The Canadian Academics for Covid Ethics (CA4CE) is a group of researchers and scholars from fields spanning the natural and social sciences and humanities. It is concerned with the mismanagement of the ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic response in Canada and around the world.
The following commentary was written by Alexander Andrée, PhD, Valentina Capurri, PhD, Claudia Chaufan, MD, PhD, Candice Chow, C.Dir., DBA, MBA, MSc, B(Eng), CFA, Cornelius Christian, DPhil, Anton de Ruiter, PhD, Angela Durante, PhD, Maximilian C. Forte, PhD, Daphene Francis, PhD, RN, Jeffrey Graham, BA, MA, PhD, Laurent Leduc, PhD, Robert Price, PhD, Denis Rancourt, PhD, Claus Rinner, PhD , Michelle Turan, PhD, BCBA.
Now that nearly three-quarters of Canadians have received a COVID-19 vaccine, governments are rushing forward with plans to inoculate the largest remaining group of unvaccinated – children as young as five years old.
Parents should treat this development with alarm, and they must do all they can to protect their children from vaccines with questionable safety and effectiveness.
The rush to inject children is not driven by fact or reason but by specious assumptions about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines and the threat the disease poses to children. The fact is that there’s no good reason to administer these products to children.
Here are five facts all parents should know.
1) These are not traditional vaccines that provide sterilizing immunity but genetic-based therapeutics that, at best, protect a person from severe illness. The technology in mRNA vaccines is nothing like the technology found in something like the polio vaccine. mRNA’s use in humans is brand new, and in children it is unprecedented and untested – except in the most minimal ways.
2) Despite much misinformation propagated by government and mass media, mRNA vaccines have not yet been proven “safe and effective” for the general population, let alone for children. The Pfizer vaccine is in Phase 3 trial until 2023. All the people who have taken it are, wittingly or not, part of an experiment. The effects of these vaccines will have to be monitored well beyond this decade.
3) Pfizer’s rushed safety trial cannot accurately gauge the risk these novel therapies pose to children. The trial for five- to 11-year-olds had only 3,100 children – far too small a sample to capture safety signals. If a side effect occurs one in 5,000 children (which is considered a high number), Pfizer’s trial wouldn’t catch it.
In Ontario, the rate of myocarditis, a dangerous heart condition, is one in 5,000 in males aged 12 to 24. You’d never capture this safety signal in the under-powered trials. The rollout of the Pfizer product to the younger age group will serve as a larger trial, with your children as the guinea pigs.
We have a much larger sample of kids who caught the coronavirus – and the overwhelming majority survived without any negative consequences. Most children who passed away did so with rather than from COVID-19. To give perspective, about 100 kids die of cancer each year, compared to 20 recorded COVID-19 deaths in almost two years. Sadly, more will die from preventable drowning than from, or even just with, COVID-19.
4) Government regulators like the Food and Drug Administration in the United States and Health Canada don’t run independent trials. These bureaucracies trust the results of studies done by the same corporations that profit from the sales of the drugs they study. The profits have been immense – Pfizer expects sales for 2021 and 2022 to top $65-billion – and with young children added as a new market segment, the drive to vaccinate children will only grow.
5) The scheme to vaccinate children presumes that an emergency is ongoing. The virus that causes COVID-19 is real, it does constitute a threat to certain populations, especially the aged and the dying, and some jurisdictions did live through an emergency.
But the emergency has passed. As a province of 14.57 million people, Ontario has 133 people in ICU due to COVID-19, as of Nov. 22. The field hospitals Ontario built to triage patients were closed without being used. Even the best-case model predictions never came to pass.
We won. We should be celebrating and resuming life, not vaccinating children, a group for whom the threat of COVID-19 never constituted an emergency.
Last year, public health officials prefaced every decision they made with the phrase “out of an abundance of caution.” Governments locked down the free world, separated families, and turned the precautionary principle on its head by positioning COVID-19 vaccines as the only solution – all “out of an abundance of caution.”
The precautionary principle demands caution with implementing innovations before proper study. This is one of those cases when the precautionary principle should reign. The risks to children from these vaccines are still unknown, and because they are unknown, we have to assume they are serious and proceed with extreme caution.
Elected leaders and public health officials should, out of an abundance of caution, pause approvals and demand rigorous studies of the safety of these vaccines in the most sensitive groups, including children and pregnant women.
And parents, most of all, should demand caution in abundance and fight any mandate or coercion that could harm their children.
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