Among the foolish legislation California lawmakers allowed to pass in this session of the legislature, criminalizing medical doctors for “spreading misinformation” about COVID-19 is at the top of the idiocy ladder. Assemblyman Evan Low and Senator and Dr. Richard Pan, both Bay Area Democrats, sponsored bill AB 2098 for just that purpose. It was passed by the legislature and now sits on Governor Gavin Newsom’s desk for either veto or signature. Should Newsom not make a decision by October 1, the bill passes into law.
From Fox News:
President Joe Biden may have declared the pandemic “over,” but someone needs to tell the state of California. A bill sitting on Governor Gavin Newsom’s desk would levy career-ending penalties on doctors deemed guilty of spreading so-called “misinformation” related to COVID-19. If enacted, this law has the potential to destroy the medical profession and stifle innovation from coast to coast.
The bill in question, AB 2098, would allow the Medical Board of California to revoke a doctor’s license to practice medicine in the state for expressing an opinion “contradicted by contemporary scientific consensus contrary to the standard of care.” The problem is that “contemporary scientific consensus” has fluctuated wildly over the past two years.
Dr. Jay Bhattacharya is an epidemiologist and professor of Health Policy for Stanford University School of Medicine. Dr. Bhattacharya is also the co-author of the Great Barrington Declaration (GBD). In 2020, the GBD letter took the unprecedented step of calling out the wrongs of health experts and medical personnel in promoting lockdowns and shutting down world economies, for a virus which studies have shown has a 99.95 percent survival rate for healthy people under the age of 70 who have no comorbidities.
Dr. Bhattacharya was targeted by Dr. Anthony Fauci and NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins, so he is no stranger to being attacked for telling the truth and condemning adherence to medical consensus no matter what the costs.
Former New York Times journalist Bari Weiss invited Dr. Bhattacharya on her Common Sense Substack to discuss his experiences and warn about the evils embedded in AB 2098:
In October 2020, I, along with colleagues Sunetra Gupta of Oxford, and Martin Kulldorff, then of Harvard, issued an open letter called the Great Barrington Declaration. In it, we expressed deep concern about the damage caused by the international public health response to Covid through sweeping lockdowns, school shutdowns, business closures, and more.
We urged a nuanced approach that focused on protecting those most vulnerable to Covid—primarily the elderly and those with certain comorbidities—and returning to normal life those more harmed by lockdowns than by the disease.
Nearly a million people have signed our letter, including tens of thousands of doctors and scientists from over 40 countries. In other words, we were far from alone in our belief that this was the proper response to an unprecedented pandemic.
But the official response was swift and brutal.
Four days after we published the Great Barrington Declaration, Francis Collins, then director of the National Institutes of Health, wrote an email to Anthony Fauci calling the three of us “fringe epidemiologists.” He called for a press “takedown” of us when an open discussion of our ideas would have been more productive. Big tech outlets like Facebook and Google followed suit, suppressing our ideas, falsely deeming them “misinformation.” I started getting calls from reporters asking me why I wanted to “let the virus rip,” when I had proposed nothing of the sort. I was the target of racist attacks and death threats.
Fast forward two years, and Dr. Bhattacharya, Dr. Sunetra Gupta, Dr. Martin Kulldorff, and the other GBD signatories were the ones on the side of right and truth, and their findings and pronouncements have been vindicated. The Science™ that Fauci and Co. used to bludgeon the entire world was proven false by The Science.
The Science ™ disgraced science during the covid era. For science to recover from being a laughing stock, scientists must repudiate The Science ™. https://t.co/z6KRBvxReN
— Jay Bhattacharya (@DrJBhattacharya) September 27, 2022
Sadly, the COVID propaganda campaign continues to seek to gaslight and control the information surrounding the virus, the failed measures they are still choosing to use to “mitigate” the virus, and the medical decisions doctors and patients make. AB 2098 is a dangerous part of this campaign, not only coming between the relationship between doctor and patient, but seeking to destroy doctor’s careers and livelihoods for simply doing what they are trained to do: perform scientific inquiry and apply the proper and most medically sound solutions for their patients.
Now that AB 2098 has passed the legislature and is in that critical period of either being vetoed by Newsom or passing into law, the battle lines are being drawn in the public square, particularly on Twitter. Dr. Pan continues to do the work that Fauci and Collins started: to target, discredit, and malign anyone who calls out his falsehoods about what this law would actually do.
If it's true that AB2098, the dystopian California bill, really is limited to taking away licenses from bad doctors who directly harm patients, why is California legislator @DrPanMD singling me out for criticizing the bill he co sponsored? The real aim is to silence dissent. https://t.co/L152kMSpEh
— Jay Bhattacharya (@DrJBhattacharya) September 25, 2022
Dr. Bhattacharya goes into greater detail in the Substack article:
This forced scientific groupthink—and the fear and self-censorship they produce—are bad enough. So far, though, the risk has been social and reputational. Now it could become literally career-ending.
