Covidians Want Us to Forget Their Crimes
Emily Oster, writing in The Atlantic, wants "amnesty." Forgive, yes; forget, never
There are two branches of the Covidians:
The duped branch
The malicious branch
Emily Oster, writing in The Atlantic, makes a case for mass amnesty for the duped branch. She describes the silliness that people performed in early 2020 and concludes:
These precautions were totally misguided. In April 2020, no one got the coronavirus from passing someone else hiking. Outdoor transmission was vanishingly rare. Our cloth masks made out of old bandanas wouldn’t have done anything, anyway. But the thing is: We didn’t know.
It’s true that many people were duped in March and April of 2020. But it’s equally true that information was available that contradicted the “official” guidance as early as late March. While we cannot blame people for believing Fauci, Birx, et al, in the early days of the breakout, they cannot be completely absolved for failing to do their own research. Critical thinking was still taught in the nation’s schools as late as the early 2000s. Emily Oster is an economist at Brown University.
I will concede that people who were panicked in March and April 2020 deserve some leniency. But by May, two full months after 15 days to stop the spread, even a technology guy from South St. Louis figured it out.
I wrote this on May 5
Even a cartoonist saw it. On May 15 and 16, I wrote these posts:
Ms. Oster is an economist at Brown, so we can assume she passed a basic statistics course at some point. On May 8, 2020, I pointed out that Nate Silver was livid about the CDC and media using bad statistics to create panic:
No mitigation tactics stopped the spread—some made things far worse.
Safe and inexpensive therapeutics could reduce the severity of most cases and prevent some deaths.
Among the mitigation tactics that made the pandemic worse were ventilators and placing infected patients into nursing homes. Both of these tactics were murder. Pulmonologists warned at the outside that ventilators caused severe, permanent damage and should never be used except as a last resort, but thousands of doctors ordered moderately sick patients to undergo the painful and usually deadly procedure. They got paid to do it.
Sorry, Ms. Oster, but there are thousands of people who committed murder and other assorted felonies for malicious reasons. These begin with Dr. Fauci, a wretched waste of human flesh, Dr. Deborah Birx, the entire leadership of the FDA, the CDC, and the NIH, doctors, nurses, data scientists, governors, state, county, and city health officials, journalists, Hollywood and music stars—the list goes on.
Amnesty? Does Ms. Oster even know what the word means?
In her article, Oster talks about “forgivenss” several times, but amnesty means something different from amnesty. Forgiveness is a theological act of the will, as I have written before. It frees the person harmed from slavery to thoughts of revenge. Forgiveness does not absolve the perpetrator from consequences for his crimes. Indeed, Pope John Paul II wrote in his encyclical Dives in Misericordia:
the requirement of forgiveness does not cancel out the objective requirements of justice. . . . In no passage of the gospel message does forgiveness, or mercy as its source, mean indulgence toward evil, toward scandals, toward injury or insult. In any case, reparation for evil and scandal, compensation for injury, and satisfaction for insult are conditions for forgiveness.
Ms. Oster is right that, as Christians, we must forgive those like her who have shown signs of repentance. By publishing her piece, she has admitted she and many of her ilk were wrong. They were wrong about the dangers of the disease, the lengths to which governments and individuals should take to fight the disease, the effectiveness and safety of vaccines, and their cruel treatment of people who saw through the false narratives.
Few Covidians have shown signs of repentance from their evil ways when it comes to covid, though, and Christians have no duty to forgive the unrepentant. It’s not me saying this; it’s Jesus Christ.
Catholic apologist Jimmy Akin wrote about the Limits of Forgiveness on Catholic Answers in 2002:
We aren’t obligated to forgive people who do not want us to. This is one of the biggest stumbling blocks that people have regarding the topic. People have seen “unconditional” forgiveness and love hammered so often that they feel obligated to forgive someone even before that person has repented. Sometimes they even tell the unrepentant that they have preemptively forgiven him (much to the impenitent’s annoyance).
This is not what is required of us.
Consider Luke 17:3–4, where Jesus tells us, “If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him; and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, and says, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.”
Notice that Jesus says to forgive him if he repents, not regardless of whether he does so. Jesus also envisions the person coming back to you and admitting his wrong.
Forgiveness for the repentant, yes! Freedom from punishment, no.
Forgiveness does not preclude punishment, and justice requires a leveling of accounts. The Covidians have killed people and ruined lives out of ignorance and malice, and few Covidians have followed Ms. Oster’s example by repenting (change her ways) and asking for forgiveness. The unrepentant—even if a loved one—must not be forgiven. The malicious—even if repentant—must be punished. And their punishment must fit their crimes.
Proper punishment would look a lot like the punishments meted out in the Nuremberg trials after World War II. Top government officials involved in prolonged lockdowns, school closures, the intentional raising of panic, forced vaccinations, manipulation of data, concealment of evidence, and the like, must pay with their lives. Lesser offenders—doctors who lied to patients, teachers who demanded school shutdowns, clergy who voluntarily closed their churches, police officers who enforced unlawful orders—must lose their careers, licenses, and ministries even if they repent. These can never be trusted again no matter how sorry they might be.
The official and unofficial response to Covid was one of the greatest crimes in human history. We must not treat it like a failed transportation project. It was murder on a global scale. The human toll of mask mandates, lockdowns, unnecessary intubation, withholding of treatment, and rushed vaccines was known or expected in May of 2020. I just proved such were known with links to my old blogs. If I could figure it out, surely a Harvard-trained doctor could, too. And they did. They just lied for self-aggrandizement, money, and power.
Forgive the repentant, rebuke the recalcitrant, and punish them all so that their lives and lies might serve as a warning to others.