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Welcome From The Chief Editor

So now filling the news stream are endless reports of coronavirus (specifically SARS-Cov2) mutations. There's the British B.1.1.7. There's the South African B.1.351. There's the California CAL 20C. There's the New York B.1.526. There are many, many more variants of the coronavirus that causes SARS-Cov-2. And, they are all nasty little buggers.

Yes, we need to monitor these variants so we know whether or not (or how much) people are at risk, and to be able to plan how to handle them should they become the dominant strain. But do we really need to report on every. single. solitary. variant? Yes, the scientists and the doctors and the nurses and all the other healthcare professionals need to know if the vaccines that are still being rolled out are effective against these new variants. But does this information need to flood the airwaves, creating hysteria?

Most people outside of the scientific and medical communities simply don't possess the ability to fully comprehend the genetic technobabble of these reports. Hell, there are a lot of scientists and medical personnel who struggle with it, as well. So probably the last thing we need are the talking heads on the nightly news (who probably understand none of it) causing panic and mayhem. There's a LARGE gap between keeping people informed and whipping a crowd into wild hysteria. The talking heads excel at the latter. It does, after all, make great headlines, even at the expense of the truth. And big, sensational headlines increase viewership, which increases advertising prices, which increases profits for the broadcaster.

Remember. This is what virii do. They mutate. They always have, and will always continue to do so. Transcription errors in the genetic code of the virus when it reproduces is one of the things that causes these variants. Sometimes, the virus adapts to thwart something that has blocked its ability to infect and multiply. These mutations can cause a virus to become more easily transmissible, or just as easily cause a virus to be more virulent.

These mutations can also go the other way. The right mutation can cause a virus to become less transmissible or less virulent. There are some theories that this is exactly what happened to the H1N1 influenza virus that was responsible for the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. It just mutated itself right out of the headlines. The mutations of H1N1 caused it to become less virulent, less deadly, and less transmissible, or so the theory goes. I'm not advocating for keeping such information locked away or behind closed doors. But you don't have to drive it into the ground with wall-to-wall, gene-by-gene coverage, either. Like I mentioned before, there's a LARGE gap between keeping people informed and whipping up mass hysteria. When you drive it into the ground with the wall-to-wall, gene-by-gene coverage, you are achieving the latter. Those who want to know more should have the resources already available to seek out the additional information, should they desire.

Of course, it also comes into play whether or not the news media deserve our trust, anyway. Their recent track record has been way, way, way less than stellar. Little of what is pawned off as news today is really news at all, at least by traditional measures. I know. I was once a member of that "mainstream media" establishment years ago. The media today is much more interested in pushing an agenda than they are in telling the truth or just telling the story about what happened. And if that story doesn't pair well with the agenda they are pushing, it simply gets omitted, as if it never happened. These were things that we were taught to NEVER do, no matter what.

Until next month, I bid you peace, happiness, serenity, prosperity ... and continued good health.

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