Monday, September 19, 2022

Post-Vaccine Myocarditis Concerns

 From The Federalist:

When reports first surfaced in 2021 that some cases of myocarditis — the inflammation of the heart muscle, potentially leading to blood clots and heart attack or stroke — were potentially associated with the Covid-19 vaccine, the corporate media and its fact-checkers were quick to label them as misinformation, saying the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh its small risks.

A year later, though, the media can no longer deny that what they called misinformation actually has data to back it up. As Matt Shapiro detailed in his Substack post on the matter, “Last year’s misinformation on vaccine-associated myocarditis in young men is this year’s well-established fact.” (Read more.)

 From The Defender:

A federal judge on Tuesday ordered top-ranking Biden administration officials — including Dr. Anthony Fauci and White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre — to hand over their communications with five social media giants within 21 days.

The ruling stems from a lawsuit filed earlier this year by Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt and Louisiana Attorney General Jeffrey Landry alleging the Biden administration colluded with Big Tech firms Twitter, Meta (Facebook’s parent company), Youtube, Instagram and LinkedIn to censor certain viewpoints under the guise of preventing the circulation of “misinformation” or “disinformation.”

U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty in July ordered the Biden administration to swiftly produce records requested by the plaintiffs as part of the discovery process.

On Aug. 2, Schmitt and Landry filed discovery requests seeking documents and information from the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and its director, Fauci; White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre; Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy; and former Disinformation Governance Board executive director Nina Jankowicz.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs also sent discovery requests to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and its director, Jen Easterly; the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS); and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The requests resulted in a cache of documents revealing more than 50 Biden administration workers and 12 U.S. agencies had been involved in a censorship push over social media.

However, some government officials — including Fauci — refused to provide records or answer any questions posed by the plaintiffs, claiming the communications were protected under executive privilege.

The government claimed Fauci should not be required to answer the plaintiff’s questions or provide records related to his capacity as NIAID director or related to his capacity as Biden’s chief medical officer. Additionally, the government sought to withhold records and responses from Jean-Pierre.

Judge Doughty on Tuesday broke the stalemate by ruling that both Fauci and Jean-Pierre must comply with the interrogatories and hand over the requested records.

“First,” Judge Doughty said in the ruling, “the requested information is obviously very relevant to Plaintiffs’ claims. Dr. Fauci’s communications would be relevant to Plaintiffs’ allegations in reference to alleged suppression of speech relating to the lab-leak theory of COVID-19’s origin, and to alleged suppression of speech about the efficiency of masks and COVID-19 lockdowns. Jean-Pierre’s communications as White House Press Secretary could be relevant to all of Plaintiffs’ examples.” (Read more.)

From BMJ Journals:

For children, the collateral damage of the COVID-19 pandemic response has been considerable: ‘nearly insurmountable’ educational losses,1 deteriorating mental health,2 low routine childhood vaccination rates,3 39 billion missed school meals by January 20214 and millions of estimated life-years lost among students in the USA alone.5 It is difficult to deny the harmful impact of lockdowns on children, who are society’s most vulnerable members. In this paper, we use the framework of evidence-based medicine to argue that child abuse is another negative side effect of COVID-19 lockdowns.

One of us serves as the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Early Childhood Champion for the State of New Jersey, and we firmly stand by the AAP’s initial goal of having every student physically present in school during the pandemic.6 Yet, the potential reduction of COVID-19 transmission has been cited as justification for lockdowns, an intensive package of non-pharmaceutical interventions which include the prolonged use of general population restrictions and school closures.7 While it was certain that school closures would have profound social and economic costs, it remains uncertain whether they have any effect on COVID-19 transmission.8 One such cost is the negative effects on the detection, reporting and prevention of child abuse. Meanwhile, Sweden, which notably did not close primary schools, has emerged from the pandemic with one of the lowest overall excess mortality rates in Western Europe and finds no evidence of learning loss.9 10

There is emerging evidence that lockdowns significantly worsened child abuse on a global scale. Low-income and middle-income countries are particularly vulnerable to increases in child abuse. In Uganda, for example, there was a 1565% increase in the average number of calls per day to the Uganda Child Helpline in the first month of lockdown.11 Yet, even wealthy nations in the West did not escape unscathed. In the UK, there was a 1493% increase in cases of abusive head trauma at Great Ormond Street Hospital.12 In France, there was an 89% increase in national child abuse helpline calls, a 48% increase in home visits by law enforcement officers and a 50% increase in the relative frequency of child abuse hospitalisations.13 14 Furthermore, there appears to have been insidious changes with potentially long-term effects which are more difficult to measure. In the Netherlands, for example, there was a 32% increase in previously rare harsh parenting behaviours, including shaking and name calling.15

Agencies of the United Nations (UN) report that ‘the COVID-19 response’—school closures, movement restrictions, loss of income, isolation, overcrowding and stay-at-home measures—affected the frequency and intensity of risk factors for child abuse.16 First, child abuse tends to increase during public health emergencies. Second, the implementation of lockdowns were often followed by spikes in calls to child abuse helplines. Third, quarantines may be ‘the worst situation imaginable’ for vulnerable children who are pushed closer to their abusers. Fourth, lockdown-related disruptions imposed barriers to accessing community providers who recognise and report child abuse. Fifth, child abuse rates are likely to stabilise at a higher level than before the pandemic due to the persistence of risk factors, including unemployment and financial insecurity.

The best available external evidence from systematic research during the pandemic demonstrates an increase in the risk of child maltreatment, an increase in child maltreatment hospitalisations and a concerning decrease in official child maltreatment referrals.17 18 Given the lack of high-quality overall evidence, however, there is admittedly some uncertainty regarding the effect of lockdowns on child abuse. Despite an increase in the proportion of child abuse-related hospitalisation in the USA, for example, there was an initial transient decrease in child abuse reports.19 Some have therefore questioned whether lockdowns have anything to do with an increase in child abuse at all. Robert Sege and Allison Stephens describe child abuse during lockdowns as a so-called ‘missing epidemic’, hypothesizing that lockdowns prevented child abuse by strengthening families, community resources, and financial assistance.20 (Read more.) 


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