The "wizardry" of TV personalities Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil, relied upon by Fox News to bolster Trump's "open up the country" narrative, threatens to mislead and jeopardize the lives of gullible fans who are suffering from the coronavirus' economic shutdown shock.
Earlier this week, Mehmet Oz, the surgeon and TV personality known as Dr. Oz, said reopening schools across the nation "may only cost us 2 to 3 percent in terms of total mortality", saying that "might be a trade-off some folks would consider."
He made the comment on Sean Hannity's show Tuesday night. "First, we need our mojo back," he said, echoing Trump's view that the nation needs to get moving again. Enough of this closing down stuff that's killing the nation's economy and screwing with the president's chances for reelection.
"Schools are a very appetizing opportunity," he said. "I just saw a nice piece in The Lancet arguing the opening of schools may only cost us 2 to 3 percent, in terms of total mortality. Any, you know, any life is a life lost, but...that might be a tradeoff some folks would consider."
Is that a tradeoff you would consider if your child was one of those 2 to 3 percent who would die so everybody else could feel normal again and parents could go back to work?
Social media exploded, of course, as that clip went viral. So late yesterday he released a video (above) saying he "misspoke" and that he realized what he said had "confused and upset people." He said his goal was to discuss "how do we get our children safely back to school."
Of course, that comment simply feeds into the mentality of those who are protesting in several states against lockdown and stay-at-home orders, and who are being supported by President Trump -- in violation of the federal government's official policies. Today, Trump tweeted "LIBERATE MINNESOTA!", encouraging an anti-lockdown group that is scheduled to protest in Minnesota.
As for Dr. Phil
Meanwhile, Dr. Phil said on Laura Ingraham's show Thursday night that the coronavirus lockdown will "create more destruction and actually more death across time than the actual virus will itself."
“The fact of the matter is we have people dying — 45,000 people a year die from automobile accidents. 480,000 from cigarettes. 360,000 a year from swimming pools, but we don’t shut the country down for that. But yet we’re doing it for this?” he said.
First off, understand that Dr. Phil -- his name is Phil McGraw -- is not a medical doctor. He has a PhD in clinical psychology from the University of North Texas, but no longer holds a license to practice in any state. He's a TV personality, if you could call it that.
Secondly, his comparisons are idiotic. Car accidents are not contagious. And, for a point of accuracy, the annual figure is 38,000 in the U.S., not 45,000. And pool accident deaths? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the correct figure is an average of 3,536 fatal unintentional drownings (non-boating related) annually in the United States.
So, Dr. Phil, get your facts straight. Stop misleading the people. And remember, as this article in the INDEPENDENT points out, "car crashes are not contagious; you cannot contract drowning; and while secondhand smoke can affect the health of those around you, it is not comparable to a highly contagious viral pandemic."
More than 662,000 people in the U.S. have contracted the coronavirus and more than 33,000 have died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.
Go ahead, people, listen to the egomaniac, Trump, whose only interest is covering up and preserving his own political future, and his shills, Ingraham, Hannity, Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil. Want to risk your lives by being stupid? That's fine. The problem Is, however, that you are risking everyone else's life in the process.