid. It is the key to good to our health. “Exercise” (oxygen), is a nutrient required in abundance, for the nutrient vitamin C to do its job. Internet:
    vitamin C to do its job


  14. Kam Amir says:

    I always relied on Front Line for fair, balance and accurate journalism. No more. Too bad.


  15. David Giantomasi says:

    Drugs are bad…mmmmkay.


  16. Andre' says:

    PBS Frontline, It is only fair that you reair the interview unbiased. The American public deserves honest journalism.


  17. Chatham H. Forbes Sr. says:

    There is no exaggerration in the preceding statement. Why would you wan to moderate an accurate comment?


  18. Chatham H. Forbes Sr. says:

    Surely it’s past time to stop the moneygrubbing hogwash that mainstream medicine keeps pumping out all year ’round! The trouble is that people think of their kindly private physician, so believe all this stuff that Big Pharma and political AMA types tirelessly produce. The truth is that many vaccines use unsafe components. That is hardly breaking news! Sad, but the flow of propaganda will never stop , because the flow of money to the organizations will never stop. So we just have to keep opposing them with the truth.


  19. laura tattoo says:

    thank you for starting this action! i felt sick and helpless watching the show, and then angry. thank you. i hope many others, who saw the show and knew it to be the “treacle” it is, will have a chance to see this letter and take action.


  20. Kristen Billings says:

    Your report was shameful and completely lacking in any objective reporting on the real issues surrounding vaccines. You should be ashamed of yourselves.


  21. David Witt says:

    I’ve always been supportive of PBS and have appreciated the Frontline series for many years, but I can see that the high standards PBS adhered to in the past have started to go out the window. In fact,
    I think the programming has been going downhill for some time now, so I’m actually not too surprised by this tabloid style approach. What I dislike most of all is the pandering to the dreaded lowest common denominator. I want shows that challenge me intellectually, that have an edge to them, as well as providing a balanced approach to a topic. Most television is just drivel these days.


  22. Jay Bulloch says:

    I always thought Frontline was one of the few journalistic shows with integrity. There is a growing body of evidence against vaccines and more importantly corruption within the FDA and pharmaceutical industry. It is a shame this is not being covered.


  23. mark kelley says:

    Dear PBS,

    Please be fair and unbiased and offer opposing views equal time. When I grew up it was common practice to expose children ‘to those with various diseases’, so as to build up naturally acquired immunity.
    I have not seen a doctor since 1973, and take no drugs, and am in better health than many of my fraternity brothers who regularly see MD’s.
    Please offer time to those with ‘other views.
    Thank you. mark kelley, Wilmington, NC


  24. Eugene O'Sullivan says:

    Anyone who thinks that giving a new born infant three or four or more vaccinations within hours
    of birth is not doing more harm than good has abandoned any notion of do no harm.
    Can anyone cite an independent study that shows that these vaccinations work?


  25. Mary says:

    Disgracefull- News should be told Straight up not changed.So what if it is the Truth, You get more done by telling it instead of covering or ommitting parts of it. People are fed up with Lies.If you can’t tell the Truth get into another line of Business.


  26. Joyce Howard says:


    You are not doing your viewers any favors by reporting things unfairly! Tell the story, both sides of the story and allow people and parents make up their own minds!

    It is not for you to judge but for you to REPORT…if you remember how.


  27. I have 2, TWO grandchildren who were stricken with autism. My daughter’s only 2 children. It’s a 24/7 life of sleepless nights, chaotic days with gastrointestinal disorders, food allergies, eating disorders, sensitivity issues, obsessive compulsive disorders, speech therapy, social behavior therapy, multiple prescription medications, etc. The bright side ? At 8 years old, my grandson is finally potty trained, by day, when reminded. The weight of stress on the lives of my daughter and her husband in their stalwart attempts to lead as normal a life as possible, with children who are not and never will be, is taking a toll on every aspect of life as they knew it -prior to their children’s 18 month vaccinations. PBS– the PUBLIC broadcasting network–funded by the PUBLIC to present for the PUBLIC, trusted, intelligent information–or maybe not ? Truths must be revealed about this growing epidemic, as heartbreaking and gut wrenching this topic is. A, In-Denial -Wishful-Thinking approach to the reality, for the sake of airing a more Warm-Fuzzy-Feel-Good show for the folks at home, is inexcusable and shameful.


  28. Joseph Romero says:

    I’ve alway counted on “Frontline” to provide accurate information on the subject of their programs. On hearing this report on how you left out a complete interview that presented a logical “middle of the road” approach to child vaccines, you’ve lost creditability. The program left a lot of parents with incorrect information which could affect the lives of many children. Not good.


