Robert De Niro Enters the Vaccine Safety Battle

By Dr. Mercola

Can vaccines trigger autism? This is the topic of the film “Vaxxed”, which was originally scheduled to be shown at the Tribeca Film Festival, but was pulled from the lineup on March 26.

The decision has created so much blowback and publicity that whoever was pushing for its removal may have cause to regret it because it has given the film a much higher public profile than if it had simply been screened as scheduled.

The Tribeca Film Festival was started by Oscar-winning actor Robert De Niro and producer Jane Rosenthal in 2001 in an effort to revitalize lower Manhattan after the 9/11 attacks.

Strange as it may seem, according to Rosenthal, it was primarily other filmmakers that were threatening to pull their films out of the prestigious festival unless “Vaxxed” was removed. De Niro says he will look into who lodged the complaints, and why.

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De Niro Brings Vaccine Safety Into the Limelight

While De Niro felt pressured to pull the film, he makes it clear it’s a film people need to see, noting there are many issues relating to the way the CDC evaluates and monitors the safety of vaccines that are not being spoken about openly — and they should.1

De Niro has an 18-year-old son who is autistic, and he admits he has concerns about vaccines and autism. “There is a link,” he says, and draws a parallel between people who have severe, even fatal, reactions to penicillin. De Niro points out that the same might be true for some people who react to vaccines.

He also makes the point that everyone really should have the choice whether or not to vaccinate their children.

Interestingly, while De Niro called for more discussion and more research into the safety of vaccines, Rosenthal appeared openly uncomfortable about the entire topic when she and De Niro were originally interviewed on NBC’s “Today Show” on Apr. 132 and even more uncomfortable when she and De Niro appeared in a follow-up interview on the “Today Show” on Apr. 18.3

One of the potential reasons for her discomfort could be related to the fact that her ex-husband, Craig Hatkoff, is a board member of the NYU Child Study Center, which is involved with the research and treatment of child psychiatric disorders. As noted by journalist Jon Rappoport:4

“The NYU Center would never, ever, in a million years imagine that vaccines could cause autism … A film that claims to show a link between the MMR vaccine and autism would be a hideous affront to the NYU Child Study Center, where Craig Hatkoff, co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, sits on the Board.”

Rosenthal’s sister, Pamela Rollins, Ph.D. is also deeply involved in the field of autism, and is a member of the Texas Council for Autism.5 The conventional view is that whatever autism is caused by, it’s NOT caused by a medical intervention like vaccines, and to suggest that it might be related simply isn’t permitted.

Organic Consumers Association (OCA) has created a petition to encourage Robert De Niro to continue seeking the truth about vaccines. Click the button below to sign the petition.

Vaccine Shills Coming Out of the Woodwork

A number of industry shills have already written derogatory articles about “Vaxxed.” This includes Dr. Paul Offit, whose article6 places the focus squarely on Andrew Wakefield, the director of the film.

Taking aim, Offit makes sure Wakefield’s character and qualifications are brought into question in order to try to discredit the information in the film.

No surprises there, as character assassination is part of Offit’s modus operandi — regardless of whether he’s got his facts straight or not. Offit does not have a good track record for being accurate in his assessment of the facts.

In at least one case, a newspaper was forced to issue a correction, noting that Offit’s disparaging statements about CBS News Investigative Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson (who had written a report critical of vaccines) were actually found to be wholly unsubstantiated and/or false.7

The fact of the matter is, anytime you hear or read terms like debunked, discredited, quack, conspiracy theorist, the science is settled, the debate is settled, the scientific consensus agrees, or the poison is in the dose, you can be more or less assured you’re reading agenda-driven propaganda.

The same can be said for anyone relying on Offit as the sole voice of what is true and what is not true about vaccine safety.

There are many respectable researchers out there who are well-qualified to speak about vaccine science, and I have interviewed a number of them. And contrary to what Offit proclaims, the science is far from conclusive when it comes to safety.

Science on Vaccines Is Nowhere Near Settled

Science has shown that when you overuse antibiotics, antibiotic resistance develops. So what is the science of mass vaccination with multiple vaccines? The truth is the science is nowhere near “settled” when it comes to the potential long-term risks of mass vaccination.

