The resistance to the pandemic abatement has revealed the strength of a very popular narrative: The story of the lone hero, in this case, the lone renegate scientist who knows something that nobody else knows, that shows that everyone else is wrong, and that there is a different reality waiting to be discovered underneath what you still think is real.
There are several of these types out there. Some claim the pandemic would not be dangerous at all, that there all kinds of Coronaviruses, and this one would not be more dangerous. Others claim that somehow magically, the virus would become less dangerous over time (sure, evolution may point to such a possible pathway, but it is not guaranteed – or have AIDS, the Plague, Measles, Ebola, or Smallpox have become cuddly harmless pets in the meantime? I don’t think so…). Again others claim that the vaccines would be uniquely dangerous, and that everyone else – the pharmaceutical industry, politics, journalists, the vaccinated, are all in on the conspiracy.
Only the lone, renegate scientist can help us here?
This is called romanticism. In today’s newly romantic era, the romantic hero is typically a comic book character, or somewhere on a spaceship far, far in either the past or future.
Romantic narration – not unrelated to psychotic narration (Flor and Kneis 2007) is a category of fiction, not reality. Let us not mix methodologies!
How does reality work, how does science work?
Be careful of arrogant geniuses that tell you that what they are saying would stand against the orthodoxy of established opinion. If anyone even claims this, they know nothing about science, about the scientific method and process. They must not be taken seriously, for they know not what they are doing.
Science is collaborative, it is always conducted within an established methodology and community. That’s why scientific or academic writing is so hard! You need to have evidence, you need to tie you work into the long line of researchers before you, you need to open yourself up to ruthless (let me repeat: ruthless!) criticism, so that once your ideas pass muster, everyone can accept your contributions as legitimate.
The romantic hero cries into the wilderness like a mental patient.
The scientific researcher willingly endures science bootcamp for all his academic life with rewards few and far between, and academic versions of drill and persistent criticism making all of us, hopefully, better.
If you read something by someone saying “What you are hearing from me stands at odds with the entire scientific/medical/political establishment,…” – simply stop reading. It will not be worth listening to. Ever.