Category: Health

Mesa County Concerned Citizen meme demonstrates local cluelessness about respiratory transmission of disease

Meme in an email blast sent out by the far right group Mesa County Concerned Citizen on 11/15/21, showing that likely many local people lack any understanding of how respiratory disease and its transmission work — information that is massively important to getting a pandemic under control

The above meme was sent out in an email blast last November 15, 2021 by the far right extremist group Mesa County Concerned Citizen.

The meme makes it clear that many Mesa County residents likely lack an understanding about how the transmission of respiratory diseases works — information that is massively important to our ability to bring the virus under control. This could be one reason why the coronavirus has been able to spread so efficiently in Mesa County, and why it is likely to persist here.

Former KKCO weatherman Butch McCain now shilling for anti-vaxxers

Former KKCO Channel 11 weatherman Butch McCain, who was fired last October for refusing to get vaccinated against Covid-19, stands in front of a fake weather map in a video promoting the anti-vax group Stop The Mandate GJ

Former longtime KKCO weatherman Butch McCain, who was fired from KKCO last October after refusing to get a Covid-19 vaccine in compliance with his employer Gray TV’s Covid-19 vaccine policy, is now promoting the anti-vax group Stop the Mandate GJ, which is encouraging others in our area to also refuse the vaccine.

McCain now appears on the first page of StoptheMandateGJ’s website, talking in front of a fake weather map and saying in part,

“It’s not about Covid any more, it’s about forced compliance…Let’s be the resistance to their nationwide tyranny…

 

Another local chiropractor spreads dangerous misinformation about Covid prevention and treatment

Photo: YouTube, 2010

In October, 2021, the U.S. News and World Report revealed chiropractors are a major force stirring up anti-vaccine sentiment and spreading medical misinformation across the country in the pandemic. Often regarded as trusted health professionals, chiropractors who do this pose a potent threat to the public by hawking supplements as alternatives to vaccines, working to help people evade vaccine mandates, recommending unapproved and potentially toxic medication regimens to treat and prevent Covid, and abetting anti-vaccine movements at the local level.

That is certainly happening here in Grand Junction, too.

G.J. chiropractor recommends novel but fraudulent way for anti-vaxxers to try to avoid mandatory Covid vaccination

New Life Chiropractic on Patterson Rd., operated by Wesley Sheader, recommends “VaxControlGroup.com” to anti-vaxxers who are trying to evade vaccine mandates. The only problem is, it’s fraudulent.

Grand Junction chiropractor Wesley Sheader of New Life Chiropractic at 2532 Patterson Road is giving people trying to evade Covid-19 vaccine mandates a unique way to evade the jab: he suggests they join an unvaccinated study control group which can issue them an official-looking ID card saying they can’t be vaccinated because they are a participant in the study.

The only thing is, there is no study and the “control group” is a scam.

“Mesa County Concerned Citizen” fraudulently promotes $182 ripoff box of common OTC items as an “early and effective treatment of COVID-19”

Screen-shot from a January 6, 2022 email sent out by Mesa County Concerned Citizen in which the group links to this box of every day drug store items selling online that claims to be an “early and effective treatment for Covid-19.”  The box sells for $160.00 plus $20 shipping and $12.37 tax, for a total of $182.36 — all for about $60 worth of over-the-counter items.

In its January 3, 2022 email blast, the local extreme right wing group “Mesa County Concerned Citizen” included a plug for “The Defense Box,” an item selling online that contains about $60 worth of common over-the counter items like Pepcid, Listerine, Vitamin C and baby aspirin, that costs $182.36, including shipping and tax.

The group says the items are an “early and effective treatment option” for Covid-19.

None of the items in the box are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment, prevention, mitigation or cure of Covid-19.

Redlands chiropractor spreads dangerous medical misinformation amid pandemic

In a video on his business web page under the heading “Covid Treatments,” Grand Junction chiropractor Ronald Engler of the Redlands Chiropractic and Wellness Center administers horse deworming medication to himself and encourages others to do the same to themselves, in violation of FDA guidance on use of the drug.

NOTE: This video has been banned on YouTube previously for posing a serious risk of egregious harm. It was uploaded again here for purposes of criticism in this article. We’ll see if it lasts.

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While some Grand Junction chiropractors are profiting from the pandemic by marketing proprietary dietary supplements that they falsely infer will prevent or treat Covid-19, others are using their credibility as health care providers to openly promote dangerous medical misinformation to the public.

One of these is Ronald W. Engler of the Redlands Chiropractic and Wellness Center.

