When science is being characterized as “right-wing” because it doesn’t fit the Democrats’ and the media’s preferred COVID-19 narrative, we are living in a dangerous world. The mental and physical health of millions of Americans is on the line, and the media wants to play politics with what kind of information you can read.
Take the case of Dr. James Todaro. He was a member of America’s Frontline Doctors, the group that went to Washington, D.C., to try and cut through the panic porn being pushed by the media. After sharing their experience with early outpatient treatment with HCQ, zinc, and azithromycin, they were censored, smeared, and, in at least one case, fired.
More recently, Dr. Todaro shared information about T-cell immunity from COVID-19 in several studies published in reputable journals. In a sane world, this information would be excellent news amid a pandemic. The studies are also based on science, using proven techniques.
These studies showed that subjects who had no exposure to COVID-19 had long-term immunity that fought off the virus. Their memory T cells reacted to COVID-19 based on characteristics the virus has in common with other coronaviruses.
These T cells, developed in response to coronaviruses that cause the common cold, may be fighting off COVID-19 in healthy people. This T-cell reactivity may explain the phenomenon known as “asymptomatic cases.” It may also make testing asymptomatic individuals an exercise in futility.
The CDC states on its website that retesting a recovered patient is of little to no value for 90 days after they no longer have symptoms. The limited usefulness of a retest is because virus RNA can remain in the nasal passages and is amplified by the current test. The same thing could happen to a person with reactive T cells who never shows symptoms. The particles, or viral remains, cannot infect someone else.
Now there is a full-court press against any clinician sharing this news and any outlet covering it. The lockdown-until-a-vaccine crowd is rallying around a BuzzFeed article written by their science reporter, Stephanie Lee. Her bio does not give any medical certifications or advanced degrees. It appears this is just her beat. She characterizes the T-cell findings and theory that they may result in a lower herd-immunity threshold as a “right-wing” theory.
A lower herd-immunity threshold was first proposed based on the experience of Sweden. The country’s experience would still support this theory. Sweden’s 7-day average for new positive tests is flat, hovering around 300, with only one death. There are only 30 critical cases in the country.
The Nordic countries generally, and Sweden in particular, are not known to be rabidly right-wing countries, yet Sweden continues to pursue a herd-immunity strategy. Its results are not notably worse and, in many cases, are better than their European neighbors.
The political leanings of the researchers, who published in Nature, MedRxiV, and Cell, cannot be determined. However, it is probably safe to assume they are scientists doing science and trying to find answers to the COVID-19 crisis. Dr. Anthony Fauci has acknowledged the science presented and said it could explain the range of responses to COVID-19 infections—from asymptomatic to severe disease. But listen to BuzzFeed. Sure.
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There is something that explains the experiences of New York and New Jersey, and the emerging disease curves in the Sun Belt states. Given the varying degrees and durations of lockdowns and mask mandates in these states, neither seems like the definitive answer.
Researcher Smita Iyer, an immunologist at the University of California Davis, says cross-reactive T cells can protect almost like a vaccine. In fact, vaccines are developed to trigger T-cell reactivity. Perhaps Professor Sunetra Gupta, a theoretical epidemiologist at Oxford who proposes the U.K. already has herd immunity, is a rabid member of the right-wing? Or maybe she’s just a scientist.
New cases in the United States appear to be declining, and you would expect deaths to begin declining after the peak in cases. Phil Kerpen noted that emergency room visits for COVID-19-like illnesses have fallen to 1.8% of all visits. This percentage is the lowest since before June 21. It is also equivalent to the combined influenza and pneumonia emergency room visits.
The news about T cells may make Americans less tolerant of masks and lockdowns if they understand it, and if open debate is allowed. However, the censors are alive and well, and BuzzFeed says it is “dangerous” to discuss T-cell immunity. Recently, a paper authored by a bio-mathematician, Dr. M. Gabriela M. Gomes, was rejected for proposing, based on science, that herd immunity for COVID-19 may be about 20% of the population.
Some relevant knowledge is not being communicated widely because science journals refuse to publish it. Our most recent preprint estimating relatively low herd immunity thresholds has just been rejected. The top reason was: https://t.co/yC62QPHD1U
— M Gabriela M Gomes (@mgmgomes1) August 6, 2020
She openly challenges her colleagues’ objections to her assessment and says the urgency to make a determination is paramount. However, Indoor Biotechnologies in the U.K. moved quickly and announced a test that can detect T-cell immunity to COVID-19. The left-leaning BBC is celebrating the news as a breakthrough.
But the good news is that this a right-wing theory, everybody, not science. At least until November 4. At this point, I think we all know the drill.
You can read the pre-print of Dr. Gomes’ study here.