Twitter Deletes Bolsonaro’s Videos Questioning COVID-19 Lockdown
Written by Michael Tennant
Continuing in its role as enforcer of politically acceptable speech, Twitter deleted two tweets by Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro disputing the government-enforced wisdom that as long as the coronavirus threat persists, people must avoid others at all costs, even if it means economic disaster.
According to Agence France-Presse, Bolsonaro “had posted several videos in which he flouted his government’s social distancing guidelines by mixing with supporters on the streets of Brasilia and urging them to keep the economy going.”
In one deleted video, Bolsonaro tells a street vendor, “What I have been hearing from people is that they want to work.”
The vendor, quite reasonably, says, “We just can’t stand still. There is fear because if you don’t die of the disease, you starve,” to which Bolsonaro replies, “You’re not going to die!”
“In another video,” writes AFP, “the president calls for a ‘return to normality,’ questioning quarantine measures imposed by governors and some mayors across the giant South American country as an effective containment measure against the virus.”
“If it continues like this, with the amount of unemployment, what we will have later is a very serious problem that will take years to be resolved,” he says. (Americans, already filing for unemployment benefits in record numbers after just a few weeks of shelter-in-place, would undoubtedly concur.)
Later, Bolsonaro told reporters, “Brazil cannot stop, or we’ll turn into Venezuela.”
Bolsonaro’s common sense apparently amounted to heresy for the enforcers at Twitter, who took down his videos Sunday under their new COVID-19 directives, in which they state they will require people to remove content “that goes directly against guidance from authoritative sources of global and local public health information.” Among the types of content that will be deleted are “denial of global or local health authority recommendations to decrease someone’s likelihood of exposure to COVID-19 with the intent to influence people into acting against recommended guidance … or actively encouraging people to not socially distance themselves in areas known to be impacted by COVID-19.”
In other words, expressing an opinion at variance with “authoritative sources of … public health information” is prohibited on Twitter.
However, these allegedly authoritative sources of information can’t even agree among themselves about the dangers posed by the coronavirus and the best means of mitigating them.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the public face of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, told Congress on March 11 that COVID-19 “has a mortality rate 10 times that” of the seasonal flu; yet two weeks later, an article he co-authored in the New England Journal of Medicine claimed, “The overall clinical consequences of Covid-19 may ultimately be more akin to those of a severe seasonal influenza.” This would be the same Fauci who warned that the West African Ebola outbreak a few years ago would go out of control as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) computer models projected that the disease would infect 1.4 million people; the actual number of cases (including suspected cases) turned out to be just 32,000.
Then there’s British doctor Neil Ferguson, whose computer models forecast 250,000 COVID-19 deaths in the United Kingdom and 1.2 million in the United States. A mere five days later, Ferguson drastically reduced his predictions.
Meanwhile, governments the world over have shut down their economies and forced people to stay home. But as New York Governor Andrew Cuomo recently admitted, that is “probably not the best public health strategy” because it requires vulnerable individuals to be cooped up with others who may be unwittingly carrying the virus.
Brazil, with a population of 212 million, had 3,904 confirmed COVID-19 cases, including 114 deaths, as of Saturday. For this the entire country should be locked down?
“Let’s face the virus with reality,” said Bolsonaro. He advocates reopening stores and schools while asking those over 60 to self-isolate — in short, freedom and personal responsibility.
For the progressives at Twitter, such unorthodox ideas must not be disseminated lest the virus of independent thought infect the entire body politic. COVID-19, after all, is providing excellent cover for the establishment of the total state. Independent thought, on the other hand, might cause people to do what the Left used to claim as its motto: Question authority.
Courtesy of The New American