The University of Wollongong’s perennial anti-vaccine PhD student, Judy Wilyman, is the great, big hope of Australian anti-vaccinationism.
Does she say “the science” a lot? Tick.
Does she say “the research” a lot? Tick.
Does she vilify bereaved parents with slurs of kickbacks? Tick.
Does she refer to these bereaved parents’ deceased babies as “anecdotes”? Tick.
Does she and her cabal of thugs organise anti-vaccine protests under the disingenuous facade of “pro-choice”; the same thugs having followed her example of vilifying bereaved parents; some of the thugs even claiming that the bereaved parents’ baby did not even exist, as some kind of Big Pharma agenda, a thinly masked sales pitch? Tick.
Does she resent the tag “anti-vaccine”; whilst only providing information which is against vaccination, a lot? Tick.
Perfect! Wilyman is perfect. And the added bonus with Wilyman is that she appears to have the ongoing imprimatur of the University of Wollongong; who in turn would appear to have had the word “disrepute” erased from all of its libraries’ dictionaries. I’m wondering if they have a sort of Safe Eyes software installed on the main servers – Safe Disrepute – which seeks out and destroys all versions of the word, lest anyone get any uppity ideas about what integrity means to past, present, and future alumni and academics, and other staff. They all carry Wilyman’s stink, now. And they’re not happy.
Wilyman’s official Facebook page is called Vaccination Choice. It is the official Facebook page for her website, Vaccination Decisions: Know Your Vaccines. Her website – to which we shall return – features this conspiracy theory click-bait de rigueur:
The truth behind vaccinations. What the government doesn’t tell you.
Today, on her Facebook page, Wilyman posted this…thing…featuring the disgraced Sherri Tenpenny. Tenpenny complained – with a not unexpected misrepresentation of the circumstances surrounding her cancelled 2015 Caravan of Hurt Down Under – about threats which were made against prospective venues for her Australian tour. Tenpenny forgot to mention that it was an anti-vaccine activist who was doing the threatening. But, anyway. Tenpenny gave an interview to Irish conspiracy theorist, Richie Allen. And Wilyman linked to it on her official Facebook page which is the official Facebook page for her official website; the official website which provides you with “the truth behind vaccinations”, this truth being that which is also what “the government won’t tell you”:
Friends. Dear friends. I listened to that 30 minute thing. I transcribed some of it (the rest wasn’t worth writing down). Here are the main points from the interview which was promoted by Judy Wilyman, University of Wollongong PhD student:
Richie Allen: David Icke is a friend of the show…says vaccines are about depopulation…pumping chemicals into children…to change DNA…
Tenpenny: “I would have to agree with David on that…I do believe that there is a very large depopulation agenda going on…Gardasil…testicular atrophy…uterine atrophy in rats…Polysorbate 80 which is in the Gardasil vaccine…DPT vaccine”
Tenpenny: We are “allowing foreign matter that has animal DNA, chemicals that are known to be carcinogens, heavy metals, stray viruses that some of them are oncoviruses into their children and if people do not understand that that is a consciously sinister act being done by people much higher up than your doctor’s office, then, they really need to rethink that…It is corrupting and changing the DNA of the human race”
Richie Allen: is sterilization a big thing for the “lunatics”?
Tenpenny: “If you can’t kill people off with pestilence and war then how you lower the population is you don’t allow them to reproduce”
Richie Allen/Q: what about “lunatic Nazi scientists” being brought in covertly after World War 2?
Tenpenny: “Nazi scientists took off their business suits and put on a white coat and what has been infiltrated into the medical education system the research for new medications and drugs…GMOs…vaccines…there is a global conspiracy…implement their agenda…working together to make everybody on the planet sicker”
Richie Allen/Q: are all vaccines bad?
