It’s not easy to talk about the COVID vaccine, especially if you are a well-known scientist. Any legitimate concerns being raised that paint COVID vaccines in a concerning or “negative” light is likely to be deemed an “anti-vaccine conspiracy theory” by mainstream media, clouding the point that there are a number of legitimate concerns and reasons as to why so many people aren’t taking them.
These are intelligent people, many of the are experts in the field that have been “pro-vaccine” advocates for years, and the fact that they are being labelled as “conspiracy theorists”, ignored, censored, or unacknowledged is quite concerning especially when you consider public transparency.
Dr. Bryan Bridle, a viral immunologist and professor at the University of Guelph is one of many who provide good insight as to why COVID vaccine hesitancy may be high among experts like himself. Bridle develops immunization strategies to prevent infectious diseases and treat cancers. He teaches, in his own words, “the value of high-quality, well-validated vaccines and passionately promotes their use. Vaccines are, by far, the most efficient type of medicine; they cost-effectively save millions of people from sickness and/or death.” I personally, and many others would disagree with this statement. But that’s another topic of discussion. I thought it was important to include his stance on vaccines overall.
The information and quotes below come from this interview, this presentation, and this release by the University of Guelph. I suggest you go through them all to get the full picture beyond what’s summarized in this article.
One of the reasons for hesitancy among academics in the field is natural immunity. Bridle explains:
Natural immunity acquired by an ever-growing number of people means fewer people require vaccination to reach herd immunity. As a bonus, natural immunity also equates to broader immunity; these people should be less susceptible to re-infection if an immuno-evasive SARS-CoV-2 variant emerges.
He himself has stated that he would prefer to acquire natural immunity through exposure to the virus rather than through the vaccine. He is one of many experts who have expressed that natural immunity is stronger than vaccine-induced immunity. He explains,
Acquisition of natural immunity, which targets multiple components of the virus, may reduce the risk of re-infection not only with covid-19, but also with variants that can bypass spike protein-specific (vaccine) immunity…It’s just a matter of time before we will have variants that can bypass this narrow immunity conferred by all of these vaccines….Natural immunity is very broad…And we know now there’s lots of published reports that this is protective.
So if a new variant infects, chances are that the immunity you have is going to blunt that infection, whereas if you have that narrowly focused immunity conferred by the vaccine, and this variant has evaded that spike protein specific immunity, those people are going to be at much greater risk of more severe disease than those who acquire the new variant, but have this broad acting natural immunity.
And there’s even evidence, interestingly, that those with pre-existing immunity against other coronaviruses, including the SARS coronavirus one from 17 years ago, and even from some of the cold causing coronaviruses, can cross protect some people.
So this is the sweet evidence that natural immunity can be pretty good. I actually kind of laugh when I see these publications coming out, because this is kind of immunology 101 that I teach all my students. This is what our immune systems are designed to do.
This is something many in the field have been sharing. Dr. Suneel Dhand, an internal medicine physician based in the United States recently explained that vaccines aren’t required if one has acquired antibodies from infection, which, according to him, are much more effective than the vaccine.
I’m not aware of any vaccine out there which will ever give you more immunity than if you’re naturally recovered from the illness itself…If you’ve naturally recovered from it, my understanding as a doctor level scientist is that those antibodies will always be better than a vaccine, and if you know any differently, please let me know.
Vaccine expert and Harvard professor of medicine Dr. Martin Kulldorff recently tweeted that:
“After having protected themselves while working class were exposed to the virus, the vaccinated Zoomers now want Vaccine Passports where immunity from prior infection does not count, despite stronger evidence for protection. One more assault on working people.”
There are multiple studies hinting at the point the professor makes, that those who have been infected with COVID may have immunity for years, and possibly even decades. For example, according to a new study authored by respected scientists at leading labs, individuals who recovered from the coronavirus developed “robust” levels of B cells and T cells (necessary for fighting off the virus) and “these cells may persist in the body for a very, very long time.” There are also studies that suggest infection to prior coronaviruses, which prior to COVID-19 circled the globe infecting hundreds of millions of people every single year, can also provide protection from COVID-19, something Bridle also emphasizes as mentioned above.
This is why Bridle states that, “It’s crazy in Canada, we’re not bothering to test people for pre-existing immunity before vaccinating them.” Dhand also mentions in his video that antibody testing is standard procedure at their practice. Instead of PCR testing, which is controversial in of itself, why aren’t we testing for antibodies?
So those being vaccinated now are, whether they realize it or not, part of the phase three experiment, they part of a vaccination experiment and the companies have openly acknowledged this in their reports to the regulatory agencies, because, for example, there’s a minimum period of time for which they have to track things like the safety of the vaccine.
And indeed they’ve even indicated that. So most people, you know, we’re used to as scientists, usually being able to see published scientifically peer-reviewed data before the vaccines are rolled out. And this won’t happen for probably for about two more years.
And the reason for this is because it’s going to take that long to complete the phase three clinical trials, because a phase three clinical trial, it cannot be declared complete until they have monitored the safety of the vaccine for multiple years. – Bridle
Bridle also states that because of the fast rollout of these vaccines, and the lack of long term safety data, there are concerns. This type of rushed rollout has happened before, he pointed to the swine flu pandemic as an example. One of the vaccines that was manufactured and distributed in Europe, “Pandemrix AS03” caused, for 2 years after the vaccine was used, a 14-fold and 7-fold increase in the diagnosis of narcolepsy in children, teens and adults. This is a chronic sleep disorder with overwhelming fatigue which is accompanied by a loss of muscle tone, likely due to “autoimmunity against neurons in the brain.”
