student filmakers from Carlsbad High school and their award-winning broadcast journalism program CHSTV Films. It is an exquisitely done short film about the vaccine-autism manufactroversy. CHSTV Films was approached by the Rotary Club International to produce a film about the immune system and how vaccines work to support their "Don't Wait, Vaccinate!" program. However, the student broadcast journalists of CHSTV Films had their own idea:
But the young people and their advisors thought the Rotary proposal — to make a 20-minute educational film explaining how the immune system and immunization work — seemed boring, they said. And they bristled when the Rotarians told them how the movie should be made, added Bradley Streicher, one of the students who worked on it.
"We said, if we do this, we have to do this on our terms," he said. "We wanted to explore this from both sides."Little did these students know what they were about to embark upon and the vitriol they would have to endure to see this documentary completed and released. Over a year prior to completing the film, the North County Times of Escondido, CA reported on it and the hate blog Age of Autism wasted no time sliming the students and their project. Links to the NC Times are dead, I understand the paper folded and fortunately for the Age of Autism denizens their vicious comments railing against the student journalists involved with Invisible Threat can no longer be seen. However, the school received numerous threatening and harassing phone calls and their Facebook page continues to get nasty ad hominem comments (which are deleted).
The adult volunteers involved with Invisible Threat were rightfully concerned for the students' safety and wanted to terminate the project. The students were not deterred however and it was then that they became the teachers and convinced the parent/teacher volunteers to forge ahead.
It was outrageous to me that the adults would cave to the intimidation. My passion for not backing down was as a student broadcast journalist and the lessons I’d learned making our first film, We Must Remember. In response to that film, it was white supremacists who were angry and contacting us, but we didn’t drop the project. The documentary was about American teens who discover the horrors of the Holocaust first hand by interviewing survivors, traveling to several concentration camps in Europe, and interviewing German teens with Nazi grandparents. The Academy Award winning producer for Schindler’s List, Branko Lustig, took our team to Croatia for the international premiere. There the filmmakers had the opportunity to speak to Serbian, Muslim, and Croatian teens about the lesson we learned. We Must Remember was made to promote tolerance and alert people to the dangers of bullying, while teaching history from a peer-to-peer approach. How could we back down from a topic because of bullying after what we learned and experienced with We Must Remember? The adults weren’t budging until I asked them to “Remember what happens when good people do nothing!”The documentary was completed and select screenings were arranged. Apparently one that took place on Capitol Hill provoked a new round of vapid criticisms, oddly by those who hadn't even seen the film.
Focus Autism and AutismOne organizations complained about the movie's Rotary Club backing and about the involvement of Dr. Paul Offit, a University of Pennsylvania pediatrician and immunization proponent. They argued that "Invisible Threat" was "scripted with industry talking points" and that the movie seemed to be the work of adults operating under false pretenses, not students.It is important to note that AutismOne is a notorious anti-vaxx organisation who gives a platform to fraudulent researcher Andrew Jeremy Wakefield, showcases horrible and abusive "autism treatments" such as bleach enemas, DIY faecal transplants, chemical castration and chelation and off-label prescription drug use. Until this year, anti-vaxxer Jenny McCarthy sponsored Autism One conferences and still owns Generation Rescue an alleged autism charity that promotes unproven and dangerous "autism treatments" along with funding anti-vaxx "studies". Focus Autism is another faux "autism resource" whose members and founders disseminate the discredited vaccine autism causation idea. They attack perceived enemies as well as allies who don't toe their party line.
These are the groups and individuals with a clear axe to grind because they are the very types Invisible Threat features in their documentary. But these are not particularly rational nor ethical people to begin with given what they advocate for.
The film has been completed, distributed to academic and public health institutions and has received glowing reviews and endorsements. Invisible Threat has been scheduled to be released in conjunction with the 2014 National Immunization Awareness Month. If you are a public health official, school administrator, healthcare provider or member of an academic institution, please visit Every Child By Two or contact ThreatInfo@gmail.com to arrange for a screening and/or get a copy of Invisible Threat. Please support these amazing students and their broadcast journalism program while educating the public about the threat to our health and well-being due to falling vaccination rates. A student involved with the production of Invisible Threat made an amazingly eloquent statement about what she learned during the making of the film:
"My personal conclusion is that vaccinations causing autism is a social controversy, not a scientific one."