YouTube has yanked down a video produced by Stanford University's Hoover Institute featuring public health expert Dr. Scott Atlas, M.D., because it "contradicts the World Health Organization or local health authorities' medical information about COVID-19."
Dr. Atlas is a physician who received his medical degree from the prestigious University of Chicago School of Medicine, and he serves as a special adviser to the president and also as a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. By all accounts, his opinions on the coronavirus, as one of the country's foremost experts and as an adviser to the president, merit a public airing.
However, YouTube disagrees. Now, when users attempt to load the video — which was first uploaded in June — an error message appears stating that the video has been removed "for violating YouTube's terms of service." A further explanation provided by YouTube states that the specific reason this video violates those terms of service is that it "contradicts the World Health Organization or local health authorities' medical information about COVID-19."
No further explanation was provided by YouTube about what Dr. Atlas might have said specifically that contradicted the World Health Organization's advice.
As a refresher, and as just one example of the patent absurdity of censoring a three-month-old video because of the WHO's current stance on COVID, the WHO insisted that masks were not necessary and should not be worn until June of this year — a position that it now considers to be anathema. If YouTube is censoring videos from June because of what the WHO now says, will it also censor all videos that contain remarks from the WHO about masks prior to June? When and if the WHO changes its position on any aspect of the coronavirus in the future (as it has done in the past), will all videos on YouTube that contain statements that disagree with the WHO's current position also be censored?
A transcript of Dr. Atlas' full remarks has been uploaded to the Hoover Institute's website, and it is clear that in the video, Dr. Atlas did not treat the virus as a hoax, engage in conspiracy theories, or otherwise diminish the seriousness of the pandemic.
He did, however, posit that the costs of the lockdown were outweighing the benefits of the lockdown. The basis thesis of Dr. Atlas' interview was, "What we would sanely do is consider the impact of what we're doing as well as the impact of what we're trying to prevent. Instead, they did two things, they, the policymakers in general. They put in a lockdown. They did [not] care at all, they did not calculate at all the harms of the lockdown, the consequences of the lockdown."
Among other statements made by Dr. Atlas, he noted:
- "Sure, this is one of the really horrifying but underemphasized truths of the cost of the lockdown. As we said in the article, for instance, 650,000 Americans have cancer and undergo chemotherapy right now, currently. Half of them stop getting their chemotherapy. That's actually happened in the U.S. during this so-called lockdown."
- "So that means literally thousands of biopsies per week of potential cancers were not done. All scheduled hip replacements, knee replacement were not done. All kinds of other things including, for instance, I forget the total number of cancer screenings, but 2/3 to 3/4 of cancer screenings were not done."
- "And the second part is what you had alluded to, which is the fear because it turned out that even emergency care was not getting done. 40% of people who had an acute stroke... You basically have zero to six hours from your symptoms to get into the hospital to get treated. 40% of them did not call the ambulance. That's our of fear. Same thing with heart attacks, 40, 50% of people with heart attacks did not call the ambulance. The most ironic of all was more than half of children did not go in for their vaccinations, which of course the sad irony is that this is setting up yet another health catastrophe that we did actually quantify because there are CDC data about lives lost when you don't have immunizations from some of these really very serious illnesses."
- "One of my emails, recently, came from an emergency room doctor at Children's Hospital of Michigan, who told me that the serious child abuse emergency room visits are up 35% during the lockdown. Now, let me tell you what that means. This is very important. Somebody who brings in their child to the emergency room, that's not because they smacked them around and gave 'em a black eye. I'm saying this with sadness. These emergency room visits are for children who the parents think they might have killed them. They're unresponsive. They have multiple broken bones. These are the most serious. 35% increase in child abuse and that's directly due to the lockdown, and I'll explain why because when you lose your job, the correlation of amount of child abuse found in a home is directly correlated for lower socio-economic, unemployment, alcohol abuse. This is markedly increasing during the lockdown when we know that almost half of people making $40,000 a year or less lost their jobs, by far more than people like you and I. So when these people have children and the schools are closed and there's a tremendous amount of stress in the household, we know that the emergency room visits are going way up. That's only part A. Part B is that do you know where the number one place that child abuse is noticed by an outside person? The schools... you close the schools, you have no visibility on the overwhelming majority of child abuse. So this is creating a catastrophic, sad and simply unspoken harm to the children."
As conservative policy wonk Avik Roy noted, YouTube did not disclose the credentials of the person who determined that Dr. Atlas' views on these subjects were incorrect or out of bounds or indicate why they did not merit a public discussion.
Will @YouTube disclose the name of the person (or the person programming the algorithm) responsible? Is he/she/it m… https://t.co/hvLKOFlNaQ— Avik Roy (@Avik Roy) 1600025683.0