That 'Plandemic' conspiracy video has been thoroughly debunked, people. Stop pushing it on us.

The coronavirus pandemic has brought out a whole slew of interesting human tendencies, including a veritable tsunami of conspiracy theories. Like, holy cow, folks. When did everyone start pulling out their tinfoil hats?

There are several reasons for this, from the emotional and psychological needs that conspiracy theories fulfill (especially during such an uncertain time), to the intellectual habits that enable people to fall prey to such theories.

And of course, there's always a shred of truth in any conspiracy theory, which pulls people in. But just as a shred of fabric doesn't make a shirt, a shred of truth in a conspiracy theory doesn't make it credible or true.

By now, you've undoubtedly seen or at least heard about the Plandemic video making the rounds. YouTube keeps taking it down because of its policy against spreading harmful misinformation about the coronavirus, but that of course just fuels the fire of conspiracy theorists who think the truth is being silenced. The good news is that the claims in the video have been debunked many times over at this point. The bad news is that the people who need to see these debunkings have probably not even read this far into the article, and are definitely not going to take the time to read and process what we share past this point.


But we're gonna go ahead and share these well-cited debunkings anyway, because facts matter, sources matter, not all opinions are equal, and we can't keep letting paranoid theories that don't hold up to scrutiny and can't be backed up with well-done science go unchecked.

(And yes, there is such a thing as well-done science. The scientific world has spent many, many decades improving and systematizing processes for checking data, replicating studies, peer-reviewing findings, etc. so that we have a good idea of what science we can trust and what science is not credible. The only way to refute well-done science is to toss the entire systematized scientific process out the window and instead listen to random individual scientists who refuse to accept that their work was shoddy. Not all scientists are credible, and if a scientist is publishing their opinion outside of the scientific community—especially via YouTube—you should immediately be skeptical and look for whether or not their claims have been debunked by well-done science.)

Case in point, Judy Mikovitz, the scientist at the forefront of the Plandemic video.

Since there are so many clear refutations of the claims in that video and there's no need to reinvent the wheel, we're just going to share a bunch of them with you. Off we go:

- Here's an explanation from Kat Montgomery, a surgical pathology fellow in the Department of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

- Here's an explanation from a social epidemiologist with a PhD from Johns Hopkins:


- Here's an explanation from a microbiologist (see her credentials here) who outlines some of the most blatantly wrong things in the Plandemic video with links to back her up:

- Here's an explanation of the difference between a scientific theory and a conspiracy theory, for those who think that the conspiracy theories are using science as their basis:

- Here's a Snopes piece that details the issues with Judy Mikovitz's research and history and why she is no way a credible source. (It's worth noting that this was written in 2018, long before the pandemic. This woman has been discredited in the scientific world for years.)

- And here's another Snopes piece about the issues with the chiropractor in the video who advocates drinking tonic water as a way to prevent coronavirus.

(I realize that most conspiracy theorists don't trust Snopes because...well...they think the site is part of a liberal conspiracy. But the Snopes debunkings include links to reputable sources to back up their facts checks, so if the conspiracy theorists really look at everything and think critically like they claim to do, they have to look at the information and sources claiming to debunk their theories. Then they have to either refute them with actual science from reputable sources or admit that they have no credible basis for their beliefs.)

- Here's an article I wrote about how medical associations as well as statistical experts have condemned the Bakersfield doctors shown in the video (which is a bit unnecessary since the docs issued a public statement condemned the Plandemic filmmakers for using footage of them anyway).

- Here's a decently thorough debunking by surgical oncologist David Gorski.

- Here's a very thorough explanation of the Plandemic erroneousness on Reddit, where you can also see discussion on the video and the debunking (for those of you who say, "Let's at least have a debate!" about already thoroughly debunked claims—here's where you can have at it.)

- If you prefer doctors on YouTube sharing their professional opinions on all things pandemic—which seems to be the favorite method for conspiracy theorists to do "research"—here's a doctor who explains a bit about the psychology of the Plandemic video and also explains the shoddy research behind it.

"Plandemic" Video Analysis | Did Judy Mikovits Connect the Dots? www.youtube.com

- This final one from Stanford-trained physician Dr. Zubin Damania might be just be my favorite (but only after reading everything above for the facts). For those of us who are trying not to lose our minds over having to continually fact-check all of this misinformation for people who really should be able to do it themselves, this 3-and-a-half minutes is quite cathartic. Enjoy.

A Doctor Reacts To “Plandemic" www.youtube.com

Bottom line: The video is bunk, but conspiracy theorists will keep on insisting that it's not. (Wake up! You're all sheep following the mainstream media! Experts who provide data backed up by multiple peer-reviewed studies can't be trusted! Individual doctors and scientists are more trustworthy than professional associations of thousands of doctors and scientists! Everyone is getting paid off, except these conspiracy theory pushers because I trust them because they say they're being persecuted by the science community for no reason and that sounds totally legit! And maybe the earth really IS flat—scientists have been wrong before!)

Did I miss anything?

When "bobcat" trended on Twitter this week, no one anticipated the unreal series of events they were about to witness. The bizarre bobcat encounter was captured on a security cam video and...well...you just have to see it. (Read the following description if you want to be prepared, or skip down to the video if you want to be surprised. I promise, it's a wild ride either way.)

In a North Carolina neighborhood that looks like a present-day Pleasantville, a man carries a cup of coffee and a plate of brownies out to his car. "Good mornin!" he calls cheerfully to a neighbor jogging by. As he sets his coffee cup on the hood of the car, he says, "I need to wash my car." Well, shucks. His wife enters the camera frame on the other side of the car.

So far, it's just about the most classic modern Americana scene imaginable. And then...

A horrifying "rrrrawwwww!" Blood-curdling screaming. Running. Panic. The man abandons the brownies, races to his wife's side of the car, then emerges with an animal in his hands. He holds the creature up like Rafiki holding up Simba, then yells in its face, "Oh my god! It's a bobcat! Oh my god!"

Then he hucks the bobcat across the yard with all his might.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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