We’re now over six months deep into a pandemic that has impacted the world in unprecedented ways. What if most everything we know and say (and fight) about … is wrong. What if we’re all wrong about coronavirus?
Not “I’m right, you’re wrong.” Or “they’re wrong, we’re right.” Not Andrew Cuomo vs. Donald Trump or Italy vs. Sweden or me vs. my neighbor. But what if we are all wrong about coronavirus?
We’re all wrong some of the time. Half-truths pass for facts. Missing information is labeled misinformation. I’m a firm subscriber to Ralph Waldo Emerson’s idea that “a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” And I try to always remember that science is a process of questioning. I’m the first to admit that I’m as wrong as the next person (to the delight of my dedicated and sometimes angry Facebook trolls).
So, really, instead of asking, “What if we’re wrong about coronavirus?” we’d be better off saying “We are wrong about coronavirus.” And then taking it from there. Because knowing we are wrong changes everything about how we approach what we’re going to do next.
So many things wrong about coronavirus
I listened to Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden during his acceptance speech tell the American people that his administration would solve this coronavirus pandemic. Biden promised us that he has a plan and that it will succeed.
President Donald Trump said essentially the same thing when he accepted the Republican nomination. Trump has been trying for months to tamp down the fear over coronavirus. In his words, “It will just go away, like a miracle.”
Biden. Trump. Our state senators and representatives. Everyone has a plan. Everyone has an opinion. Everyone is sure. Sure enough to tell me my stories questioning the “facts” being told us about mass quarantine, mask wearing, and the various coronavirus vaccines under development solutions are “killing people.”
Here are just a few gems of hate that glitter my way for your reading enjoyment:
I’m a killer, apparently, because I question the “facts” we’re being fed, recommend people think for themselves, share links to peer-reviewed scientific journal articles, and champion individualized health solutions.
I write about Sweden’s approach, which is different from the rest of the EU’s and vastly different from ours. I write about my home state of Oregon having more deaths from suicide than coronavirus and ask what my legislators’ plan is. I write about the emotional toll coronavirus solutions have taken, misleading reporting of illness and death, and the harms of masks to people who are hearing impaired.
We’ve all been wrong about coronavirus in so many ways:
- We thought antibodies were going to be the cure all. Now we think they likely provide protection for less than two months, if at all.
- We thought a shutdown where we stayed in our homes could flatten the curve and we could all avoid getting sick. Now we know that the virus was spread most among folks in New York who didn’t leave their apartments and that even if we’re living on an island like New Zealand, which is seeing a new surge in infections, we can’t run from the virus.
- We thought the virus was airborne. Now it looks like it’s spread more readily via the oral-fecal route.
Despite really not knowing much about this disease and how it would impact us, we rushed ahead with human trials for a vaccine that isn’t close to working yet. We forced people to give up their civil liberties, jobs, and education. We are mandating masks. We’ve crushed the economy. We put 30 million people out of work. We added trillions to our national debt. All of the time not knowing, really, what we’re dealing with.
And now, our technocrats are censoring any information they deem spurious. They try to silence anything that questions what they want us to believe about coronavirus. Google and Facebook algorithms are now deciding who and what is right about coronavirus and who and what is wrong about coronavirus.
What if we listen more, talk to each other, and try to be less wrong?
Our job is to learn more about what’s right. To be less wrong. These are unprecedented times.
But how do we get to what’s right while being afraid of views that run counter to our own? How do we learn more about what’s right—what will actually solve this pandemic—without being open to understanding what the science is teaching us?
Let’s learn more about COVID-19 together. Let’s remember our shared humanity and compassion and say no to hatefulness and censorship. Let’s keep sticking up for people on the margins who are left out of the conversation.
I urge us all to speak up, be brave, and refuse the herd mentality being shoved down our thoughts.
Healthy debates and honest dialogue helps us all. We need to work together to admit where we’ve been wrong about coronavirus and to get closer to the truth.