Fake news: deadlier


By Philip S. Chua, MD.

One of the greatest inventions of the man inspired by the desire to share information is the internet. The impetus started in the 1960s “as a way for government researchers to share information.” The initial computer was a humongous, immobile unit the size of an entire room. On January 1, 1983, the internet was born, as a Swiss computer programmer, Tim Berners-Lee, introduced the World Wide Web (www), a “web” of massive information which internet users could retrieve and share, making the encyclopedia, among hundreds of other books, obsolete. Today, we have this “computer” at the palm of our hands, the lightest less than 35 grams, hundred times faster, with gigantic storage space, with amazingly versatility in its functions, most addicting, serving as our most valuable companion, and truly indispensable, a modern gadget called cellphone. Most of us could no longer function with comfort and confidence, or even GPS our way around without it. It seems we could not live without it, almost fully dependent on it and following what it tells, transforming this supposedly slave of ours into our master.

But just like any good discovery or invention, the internet, in the hands of some twisted or criminal members of our species, is used to confuse, instill doubt and fear, for them to achieve a perverted sense of gratification and/or for financial or political gains by spewing out misinformation or actual lies. They are the scammers, identity thieves, corporate hackers – cyberspace criminals victimizing countless people around the globe. Some aim to create chaos and to destroy, for no reason all. The internet is obviously a double-edged sword. It could be used by men of goodwill as an instrument to pursue and defend and attain justice, peace, prosperity, and happiness, for all, or as a destructive weapon to devastate, maim, or kill, not only the body but the soul and spirit of man.

Worst of all, disinformation or posting or sharing fake news during this COVID-19 pandemic could lead to killing millions of lives more than the current global deaths of almost 2.5 million in about 105 million cases (USA-26,924,998 cases, with 455,000 deaths; The Philippines: 529,000 cases, with about 11,000 deaths).

A public disservice

An example of the disinformation, which sounds like an evil intent to misinform deliberately is this post by a Jon Rappoport, emailed to me by a colleague from New York, which says “There are several reasons to reject and ignore ALL COVID statistics. Chief among the reasons—no one has proved that the virus, SARS-CoV-2, exists.”

The claim that “no one has proved that the virus SARS-Cov2 virus exists,” is simply stupidity and almost hilarious. The global medical community and the entire world (obviously except Jon Rappoport and his kind) have not only proven this existence of the SARS-CoV2 virus and its variants in the laboratory, killing almost 2.5 million people in 219 countries around the globe from a pandemic called COVID-19 (Rappoport also denies there is a pandemic!), that even a kindergartener knows there is pandemic caused by a virus ravaging the world today. Even the blind can see this. Only a lunatic or a criminal with a 20/20 vision  who has a sinister goal would deny the existence of such a virus and the presence of this COVID-19 pandemic.

RN refuses the vaccines

Unfortunately, Rappoport is not the only one. There are dozens and dozens of brainless individuals out there in the social media pouring gasoline on the fire of fear and confusion, about the COVID-19 testing, its treatment, and now with the vaccines. As a result, the doubt in the people’s mind is magnified to the extent that even a Registered Nurse vehemently stated on a television interview that she was so afraid of the dangers of the vaccine and its component she was definitely not getting the vaccines. This, and all misinformation, send the wrong and dangerous message to the public. Those uninformed, ignorant, and gullible individuals could fall victims to misguided assertions like this and refuse testing where needed and object to vaccination, making them carefree, careless, and getting infected, thus becoming virus spreader and potential accidental killers of the vulnerable people. Fake news is very dangerous, perhaps more lethal than the COVID-19 itself, in more ways than one.

We are all in this fight together as a people, as a global nation. Let us cease and desist from helping these crazy people spread their hurtful lies and misinformation by deleting them from our devices and not sharing them with our friends in the social media or Messenger. Precious human lives are a stake here. If we cannot chip in to help, let us not help these cruel people chip away the life of our disciplined fellowmen who are suffering and sacrificing, following the CDC guidelines religiously to be safe and to protect others too

The vaccines are safe

Contrary to what some misinformed people might think, the vaccines for COVID-19 and its variants are effective and safe, proven by the more than 101 million people in 64 countries around the world who had the vaccines, almost 33 million in the USA.  As I have stated in a previous column, the fear that the vaccines are unsafe because they were developed in less than a year, unlike past vaccines which took years to create, is unfounded. These vaccines for COVID-19 were not rushed, no short-cuts were taken in their development. The reason for the amazing speed in their creation and formulation is the newly discovered technology in making vaccines, using messengerRNA. Henceforth, for all other vaccines in the future for other diseases, the development will be faster too. My analogy: Simply because vehicles are designed and manufactured a lot faster today than decades ago does not necessarily mean the cars of today are less safe. As a matter of fact, vehicles today in general are more comfortable, more efficient, more fun to drive, and certainly much safer, with all its security features and options.

Post COVID-19 vaccination

New studies revealed that those who recovered from COVID-19 and received their first shot have more than ten times the level of antibodies in their system than those who never got infected and received their first and second dose. Hence, those who previously had the infection are advised to get vaccinated too.

The first dose confers only about 52 percent protection, with 48 percent residual risk. After the second dose, the immunity level gradually goes up to around 95 percent after a few months, not immediately! After the first, and even the second dose, people can still get infected with COVID-19 when they allow their guard down and cease using mask and stop social distancing and crowd avoidance. We can do away with all this only after the country has developed herd immunity. God-willing, hopefully before the end of this year or by the summer of 2022.

Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS, a Cardiac Surgeon Emeritus based in Northwest Indiana and Las Vegas, Nevada, is an international medical lecturer/author, a Health Public Advocate, and Chairman of the Filipino United Network-USA, a 501(c)3 humanitarian and anti-graft foundation in the United States. Visit our websites: philipSchua.com and FUN8888.com   Email: scalpelpen@gmail.com