Letter: COVID deniers have made Ct values their new ’smoking gun’ | SteamboatToday.com

Letter: COVID deniers have made Ct values their new ’smoking gun’


Routt County’s resident COVID deniers have a new “smoking gun” that will prove, once and for all, that the pandemic is a Democrat hoax. And they can’t wait to tell you.

But before you engage with the conspiracy theorists, consider some recent history:

In March, these people told you that the pandemic was dreamed up by the media, and that COVID was no worse than the flu. Then, people started dying.

In July, they told you the hospitals were “over-testing to make Trump look bad; the death rate hasn’t gone up.” But then it did. Did any of this make them re-think their ideas about COVID or re-evaluate the trust they’d placed in the sources of the disinformation they helped spread on social media? Of course not.

I recall my adolescence, when the “9/11 truthers” told us that the security footage from the Pentagon was the smoking gun for all their claims. And when that footage was released, and it didn’t show what they said it would, they immediately decided that actually, the real smoking gun was the security footage from the gas station across the street. See how this works?

That’s just what they do. Conspiracy theorists never stop moving goalposts or acknowledge when they’ve been proven wrong.

So, what’s their latest “smoking gun?” Ct values.

Now, I’m not a doctor. So you should read this article, which was written by one, that explains what Ct values are. In short, a high Ct value, though somewhat imprecise, can indicate that a patient is infected but no longer contagious.

However, the Deniers are conflating — perhaps deliberately — “infected but no longer contagious” with “false positive.” Even if the Ct values were somewhat high, those are not false positives.

And if they aren’t contagious, how is the virus spreading exponentially in Routt County? Their argument defies basic logic.

But that doesn’t matter. If the deniers get the Ct values released, and they’re normal, they’ll just move onto something else — some other type of medical data to misinterpret, some new shiny object to be their purported smoking gun. You smack one mole down, and another one pops up.

It’s a shame, but frankly, we should ask ourselves what we hope to accomplish by engaging with these people, who behave like cult-members — paranoid and divorced from reality. To paraphrase Jonathan Swift: You can’t reason someone out of a position they didn’t reason themselves into.


Joe Townsend

Steamboat Springs

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