In a previous essay titled “Loud Silenced Doctors”, I wrote the following about the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration:
They’ve been on far-reaching podcasts claiming they’ve been “censored”. They’ve said the same thing on national TV programs. They’ve written editorials in international newspapers claiming they’ve been “muzzled.” They lament attempts to “censor and silence scientists” to their hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers. They even opened an Academy for Science and Freedom at Hillsdale College to counter “the silencing and censoring of scientists”
Of course, the three authors of the Great Barrington Declaration haven’t been silenced. Sure YouTube removed one of their many videos, which seemed to be the touchstone moment of the pandemic for them, along with being called “fringe“. But these insults aside, the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration have become celebrities of sorts. They given many interviews. They’ve writing many editorials. They have large social media followings. Their many admirers frequently regret they weren’t given more attention. They’ve testified before Congress and in courts. They’ve advised President Trump and Ron DeSantis. Everyone who follows the pandemic closely knows who they are and what they believe. It takes effort to avoid them.
Moreover, nearly all of their favored pandemic policies have been reality for a long time now. Aside from many millions of children being vaccinated prior to being infected, they got what they wanted.
However, it occurred to me that one group of doctors has been silenced this pandemic. We no longer hear from them at all, and few of us know their names. They are defined by their absence and so we are unaware they are missing. These are doctors- and nurses, pharmacists, and all vital healthcare workers- who died from COVID. It takes effort to notice them.
A memorial to Bellevue Hospital employees who died of COVID’s first wave
I wonder what they would say if they could speak to us today.
What would they say about the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration- who weren’t there on the front lines with them- who now feel too much was done to stop the virus at the start of the pandemic? What would they think about doctors who spread blatant misinformation, always minimizing the risks of COVID? How would they feel about doctors who advised young people not to “live in fear from coronavirus” and mocked those who did? How would they feel about doctors who discouraged vaccination while fetishizing “natural immunity.” How would they feel about doctors who treated rare vaccine side effects as a fate worse than death?
Nearly all healthcare workers killed by COVID would still be alive today if not for the virus. I think I have a good idea what they would say if they could speak to us today. I doubt they would speak too highly of sheltered doctors who extol the Triumph of Natural Immunity, callously forgetting the doctors for whom natural immunity was a death sentence.
Of course, we’ll never know. Silenced doctors are tragically silent.