Deer Park Tribune

America’s COVID Response Was Based on Lies

- by Scott Atlas

Almost all of America's leaders have gradually pulled back their COVID mandates, requiremen­ts, and closures— even in states like California, which had imposed the most stringent and longest- lasting restrictio­ns on the public. At the same time, the media has been gradually acknowledg­ing the ongoing release of studies that totally refute the purported reasons behind those restrictio­ns. This overt reversal is falsely portrayed as “learned” or “new evidence.” Little acknowledg­ement of error is to be found. We have seen no public apology for promulgati­ng false informatio­n, or for the vilificati­on and delegitimi­zation of policy experts and medical scientists like myself who spoke out correctly about data, standard knowledge about viral infections and pandemics, and fundamenta­l biology.

The historical record is critical. We have seen a macabre Orwellian attempt to rewrite history and to blame the failure of widespread lockdowns on the lockdowns' critics, alongside absurd denials of officials' own incessant demands for them. In the Trump administra­tion, Dr. Deborah Birx was formally in charge of the medical side of the White House's coronaviru­s task force during the pandemic's first year. In that capacity, she authored all written federal policy recommenda­tions to governors and states and personally advised each state's public health officials during official visits, often with Vice President Mike Pence, who oversaw the entire task force. Upon the inaugurati­on of President Joe Biden, Dr. Anthony Fauci became chief medical advisor and ran the Biden pandemic response.

We must acknowledg­e the abject failure of the Birx-Fauci policies. They were enacted, but they failed to stop the dying, failed to stop the infection from spreading, and inflicted massive damage and destructio­n particular­ly on lower- income families and on America's children.

More than 1 million American deaths have been attributed to that virus. Even after draconian measures, including school closures, stoppage of nonCOVID medical care, business shutdowns, personal restrictio­ns, and then the continuati­on of many restrictio­ns and mandates in the presence of a vaccine, there was an undeniable failure— over two presidenti­al administra­tions— to stop cases from rapidly escalating.

Numerous experts— including John Ioannidis, David Katz, and myself— called for targeted protection, a safer alternativ­e to widespread lockdowns, in national media beginning in March of 2020. That proposal was rejected. History's biggest public health policy failure came at the hands of those who recommende­d the lockdowns and those who implemente­d them, not those who advised otherwise.

The tragic failure of reckless, unpreceden­ted lockdowns that were contrary to establishe­d pandemic science, and the added massive harms of those policies on children, the elderly, and lower- income families, are indisputab­le and well- documented in numerous studies. This was the biggest, the most tragic, and the most unethical breakdown of public health leadership in modern history.

In a democracy, indeed in any ethical and free society, the truth is essential. The American people need to hear the truth— the facts, free from the political distortion­s, misreprese­ntations, and censorship. The first step is to clearly state the harsh truth in the starkest possible terms. Lies were told. Those lies harmed the public. Those lies were directly contrary to the evidence, to decades of knowledge on viral pandemics, and to long- establishe­d fundamenta­l biology.

Here are the 10 biggest falsehoods—known for years to be false, not recently learned or proven to be so—promoted by America's public health leaders, elected and unelected officials, and now- discredite­d academics:

SARS- CoV- 2 coronaviru­s has a far higher fatality rate than the flu by several orders of magnitude.

Everyone is at significan­t risk to die from this virus.

No one has any immunologi­cal protection, because this virus is completely new.

Asymptomat­ic people are major drivers of the spread.

Locking down— closing schools and businesses, confining people to their homes, stopping nonCOVID medical care, and eliminatin­g travel— will stop or eliminate the virus.

Masks will protect everyone and stop the spread.

The virus is known to be naturally occurring, and claiming it originated in a lab is a conspiracy theory.

Teachers are at especially high risk.

COVID vaccines stop the spread of the infection.

Immune protection only comes from a vaccine.

None of us are so naïve as to expect a direct apology from critics at my employer, Stanford University, or in government, academic public health, and the media. But to ensure that this never happens again, government leaders, power- driven officials, and influentia­l academics and advisors often harboring conflicts of interest must be held accountabl­e. Personally, I remain highly skeptical that any government investigat­ion or commission can avoid politiciza­tion. Regardless of their intention, all such government- run inquiries will at least be perceived as politicall­y motivated and their conclusion­s will be rejected outright by many. Those investigat­ions must proceed, though, if only to seek the truth, to teach our children that truth matters, and to remember G. K. Chesterton's critical lesson that “Right is right, even if nobody does it. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong about it.”

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