  29. Dan Dickinson says:

    Shame on PBS. You used to pride yourself on discussing all sides of controversial issues. No more, now you toe the line of the companies that are your sponsors. Not a good idea if you really are “Public” as you like to point out all the time.


  30. Judth Labadie says:

    Our grandson is eight months old and his reaction to his first round of vaccinations was worrisome. We all noticed he was withdrawn, frequently cried and over-reacted to touch for several days afterward. But our daughter and son-in-law don’t question the pediatrician’s vaccination schedule. They’re nervous young parents, and my sense is they want to believe someone has all the answers. Dr. Gordon’s participation in the Frontline program certainly wouldn’t do that, but in my view would have been a greater service: showing why we need to stop polarizing around the vaccine issue and instead put more attention on what’s happening to our children.


  31. Deborah Sargeant says:

    I am very upset that PBS produced a slanted documentary .Not only do I expect a higher standard from publc television but to omit the views of Drs that you thought worthy of their opinion on this topic until YOU chose to edit these opinions out is suspect. Now every time I watch a PBS documentary I’ll consider it with the same cynicisim that I view FOX,ABC.CBS NBC & the rest of the corporatly owned networks. What a shame,shame on you.Mrs.Deorah Sargeant , South Amboy,N.J.


  32. Catherine Turley says:

    I expect PBS to give me both sides of any story, objectively. Dr. Jay Gordon was not represented honestly in The Vaccine Wars.


  33. Margery Oberheide says:

    As a devotee of PBS, NPR, BBC for my news and information sources, and an ardent follower of Frontline programming, I am disappointed to find in your coverage of vaccinations that your coverage was less than fair and decidedly biased against those who are concerned about the unprecedented barrage of live/dead virus’ etal being injected into those very young who have not developed full immunities and whose bodies metabolize everything differently than do much older children.

    Perhaps you will reevaluate your “discussion” of our present vaccination requirements. As the mother of a child who had an immediate and violent reaction to the first of the required three tetanus, diptheria, pertussin inoculations that resulted in his being hospitalized for over a week, I am well aware of how it feels to be one of the parents/children who fall under the statistics where it goes wrong.

    Fortunately, I had a holistic physician who I contacted. He told me to insist that the inoculations be given (the second and the third) WITHOUT the pertussin. This was in the 1980s. The subsequent vaccinations were given and no other reaction occurred. We were lucky, very lucky that we had an informed physician who was willing to question the “authoritativeness” of the medical establishment in requiring the vaccination schedule.

    Thank you,


  34. Greg says:

    It is unethical when you have a more complete picture of a very serious matter that has caused tragic and painful injury to tens of thousands of families and you fail to present it. You make a mockery of a victim. The families are twice victimized, first by a preventable disease, autism, and secondly humiliated by a “Fox News” type treatment of her valid position. Frontline should search for truth so that people can avoid serious problems for their loved ones and not be just a form of simpleminded entertainment.


  35. Dave Lowe says:

    You’re supposed to be unbiassed. You are not. You are bought-out and paid-off.


  36. Katrina says:

    I am tired of “All Media” protecting Corporate interests . instead of People’s interests and well being. This country needs to change it’s course immediately or down the road we are going to pay dearly and our children will pay moreso. America has turned into an “UGLY TWISTED PLACE ” the freedoms our ancestors fought and died for are quickly going down the toilet all for the corporation. When are people going to ” QUIT ” selling out for a buck? I am ashamed FRONTLINE. And I used to be a big avid watcher years ago because you used to do REAL JOURNALISM back in the day. This is why I do not allow Television in my house. I refuse to watch adulterated crap and immoral 24-7. I am happy to say that we still have other news sources to turn to that do not involve corporate pimps.


  37. Robert Black, O.D. says:

    The veracity of PBS is no longer at issue as it appears there isn’t any… is obvious that PBS has a preconceived notion in mind prior to interviews and anyone, regardless of stature and expertise, that does not fit that notion is cast aside so that differing opinions are never heard. I am ashamed that this comes from a public supported broadcasting system and will make sure that I do not support it until journalism ethics are re-established.


  38. cj holtman says:

    my 4 children are grown & we were very fortunate not to have irreversible damage done to them with vaccines. my question is; is there a difference in the contents of the vaccines used in the last 10 years & if so, does that not account for some of the increase in the rate of autism in the children receiving them or if they are the same as 10 years earlier could the scheduling of them be partly to blame?…
    as a very concerned grandparent of 6, the concerns of mandatory vaccinations have not been clearly researched. it’s a shame that PBS, which is one of my favorite sources of pertinent information played their cards to the drug companies. that is very unlike them, as a rule. people simply want answers. why must it be so incredibly difficult to get them?