According to California Assembly Bill 2098, physicians who deviate from an authorized set of beliefs would do so at risk to their medical license. The bill, written by Assemblyman Evan Low, a Democrat in Silicon Valley, and currently making its way through the California Legislature, is motivated by the idea that practicing doctors are spreading “misinformation” about the risks of Covid, its treatment, and the Covid vaccine. It declares that physicians and surgeons who “disseminate or promote misinformation or disinformation related to COVID-19, including false or misleading information regarding the nature and risks of the virus, its prevention and treatment; and the development, safety, and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines” shall be subject to “disciplinary action,” which could result in the loss of the doctor’s medical license.
The language of the bill itself is intentionally vague about what constitutes “misinformation,” which makes it even more damaging. Doctors, fearing loss of their livelihoods, will need to hew closely to the government line on Covid science and policy, even if that line does not track the scientific evidence. After all, until recently, top government science bureaucrats like Dr. Fauci claimed that the idea that Covid came from a Wuhan laboratory was a conspiracy theory, rather than a valid hypothesis that should be open to discussion. The government’s track record on discerning Covid truths is poor.
No kidding. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors are allowing the citizens of the county to be held hostage by L.A. Department of Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer, who would not know science or truth if they bit her in the rear. “Not that Kind of Doctor” Ferrer, and her constantly shifting facts and data only serve to support the COVID command and control narrative.
The bill claims that the spread of misinformation by physicians about the Covid vaccines “has weakened public confidence and placed lives at serious risk.” But how significant is this problem in reality? Over 83% of Californians over the age of 50 are fully vaccinated (including the booster).
What is abundantly clear is that this bill represents a chilling interference with the practice of medicine. The bill itself is full of misinformation and a demonstration of what a disaster it would be to have the legislature dictate the practice of medicine.
Isn’t that the way of these wannabe dictators? They attempt to control misinformation by others by spreading misinformation to control others.
It never lets up.
For starters, it fails to note that people who have contracted Covid—by now a considerable number of Californians—already have substantial protection against severe disease if they get Covid again. High quality studies have shown that this “natural immunity” provides equivalent or even greater protection than immunity generated by Pfizer and Moderna’s mRNA vaccines. If this bill passes, would a California physician be in trouble for taking into account a patient’s Covid history when making vaccination recommendations?
Dr. Pan has made it his personal mission to malign and tear down Dr. Bhattacharya and other brave medical and legal professionals, as well as medical freedom advocates who are speaking out about the dangers of this bill becoming law. Claiming the opposition to AB 2098 is an “amplified minority,” Dr. Pan has also enlisted his own minority among the chattering class to gaslight and keep the misinformation train running on the tracks.
There continues to be an ongoing attack on CA’s AB2098 as being related to the 1st Amendment and private speech as a private citizen.
These are intentional lies.
Professional speech as a physician working with patients is medical practice, and should be legally considered such.
— Taylor Nichols, MD (@tnicholsmd) September 24, 2022
Pan also suppresses comments from California citizens asking for specific data and asking legitimate questions.
Why won't @DrPanMD answer whether AB2098, the California doctors censorship bill considers intent under its vague definition of "misinformation"? Why does he hide requests from a constituent to answer this question? That is because his goal is censorship. pic.twitter.com/SwRWY14DHq
— Jay Bhattacharya (@DrJBhattacharya) September 26, 2022
Dr. Bhattacharya continues to be on the side of science, history, and truth; and along with advocating against AB 2098, he continues to speak out about what it cost the world by following The Science™.
The Great Barrington #ThugLife
Whilst this video is a bit of fun, I've come to know a man who behind the incredibly poised and intelligent exterior is someone equally as appalled and mocking of the irrationality of Daniel Andrews and Gavin Newsom as we are.@DrJBhattacharya pic.twitter.com/naJIzPlaK4
— discernable (@discernableco) September 23, 2022
And a corollary: if civil liberties and free speech are void during a crisis or a pandemic then they do not hold at all. That is when they are most important. https://t.co/3mNSG0X4T2
— Jay Bhattacharya (@DrJBhattacharya) September 27, 2022
Senator Ron Johnson has been fighting real COVID misinformation himself by documenting vaccine injury from the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson COVID products, and hearing from doctors who have been targeted by medical licensing boards for saving the lives of their patients by applying treatments that work, and because they don’t parrot The Science™.
Dr. Pierre Kory is one of those doctors who is also standing for medical freedom and against AB 2098. Dr. Kory and Sen. Johnson wrote in a Fox News op-ed:
What happens in California does not stay in California. Newsom can kill this terrible bill and prevent a hostile takeover of medicine by oppressive government censors. Let’s hope he does the right thing.
Doing the right thing has never been Gavin Newsom’s strong suit. Doing what is politically expedient has. If Newsom does veto the bill, the calculus will depend upon how much it helps or hurts his presidential aspirations.
Leigh Dundas, a human rights attorney, is organizing doctors, lawyers, activists, and concerned citizens to come to the Sacramento Capitol on Friday, September 30, 2022, to urge Governor Newsom to veto AB 2098. If you wish to partner with her, visit medicalcensorship.org.
Human rights attorney Leigh Dundas' inviting you to come to the steps of Sacramento Capitol to hear doctors, lawyers, activists plead to VETO the California bill AB 2098 that will completely censor the medical community who are accused of misinformation. https://t.co/GWmNEHVJ5j pic.twitter.com/uSsmylnotV
— Mark Trent (@trentster) September 27, 2022