Tucker Carlson opened his show Wednesday night with some irresponsible speculation about the covid-19 vaccines.
Carlson devoted the intro of his program to raising questions about the “downside” of the covid-19 vaccines.
Carlson — who has said on his show a few times recently he is personally pro-vaccine — told his audience “vaccines are not dangerous” and that “that’s not a guess, we know that pretty conclusively from the official numbers.”
But he went on talk up “the apparent death rate from the coronavirus vaccines,” referencing data from VAERS (the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System).
The CDC’s web page about VAERS says, “As an early warning system, VAERS cannot prove that a vaccine caused a problem. Specifically, a report to VAERS does not mean that a vaccine caused an adverse event. But VAERS can give CDC and FDA important information. If it looks as though a vaccine might be causing a problem, FDA and CDC will investigate further and take action if needed.”
VAERS data alone cannot determine if the vaccine caused the reported adverse event.
This specific limitation has caused confusion about the publicly available data, specifically regarding the number of reported deaths. In the past there have been instances where people misinterpreted reports of death following vaccination as death caused by the vaccines; that is a mistake.
At one point Carlson said this:
The debate is over what it means. Again, there’s a lot of criticism of the reporting system. Some people say, well, it’s just a coincidence if someone gets a shot and then dies, possibly from other causes. No one really knows is the truth.
And Carlson was called out for his monologue:
We ran this in-depth story from @annamerlan and @shayla__love on misuse of VAERS data three months ago; I have no idea what to say about seeing this kind of dangerous, historically- and scientifically- illiterate bullshit blasted at millions of people https://t.co/avZ442wmWV https://t.co/QfYc1ybB44
— Tim Marchman (@timmarchman) May 6, 2021
What a coward.
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) May 6, 2021
OK, this is just fucking evil now https://t.co/P8983SxfWV
— Cathy Young (@CathyYoung63) May 6, 2021
Tucker could calculate expected deaths in that age group versus vaccination rates, but he doesn’t, because his aim is not to inform his viewers, it is to frighten and aggrieve, even at a cost to their safety.
— Conor Friedersdorf (@conor64) May 6, 2021
— Pradheep J. Shanker (@Neoavatara) May 6, 2021
Not even sure what bounds are left to be transgressed but the latest Tucker clip of vaccine scaremongering seems unhelpful!
— Jacob Silverman (@SilvermanJacob) May 6, 2021
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