Moreover, vaccines are clearly not as effective as previously thought. For example, recurring outbreaks of whooping cough (pertussis) have been linked to vaccine failure, not lack of vaccination. Most recently, 56 people contracted a whooping cough in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania and every single one of them was vaccinated.8

If you’re like most people, you probably thought vaccines the government recommends have been scientifically proven effective.

But every year we hear about many vaccines besides a whooping cough failing, including mumps, measles, and chicken pox — with a majority of the outbreaks again being among fully vaccinated people. So if the science isn’t settled when it comes to effectiveness, perhaps it isn’t so settled when it comes to safety.

Just last year, researchers made the remarkable discovery that the brain is actually directly connected to the immune system via previously unknown vessels.9

According to researchers, the discovery of these new vessels has “enormous implications for every neurological disease with an immune component,” and that certainly would include autism.

So just how does vaccination affect this system? Anyone who claims we have the answer is either uninformed or lying, as up until last year we didn’t even know the brain and immune system were linked!

Every year we make new discoveries about how the body works, yet we’re to believe that everything there is to know about how vaccines affect human biology was discovered decades ago?

Did Mass Vaccination Eradicate Measles in the US?

Download Interview Transcript

The NBC also made sure to note that while parents are “looking for answers,” studies have “conclusively shown” there’s no link between vaccines and autism. That sounds all good and well, but just because a statement is repeated does not make it true. I’ve interviewed a number of health and vaccine experts and researchers over the years, and the consensus among them is that safety studies are clearly lacking. As noted by board-certified pediatrician Dr. Lawrence Palevsky:

“… [T]hey are not following children long enough to know whether in three months, six months, three years, six years, or 10 years, there could be some autoimmune antibody or some immune challenge that happens to the body that lingers or that just sits there as a genotypic effect.

There’s a change in the genetics, there’s a change in the DNA, that doesn’t necessarily manifest itself until years later because of other stressors, perhaps even from another vaccine that comes years later. None of those studies have been done, so I don’t know how you can say that vaccines are safe.

… We’re not looking at the micro-molecular levels to see, ‘OK, was there an autoimmune antibody produced? Were there other inflammatory markers produced? Where did those markers manifest? Did they stay in the body? Did they manifest into clinical symptoms? How are they relevant?’ None of that science is being done. But we’re just saying that vaccines are safe because we’ve been doing it for so long. And anyone with a good scientific mind would say that’s not adequate.”

There are biological, genetic, and environmental differences among us, and that is why some of us get an MMR shot or experience measles and do not suffer complications while others do suffer complications and are brain injured or die.

Doctors cannot predict ahead of time who will be harmed by a vaccine or an infectious disease, and they cannot guarantee that those who have been vaccinated will not be infected or transmit infection. These are important points that are typically not shared with parents in the decision-making process regarding vaccination.

Even the studies that have been done are not nearly long enough to show what the long-term implications of vaccinations might be.

As mentioned earlier, we now also have brand new information regarding the connection between the brain and the immune system; a connection that may very well change the way we need to study vaccines and their impact on both brain and immune function. Clearly, De Niro is entirely correct when he says it’s a complicated matter, and that there are still many questions that need to be answered.

Do Vaccines Deserve Their ‘Safety Halo’?

Our genome is comprised of between 5 and 8 percent viral DNA, in what I consider being a component of synergistic adaption with our environment. Microbial signaling plays a role that we still do not fully understand, yet our federal policies place a halo over all drugs called “vaccines.” The assumption is that we understand everything that needs to be understood about them and that without them we’d be worse off. But where’s the proof? As noted by Rappoport:11

“[M]ajor media won’t reveal medically-caused death numbers … So we begin with a few citations … Journal of the American Medical Association; author, Dr. Barbara Starfield, revered public health expert at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health;‘Is US health really the best in the world?Starfield reported that the US medical system kills 225,000 Americans a year; 106,000 as a result of FDA-approved medical drugs … Extrapolate the numbers to a decade: that’s 2.25 million deaths…

BMJ June 7, 201212… Lenzer refers to a report by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices: ‘It calculated that in 2011 prescription drugs were associated with two to four million people in the US experiencing ‘serious, disabling, or fatal injuries, including 128,000 deaths.” The report called this ‘one of the most significant perils to humans resulting from human activity.’

