Thanks for the Diphtheria, Anti-Vaxxers

Spain's first victim of the deadly bacterial infection in almost 30 years is a six-year-old boy.

At this rate, we should probably start busting out medieval medical dictionaries so we’re prepared for the swarm of diseases we thought we had wiped out 400 years before we invented toilet paper. Any day now somebody’s going to get diagnosed with ergot poisoning, or St. Anthony’s Fire to you highborn.

Spain has its first confirmed case of diphtheria since 1986. The victim is a boy, 6, whose parents refused to vaccinate him.

The infection can cause death by asphyxiation and was once so widespread that Spain has 12 months in the history books under the title “Year of Strangulations.” That was before vaccines. Medical advances have come a long way since then, and even though the boy should never have contracted diphtheria in the first place there is, luckily, an anti-toxin. Only it was a little hard to come by, because nobody keeps it on hand, because nobody gets diphtheria anymore, because it’s easily preventable. Because of vaccines.

This isn't the first time we've seen a resurgence of an illness we have no business worrying about anymore. The Anti-Vaxxers were also responsible for an outbreak of measles at Disneyland earlier this year.

Greyscale. That's what's going to be next. Goddamn legions of stone men. 

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