The Error of Fighting a Public Health War With Medical Weapons

Here’s the wild portion, the most 2020 issue about 2020: That schism—that conflict in between public health and non-public perfectly-currently being, in between particular liberties and communal gain—is as outdated as pandemics. The germ of the concept was, in point, the concept of the germ.

In the mid-1800s, doctors and researchers have been setting up to appear all over to the extensive-gestating concept that illnesses could be brought on by wee, invisible critters that jumped from human being to person—a “contagium animatum,” as 16th-century thinkers place it. They didn’t know what viruses or germs have been, but they realized anything was carrying sickness.

The contagionists experienced their opposite range: researchers who in 1948 the researcher Edwin Ackerknecht famously termed “anticontagionists.” Oh, they believed that some illnesses spread by some agent, human being-to-human being. Smallpox and syphilis, probably. Those have been contagious. But they weren’t epidemics—yellow fever, cholera, or the

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