At the intersection of COVID and politics, omissions proliferate.

How does a news organization publish an entire article, by WPRI’s Steph Machado, with associated television news clip, about a tug-of-war between the mayor of Providence and the city council over vaccine mandates for police and not mention crime in the city?

The deadline is Friday for all city workers to get at least one dose of the COVID vaccine or be terminated from their jobs. Up to 80 police officers out of 450 remained unvaccinated as of last week, according to Public Safety Commissioner Steven Paré. It’s unclear how many officers have opted to get vaccinated this week ahead of the deadline.

Friday’s vote to block the mass firings, if approved by a majority of councilors, would not immediately stop Elorza from enforcing the policy. Ordinances must pass the council twice, and then the mayor can either veto or sign it into law.

Sure, we get City Council President John Igliozzi predicting that the “city will be completely lawless,” but no context about how crime has been in the city recently.  One looks in vain for that familiar phrase that the mayor “has come under fire” for drive-by shootings, assaults on college students, and other incidents.  Of course, one reason is that the local news media has not been providing the sort of coverage that might generate a little heat on .  Whether they’re protecting Jorge Elorza or progressives’ efforts to make gang life more comfortable in Rhode Island isn’t clear.

On a related note, how does a news organization publish another article, by the AP’s Lindsey Tanner, although still on WPRI, about low vaccination rates among young children and not mention evidence of side effects from the drug?  The reader gets more propaganda from the American Academy of Pediatrics, with a New York pediatrician given space to call for government mandates, but mention of any evidence supporting an alternative view is completely absent.  Sure, argue that the side effects of the vaccine are rare and generally mild, but then, so is harm from the virus for children.  Evidence suggests myocarditis risk for males under 40 is elevated by 7.6 times after a Pfizer booster shot (3.4 times after the second shot), compared with 2.0 times for the virus.  This is clearly relevant to the vaccination decision.

The fact that information like the above is completely absent contributes not only to distrust of the mainstream media, but also to distrust of public health officials and the vaccines they’re promoting.  We’re not children, and attempts to treat us as such demean our status as equal citizens and lead us to conclude insiders are trying to hide something and manipulate us.


Featured image by Climate Reality Project on Unsplash.

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brian bishop
brian bishop
9 days ago

Same as media crying about shortages of health care staff that started just as that mandate kicked in. I’m not saying that a state mandate for health care workers is not defensible as an exercise of the state police power, but there is always a question of prudence. So now we have covid positive vaccinated workers on the job because we don’t have unvaccinated. (as silly as that sounds it might be defended in hindsight based on tenure and level of infectiousness of vaccinated but we don’t have that information and it simply is not clear that testing unvaccinated (and now vaccinated) healthcare workers would not have been a suitable alternative.

By analogy, are we going to start drafting criminals to staff the police precincts because we fired unvaccinated police officers?

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