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Legislating Sanity

September 4, 2020

The AP reports on the horrors endured by Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other minorities in China’s Xinjiang region as the government enforces not only draconian “lockdown” measures, but forced pseudoscientific medication. Hard to read without needing to lie down.


Peter Hamblin at The Atlantic: The administration’s reliance on herd immunity is “a contradiction in terms” and “the absence of a strategy.” In an associated podcast episode on the topic, Yale’s Howard Forman says, “And by the way, there’s never been a real case of herd immunity through infection.” Cool.

Liz Bucar at The Revealer sees a connection between many Americans’ hostility toward face masks and Islamophobia: “Because the dominant framing of face coverings is that they are foreign, a sign of submission, and an assault to American values, our country is now unable to cover when it is literally an issue of life and death.”

Marvel at these words coming from Deepak Freaking Chopra: “To not look at the scientific evidence is, in my view, idiotic. But how can you legislate sanity?”

You already know this, but now a study says it. The Post: “States led by Republican governors have been slower than those led by Democrats to require residents to wear masks to protect against the novel coronavirus — if they have adopted such rules at all.”

The next Batman has COVID-19. Plus, Dwayne Johnson has it, and he’s going to play Black Adam. Even superheroes (and super-anti-heroes) aren’t safe.


French President Emmanuel Macron: “At the start of the trial of the [Charlie Hebdo] attacks of January 2015, I say that to be French is to defend the right to laugh, jest, mock and caricature, of which Voltaire maintained that it is the source of all other rights.”

Sonny Bunch in the Post: “If you’re a friend of freedom of expression, you have no choice but to back Charlie Hebdo with reservation no greater than ‘I disagree with what you say, but I’ll defend until death your right to say it.’ It is cowardly to do otherwise.”


Andrew Seidel on the Christian support for Kenosha killer Kyle Rittenhouse: “There are those who don’t hear these dog whistles, not because they’re inaudible, but because they’ve stuffed their fingers into their ears, unwilling to hear anything that might connect their religion with racism.”

Ryan Burge: In an average five-year span, one-in-ten Americans either becomes or stops being “born-again.” Plus, a new born-again isn’t much more likely to start going to church, or even vote Republican.

The Orange County Board of Commissioners in North Carolina is doing away with the Pledge of Allegiance.

As the Only Person in Maine Who Has No Interest in Kayaking, I find this church in Pennsylvania doubly baffling.


Clay Jones at Science-Based Medicine: A TikTok “challenge” shows how Benadryl is “a bad drug.” I’ve always thought so.

Kenny Biddle at Skeptical Inquirer: That ghostly bride is neither ghost nor bride. Discuss.


We’re keeping track of COVID-19 pseudoscience, snake oil, fake cures, and more at CFI’s Coronavirus Resource Center. Separate fact from fiction and inoculate yourself from misinformation at centerforinquiry.org/coronavirus.


Linking to a story or webpage does not imply endorsement by Paul or CFI. Not every use of quotation marks is ironic or sarcastic, but it often is.



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