Even after being sick for several days with a moderate case of COVID, WorldNetDaily columnist Michael Brown couldn't stop waffling on the issue of vaccination (he wasn't, which likely made his case worse than it needed to be) and misinformation (because free speech, or something). And the waffling hasn't stopped. In his Jan. 17 column, Brown joined the Media Research Center in praising tennis star Novak Djokovic for sticking to his anti-vaxxer guns, which cost him a spot in the Australian Open. While conceding that "the Australian Open has the right to determine what vaccination policies it will follow, and players can choose to comply and play or not," Brown added, "But was it right to deport him simply because of potential thought crimes? Was this yet another shocking example of Australia's draconian efforts to combat COVID?" He continued:
Once again, I am not for a second belittling the very real dangers of COVID, as I said repeatedly for almost two years now. And I am not minimizing for a moment the difficult decisions that governments must make during this pandemic.
But to ban one of the world's top athletes from playing in your country simply because his personal choice not to be vaccinated might influence others is to set a very dangerous precedent, confirming the worst fears of many within Australia. How far will this go?
Brown took a different approach in his Jan. 24 column, pondering the spiritual dimension of COVID, which included the purportedly demonic feeling fighting the disease some feel as well as knowing people who have died from it. Brown admitted to "tormenting thoughts" while fighting COVID, adding:
Again, there could be a perfectly natural explanation to this. And it's even possible that COVID affects the body in such a way that one's emotions are impacted as well. After all, the brain is part of the body.
I can't comment on that possibility at all because of my lack of medical knowledge.
But I can say this. I do know my relationship with the Lord. I do know the reality of my faith. And I do have some understanding of the spiritual realm.
That's why I don't discount for a moment the demonic nature of some of these fears and emotional assaults. (By demonic, I mean originating with the devil, who is as real as you and I are, and actualized by demons, who are also quite real.)
After all, one of Satan's greatest tools is fear. And the greatest fear of all is the fear of death (and, in some cases, fear of what is coming beyond death).
But even after all of this, Brown still couldn't bring himself to take a stand. He pondered in his March 7 column:
For those in the pro-COVID-vaccine camp, there is a two-fold concern for those who choose not to be vaccinated. First, they are endangering their own lives. Second, they are potentially endangering the lives of others should they get infected and spread the virus.
For those who are skeptical about the vaccines, there is also a two-fold concern. First, do these vaccines really work? Second, long term or short term, could these vaccines do more harm than good?ccordingly, there has been passionate debate about these issues, with many in the pro-vaccine camp seeking to censor or deplatform those who raise questions about the vaccines. After all, the pro-vax camp reasons, with your anti-vax misinformation, you are dissuading people from getting vaccinated, and that could be fatal.
I'm not here to weigh in on these issues (other than to say that everyone should be allowed to present their relevant views publicly without fear of censorship). I want to focus instead on something far more dangerous than alleged vaccine misinformation, namely, our active promoting of unhealthy foods that lead to obesity and death.
Yes, he shifted the debate from COVID to obesity:
In this case, we know for a fact that obesity is deadly. We also know for a fact that much of our American diet contributes to obesity and premature death. Yet we celebrate our unhealthy culture with a constant bombardment of sumptuous ads on TV and internet, calling us to feast afresh on the latest decadent meals.
Or do you actually think that a steady diet of sugary drinks (like Coke), pizza, donuts, ice cream, pasta, burgers and fried foods is not dangerous, but COVID is?
That's not the issue, and Brown knows it. Getting vaccinated and struggling to deal with body issues and orienting oneself toward healthy eating are two wildly different things. He finally acknowledged that at the end of his column:
That being said, I know how powerful food addictions can be, and I do not sit in judgment of you or your weight or your lifestyle. Not for a split second.
I'm simply saying that with today's hyper-charged atmosphere when it comes to alleged COVID misinformation (on either side of the debate, understandably so), I find it quite ironic that, at the same time, we advertise and celebrate a decadent lifestyle that is undeniably deadly.
Perhaps this deserves more attention.
Of course, nobody's seriously claiming health benefits from junk food, and most poeple understand how advertising works, as well as that junk food is not good for you in the long run. By contrast, anti-vaxxers are promoting demonstrably false and misleading claims about COVID vaccines, and people have been misled into believing it. The problem here that Brown still doesn't really want to do anything about COVID misinformation -- a presumably non-insignificant portion of his audience is anti-vaxxers, and he doesn't want to take a stand lest he lose them.
Such wishy-washiness serves neither him nor his audience well.