Tenpenny: [fundamental idea of protecting from disease is good one] “injecting vaccines as they currently exist and as they are created and what is in theory and there is no such thing as a safe vaccine, there is no such thing as a green vaccine…using vaccines in this way in which they are administered has no value in that. None”
Tenpenny: “why is it that parents still trust their doctor and will sacrifice their child to the pharmaceutical god by putting foreign matter in them and potentially either killing them or making them a customer for life and I know that sounds really, really strong but what are we actually trying to avoid? Childhood illnesses consist of a fever, a cough, a rash and some diarrhea and we’re willing to take that exchange of lifetime of illness to make sure your kid doesn’t have a fever, a cough for a couple of weeks? That’s not a fair exchange in any sense of the word”
I don’t need to add anything to the preceding. But, I want to contrast it directly with Wilyman’s own website.
Wilyman’s about page refers to the University of Wollongong many times:
In 2004 I began researching this public health issue at the University of Wollongong (UOW). I completed a Master of Science degree (Population Health) in the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences in 2007.This included a research project analysing the Australian Government’s Policy on Whooping Cough. In 2007 I continued my research with a PhD.
I transferred back to Wollongong University in 2011 to complete my PhD investigating the Australian government’s reasons for its current National Immunisation Program (NIP). My PhD includes an examination of the science in the government’s vaccination policy…
Even more striking – in the current context; oh, let’s face it: in almost all contexts pertaining to Wilyman’s claims – is the section directly underneath the above, titled, “Motivation for this Research”. Wilyman argues that she is being treated unfairly by “lobby groups” who “present disinformation about my research”. She continues:
The information I am providing on this website is academic research for public debate to ensure that decisions made on health are supported in the medical literature.
Many lobby groups are disparaging researchers reputations and not debating the scientific issues.
Referring again to “academic debate” and “vaccination…information” which goes toward her PhD:
This website is set up to present an academic debate of vaccination (free of emotional arguments) and it contains information that will be presented for the completion of a PhD.
Wilyman’s anti-vaccination activism certainly does not meet the expectations to which she aspires in her website’s biography. In my most recent post I highlighted Wilyman’s output from her official newsletters, which are also linked from her website. I wrote, of Wilyman’s complaints that she was being portrayed an an anti-vaccinationist, and her protest as being anti-vaccine:
Why would Wilyman deny that her event was an anti-vaccine event? Why would this concern her? In only her previous newsletter she sent out, Wilyman linked to a delusional YouTube video made by the US anti-vaccine organisation, The Weston A Price Foundation…
This is Wilyman’s Newsletter 80:
Here is a 6 minute video illustrating the dangers of this bill because governments have not studied the long-term health effects of the combined schedule of vaccines in animals or humans.
This is critical information for the health of global populations. Many of the ingredients of vaccines are listed below.
www. vaccinationdecisions. net
This is the newsletter with three stills from that YouTube video, which Wilyman linked from her official newsletter. Does she think no one else will watch it? Does Wilyman think no one will check her claims, ever? Something is not right, and it never has been:
And these issues aren’t new for the University of Wollongong. In 2013 it was forced to issue a statement about her, on Twitter:
Questions have rightly been raised in public about the level of appropriate supervision given to Wilyman by Professor Brian Martin – himself a friend of the anti-vaccination movement, guiding the execrable Australian Vaccination skeptics Network and its cruel ideologue, and long-term Wilyman friend, Meryl Dorey, away from appropriate regulatory scrutiny – and the University of Wollongong believes that Martin is performing his supervisory role of Ms Wilyman in a satisfactory manner and that he is an appropriate supervisor for her study. Indeed the follow-up question is, then, why is someone who is being supervised appropriately, on vaccination policies, on “the science”, routinely citing conspiracy cranks? Is the department infected? I’m Just Asking Questions.