  39. Michelle Farniok says:

    I whole heartedly agree with Dr. Gordon’s view in this letter. I saw this “Vaccine War” show on PBS and throughout it I literally felt my blood boiling! It did not address ONE question I have about vaccines and their effectiveness. Each day there are reports produced that indicate vaccines are NOT proving to be effective and need “boosters”. So vaccinated persons are getting the illnesses anyways? No where in this show was it said Vaccines are 100% effective nor do the Doctors say that. Parents then assume they get their children a shot and then they will be “immune”. Well natural immunity gives you 100% immunity for LIFE! I do believe there is a time and a place for SAFe vaccines, but NOT the way they are manufactured and given RIGHT NOW in this United States of America! We are no longer a nation led by it’s people! We are led by BIG CORPORATIONS! IT’s time the PEOPLE take a STAND!!!!! NOW!!! If all parents stopped and refused vaccines until they are “proven safe”, then big pharms would get their crap straight and do it! Money talks and that is all they listen to! So what are we waiting for? I’m already in that line!


  40. chris hammond says:

    Dear Sirs As a long time viewer of front line I was very disappointed in you vaccine segment. Please continue researching the subject at length. It is too important to be treated in this fashion. Dig In deep! Keep clawing for a fuller story. Balanced is different than milk and toast reporting. Chris Hammond


  41. Michael Morningstar says:

    I watched y;our show and was very dissappointed with the lack of fair and equal opportu;nity and slanted reporting. Having tracked this issue for many years it is obvious your portrayal was less than unbiased. Your coverage is oviously slanted toward the big drug companies and AMA which have the fear, intimidations, money and power factors working for them to buy whatever they want. I am saddened and disappointed to the point that I have lost much of my feelings of support for PBS. BTW I have noticed the same thing with some of the national public radio and stopped listening to most of it. PBS is being bought and paid for by the same big companies that are destroyeing the environment and the health and well being of individuals that fall victim to the over vaccinations. I only hope you will do a little more research to discover the truth about the abuse of unecessary childhod vaccinations and the problems they are causing.



    I watched the Frontline show and really felt that once again, PBS has taken the a pro chemical stand. Why? I believe sponsors. I used to think public television was a good impartial news reporting station…no longer…pro abortion…pro Democrates…and big money once again buys air time. I really would like to find a news station and programming showing the pros and cons fairly.
    You Ain’t It PBS.


  43. anne gross says:

    I was looking forward to your program. What a disappointment. PBS=particularly biased station!!!


  44. Dr Guy Devin says:

    This was so unfair. Are you kidding me. How is that every Twenty minutes a child is diagnosed with Autism?


  45. Jan Walls says:

    As a long-time member of public broadcasting and an avid fan of Frontline, I am disappointed to discover the bias in your report on the vaccine wars. Please rectify the deplorable situation and provide the “rest of the story”.


  46. Betty Beck says:

    Inexcusable, PBS, how you edited out Dr. Gordon’s truth about vaccinating children. You’ve broken a trust. Show Dr. Gordon’s interview accurately and honestly … at least on your website.


  47. Mark McLean says:

    Why did you publish only part of your interview with Dr. Jay Gordon? Because he was honest but did not agree with you, you only published what you wanted to publish. You are far from honest in your reporting the facts. You are very biased ie LIBERAL.
    Mark McLean


  48. Vicki Robbins RN, IBCLC says:

    Please present Dr. Gordon’s interview on Frontline’s website. As a nurse that works with moms and babies I see this his reasoned balanced thoughts as so refreshing. Many educated parents see through the medical establishment’s propaganda of “same ole” story when it comes to vaccinations as they see and hear a very different story in life with their own or their friends’ experiences. There are many stories to be heard when over 25% of children have some variety of neurological issues from autism to ADHD to learning disabilities, etc. It is obvious to anyone that researches any further than those who have a vested interest in selling vaccines, that there are many missing pieces and much more research that needs to be done to ensure the safety and health of our children is not harmed by over zealous vaccination. Until a reasoned balanced expert opinion is shown then parents feels they have no choice except to not vaccinate their children. They do not trust strong one sided “experts”
    that dismiss what parents see as their own truths. And I understand their frustration. “Money talks”, huh ???? Too bad PBS can’t be a little more balanced. Shame on them, They’ve lost my trust.


  49. Linda Miyoshi says:

    Did not appreciate your biased show on vaccinations, whatever you say, parents know the truth and damage they have caused these poor children, shame on you.


  50. Sybil A. Stock, MD says:

    Your one-sided report, “The Vaccine Wars” has done a huge disservice to anyone seeking unbiased information on this complex topic.


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