Democrats introduce legislation to 'combat health misinformation’ based on misinformation

Cartoons About Corona VirusPurpose of bill not so much to combat misinformation, but to push government's own misinformation

Legislation was introduced last week that would dedicate $45 million in taxpayer funds to promote government COVID-19 vaccine claims. 

The Promoting Public Health Information Act, sponsored by Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), would establish a new committee within the Health and Human Services (HHS) Department.  

But the Public Health Information and Communications Advisory Committee would not just include experts in public health and medicine. It would also include experts in communications and national security.  

“The Advisory Committee would make recommendations on effective ways to communicate scientific and medical information and understand the impact of misinformation during a public health emergency," Luján says on his website. 

The Act would also issue awards to those who follow the government’s talking points. 

The HHS secretary would be authorized to “issue awards to develop evidenced-based initiatives to educate the public and promote fact-based public health and medical science.” 

In a press release, Murphy clarifies that there would be a large emphasis on advertising masks and the COVID-19 vaccine. 

“Throughout this pandemic, the impact of misinformation has been devastating,” said the release. “Rumors and conspiracy theories about the efficacy of masking or the safety of vaccines still run rampant on social media and have caused thousands of deaths that could have been prevented. This legislation will help us get smart about how to tackle misinformation and effectively promote science-based health information, especially as we continue fighting COVID-19 and prepare for future public health emergencies.”  

It’s clear, however, that the purpose of the bill is not so much to combat misinformation, but to push the government's own misinformation. 

Speaking at a roundtable at the Yale School of Medicine yesterday, Murphy promoted the bill by lamenting that some Americans don’t subscribe to the COVID-19 narrative. 

To illustrate this, he cited a study which found that 7% of respondents believe the COVID-19 vaccine contains fetal tissue and 8% believe that it will change their DNA. 

Vaccines containing fetal tissue is a well-known fact among the medical establishment, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

As for the vaccine changing DNA, Swedish researchers found last week that the vaccine enters into human liver cells and is indeed converted into DNA. 

But in addition to directly contradicting this science, Murphy neglected to mention the huge numbers of Americans who believe and share misinformation that exaggerates the pandemic. 

According to a poll by Franklin Templeton and Gallup, 41% of Democratic voters think that at least half of COVID patients need to be hospitalized. The actual number is between 1%-5%. 

Democrats also vastly exaggerated the risk to younger people, thinking that at least 8% of people ages 24 and under get COVID, when the number was around 0.1%. 

However, it appears that the fear narrative, no matter how misinformed, does not fall under the category of “misinformation”. 

Source : https://aflds.org/news/post/democrats-introduce-legislation-to-combat-health-misinformation-based-on-misinformation/

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