At a recent conclave of medical professionals hosted by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, an ER doctor named Joseph Fraiman publicly apologized to three of the attendees, Drs. Jay Bhattacharya, Martin Kulldorff, and Sunetra Gupta.
The three doctors had authored the anti-lockdown manifesto known as the Great Barrington Declaration (read the entire declaration below), which had been much maligned by the mainstream health industry, but in retrospect appears to have been prescient. Author and political commentator Tom Woods was in attendance. Here’s what he wrote about the exchange from LewRockwell.com (abridged):
DeSantis himself, whom I got to chat with a bit after the event, struck me as informed, down to earth, and authentic. What you see on television is what you get in person, except in person he’s funnier and edgier.
The event itself featured such notables as Dr. Robert Malone, Dr. Tracy Hoeg, Dr. Jill Ackerman, Dr. Christopher D’Adamo, Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, Dr. Martin Kulldorff, Dr. Harvey Risch, and Dr. Sunetra Gupta.
During the event an ER doctor named Joseph Fraiman offered a public apology to Professors Bhattacharya, Kulldorff, and Gupta, whose anti-lockdown Great Barrington Declaration he had once considered dangerous. He was sure that places without harsh COVID lockdowns would experience worse outcomes.
“You were right,” he said to them. “I was wrong…. The scientist in me…had to acknowledge that my hypothesis had been falsified.”
Stanford’s Jay Bhattacharya emphasized the various ways in which the people in that room had been correct from the start, and reminded people of his own work early on, in March and April 2020, showing how much more widespread the virus was than previously thought. That meant there was no way a lockdown strategy could possibly work, but it would severely harm the working class and ordinary people in general.
The event wrapped up with a striking announcement from Joseph Ladapo, the heroic Florida Surgeon General: Florida is now the first state to recommend against the vaccines for healthy children.
Read more here.
Here is the text of The Great Barrington Declaration, authored by Drs. Jay Bhattacharya, Martin Kulldorff, and Sunetra Gupta on October 4, 2020.
The Great Barrington Declaration
The Great Barrington Declaration – As infectious disease epidemiologists and public health scientists we have grave concerns about the damaging physical and mental health impacts of the prevailing COVID-19 policies, and recommend an approach we call Focused Protection.
Coming from both the left and right, and around the world, we have devoted our careers to protecting people. Current lockdown policies are producing devastating effects on short and long-term public health. The results (to name a few) include lower childhood vaccination rates, worsening cardiovascular disease outcomes, fewer cancer screenings and deteriorating mental health – leading to greater excess mortality in years to come, with the working class and younger members of society carrying the heaviest burden. Keeping students out of school is a grave injustice.
Keeping these measures in place until a vaccine is available will cause irreparable damage, with the underprivileged disproportionately harmed.
Fortunately, our understanding of the virus is growing. We know that vulnerability to death from COVID-19 is more than a thousand-fold higher in the old and infirm than the young. Indeed, for children, COVID-19 is less dangerous than many other harms, including influenza.
As immunity builds in the population, the risk of infection to all – including the vulnerable – falls. We know that all populations will eventually reach herd immunity – i.e. the point at which the rate of new infections is stable – and that this can be assisted by (but is not dependent upon) a vaccine. Our goal should therefore be to minimize mortality and social harm until we reach herd immunity.
The most compassionate approach that balances the risks and benefits of reaching herd immunity, is to allow those who are at minimal risk of death to live their lives normally to build up immunity to the virus through natural infection, while better protecting those who are at highest risk. We call this Focused Protection.
Adopting measures to protect the vulnerable should be the central aim of public health responses to COVID-19. By way of example, nursing homes should use staff with acquired immunity and perform frequent testing of other staff and all visitors. Staff rotation should be minimized. Retired people living at home should have groceries and other essentials delivered to their home. When possible, they should meet family members outside rather than inside. A comprehensive and detailed list of measures, including approaches to multi-generational households, can be implemented, and is well within the scope and capability of public health professionals.
Those who are not vulnerable should immediately be allowed to resume life as normal. Simple hygiene measures, such as hand washing and staying home when sick should be practiced by everyone to reduce the herd immunity threshold. Schools and universities should be open for in-person teaching. Extracurricular activities, such as sports, should be resumed. Young low-risk adults should work normally, rather than from home. Restaurants and other businesses should open. Arts, music, sport and other cultural activities should resume. People who are more at risk may participate if they wish, while society as a whole enjoys the protection conferred upon the vulnerable by those who have built up herd immunity.
If you’re willing to fight for Main Street America, click here to sign up for my free weekly email.