‘We don’t have to fear anything but fear. Wasn’t that an American who said that?…’
Last week, the platform removed a viral video featuring Dr. Knut M. Wittkowski, the former head of biostatistics, epidemiology and research design at Rockefeller University, because he questioned the benefits of social distancing.
In the video, which garnered more than 1.3 million views, Wittkowski argued that we should be allowed to develop “herd immunity” to COVID-19. If we do not, the coronavirus, which is nothing more than a “bad flu,” will continue to reappear, he said.
“With all respiratory diseases, the only thing that stops the disease is herd immunity. About 80% of the people need to have had contact with the virus, and the majority of them won’t even have recognized that they were infected,” he explained in the video.
YouTube removed the video shortly thereafter without explaining why, Wittkowski told the New York Post.
“They don’t tell you. They just say it violates our community standards. There’s no explanation for what those standards are or what standards it violated,” he said.
In some cases, the site has gone so far as to claim that it is understaffed because of the pandemic, which has led to fewer human reviews, and that some content that does not violate community guidelines thus may be inadvertently removed.
It’s no coincidence, however, that YouTube nearly always tends to err on the side of suppressing conservative perspectives, such as lockdown skepticism, while promoting controversial and far more dangerous left-wing statements that have vastly overestimated the virus’s risk and threat.
This is just the latest example of YouTube removing content that goes against leftist dogma. In late April, the company similarly took down a viral video of two California doctors, both of whom worked on the state’s frontlines in its fight against COVID-19, urging government officials to begin reopening.
And earlier this month, YouTube claimed that Dr. Dr. Judy Mikovits, who raised serious questions about Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the members of President Trump’s White House Coronavirus Task Force, violated its “Community Guidelines” by spreading “misinformation.”
While some of Mikovits’s conspiratorial anti-vaccination claims seemed hard to swallow from a scientific perspective, her 26-minute video was noteworthy simply because of her ability to create a viral discussion that used YouTube’s censorship policies against it to garner even more attention than it might have otherwise.
Yet, the questions she raised about Fauci’s role in the prior HIV crisis were consistent with criticisms he has faced, according to outlets like Newsweek and The Washington Post, over his advocacy of dangerous virus experiments—including the funding of research on coronavirus that relied on bat studies at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
Facebook and Twitter have launched similar censorship crusades, alerting users when content posted to their website runs against health officials’ advice and providing relevant “fact checks” conducted by the mainstream media.
These actions are particularly troubling since tech companies are trying to have it both ways: they want to enjoy the benefits of private free speech while simultaneously removing content that doesn’t fit their narrative.
Wittkowski said YouTube’s restrictions won’t stop him from sharing his opinions.
“We don’t have to fear anything but fear,” he said. “Wasn’t that an American who said that?”
Liberty Headlines’ Ben Sellers contributed to this report.