Ben Franklin lost a 4-year-old son to smallpox. He wrote about the incident in his autobiography nearly a half-century later. His words are keenly relevant to the current national conversation about early childhood vaccines, and are worth a close read:
The incident stuck with him so much that he went on to co-author a how-to guide on smallpox inoculation with a London physician.
As I wrote Tuesday, the incredible success of vaccine programs has afforded us the luxury of indulging in ill-informed skepticism of them. Some 250 years ago, the situation was very different.
(A hat tip to Amy Webb on Twitter).