HD-55 candidate Cindy Ficklin (R) now blames taxpayers and a Daily Sentinel reporter for her getting Covid, and is taking unproven treatments for the disease

Ficklin says she “went underground” to get Ivermectin to treat her Covid-19 infection, and displays the bottle in a Facebook post. There is no evidence Ivermectin cures Covid-19, and the FDA urges people not to use it.

Republican House District 55 candidate Cindy Ficklin is using non-medically approved treatments for Covid-19, including the animal de-worming medication Ivermectin. She also says she is inhaling “silver and Glutathione” with a nebulizer to “prevent conjestion [sic] from hardening in my lungs.”

Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra announces mandatory vaccine and masking policy for patrons 2021/2022 season

The Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra has a grip on reality when it comes to the pandemic, and they’re acting on it

The Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra (GJSO) appears to be the first local organization to grasp the gravity of the coronavirus infection spike currently gripping Mesa County and act on it by adopting policies aimed at minimizing the danger of transmitting the virus at its events.

The GJSO emailed its supporters today to let them know that due to the high number of Covid-19 cases locally, the low vaccination rate here and the very heavy burden being placed on local hospitals, starting December 10 all patrons will be required to wear masks and provide proof they are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 prior to attending all GJSO events at all indoor venues, including the Avalon Theater, Love Recital Hall at Colorado Mesa University and others.

HD55 Candidate Cindy Ficklin repeatedly asserts Coronavirus was invented in a lab to target obese, elderly & unfit people

Cindy Ficklin in a screen shot from a video published by the extremist group “Stand for the Constitution”

Extremist Republican House District 55 candidate Cindy Ficklin has repeatedly asserted, without providing any evidence, that the SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus was manufactured in a laboratory and intentionally designed to target elderly, obese and less fit people, adding “Hitler would have loved it.”

She stated this the first time in an April 6, 2020 Facebook post:

April 6, 2020 Facebook post by Cindy Ficklin

HD 55 candidate Cindy Ficklin spreads false, dangerous misinformation about vaccines & Covid on her “Cindy Says” blog

Republican HD-55 candidate Cindy Ficklin has a track record of spreading harmful lies and conspiracy theories about Covid-19, Covid vaccines and other topics on social media. Facebook has tried to rein her in.

After Republican House District 55 candidate Cindy Ficklin was banned from Facebook for 30 days on May 27, 2021 for spreading the lie that Covid-19 was man-made in a lab in China, she started a personal blog on the website of Coldwell Banker, the real estate office with which she is affiliated.

Ficklin has been banned from Facebook several times, including another 30 day stint in July of 2021. Facebook usually applies the 30 day ban — the longest ban they use before taking an account down completely — after a user willfully violates the platform’s “community standards” multiple times and after they give at least five prior warnings and multiple bans of increasing length before reaching the 30-day threshold.

Deprived of her main social media conduit, Ficklin was in need of an outlet where she could spread conspiracy theories and misinformation about Covid-19 and other topics without restriction.

Election conspiracy theorist Sherronna Bishop compares G.J. blogger to a top U.S public health physician

In what apparently was meant as a slur toward trangender people, Garfield County election conspiracy theorist Sherronna Bishop, who calls herself “America’s Mom,” in this Instagam post today compared Grand Junction blogger Anne Landman to Admiral Rachel Levine, M.D., newly-appointed as U.S. Assistant Secretary of Health and among the most accomplished public health physicians in the country.

In what was meant to be a slur aimed at transgender people, Garfield County election conspiracy theorist Sherronna Bishop, who bills herself as “Americas Mom,” today in an Instagram post compared AnneLandmanBlog author Anne Landman to Admiral Rachel Levine, M.D., the highly accomplished public health physician who was recently confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the nation’s new Assistant Secretary of Health in the U.S. Department of Human Services.

Free financial help available for families of Covid-19 victims to pay funeral expenses

309 people have died so far in Mesa County from Covid-19 in Mesa County, thirteen of them in just the last two weeks, according to the Mesa County Public Health Department, and there’s no end to the pandemic in sight. Over 700,000 Americans have died from Covid-19 nationwide since the start of the pandemic in 2020.

All of those deceased people have family members who were suddenly burdened not just with grief from the death of their loved ones, but also with unexpected costs from funerals, cremations, interment, buying burial plots and other expenses.

The Biden administration wants to ease some of the financial burden and stress placed on American families who are dealing with deaths caused by Covid-19. To that end, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is providing financial help for COVID-19-related funeral expenses incurred as far back as January 20, 2020.

