On Thanksgiving my practice is take a break from my normal routine and give thanks for all I’m grateful for. As I reflected on my bounty of blessings this year, I felt compelled to include the brave doctors and other experts who have been silenced for having the courage to speak truth as they understood it. Even if these people are mistaken, they didn’t deserve their online banishments.
LinkedIn, the only social media I’m on, recently appears to have conducted an online pogrom and “deplatformed” a multitude of persons who are critical about vaccine safety and effectiveness. Two of these people are individuals I closely followed because I found their information helpful and insightful. I’m doubly vaccinated and just got a booster, so don’t dare call me an anti-vaxxer, but I understand and respect the right of others to make their own determinations as to what’s medically best for them. Denying these people compelling information, often based on studies published in respected medical journals, should be a criminal offense. Instead, it is celebrated by the Biden Administration and its corporate and social media myrmidons.
“Deplatformed” is an Orwellian techie word that belies the horror of unaccountable censorship. Having a minimal online presence is critical today, particularly to gain employment. LinkedIn bills itself as a professional site, and some job recruiters rely on it exclusively to find candidates. Wiping out a person’s online presence limits their job prospects and ability to form professional connections. In America, it is illegal to discriminate in hiring because of a person’s national origin, race, color, religion, disability, sex, and familial status. It should be illegal to discriminate based on one’s beliefs.
For those who believe President Biden that covid is a “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” I offer you this paragraph from a November 16th story written by an experienced medical reporter for Reuters, hardly a news outlet known for its radical journalism:
People infected with Delta carry around 1,200 times more virus in their noses compared with the original version of the coronavirus. The amount of virus in vaccinated individuals who become infected with Delta is on par with those who are unvaccinated, AND BOTH CAN TRANSMIT THE VIRUS TO OTHERS.
Demonizing the unvaccinated is also Orwellian. In Orwell’s 1984, members of the Outer Party of Oceania were subjected to “Two Minutes of Hate,” during which party members watched a film depicting enemies of the state. Orwell was an optimist: Twitter offers a 24/7 forum where people can call out, turn in, and destroy individuals not to their liking. Only about 20 percent of Americans are on Twitter, yet the stench from the online sewer permeates our culture. Other declared enemies of the state are those who support Donald Trump and those who question climate change. On any given day, there’s some additional targets the cancel culture mob is looking to destroy.
Social media, in cahoots with the corporate media, serves as Orwell’s envisioned Ministry of Truth. LinkedIn has censored multiple commentaries of mine without any explanation or due process, all based on reputable publications. In some instances, the commentaries were simply blocked from public view with the explanation they violated “professional community policies.” In others, they were vanquished, despite garnering dozens of “likes.” As best I can tell, LinkedIn’s “community policies” are those of its censors, not the greater LinkedIn community.
Given the constitutional protections they enjoy to routinely publish erroneous and false stories with impunity, it’s shameful the corporate media supports and abets censorship. A consortium of government funded and corporate media outlets launched the Trusted News Initiative, supposedly to combat the spread of “harmful” vaccine disinformation. A tool of TNI is the vile “fact checkers” like Politifact who provide “context” that makes lies into truths and truths into lies.
These fact checkers have been caught effectively manufacturing lies of their own. USA Today, a sanctioned Facebook “fact checker,” allowed Stacey Abrams to “stealth edit” a line from a commentary she published saying she “can’t argue with people who choose to boycott businesses in her state.” Two days after publication, Major League Baseball announced it was pulling the 2021 All-Star Game out of Atlanta because of the state’s voting law. On reflection, Abrams clearly thought it wasn’t good politics to have supported the boycott and USA Today was complicit in manufacturing Abrams’ revised position.
Biden spokesperson Jen Psaki is on record as saying the White House is in regular contact with Facebook and other social media about vaccine posts it deems problematic. The corporate media said Donald Trump was a threat to Democracy and free speech, yet he’s the one banished from social media. The corporate media has been slow to correct the Steele dossier lies it published that have since been refuted. The Steele dossier lies, funded by Hillary Clinton’s election campaign, will likely forever remain as truths.
In the current climate, it takes great courage to act on one’s conscience and express unpopular vaccine concerns that leads to online banishment. No one can yet say for certain their views are mistaken but given the lengths the Biden Administration and corporate and social media have gone to silence vaccine critics rather than provide compelling arguments to counter their positions, I’m more inclined to believe them.
History has shown that prevailing wisdom too often proves to be wrong. If history again repeats itself, I hope corporate and social media censors are held accountable. Regardless, I will forever admire and respect those who dare to speak truth to power. It’s a virtue worth celebrating on the Thanksgiving holiday.