Getting back to Wilyman’s recent Facebook shenanigans, it is not difficult to watch the real Wilyman in the natural pastures of anti-vaccinationism. For yet another example, Wilyman is a member of this closed group, Anti-Vaccination Australia:
And Wilyman even liked this attempt at fat-shaming myself, posted by the group’s adolescent creator, Belgin Sila Colak:
Here’s another version, in case the University of Wollongong can’t see the previous one:
I mean, does Wilyman ever stop to consider anything she does or says – anywhere, anytime – preferring only to vilify critics who rightfully and appropriately point out her demonstrable and exasperatingly ubiquitous failings of logic and comprehension; Wilyman citing only her tired drone of “you are derogatory…this is derogatory…they are being derogatory about the science presented to the community from the university which is the science the gubment doesn’t want you to see…the science…derogatory…”?
Has the University of Wollongong even re-read her masters thesis? I know people who have. Does it still stand up to academic rigour, University of Wollongong? I’m Just Asking Questions.
When is enough going to be enough for the University of Wollongong and it long-suffering fans?
When is academic freedom just plain old disrepute?
Update October 3 2015
Sydney anti-vaccine protest organiser Renata Bialkowska is organising a panel discussion featuring Judy Wilyman and a “representative from the government or medical profession”. As far as I know no representatives from the government or medical profession will give Wilyman the undue recognition she craves, by appearing on stage with her. This is as it should be. As the old saying goes, “it would look great on Wilyman’s CV; not so great on mine.” The panel is being filmed by filmmaker Bialkowska who also filmed and photographed the protest marches for her upcoming documentary:
We will be filming a Q&A style discussion to give you an opportunity to express your views and questions about the issue.
A professional panel representing both sides…
Ah, yes: “both sides”. That old, slippery three-card trick.
The organisers state that the University of Technology Sydney’s facilities will be used for the purposes of this anti-vaccine sham, on October 15:
Having just gone back through all of Bialkowka’s involvement with the anti-vaccine protests, I noted a discrepancy in her ability to be an impartial observer/filmmaker, who is up-front in declaring the depth of her affiliations with anti-vaccinationism, and as an organiser of the protests, since their inception.
Indeed, on June 8 2015, we see the official anti-vaccine protest page post their press release which was shared from the barking mad Conspiracy Oz website. Notice the text from the website [my bold]:
Hi Ppl received this very important email from Renata Bialkowska, support this Protest for Free Choice! – …
At that time the above Facebook post led to this page, which I fortunately screenshot, back in June. Again, note the text [my bold]:
Hi Ppl received this very important email from Renata Bialkowska, support this Protest for Free Choice! – Mick Raven
Today I thought I’d better ensure I wasn’t making things up, or confusing myself and others; so I took to the Wayback Machine to check that the linked post really did say what I thought it said. This is what the Wayback Machine tells us [my bold]:
Hi Ppl received this very important email from Renata Bialkowska, support this Protest for Free Choice! – Mick Raven
Okay. We weren’t seeing things. The Conspiracy Oz website stated unequivocally that they received the official anti-vaccine protest press release from Renata Bialkowska. The reason I felt the need to go back and triple-check everything is that Bialkowska’s name has been erased from that very post, in the interim. This is how the Conspiracy Oz post looks, now [my bold]:
Hi Ppl received this very important email from “No jab No pay No way!” Protest organisers , support this Protest for Free Choice! – Mick Raven
One thing which really rustles my jimmies is when anyone attempts to pull a fast one, or fails to disclose conflicts of interest, or affiliations. I can’t think of any appropriate reason why the owner of the Conspiracy Oz website would need to go back and erase Bialkowska’s name from that June 8 post. The whole thing makes me think there’s a conspiracy to cover up the TRUTH™.
Luckily, Bialkowska is very well educated on these things; she knows to whom she should turn to uncover the TRUTH™ for us, especially when there is suspected conspiratorial chicanery afoot: Alex Jones, Conspiracy Oz, and Vinny Eastwood*. From her Facebook profile:
*This is Vinny Eastwood, in March 2015:
Omg Vinny Eastwood is awesome…
Update October 7 2015
In a post updated since the publication of this blog post, Wilyman repeats her callous claims about both the McCaffery and Hughes families. There are no words to describe the lack of empathy displayed by Wilyman by repeating her cruel remarks; remarks which she knows are cruel, having been requested to stop making them by the families.
