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Covid response? How, gripped by fear and groupthink, scientists 'failed' children

By Bhaskaran Raman* 
“Today’s children are tomorrow’s future”, “Nurture children’s dreams”, “A child’s smile is sunlight”. These are some cliches, rendered rather uninspiring through repetition and obviousness. However, for nearly 2½ years, society forgot these cliches, children suffered as science failed and groupthink prevailed. Worse, all of this has been swept under the rug.
As we recently celebrated Children’s Day, we must resolve to seek accountability for the largest mass violation of child rights since World-War-2. I refer to the period since March 2020 until about mid 2022, when the world was awash with fear and a single-minded focus of avoiding a respiratory virus (SARS-Cov-2), in pursuit of the unscientific goal of zero-Covid.
In a society, who is supposed to provide rational thinking to counter fear? Surely, scientists trained in logical thinking have this responsibility. However, in Covid-response, irrational measures were sold as scientific, and scientists were often leading in panic.
The failure of children by scientists is exemplified by the following recent event. On 11 Sep 2023, the US FDA approved emergency use of an updated Covid booster for everyone including children older than 6 months, a booster tested only on a handful of mice. The approval is nothing short of absurd, since there was never a Covid emergency for children anywhere in the world.
Such absurdities have characterized the world’s Covid response. “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” said Voltaire, the 17th century French philosopher. Throughout the world’s Covid response, scientific absurdities have resulted in atrocities on children. Let us consider these in roughly chronological order.

2020: no play, no school, no childhood

It is every child’s right to have a normal, healthy, and happy childhood. Celebrate birthdays, play with friends, learn from peers, and have normal socio-emotional development. Yet, these birthrights were denied to most children in 2020. 
It was to save lives, they were told. It was ostensibly to flatten the curve, their childhood was sacrificed. Schools were closed, playgrounds were shut, housing societies did not allow children to play. “Follow the science”, children were told.
  • Scientists were supposed to have scientific scepticism of whether denying education to children saved lives. They didn’t.
  • Scientists were supposed to have scientific scepticism of whether closing beaches and playgrounds flatted the curve. They failed.
  • Scientists were supposed to look at risk-benefit balance. But they were blind to the harm being caused to children.
Scientific evidence was available since mid-2020, for those who cared to look, that lockdowns and school closures are excellent at flattening childhood but ineffective, even counter-productive, in controlling viral disease spread. Sweden which kept its schools and businesses open throughout did not have a pandemic of note, for any age-group.

2021: more school closures, and an imagined third wave in India

The next year 2021 saw more irrationality and more absurdities, not less. The same measures which failed to flatten any virus in 2020 were being applied inexplicably in much of the world. What started as 21 days (or 14 days depending on where you lived) to flatten the curve extended to 21 weeks and then 21 months, to flatten childhood itself. In India, the absurdity was even greater. 
While much normality returned for adults, children continued to suffer. As a hallmark of absurd levels of fear promoted by scientists, May 2021 saw the claim of “Third Covid Wave To Hit Children More”, by Dr Devi Shetty, a Padma Shri award winning cardiac surgeon, no less.
  • Scientists were supposed to question whether such fearful claims had any scientific basis. They didn’t.
  • Scientists were supposed to read and understand scientific literature on whether the virus affected children. They failed.
  • Scientists were supposed to understand that mental health and malnutrition risk were far greater risks for children than SARS-Cov-2. But there were blind to other harms.
Thus the 260 million children of India lost one more year of education and childhood. For no earthly purpose. There was no third wave in India to prevent: not even for adults, certainly not for children. The densely packed slums of Mumbai did not even have a second wave!

2022: a mandated mass medical experiment on children

Consider the following hypothetical absurdity. Suppose a doctor advised you to take two sleeping pills to cure your insomnia. If you are unable to sleep after the two pills, and the doctor advised a third pill, you would raise your eyebrows. What if the doctor told that to cure your insomnia, you ought to wake-up your sleeping child to give her the same two tablets which didn’t work for you? What would your reaction be?
As we recently celebrated Children’s Day, we must seek accountability for largest mass violation of child rights since World War-2
Yet, this is exactly what happened in 2022 with the products labeled as Covid “vaccines”. The initial claim in early 2021 was that you would not get Covid infection after two doses. Within a few months it was clear that the “vaccines” prevented neither infection nor disease severity.
But the medical experiment, a failed one, was rolled out en-masse for children in 2022 (in India), despite the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) recommending against it. And there was never a Covid problem for children anywhere in the world.
  • Scientists were supposed to recognize that the claims behind the Covid “vaccines” were wildly untrue. They didn’t.
  • Scientists were supposed to call a medical product as a “vaccine” only after a successful completed trial. They failed.
  • Scientists were supposed to dissuade from a medical experiment on children for an old man’s disease. But they were blind to such considerations.
Can anything worse than a mass medical experiment on children transpire? Apparently yes: a mandated mass medical experiment on children. Throughout India as well as elsewhere, Covid “vaccine” mandates were common in schools as well as in colleges where the world’s leading scientists worked. This is not so much a failure of politics as it is a failure of science and scientists.

Apologies and accountability overdue

Reason and scientific method failed in Covid response. Fear and groupthink prevailed. The effect on children has been devastating.
On 21 Jun 2023, a study report from the USA showed sharp drops in children’s reading and math abilities since 2020; this erased decades of progress and increased racial disparity. Likewise in India, the Annual Survey of Education Report (ASER) 2022, released in Jan 2023, showed sharp drops in reading and math abilities in the last few years, again erasing 1-2 decades of progress; the already poor reading abilities became far worse.
The long-term effects of the Covid “vaccines” are unknown. The medium term effects in terms of myocarditis, especially in young adolescents, is only beginning to come out. However, ignoring this and other such red flags apparent since early 2021, on 02 Oct 2023, the Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to scientists whose work led to the mRNA vaccine platform, a platform known to cause serious side effects. This award epitomizes how scientists have failed children.
Given such immense harms to children in the world’s Covid response, apologies and accountability are long overdue. There have been none so far. Looking toward the future, let us end with another cliche violated in the years 2020-2022: “we must prioritize children’s well-being, especially in a crisis”.
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*Professor at IIT Bombay, has authored the book “Math Murder in Media Manufactured Madness”, presenting simple math to illustrate various absurdities related to the mainstream Covid-19 narrative; available at: https://bhaskaranraman. Views are personal

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