Wednesday, February 29, 2012

N.Y. Threatens to Remove License of Anti-vaccine Attorney

Written by Raven Clabough

Patricia Finn (left), a vaccine rights attorney in New York, is being targeted by the Ninth Judicial District, which is threatening to strip her license to practice law and file criminal charges against her.

Finn has garnered a reputation for helping parents to protect their children from vaccines that are viewed as potentially dangerous, and also represents families of victims who have suffered adverse reactions to vaccinations. Among the anti-vaccine community Finn is touted as a hero, but those in favor of vaccinations view her as a villain.

According to Finn’s website, her law office “focuses on protecting clients’ First Amendment rights,” and that the attorneys are “especially dedicated to the rights of parents and individuals who have religious beliefs in conflict with mandated vaccines.” Those clients in particular require help to receive exemptions relating to school, immigration, adoption, and the workplace.

Finn has now come under the scrutiny of the NYS Ninth Judicial District Grievance Committee. She contends that the she has been harassed by the New York State Judiciary after insisting that parents have constitutional rights regarding vaccine decisions for their children, particularly after she represented health care workers in New York regarding the H1N1 (swine flu) mandatory vaccination policy. New York was the first state to require mandatory flu shots for healthcare workers.

On February 22, Finn delivered the keynote address at the Parental Rights rally in Charleston, West Virginia — held by parents in order to draw attention to their constitutional rights to protect their children from the medical/industrial complex's vaccination protocol.

West Virginia is one of two states that do not permit religious or philosophical exemption against vaccination; Mississippi is the other. Both states mandate that children receive multiple vaccines, including those against hepatitis B, in order to attend daycare, public, or private school.

A group called “We the Parents” hired Finn to represent them in their cause against the state of West Virginia to change that mandate. Finn has also recently been hired by the parents of Kaylynne Matten, the 7-year-old Vermont girl who died in December 2011 just four days after receiving the flu vaccine.

Following her appearance at the “We the Parents” rally in West Virginia, Finn was served with papers threatening to strip her of her license to practice law. One document describes her vaccine right advocacy as “threatening the public interest.”

Mike Adams of Natural News raises the point that if vaccine proponents are so confident in the ability of the vaccinations to offer absolute and total immunity against infectious diseases, then “how can an unvaccinated child ever threaten the health of a vaccinated child?”

In a letter outlining the various charges against her, Patricia Finn was told that she must relinquish her complete list of clients to the judiciary. Most people understand that what the court is asking of Finn is a clear violation of attorney/client privilege. Adams contends that the court is looking to “terrorize the parents who have sought legal help in opting out of dangerous vaccines.”

Finn’s problems with the New York Judiciary began with her “legal termination” by New York. She explains:

This morning I was served with papers to suspend my license to practice law. The charges are bogus and come on the heels of my address to the Parental Rights Rally in WV. I am also being ordered to disclose the names of people I represent who do not vaccinate… I refuse. I would go to jail first before I give out the names. Please contact all pro vaccine choice organizations and the media… know the truth! I call this harassment the Wakefield Effect!

The “Wakefield Effect” refers to the censorship of anyone who takes a stand against vaccinations. Dr. Andrew Wakefield was reportedly slandered by the British Medical Journal (BMJ) for his views on vaccinations and for his claims that they could lead to conditions such as autism and bowel disease. He has since filed a lawsuit against the British Medical Journal to clear his name.

Natural News reports:

The lawsuit cites several articles and editorials published in BMJ that include "false and defamatory allegations" about Dr. Wakefield and his work. "Secrets of the MMR [measles, mumps, rubella] scare: how the case against the MMR vaccine was fixed," an article written by journalist Brian Deer that was published in BMJ, and an accompanying editorial by Fiona Godlee, editor-in-chief of BMJ, are two of the defamatory writings named in the suit.

It’s worth noting that the last two complaints brought against Finn were filed sua sponte, meaning “on their own accord” — there is no former client or public complainant filing the charges. Instead, they are put forward by the New York Ninth Judicial District Grievance Committee itself.

Finn is not likely to be intimidated, it seems. She posted on her Facebook page: “If it takes my license to get attention to this issue, then so be it. I’ve done nothing wrong.”

Opponents of vaccinations claim that forced vaccines are a violation of constitutional rights.

Claudia Raymer, founder of the group We the People, stated, “We feel like it’s a constitutional issue.” She adds that vaccines also pose a moral dilemma, as some are developed with the use of aborted fetuses.

During the We the People rally, Raymer made the argument that some vaccines are wholly unnecessary, such as the one for chicken pox, which is not a deadly disease, and the one for Hepatitis B, a sexually-transmitted disease.

Raymer has a stake in the push to change West Virginia law, as her son developed a condition that she asserts is related to immunizations. When a doctor in Pittsburgh recommended that she receive a medical exemption for her son, she was denied by Marshall County officials in West Virginia. Raymer is now filing an injunction, but if the exemption is denied, she asserts her only remaining option will be to home-school her son.

"We're not asking for groundbreaking legislation," Raymer said. "We're asking for the rights just like other states [have]."

While advocates of vaccinations contend that the higher the percentage of vaccinated students, the less likely a school is for outbreaks of illnesses, opponents mention to possible connections between vaccines and conditions such as autism — pointing out that groups such as the Amish, who do not participate in vaccine programs, have zero reports of autism. Likewise, vaccines such as those which are said to prevent cervical cancer, have had reported negative effects such as brain damage.

Vaccine skeptics also call attention to the content of vaccines — such as mercury, formaldehyde, phenoxyethanol, and diploid cells from aborted fetal tissue — and the long-term effects of those items on the human body as prime reasons not to force vaccinations on the American people.

The battle over vaccines has been a contentious and long-standing one. According to Finn, the decision of the New York Judiciary to target her is a clear indication that the state of New York wishes to strip parents of their legal protections.


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