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Letter: Anti-vaxxers suffering from oppositional defiant disorder

Letter: Anti-vaxxers suffering from oppositional defiant disorder

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Many of the millions of Americans who refuse to be vaccinated against the Covid-19 virus remind me of Professor Wagstaff, the character depicted by Groucho Marx in the 1932 comedy film, Horse Feathers. Wagstaff, who was the headmaster of Huxley College, refused to accept any suggestions from its trustees. The factual soundness of their recommendations was irrelevant to Wagstaff. Like some anti-vaxxers, he seemed to be suffering from a psychological condition typically associated with adolescents, something today’s psychologists might refer to as oppositional defiant disorder. The lyrics to the epic song performed by Groucho’s character say it all about today’s neurotic contrarians: “I don’t know what they have to say, makes no difference anyway, your proposition may be good, but let’s have one thing understood, whatever it is, I’m against it”. Politicians who champion such irrational and dangerous thinking should be ashamed.

Charles S. Sabalos


Disclaimer: As submitted to the Arizona Daily Star.

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