We often hear about it when people discuss the legitimacy of vaccine mandates and efficacy. If you say the vaccines are less than totally effective or discuss the idea that people have the right to decide whether to be vaccinated, it is called misinformation and many social network conglomerates will censor you. The recent example is Joe Rogan, who interviewed Dr. Robert Malone, the researcher who developed the mRNA vaccine strategy that is currently being used to immunize vaccine recipients. Malone had the gumption to state that vaccine mandates were bad. That great free speaker of the “Make love, not war” and “Four dead in Ohio” era, Neil Young, protested that the internet company, Spotify, either eliminate Joe Rogan or Neil Young music from its website.
This is like the cries of heresy and censorship that befell Galileo when he presented evidence of the heliocentricity of the solar system, basically that the sun was the center of the solar system and the earth orbited the sun. The Catholic theologians and Pope Urban VIII called his defense of heliocentricity a heresy. Galileo was sentenced to house arrest for the remainder of his life and banned from writing anything in defense of heliocentricity.
Perhaps when people say, “I don’t want to have a vaccine injected in me” they are sowing discord and undermining public trust — in US government institutions.
What was called heresy by the Catholic Church then is called misinformation now. But if the information is so false, why is the response to keep it from being mentioned? It’s because the canonical argument cannot stand up to the counterargument. As was said in A Few Good Men, “You can’t handle the truth.” Neil Young, Anthony Fauci, and their teammates can’t handle the truth; therefore they must silence it.
Censorship, though, requires a justification. An example is the recent Department of Homeland Security (DHS) document that warns of the terrorist rabble-rousing produced by the mis, dis, and mal (pick your favorite fear-mongering preface to “information”) that is present in our society. According to the DHS, we live in a “heightened threat environment.” And why is that? Among the causes of this terror threat is:
The proliferation of false or misleading narratives, which sow discord or undermine public trust in U.S. government institutions. For example, there is widespread online proliferation of false or misleading narratives regarding unsubstantiated widespread election fraud and COVID-19. Grievances associated with these themes inspired violent extremist attacks during 2021.
Perhaps when people say, “My body, my choice; I don’t want to have a vaccine injected in me” they are sowing discord and undermining public trust — in US government institutions such as . . . the DHS? Somewhat narcissistic, eh?
Most interesting about these claims by DHS is the lack of an objective justification. Maybe that’s what Joe Biden meant when he contrasted facts with truth. Which brings us back to the heresy justification: the argument of “truth” against the terrors of misinformation — i.e., hard, simple facts.