When the pandemic struck, I was living in Luxor, Egypt. I had started the first boxing club for girls on the West Bank and had hoped to start a writing and art program connecting kids in Luxor with kids in Los Angeles. Then this mysterious illness called COVID-19 appeared and the programs fizzled out.
Word traveled fast through the villages. The illness had been identified on a cruise ship that had docked in Luxor. Authorities made a few half-hearted rules, but nobody paid attention.
Life in Luxor went on as normal. Masks? Only women covered their faces! Social distancing? An impossibility when families lived so close together. After a few days of uncertainty, I went back to my daily routine of meeting friends at a favorite arts café, shopping for food, riding my bike along the Nile and to the Valley of the Kings.
The tourists quickly fled back home to lock themselves inside. From afar, I watched as the Western world fell victim to hysteria and fear.
I’d been raised by God-fearing parents to have a healthy skepticism of the media and government. But nothing prepared me for the lies and manipulations that became the story of COVID.
Stories are the most powerful force we have, either to solidify beliefs or to change them. People quickly invested in the official COVID narrative, trusting Anthony Fauci’s assertions that only through mindless submission to the rituals of obsessive cleanliness, masking, and lockdowns would people be saved from illness and death. Even when evidence surfaced to the contrary, people still clung to their newfound faith.
From my vantage in Luxor, I was able to see the big picture without being engulfed in it. I noticed how every story popping into my newsfeed parroted state propaganda. In the 1980s, I’d lived in Yugoslavia under communism and the coordinated, almost hypnotic repetitiveness of the media was beginning to look eerily familiar.
Social media descended into a dark and cruel place policed by “fact-checkers” and social justice warriors. Those who dared to question the official narrative were labeled “grandma killers” and in some cases disowned by family and friends. Doctors and scientists who bravely stood up against the lies were demonized and their careers were ruined.
The message was clear. Expressing alternative viewpoints was selfish and irresponsible, endangering not only your life but the lives of the “collective whole.” State-sanctioned “experts” knew what was best for you. Leave the thinking to them.
By late June 2020, I had managed to get out of Egypt under challenging circumstances (a whole other story) and back to Los Angeles. I started researching and writing about what was going on.
When Fauci admitted with all the arrogance of a self-identifying demigod that he had lied to the public about masks, complaining in the same breath how “antiscience” the doubters are who “don’t believe authority,” I thought surely people would object.
Yet, the majority stood up for him, using magical mantras that had become embedded in their minds, like: Trust the experts, not fake news; the science is always changing; we wear masks to protect others; this is the “new normal.”
And the one that now rings out above all others as the justification for global tyranny: It’s for our health and safety.
I didn’t get it. Surely, if our “number-one infectious disease expert” had lied once, how could we trust that he wouldn’t do it again? And again. What other lies had he told us?
We now know that Fauci lied about so many things.
His brazen claim that vaccines are a “dead end” for the virus, would have made any snake-oil salesman proud. And since “the science changes,” it was perfectly okay that the vaccines failed to do what he had promised.
Getting COVID for the third or fourth time? Not to worry! The vaccine and all those boosters protected believers from a worse fate. At least they wouldn’t experience the “winter of severe illness and death,” that Joe Biden promised antivaxxers.
After the NIH admitted in October that gain-of-function research had taken place in the Wuhan labs, disproving Fauci’s claims that it had never happened, he remained as defiant as ever. After all, by this point, he was The Science.
In that same month, on October 29, the FDA authorized the emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to include children ages 5-11.
It didn’t matter that COVID presented little to no danger to children.
Little superheroes, they were called. Doing their civic duty to “keep adults safe.” Proudly, parents marched their children to the front line, sacrificing them on the altars of Pfizer and Moderna, companies so corrupt it boggles the mind how they still exist.
Just when it seemed things couldn’t get any worse, on April 25, the FDA expanded approval of remdesivir, marketed as Veklury, to include “pediatric patients 28 days of age and older weighing at least 3 kilograms (about 7 pounds).”
And on May 17, 2022, the FDA authorized a single booster dose for children ages 5-11.
Last week, the WHO’s World Health Assembly and the World Economic Forum converged in Switzerland with dire warnings of more plagues. Monkeypox, HIV, bird flu, a strange liver disease in children, to name a few.
Their answer? More vaccines and a Global Pandemic Treaty that takes sovereignty away from nations and puts it under the control of the WHO.
Again, all for our “health and safety.”
It feels like a hundred years ago that I was riding my bike along the Nile, trying to make sense of the fear and hysteria back home. The lies and manipulations that are the story of COVID will continue to escalate in the months ahead.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the German pastor who was executed at Flossenburg Concentration Camp in 1945, wrote in his Letters and Papers from Prison: “What we shall need is not geniuses, or cynics, or misanthropes, or clever tacticians, but plain, honest, and straightforward men.”
We’ve seen through the charlatans like Fauci, claiming that they are the experts, and we are not. In fact, we have what they fear most: plain, honest, and straightforward common sense.
We are individuals with our own capable minds, and we will continue to question and debate and draw our own conclusions. Holding fast to these basic truths will help guide us through the storms ahead.