IN WHICH WE SAY NOTHING CONTROVERSIAL OR UPSETTING AT ALL
Believe it or not, some people consider Modern Satanism a controversial topic.
So in the interest of variety and moderating the discourse, we won’t be saying anything controversial this week at all. Instead, we’re going to present a series of completely factual and value-neutral statements that any reader can easily corroborate.
To start with:
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, first identified in late 2019 in the Wuhan province of China. It is not actually caused by witchcraft, black magic curses, Communism, George Soros, or the Illuminati, as none of those are infectious agents.
Most people with COVID-19 suffer relatively mild flu-like symptoms and recover in short order; many may never realize they’re sick. A smaller but still significant number of cases prove serious and progress to the point of grave illness and death; our research shows that death is widely considered the least preferred outcome of any health incident.
Preachers and conspiracists claim that COVID-19 has a “99.7 percent survival rate,” or “99.99 percent” or “99.9999999 percent” or whatever.
These numbers are never correct, but it also doesn’t really matter, because mortality rates are not constant, they can increase or decrease relative to public behavior: If we drive up the number of cases in a short period, more people will die due to our inability to treat everyone at once.
Besides, if a disease really did kill 0.3 percent of infected and it infected everyone in America, that would be about 100,000 deaths. Is that a lot? Well, it’s 100,000 people, so what do you think?
In reality, COVID-19 killed over 345,000 Americans just in 2020, more than any other single cause besides heart disease and cancer. Despite what your great aunt’s Facebook says, these people really did die of COVID-19, not a conspiracy by every nurse and doctor in America to manufacture the records.
Similarly, we can confirm that hospital staff are not secret night hags who sit on the chests of sleeping patients and draw the breath of life from their lungs; there is broad scientific consensus on both of these points.
A consensus of laboratory and observational studies as well as comparative studies with similar respiratory diseases illustrates that wearing a simple, surgical-style mask over your mouth and nose marginally diminishes chances of becoming infected if exposed to COVID-19 and greatly diminishes the odds of unintentionally infecting others if you are ill without your knowledge.
Masks are not in fact products of Satanic Illuminati mind control, raiments of ancient Middle Eastern black magic, the Mark of the Beast described in Revelation 13, or somehow deadly to the people wearing them. They’re a simple, thin piece of fabric, exactly as sinister as, say, your socks.
It’s true that misuse, carelessness, or improper cleaning of masks can significantly diminish their benefits. However, the most reliable way to reduce the efficacy of any preventative measure is not to ever use it, David from elementary school, so this is neither here nor there in your case.
The most effective preventative treatment against COVID-19 infection is vaccination; in October, the Lancet surveyed the medical records of 4.9 million people and measured vaccine efficacy up to 97 percent, although this could diminish over time and with exposure to new variants of the disease. Any degree of protection is higher than zero, however.
Potentially serious side effects of vaccination occur in a tiny number of cases; for example, two to five patients per million may suffer from anaphylaxis. Note that that’s not two to five percent, it’s two to five people, period.
Additionally, combined cases of thrombocytopenia syndrome, Guillain-Barré Syndrome, and myocarditis and pericarditis add up to some 2,001 incidents nationwide–fewer than the number of people who have slept with Gene Simmons, a decision that comes with a much higher risk of disease.
Side effects of vaccination do not include mind control, infertility, dissolution of the immune system, or having your DNA altered so that god will not admit you to Heaven.
Similarly, we can confirm that aspirin does not turn you into a vampire, antacids do not lead to an increased risk of alien abduction, and birth control does not engender witchcraft; the exact same empirical process disconfirmed all of these results, so they should all be easy to corroborate.
It’s true that vaccinated persons may still potentially become sick from COVID-19. For example, if a vaccine is 97 percent effective, you still have about a three percent chance of becoming ill; our numbers guy has been running these figures all week and he says they’re totally solid. Since three is significantly less than 97, this remains encouraging.
Facebook memes question what the “long-term effects” of vaccination may be. One long-term effect is that you will be much less likely to suddenly die of COVID, which, if it were to happen, would mean you’ll be dead forever, which is about as long-term as any effect can be. So there is that.
Beyond that, the question is somewhat incoherent: Vaccine agents leave your body within a few days usually, so there is nothing around to affect you much after that. It’s like drinking a beer today and worrying you’ll become drunk next week.
The actual long-term effects are the result of the vaccine triggering your body’s immune response, so really the question is what are the long-term effects of having a functioning immune system, and the answer is that fewer things are likely to kill you.
The memes also claim that vaccines are “untested.” In reality, just one Pfizer study from 2020 involved a pool of 43,000 people, although of course half of those were in the placebo control group. Half of 43,000 is still significantly more than none, however–again, we’ve got the best data guys on the planet checking these figures for us.
Here’s one more simple fact: About 80 percent of US adults have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine; anti-vaxxers are not a particularly large or significant share of the population.
Some people out there might suggest that even 20 percent is a higher figure than they’d like. However, it’s very easy to calculate that, one way or another, there will be even fewer than that soon.