“Coach” Dave Daubenmire has never been one of my favorite Christian broadcasters. He’s a hardcore Fundagelical who spouts off provocative nonsense. I consider him the equivalent of a radio shock jock who deliberately makes outrageous claims to rile people up and entertain while making money doing it. The problem with these shock jocks is that they know there is a lunatic fringe who will take their crazy conspiracies seriously, but they don’t realize that their words have real-world impact.
“Coach” Dave Daubenmire jumped onto the coronavirus conspiracy bandwagon, and it’s hard to figure out if he is manifesting the Fundagelical anti-science attitude or playing to that attitude in his listeners. I wonder if Daubmire actually is stupid enough to believe the junk science he peddles or if he is just “tickling the ears” of his viewers with what they want to hear so he can keep those views, likes, subscriptions, and sweet advertising dollars rolling in.
His newest piece of conspiracy involves the COVID-19 virus and 5G cell phone technology. There are several theories for how COVID-19 is connected to 5G. The simplest is that 5G radiation suppresses the immune system. Other theories claim that there is no coronavirus but that people are suffering from the effects of 5G radiation poisoning. Daubenmire is promoting a conspiracy that appeared online in a 10-minute video created by Dr. Thomas Cowan M.D.
Cowen is a legit M.D., but he is also a practitioner of anthroposophic medicine. What is that, you might ask? It’s a system of “medicine” created by Rudolph Steiner that incorporates an occult perspective for healing. Homeopathic medicine, karma, and past lives are all considered in curing illnesses. It’s safe to say that Dr. Cowen isn’t mainstream in his approach to medicine and might be considered out on the fringe.
Rudolf Steiner created anthroposophic medicine with Ita Wegman, a medical doctor who practiced therapeutic massage and came up with a cancer “cure” using specially prepared mistletoe that is still unproven. Steiner, who Cowen quotes in his video, was not a medical doctor himself. He was a philosopher, social reformer, architect, esotericist, and claimed clairvoyant. Cowen and Steiner are not authoritative sources for medical advice or information. Doctor David Gorski has provided a detailed debunking of the quackery.
Here’s Cowen’s theory of COVID-19. 5G radiation is harming the cells in people’s bodies. These cells become toxic and produce the COVID-19 virus. Does he have any evidence? Nope. Just a theory based on anthroposophic medicine quackery. He, of course, like many a conspiracy theorist notes that the virus started after cell phone companies rolled out 5G technology. You would think that a trained medical doctor took a critical thinking class at some time in his academic career. The fancy name for that kind of thinking is “post hoc ergo propter hoc” It is the belief that since one thing happened first (5G technology), it causes a second thing to happen. (Coronavirus)
The video by Cowen was shared thousands of times before Facebook marked it as disinformation. That, however, doesn’t stop Daubmire from promoting it to his audience. If “Coach” Dave is doing it because he believes it, then he is manifesting the Fundagelical aversion to Science. Is Daubmire just displaying his ignorance?
The other possibility is that he knows this is junk science, and he’s promoting it because either he needs filler for his show or he knows that his audience eats this stuff up. Either way, it is irresponsible and goes against the Christian virtue of truthfulness.
The problem with these conspiracies is that they have real-world consequences. Parents don’t get their children vaccinated. Diseases that had been eliminated are now making a comeback. The conspiracy about Hillary Clinton running a child prostitution ring in the basement of a Washington D.C. pizza parlor led to a gunman attacking the pizza place and demanding to see the non-existent basement. This 5G conspiracy is leading people to attack cell phone towers.
If Daubenmire is a Christian, as he claims to be, he must commit to the Truth and commit to not harming others. His irresponsible rhetoric damages the credibility of the Christian Church and creates the spark that can ignite some lunatic to commit an atrocity.
In the spirit of Truth, I recommend everyone during this pandemic social distancing period stop watching conspiracy mongers and take an online critical thinking class. Here’s one: https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/your-deceptive-mind-a-scientific-guide-to-critical-thinking-skills.html. You can watch it between Gilligan’s Island re-runs.
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