By Brian C. Joondeph
Religion is a belief system based on a combination of logic and faith, mostly beyond the realm of what can be proven scientifically. A dictionary definition is, “Religion is belief in a god or gods and the activities that are connected with this belief, such as praying or worshipping in a building such as a church or temple.”
Or in simpler terms, religion can create order and meaning in a random and chaotic world. Religion is also strongly held and deeply personal, not something tossed aside based on the words of a government, politician, or celebrity.
For many, politics has become religion, and as a centuries-old etiquette rule advises, “Never discuss politics or religion in polite company.” Unfortunately, today, science has now become political and entered the realm of religion.
For decades, communism was the primary religion of the left. The fall of the Soviet Union and socioeconomic failures of Cuba, Venezuela, and other communist dictatorships steered the left toward a new god, mother earth or simply the environment. This religion morphed from global cooling in the 1970s to global warming a decade later, now to climate change or extreme weather — normal cyclic events that have been a part of life on Planet Earth since long before humans existed.
While climate change has been the excuse for massive tax and spend schemes of wealth redistribution and top-down population control, the movement was stalling as the fear mongering became less credible to much of the population. Time for replacing an environmental god with a deadly virus, whose treatment and control may achieve what global warming and climate change could not. The left treats both climate and COVID with the religious fervor of jihad.
Religion has 7 basic elements. How are the religions of climate and COVID similar?
Beliefs – the planet and civilization will be destroyed due to man-made global warming or an man-made (increasingly likely) virus. The left believes this with absolute certainty. Just speak with your liberal friends or listen to cable news for confirmation. Immediate and severe measures are necessary, or we are facing an extinction event, despite ample evidence to the contrary.
Religious organization – both climate and COVID are organized around fear, large powerful government organizations and the media pushing and amplifying such fear, proposing new bureaucracies, or empowering existing ones to make totalitarian decisions confiscating both wealth and freedom.
Emotions – fear is the primary emotion for both belief systems. For climate it is fear of starvation and an end to normal life. For COVID it’s fear of death from a virus with a greater than 99 percent survival rate. Emotional images are used, from a polar bear floating on an ice cap to a crowded emergency room or ICU, even if the photos are staged or have little to do with the issue at hand.
Sacred objects – the climate movement has windmills, solar panels, and electric vehicles as their sacred objects with no acknowledgement that their religious icons are currently doing little to solve the supposed problem they are meant to fix. In COVID, the sacred objects are the almighty face mask, largely symbolic and previously acknowledged to be useless for a respiratory virus by Dr Fauci and others. The vaccine syringe is another sacred object, worshipped by late night political cranks like Stephen Colbert performing an embarrassing and insipid “vaccine dance” featuring dancing syringes. As if Colbert’s foolishness will change the minds of the vaccine hesitant.
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Symbols – these can be lumped together with sacred objects. Add in the myriad “awareness ribbons” proudly displayed by those who care more about important issues than you do, and “I’m vaccinated” stickers or a “vaxed” necklace worn by New York’s new governor as she systematically shuts down her state.
Sects – several sects exist within these two movements. Both are populated largely by Democrats and leftists but also virtue-signaling Republicans who want to appear woke, hoping to avoid ostracization or cancellation. Examples include Senator Mitt Romney, once an uber capitalist, now willing to throw untold dollars at manufactured problems and causes to make sure the Washington Post and CNN don’t say mean things about him.
There are other commonalities between climate and COVID, nicely compiled by physicist John Droz, Jr. Both pseudo religions use fear of an invisible enemy, a warming planet, or a virus, to make the public afraid and compliant.
The fear is based on “situational science” which changes based on the narrative of the day. For example, global cooling changed to global warming, then to climate change when meaningful cooling or warming could not be verified or accurately modeled. With COVID we went from “15 days to slow the spread” and “masks are unnecessary” to “vaccines are safe and effective” and “vaccines will return life to normal” with “the vaccinated don’t need to wear masks” to a “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” now to “vaccines don’t prevent infection or transmission, and only reduce the risk of hospitalization and death.” One would think the world is dealing with its first respiratory virus and vaccination program given how fast everyone seems to be learning on the job.
Prophets of doom and salvation spread the message, from Al Gore to Anthony Fauci, and profit often follows the prophet, as it does with some fabulously wealthy leaders of the mega-churches. Hypocrisy abounds as well. Green Al Gore’s home electricity bill is 20 times the national average. Dr Fauci and others go maskless when it suits them or when the cameras are off, while telling the rest of us to wear two masks.
Scientific organizations are complicit in pushing their religions, from NOAA to the CDC, and the media happily joins the chorus as they are part of the religious congregations, even if in their private lives they behave otherwise. Think CNN’s Chris Cuomo as an example.
The religious zealots propose solutions which are profitable to favored political groups, from Solyndra’s solar panels to the big pharma vaccine makers. COVID vaccines created 9 new billionaires. Is Senator Elizabeth Warren scolding them, “You didn’t build that”?
Proposed solutions are experimental and of limited benefit, carrying significant adverse effects, some of which make the problem worse.
From rolling blackouts and rising gas prices to windmills chopping up birds on the climate side, to endless lockdowns, vaccine mandates, mask rules, and business closures, destroying the health and lives of so many on the COVID side.
Common sense, safe, and inexpensive solutions are castigated and dismissed, whether nuclear energy or ivermectin. All are tossed aside in favor of more expensive and potentially more harmful remedies that are not even solving the problem they are supposed to solve.
China finds itself in the middle of both religions, as the world’s biggest polluter, now going on a “coal spree” and serving as the source as the original Wuhan coronavirus.
The previously mentioned New York Governor Kathy Hochul confirmed the new COVID religion while recently speaking at a Brooklyn church. She claimed the vaccines were divinely inspired and that congregants were her “apostles”, taking the role of Jesus, urging everyone to get vaccinated. Perhaps Saint Kathy should check in with the Book of Matthew, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.”
Finally, both religions seek to undermine America, her economy, Constitution, and way of life, taking liberty and freedom away from Americans, replaced with a top-down command and control government dictating our every behavior. Globalism is the goal, a great reset, or a one world government, controlled by the self-appointed elites who rule over the masses.
This is hardly the message taught by most of the world’s great religions, but we are in a new world, with a new religion of the left, climate and now COVID. Shout hosanna, put on your mask, get in your electric car, and drive to the nearest vaccination center.
Brian C. Joondeph, MD, is a fully vaccinated physician and writer who faithfully recycles and may someday purchase an electric vehicle.