Daily Sentinel & Mesa County Public Health Department appear to take steps to shield CMU from criticism

The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel and Mesa County Public Health Department appear to be shielding Colorado Mesa University from public criticism over its handling of the Coronavirus pandemic by minimizing and obscuring information about Covid outbreaks and how the school is handling cases.

Buried towards the end of an article in today’s Sentinel about Covid cases in area schools was a reference to a situation in which a CMU student who was sick with Covid-19 and quarantined in Piñon Hall failed to get any food delivered for two days. The paper referred to the situation as “one minor communications issue” and made it sound like the student was to blame, along with a single poster in the dorm.

CMU President John Marshall cites unreliable preprint as a basis for the school’s weak Covid-19 response

New CMU President John Marshall has never published a single article in a peer-reviewed journal, and appears oblivious to the importance of the peer-review process in citing medical research as the basis for campus health policy. (Photo: Twitter, @MesaVeep)

New Colorado Mesa University (CMU) President John Marshall on August 30 cited a non-peer-reviewed study that bears a boldfaced warning label saying it might contain errors and be incorrect, as a basis for the school’s disturbingly weak mitigation plan against Covid-19 that is terrorizing staff.

The Agency of the Irresponsible

The following commentary on how Colorado Mesa University (CMU) is handling the coronavirus pandemic was written by CMU History Professor Sarah Swedberg, who is now experiencing CMU’s policies in person. This article was originally published on Nursing Clio, an open-access, peer-reviewed, collaborative blog that ties historical scholarship to present-day issues related to gender and medicine. The article is reprinted here with full permission from Dr. Swedberg.

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Like many faculty at state universities, the beginning of this school year brings me more terror than excitement. Colorado Mesa University (CMU), the institution at which I have taught since 1999, will require neither masks nor vaccines for students, and faculty cannot enforce mask mandates in the classrooms. This flies in the face of best practices for public health. When I asked the reason for this policy, I was told that there were strong feelings on both sides.

“Strong feelings” is clearly code for the fact that CMU is in a politically conservative region where there is strong resistance to both vaccination and masks. These words remind us that public health measures have always been politicized. Because I teach about HIV and AIDS and because I was a young adult in the 1980s, it is that pandemic that is foremost in my mind as I try to negotiate my own and my students’ safety.

CMU to host another superspreader event on 8/27

As if holding one massive superspreader event to kick off Colorado Mesa University’s fall ’21 semester wasn’t enough of a public health threat to students and the community, in today’s Daily Sentinel, CMU is advertising another big event on August 27th to be held inside the Meyer Ballroom in the University Center that involves eating, dancing and drinking alcohol.

The ad does not mention any coronavirus precautions being used at the event, like proof of a negative Covid-19 test, proof of being fully vaccinated against Covid-19, or masks or physical distancing.

Mesa County residents freaked out by CMU’s semester-kickoff superspreader event

CMU’s held its freshman orientation semester kickoff event in an indoor gym without taking any coronavirus precautions, like masking or physical distancing.

 

No masks, no physical distancing, lots of open-mouths and yelling among the younger crowd, the age range currently being most infected with the more dangerous delta variant of Covid-19

Mesa County residents are horrified by photos Colorado Mesa University (CMU) gleefully posted on it’s Facebook page yesterday showing the school held a jam-packed, high-energy indoor semester-kickoff event without taking any coronavirus precautions.

Officials at Memorial Regional Hospital in Craig say Rep. Boebert is ignorant about health care policy and it’s costing lives

In the wake of House Rep. Lauren Boebert refusing to wear a mask on the House floor, calling Covid-19 vaccine administrators “needle Nazis” and likening public health efforts to control the pandemic to “communism,” Andrew Daniels, Chief Executive Officer of Memorial Regional Hospital in Craig, Colorado, told a national news outlet (video) that he is “embarrassed that Lauren Boebert is his House Representative.”

His hospital was recently forced to re-open its Covid ward due to a resurgence in Covid cases in Moffat County, now considered a coronavirus hotspot due to high rate of community transmission and a low vaccination rate, similar to Mesa County.

Covid hotspots are in red. (Source: CDC/CNN)

Daniels, who described himself as a “super conservative,” said of Boebert,

“I’m embarrassed that she’s my representative. I think if you’re going to take a stance on health care policy, you might actually want to learn something about healthcare policy.”

Dr. Matthew Grzegozewski, Memorial Regional Hospital’s Director of Emergency Medicine struck a similar note, about Boebert, saying

“A lot of people are listening [to what Boebert] is saying and a lot of what she’s putting out there is ideology and in fact isn’t medically sound, and it’s putting people in danger and quite honestly costing people their lives, and it’s frustrating to have to fight against that.