News came last week that Jenny McCarthy was to be one of the replacement co-hosts for ABC's The View, in light of the departures of Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck and the retirement of the show's creator and executive producer, Barbara Walters. McCarthy, the former Playboy Playmate is no stranger to controversy, and she has had her fair share of detractors. With her new job, however, the attention has shifted very quickly to her medically incorrect, loud views around her son's autism and the role vaccines had to play in his illness.
A Toronto based group, Voices for Vaccines has taken to Change.org to create a petition to try and get ABC to reverse their offer of employment to McCarthy based on comments such as, "If you ask 99.9 percent of parents who have children with autism if we'd rather have the measles versus autism, we'd sign up for the measles." Dangerous stuff.
And even though the basis for all her "knowledge" of autism was thoroughly debunked, McCarthy stands by her claims that vaccines such as MMR caused her son Evan to become autistic. Voices for Vaccines is concerned that McCarthy's non-scientific opinions will gain popularity again, and she will use the show as a way to start talking more about not vaccinating children. I think it's a fair concern, especially considering that the diseases we vaccinate against are still alive and well and can actually kill our children.
A few years ago, I seem to recall McCarthy being offered a show on Oprah's OWN but that was quickly put to rest, I think possibly because there were similar complaints from the public. As someone who believes strongly in peer reviewed research and science, it terrifies me that McCarthy has, time and time again, been given the forum to spew lies to people in a way that is so terrifying, so knee-jerk and so aggressively wrong based on one study that was not only debunked, but that the doctor who did the study was stripped of his credentials speaks volumes.
I'm not sure that this petition will end her job before it begins, but maybe people will stop tuning into The View come September. It will certainly be interesting to see if no-bullshit Whoopie has anything to say about her if she brings up the whole vaccine thing.
So, spill it! What do you think about Jenny McCarthy's new job as co-host of The View?