…The FDA knows and it isn’t saying anything about it, because the FDA certifies, as safe and effective, all the medical drugs that are routinely maiming and killing Americans …”

If other drugs cause well over 100,000 deaths a year, where’s the evidence to show vaccines don’t have a similar track record? The reason why the media refuses to discuss these safety issues is because their pharmaceutical advertisers have the ability to punish them financially. But there’s also the overarching issue of credibility. If these statistics were widely known and recognized, who would accept any assurance of drug safety anymore? As Rappoport notes, it would sound something like this:

“Well, the system I represent kills 2.25 million people per decade, and maims between 20 and 40 million more people per decade, but I want to assure you this vaccine presents no problems at all. It’s incredibly safe’ … Every single pronouncement, on any subject, issued via the medical cartel’s Ministry of Truth would fall on disbelieving ears, and only increase general outrage.”

The Fight for Improved Vaccine Safety Continues

The fact of the matter is, there’s still a lot we do not know when it comes to vaccines and their effects. Our knowledge is still very limited when it comes to the microbial world, as well as our own immune system.

To protect the vaccine program and the fantastic profits generated from it, any and all “cracks in the wall” must, therefore, be sealed, and the primary way this is done is by way of censoring, ridicule, and character assassination. They want mandatory vaccines from cradle to grave, and in order to implement that, all dissenters must be destroyed.

In the case of De Niro, they may have met their match, as he’s not one to be intimidated and dismissed so easily — although a number of industry “bobble heads” have already tried to make it seem as though he’s just another confused parent of an autistic child looking for a scapegoat.

They are wrong, of course, and efforts to paint De Niro as a fool just might backfire in the most spectacular way. In the end, as more and more parents see the tragedy of autism unfold in their own life, how long can the charade be maintained?

Protect Your Right to Informed Consent and Defend Vaccine Exemptions

With all the uncertainty surrounding the safety and efficacy of vaccines, it’s critical to protect your right to make independent health choices and exercise voluntary informed consent to vaccination. It is urgent that everyone in America stand up and fight to protect and expand vaccine informed consent protections in state public health and employment laws. The best way to do this is to get personally involved with your state legislators and educating the leaders in your community.

NVIC Advocacy poster



National vaccine policy recommendations are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level. It is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights can have the greatest impact.

It is critical for EVERYONE to gets involved now in standing up for the legal right to make voluntary vaccine choices in America because those choices are being threatened by lobbyists representing drug companies, medical trade associations, and public health officials, who are trying to persuade legislators to strip all vaccine exemptions from public health laws.

Signing up for NVIC’s free Advocacy Portal at gives you immediate, easy access to your own state legislators on your smartphone or computer so you can make your voice heard. You will be kept up-to-date on the latest state bills threatening your vaccine choice rights and get practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community.

Also, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have the up-to-date information and call to action items you need at your fingertips. So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Share Your Story With the Media and People You Know

If you or a family member has suffered a serious vaccine reaction, injury, or death, please talk about it. If we don’t share information and experiences with one another, everybody feels alone and afraid to speak up. Write a letter to the editor if you have a different perspective on a vaccine story that appears in your local newspaper. Make a call into a radio talk show that is only presenting one side of the vaccine story.

I must be frank with you; you have to be brave because you might be strongly criticized for daring to talk about the “other side” of the vaccine story. Be prepared for it and have the courage to not back down. Only by sharing our perspective and what we know to be true about vaccination, will the public conversation about vaccination open up so people are not afraid to talk about it.

We cannot allow the drug companies and medical trade associations funded by drug companies or public health officials promoting forced use of a growing list of vaccines to dominate the conversation about vaccination.

The vaccine injured cannot be swept under the carpet and treated like nothing more than “statistically acceptable collateral damage” of national one-size-fits-all mandatory vaccination policies that put way too many people at risk for injury and death. We shouldn’t be treating people like guinea pigs instead of human beings.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

I encourage you to visit the website of the non-profit charity, the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), at

  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries, and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment and sanctions by doctors, employers, and school and health officials for making independent vaccine choices.
  • Vaccine Failure Wall: View or post descriptions about vaccines that have failed to work and protect the vaccinated from the disease.

Connect With Your Doctor or Find a New One That Will Listen and Care

If your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don’t want, I strongly encourage you to have the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and the refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to stop the change in the attitude of many parents about vaccinations after they become truly educated about health and vaccination. However, there is hope.

At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they’re starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents.

It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.

So take the time to locate a doctor, who treats you with compassion and respect, and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child.

Sources and References