The World Series is just around the corner, but California Gov. Gavin Newsom, who attended college on a partial baseball scholarship, has thrown a major change-up at people.
Last fall, Gov. Newsom signed Assembly Bill 2098, which designated “the dissemination of misinformation or disinformation related to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, or ‘COVID-19,’ as unprofessional conduct.” Misinformation means “false information that is contradicted by contemporary scientific consensus contrary to the standard of care,” and according to the bill, physicians who “engage in the dissemination of COVID-19 vaccine misinformation or disinformation risk losing their medical license.”
A group of doctors pushed back with a lawsuit charging that AB-2098 “violated physicians’ First Amendment rights to free speech and their Fourteenth Amendment rights to due process of law” and “interfered with the ability of doctors and their patients to freely communicate.” Threats to take doctors’ licenses away established that “the law’s insidious intent was always to silence doctors who depart from state orthodoxy on Covid-19.”
In January, District Judge William Shubb halted enforcement of the measure, ruling that the language of the law was “unconstitutionally vague” and ordered the state to halt enforcement. The doctors considered the ruling a positive development. Gov. Newsom—who did not comment on the ruling—has now made the doctors’ case.
On Sept. 30, Gov. Newsom signed Senate Bill 815, which repeals the provisions “that it shall constitute unprofessional conduct for a physician and surgeon to disseminate misinformation or disinformation related to COVID-19, as provided.” Gov. Newsom failed to explain why he signed the bill. Jenin Younes, a lawyer representing the doctors, said, “They preferred to retract it themselves than get another thrashing in court.” That may be so, but there’s more at play than a lawsuit.
Newsom’s Record on First Amendment Rights Isn’t Great
Science does not work by “consensus.” Science involves observation, empirical data, testing, and, often forgotten, replication. Gov. Newsom’s team failed to investigate the COVID vaccines beyond the claims of the government medical establishment. It was true—not “misinformation”—that the vaccines failed to prevent infection or transmission. Dr. Anthony Fauci, vaccinated and boosted to the max, tested positive for COVID. Joe Biden, who proclaimed, “This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” tested positive twice.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “evidence from multiple vaccine safety monitoring systems in the United States and around the globe supports a causal association between mRNA COVID-19 vaccines (i.e., Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech) and myocarditis and pericarditis.”
That is all true—not misinformation—but Gov. Newsom’s team gave little if any thought to the possibility of vaccine injuries. As it happens, AB-2098 was hardly his only attempt to restrict the rights of the people.
In March 2020, the state legislature handed total control of California to Gov. Newsom, who proceeded to impose a rigid pandemic regime. The governor ordered 32 of California’s 58 counties to shut down schools. His stay-at-home order had police arresting solitary paddle-boarders on ocean beaches, but there was more to it.
Gov. Newsom’s “Mandatory Requirements for All Gatherings” restricted holiday gatherings to two hours and discouraged “singing and chanting” and the use of musical instruments. The requirements imposed a six-foot distancing rule and dictated that “attendees may go inside to use restrooms as long as the restrooms are frequently sanitized,” and so on. Whitecoat supremacy was on full display.
When protesters showed up at the state capitol in Sacramento, Newsom fenced off the grounds and deployed the California Highway Patrol. It’s fair to say that the governor is not a big fan of the First Amendment.
Gov. Newsom also wants to enshrine California’s restrictive gun laws as a 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution. That document already has the Second Amendment to preserve the right of the people to keep and bear arms. For all but the willfully blind, there’s a lesson here.
A change-up pitch is intended to deceive the batter, but people across the country should not be fooled. Never allow politicians and government health bosses to take away your constitutional rights, even when a pandemic comes along.
This article was also published in The American Spectator