He also questions the effectiveness of the vaccine, pointing out again, that there are many unknowns here.
A recent consensus statement from a group of renowned infectious disease clinicians observed that vaccine programs have proven ill-suited to the fast-changing viruses underlying these illnesses, with efficacy ranging from 19% to 54% in the past few years. (source)
Another important point Bridle brings up is that lockdowns have prevented the acquisition of natural immunity. I first came across this idea when Knut M. Wittkowski, PhD, ScD, headed the Department of Biostatistics, Epidemiology & Research Design at Rockefeller University for 20 years, went “viral” when suggesting that lockdowns would end up killing more people due to the fact that they prevent or delay herd immunity. Many of his interviews were completely removed from various social media outlets.
Since then, many studies have been published showing that lockdowns may have already killed more people than covid. You can find out more information and learn more about the catastrophic impact of lockdowns, here.
According to Bridle,
We’re now more than a year into the pandemic. Most countries at the beginning of the pandemic decided they’re not going to go for rapid acquisition of natural immunity. Instead we are going to slow it down or try and prevent it altogether and wait for the vaccines to accomplish this.
But for example, the country I’m in, in Canada, we’re in lockdown right now, but we had our students go back to school for quite some time, actually, just now they’re there. They’ve just gone back again after a second lockdown. We’ve had a lot of people go back to work.
The reality is we’ve probably acquired quite a lot of natural herd immunity. We’re probably much closer to herd immunity than we even appreciate. And certainly much closer than we were, which was zero.
We had zero natural immunity essentially at the beginning of the pandemic. But if you have gone with an isolationist policy, strict isolationist policy, you might have low levels of natural herd immunity. And indeed also we’ve done a very poor job of tracking that. So we really don’t know how close or how far in most countries we are from natural herd immunity.
But you’ve also been hearing the other speakers talking about that. This probably, you know, we probably should have adopted more of this earlier on, and then we’d be in a much better place should some of these dangerous variants come out. Okay.
So again, I can’t emphasize this more either, acquisition of natural immunity by an ever-growing number of people happily means that fewer people will require vaccination to reach herd immunity.
When it comes to Bridle, he also points out that “Children, especially children under 10 are at greater risk of dying from the annual flu than they are SARS coronavirus two.” Jonas F Ludvigsson a paediatrician at Örebro University Hospital and professor of clinical epidemiology at the Karolinska Institute, has also shown this to be the case. During the first wave in Sweden, despite no masks, school closures or lockdowns, zero out of nearly two million school children died.
Kari Stefansson, senior author of a study from Iceland conducted early in the epidemic when masking was uncommon showing that incidents of covid in children is far less than adults, stated that children are “less likely to get infected than adults and if they get infected, they are less likely to get seriously ill. What is interesting is that even if children do get infected, they are less likely to transmit the disease to others than adults.”
Why This Is Important
This type of information is important because it’s very scientifically sound, and because it provides a perspective and narrative that is completely ignored by mainstream media. The unfortunate thing is that many people rely on mainstream media for their source of information and “truth”, and are therefore unaware of this type of information. They are also made to feel that any point raising any type of concern about vaccines are from “anti-vaccine conspiracy theorists.” Bridle touches on this point as well in his interview:
Usually when that term is used, it’s often referring to people who tend to hold an extremely negative view of all vaccines, regardless of what the scientific data has to say about them.
But I want to highlight that vaccine hesitancy is very, very different. And a lot of people who have the vaccine hesitancy are being made to feel very bad these days, right? It’s as though if they were simply educated enough about vaccines, then they would have no problem with these COVID-19 vaccines. But that’s not the case. That’s not the definition, certainly that I use. These are individuals instead who are unsure of their commitment to taking a vaccine. And it’s usually because of outstanding questions. So in other words, the onus is not on the individual. It’s not that the individual simply needs to be educated. We have, there’s lots of people who are very deep thinkers about this, doing their own research about the COVID-19 vaccines and coming up with very legitimate questions.
Mainstream media and governments are failing to have appropriate conversations around “controversial” issues. People who disagree with each other these days seem to be experiencing the same thing, as many of us have become extremely polarized in our viewpoints. It’s ok to believe something, and stand on one side, but what’s even more important than being “right” or “wrong” is to understand why someone feels the way they do, and why someone believes what they believe. Human beings are intelligent, we are all capable of thinking and examining information and just because somebody disagrees with you does not mean they are stupid. We really need to respect and understand each other, especially in this day and age.
Here we’ve made many efforts over the years to help improve collective communication, one of the latest is the release of a coursed in our CETV membership called ‘Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking’ it’s a course that truly can benefit everyone, even those who feel they already think critically very well. You can learn more here.
It’s interesting to see so many perspectives around all things COVID, but the measures being rolled out, like mandatory vaccination in order to travel or enter into certain public spaces, don’t really match up with the science and the points made in this article and others.
What’s unnerving is the fact that information, science, data, opinion and evidence that opposes the narrative of government, big tech and/or mainstream media is not being given a voice at all. This type of censorship alone has served as a catalyst to really question our world and the way we live here, when these questions likely would not have otherwise been asked. Should we really be giving government the authority to take away our rights and freedoms when things are not as clear as they make them out to be, and when these measures go against the will of so many people?
This article (“Pro Vaccine” Canadian Prof & Viral Immunologist Explains His Concerns With COVID Vaccines) was originally published on Collective Evolution and is published under a Creative Commons license.