Thank you, thank you, thank you to the eight brave physicians who dared to debunk Richard Eggleston’s conspiracy theories.
Eggleston’s Feb. 21 column did so much harm. People were having second thoughts about getting the vaccine. I hope those people are reassured by the physicians giving the facts, point by point.
I am a retired nurse practitioner and a veteran.
I had my first shot on Feb. 5 at the Veterans Affairs clinic and am looking forward to my second one. I want this epidemic to end.
Undoing Eggleston’s harm
A loud thank you should be given to the eight physicians who contributed a rebuttal to Richard Eggleston’s potentially damaging opinion in the Feb. 21 Lewiston Tribune. Their fact-based analysis related to COVID-19 should help undo the potential harm caused by Eggleston’s article.
Most of Eggleston’s misinformation was taken from Fox News commentaries as are many of the opinions of the other local conservative writers hired by the Tribune.
I believe it is good to see differing political beliefs but nobody benefits from repeating misinformation and conspiracy theories originating from Fox News. Perhaps the Tribune should consider hiring conservative opinion writers who have fresh views.
Why publish Eggleston?
Many thanks to Colin Doyle and John Rusche for their column responding to Richard Eggleston’s Feb. 21 column.
But why, I ask the Tribune, is their response even necessary?
I simply don’t understand why you would publish Eggleston’s misinformation in the first place. Well, sadly, I do understand. But it has nothing to do with the First Amendment, so spare us, please.
Apart from appeasing the terminally misinformed, Eggleston’s column serves only to further the confusion and division that plague our society.
Eggleston parrots Trump
The Lewiston Tribune prints another column where the writer is presenting his information as fact. I checked with three different sources on his statement regarding hydroxychloroquine as curing the COVID- 19 virus. All of the sources I checked dispute columnist Richard Eggleston’s and former President Donald Trump’s claims.
Eggleston appears to be just parroting what Trump said. Trump has no medical training and does not have a medical license to practice medicine, but he did. A woman on hearing what Trump said thought her fish tank cleaner was the same thing and killed her husband.
It appears that Eggleston may be a Trump supporter and is attempting to validate Trump’s invalid medical statements in the Feb. 21 commentary.
Hydroxychlorochloroquine had some success treating malaria, which is caused by a mosquito’s bite, injecting a parasite that lives in the red blood cells.
COVID-19 is a virus that appears to have crossed the animal human barrier, causing a host of problems in humans with painful breathing resulting in some deaths. Long-term medical problems are now evident in people who have recovered.
When Trump was voted out, the number of dead in the U.S. was at 400,000 Americans. We now passed 500,000 Americans dead.
We were No. 1 in the world with deaths, beating out India, with some states having more deaths that all of Japan.
Eggleston is attempting to reduce this accomplishment to a set of numbers that will be difficult to verify as any statistic can be made to fit.
Unethical and harmful
Regarding Richard Eggleston’s Feb. 21 column: First, a quote from the American Medical Association on its Code of Medical Ethics: “Whether they are using electronic communication or social media, expressing political views or engaging in charitable endeavors, physicians must uphold professional standards of behavior to sustain the trust that is the foundation of the patient-physician relationship.”
Next, every assertion proffered by Eggleston has been debunked, refuted and vilified by the AMA, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health, Pfizer, Moderna and the World Health Organization.
His poorly written opinion was rife with dangerous disinformation and logical fallacies, which can be deadly when stated by a medical doctor. His two website references are cases in point.
He perpetuated the Politifact “2020 Lie of The Year: COVID-19 misinformation,” which I consider to be highly unethical and egregiously harmful.
Dropping the Tribune
Please cancel our subscription to the Lewiston Tribune.
Although we’ve supported your paper for 23 years, allowing a medical doctor to publish anti-vaxxer misinformation during the pandemic is the height of irresponsibility, even in an op-ed.
Jack Sullivan and Brandy Sullivan
Before you even consider listening to anything that Dr. Richard Eggleston said in his Feb. 21 column, please, please do some thorough research on his suggestions.
Eggleston said: “We are in need of scientific honesty.” Then he goes on to promote taking questionable medications to prevent COVID-19. One recommendation was hydroxychloroquine. An excellent article in The Lancet, one of those scientifically honest sources, details how this drug absolutely does not prevent or help symptoms of the virus in any way.