Wilyman – again – repeats the slur that the documented deaths of two infants, from whooping cough, among others, are anecdotes which are the equivalent of unsubstantiated anecdotes of vaccine side effects:
All vaccines come with a risk and anecdotal evidence of a death or serious reaction to a vaccine is not used to prevent the use of vaccines and similarly this type of evidence should not be used to promote vaccines to the community.
Wilyman also repeats her slur that the McCaffery family received a monetary reward in exchange for their vaccine advocacy, thus impugning the character of the McCaffery family. The McCafferys donated the total of their prize-money, awarded to them by Australian Skeptics – for The Thornett Award for the Promotion of Reason – toward pertussis immunisation research:
The Australian Skeptics lobby group also present awards of $1,000 to parents who tell their stories to promote vaccines to the public.
That Wilyman attempts to recoil from her hideous imputations with the following sentence does not negate her cruelty:
This does not suggest that parents are promoting vaccines for the financial awards.
With thanks to Dr Ingram in the comments of this post, I remind the University of Wollongong of their own student charter:
The student charter states, under Responsibilities, the following (and others not listed here):
The University of Wollongong expects that students will meet the following responsibilities:
* Develop and uphold the values of academic integrity.
* Respect the diversity of the University and broader communities.
* Behave responsibly and honestly in ways that are considerate of the rights and needs of others and refrain from behaviour that may adversely affect the experiences of others.
* Develop and practise the skills associated with collaboration and collegiality.
It is time for the University of Wollongong to act against this disgraceful individual, and those who have failed in their supervision of her.
The University of Wollongong is more than aware of how hurtful Wilyman’s behaviour has been for parents who have lost their babies to vaccine preventable disease. In 2012, David McCaffery was forced to issue this statement to Meryl Dorey and Judy Wilyman:
Meryl Dorey, you have been asked time after time not to mention our daughter Dana on your website. The recent article by Judy Wilyman is false, dangerous, misleading and disrespectful. She has no expertise in the area of vaccines and has not asked, nor does she have, our permission to discuss our daughter’s death.
Let’s be clear, Dana’s death to whooping cough and the issues related to it, are not anecdotal. How can you and Ms Wilyman be so callous?
Dana died from whooping cough, a vaccine preventable disease. And we mourn her death every day. You and your friends add torture to our pain.
Ms Dorey, you and your group simply do not know us and we ask you to stop discussing Dana’s death. Her tragic death is not something that you can toy with to promote your misleading ideology.
Once again, you and Ms Wilyman are not friends of ours, or medical doctors and know nothing about Dana’s life or death.
BTW< Both of you, do not take this post as an invite to respond in any way. Leave us and our little girl alone!
Again, that was in 2012.
Three years have passed and Wilyman is still doing it.
@UOW @uowresearch a financial reward is the last thing on our mind when our child has just died. Much rather have our baby!
@UOW @uowresearch the abuse we receive from mmbrs of groups she runs is awful. All because our child died & we spoke abt it.
How does this sit with your student’s responsibilities, University of Wollongong? How does Judy Wilyman fulfill this?
Behave responsibly and honestly in ways that are considerate of the rights and needs of others and refrain from behaviour that may adversely affect the experiences of others.
Maybe the University of Wollongong will ignore all of the above; remain true to previous form; and provide Wilyman with another plug in the UoW Faculty of Arts newsletter; just like it did in 2012, after Wilyman had made those despicable comments about the McCaffery family:
Update October 12 2015
The government has been invited to present the arguments for this policy and Phd candidate Judy Wilyman & Naturopath Brett Smith will be speaking against this policy
It should be noted that as an unregistered NSW-based health care practitioner, anti-vaccine thug Brett Smith is answerable to the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission, thanks to the awesome work of Meryl Dorey. Any attendees should take care at this event as anti-vaccine thug Brett Smith has form for intimidation and violent threats.