By Guy Page
UVM-trained microbiologist Aimee Stephensen this month wrote a commentary titled “What’s the Link Between GMOs and the Covid vaccines?” She’s concerned Covid-19 vaccines may genetically modify its recipients. VTDigger, the not-for-profit online news publisher that self-identifies as “News In Pursuit of Truth,” published the op-ed Friday, August 20.
Shortly after, VTDigger removed the post with this cryptic explanation: “Editor’s Note: This commentary has been removed. It did not meet VTDigger’s editorial standards.”
Yesterday, Vermont Daily Chronicle asked VTDigger Publisher Anne Galloway via email: “Can you or one of your staff please tell me on the record why Aimee Stephensen’s op-ed didn’t meet your editorial standards?” This morning, Galloway replied: “Thanks for asking. Here is our response: In the midst of a global pandemic, we believe it is irresponsible to amplify arguments that could lead to the further spread of Covid-19.”
What’s going on here?
Ms. Stephenson’s commentary may be read in its entirety on Vermont Independent, the blog published by social media consultant Dr. Rob Williams.
In a nutshell, Stephenson wonders that anti-GMO (genetically-modified organism) Vermont has enthusiastically embraced the mRNA vaccine – itself a synthetically-produced gene therapy.
“Just a few short years ago, Vermont led the nation in enacting legislation requiring labeling of food produced with genetic engineering,” Stephenson writes. “I find it fascinating that this same little state also led the nation in COVID-19 vaccination rates….because Vermonters may have inadvertently ingested or turned themselves into GMOs when they got the COVID-19 vaccine.”
But Stephensen’s worries extend beyond the inconsistency of the ‘Frankenfood’ state eagerly embracing gene therapy. The trained microbiologist is worried that drug regulators in their rush to approval are ignoring a very real potential problem raised last December by Harvard and MIT scientists:
“We describe evidence that SARS-CoV-2 RNAs can be reverse transcribed in human cells:” so say the one-paragraph abstract of a Dec. 13, 2020 study published on the National Institutes of Health National Library of Medicine.
Research into mRNA therapy has been ongoing since 1976, according to an MIT statement. “RNA vaccines deliver genetic information that allows the body’s own cells to produce a viral protein. Synthetic mRNA that encodes a viral protein can borrow this machinery to produce many copies of the protein. These proteins stimulate the immune system to mount a response.”
But what the MIT/Harvard researchers say could happen next raises red flags for Stephenson.
“Some argue mRNA vaccines are not truly gene therapies because they do not interfere with our human genes. But is the standard narrative really true? We have been assured by the vaccine makers there is no possible way mRNA vaccines can impact our human genes/DNA, but a recent study by MIT and Harvard scientists demonstrates the opposite. This study showed how segments of RNA from the coronavirus itself are most likely becoming a permanent fixture in human DNA.”
Pro-mRNA researchers say it’s not only safe, but it’s the key to curing HIV and cancer. The sky’s the limit for mRNA.
Which brings Vermonters back to VT Digger ditching the Aimee Stephenson commentary. Does her commentary threaten lives by reducing confidence in a life-saving vaccine? Is it the equivalent of shouting ‘fire’ in a crowded theater?
Or, does it save lives by pointing out its risks?
It’s up to the editor – and ultimately, the reader – to decide.