Eggleston also claims the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported there had been 453 deaths from the COVID-19 vaccines. I read the CDC’s Feb. 3 report and it stated there had been 113 deaths reported, but all were from underlying medical conditions, not the vaccine. Seriously, I could find nothing in any of the CDC reports I read that showed his figures.
He thinks that it’s a small price to pay for 1 in 1,000 people who contract the virus to die and that we don’t need “lockdowns.”
I bet those who have lost loved ones — 500,000 and counting — disagree.
To equate any amount of deaths with being unable to attend a wedding or having one’s spiritual needs blocked is beyond my ethical comprehension.
In the dark
Well, Dr. Richard Eggleston, ophthalmologist, may you not be in COVID-19 car wreck No. 500,001.
I went to you once years ago and I highly value the intelligence of a couple of your children whom I know.
You also have a right to your beliefs. However, 80 to 90 percent of your column on Feb. 21 is almost word-for-word what my sister, a Republican committee woman in Iowa, said to me before I unfriended her on Facebook.
When a cousin of ours died and my sister watched people, old and young, die in the hospital where she works, her tune changed. I honestly believe that the preponderance of scientific evidence leaves your theories in the dark.
I also know that you have professional colleagues who won’t wear masks when treating patients who agree with you, but they are still in the minority.
During the last 73 years, I have learned to turn the light on in a dark room before I enter. Regardless of your conservative views, I had hoped you, a bright person, would do the same where enlightenment is needed.
If you were shedding light on the solutions, I would expect you to be a candidate for a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention position so that neither you nor anyone else would be in COVID-19 car wreck No. 500,001.
The light switch is usually just next to the door.
Dennis W. Ohrtman
Stands by column
On Feb. 24, several local physicians expressed concerns about the content of my Feb. 21 column about COVID-19 and COVID-19 vaccines.
I want to thank them for the civility of their comments and do acknowledge the sincerity of their beliefs.
As stated in my column, presenting opinions contrary to accepted thought often generates demands that the offender be canceled, censured or personally attacked.
The signers, to their credit, did none of these.
I also want to thank the Lewiston Tribune editors for allowing alternate viewpoints. Included were the sources I used to supplement my knowledge. The entire piece is on lmtribune.com. Future pieces can be requested from email@example.com.
Some of the physicians in one of my sources, FrontLineDoctors (FLDRS.com), have been fired from their emergency room positions in corporate hospitals. Others have had disciplinary actions taken against them.
These physicians presented their concerns about COVID-19 from the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court last spring. So, because of their desire to bring alternative information to the public, they have been canceled, censured and personally attacked.
For example, while the world is on a vaccine-only regimend, the Indian government is distributing a home COVID-19 kit (Ziverdo) with zinc, Ivermectin, and Doxycycline. The cost is $2.65 per person.
The term “follow the science” should be “follow the true science and verify the scientist.”
This is my way of finding the truth.
Richard J. Eggleston
In a word
Just thought I could express my opinion about retired Dr. Richard Eggleston’s opinion article in the Feb. 21 paper with one word: Quack.
William T. Schmidt
Richard Eggleston’s Feb. 21 column contains a raft of misinformation, misleading statistics and bad math. Because of the word limit, I can only address a few of these.
Eggleston states that “your risk of dying in a car accident is about the same as dying from COVID-19.” This is just plain false.
Using National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, 11 per 100,000 people died in vehicle accidents in 2018 while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that 149 per 100,000 Americans died of COVID-19 during the last year. The latter death rate is slightly higher than the cancer death rate in 2019, 146 per 100,000. More people died from COVID-19 than cancer.
He also lists the mortality rate from COVID-19 as 0.14 percent or 140 per 100,000. That is suspiciously close to the 149 per 100,000 deaths due to COVID-19 for the whole population.
The mortality rate, deaths divided by confirmed cases, is more than 1,700 per 100,000. Even if we assume underreporting of cases, the mortality rate is likely at least five times Eggleston’s figure.
For comparison, Eggleston reports 453 dying after receiving a vaccine, about 1.4 per 100,000. This is not surprising since about six people per 100,000 die every three days in the U.S.
That’s not to say that there is no risk to the vaccine. The apparent risk from the vaccine is, however, in orders of magnitude less than that from the disease.