Nature recently published a survey showing how common online and other attacks on scientists trying to communicate science-based information are. The hatred is nothing new. What’s new are COVID-19 and social media.
Colton Berrett developed transverse myelitis at age 13 and as a result was left permanently disabled, with significant paralsysis. Four years later, he died, apparently by suicide. Polly Tommy and the VAXXED crew have been promoting the message that it was Gardasil that caused Colton’s disease and therefore killed him. When I explained why Gardasil almost certainly had nothing to do with Colton’s disease and death, I learned once again how “they” view “us.”
The pandemic has brought scientists who have rejected science with respect to COVID-19 public health measures a disturbing level of influence. Recent research suggests reasons why and who among the public susceptible to such misinformation remains persuadable.
Efforts to hold COVID-19 disinformation-spreading physicians accountable are leading to increasing calls by cranks for a “debate” with them. This is a disinformation tactic, not an honest call for debate.
Last week, Fox News pundit Tucker Carlson ran a trailer for The End of Men, a special claiming that men are getting weak due to low testosterone levels. It’s pure fascist worship of “masculinity” combined with “bromeopathy.”