Apoorva Mandavilli is the lead COVID writer at the New York Times -- at least she became so, after the woke mob in control of the Times forced out veteran science writer Donald McNeil, based on phony accusations of racism by vengeful, lefty teenage students.
Mandavilli’s reporting tends toward “variant”-obsessed fear-mongering, and she does not take social media criticism well. She wrote on Twitter:
The lies people are telling each other to justify attacking me: that I advocated for schools to close; that I’m a millennial without kids; that I do have kids but send them to private schools; that I am in bed with teachers’ unions; that I benefit financially from “panic porn.”
After denying favoring teachers' unions, it’s revealing that one of her defenders on the resulting tweet thread is American Federation of Teachers' head Randi Weingarten!
Weingarten is the same teachers’ union leader who showed amazing tone-deafness and hypocrisy when she took a selfie with colleagues, all crowded together around a table, while dining indoors in a New Mexico restaurant, even as she advocates denying children schooling on the grounds of insufficient spacing in classrooms.
Weingarten, who in a recent interview attacked Jews for advocating for reopening schools, gushed in a Twitter response to Mandavilli that fear-mongering reporting from the Times informed her decisions -- i.e., keeping schools closed.
I am sorry you are getting this; I rely on your reporting , and it informs our decision making. You also report the complexity of #covid, and the evolution of our understanding of it and it’s [sic] implications
Mandavilli has garnered a reputation for distributing “panic porn” about the coronavirus. Take her April 4 Sunday front-page story, “Rising Variants Imperil Return To Normal Life,” coauthored with Benjamin Mueller.
For weeks, the mood in much of the United States has been buoyant. Cases, hospitalizations and deaths from the coronavirus have fallen steeply from their highs, and millions of people are being newly vaccinated every day. Restaurants, shops and schools have reopened. Some states, like Texas and Florida, have abandoned precautions altogether.
Texas and Florida have not "abandoned precautions altogether." There are plenty of mask-wearing, social-distancing people in Texas and Florida, just no mandates.
In measurable ways, Americans are winning the war against the coronavirus. Powerful vaccines and an accelerating rollout all but guarantee an eventual return to normalcy --to backyard barbecues, summer camps and sleepovers.
But it is increasingly clear that the next few months will be painful. So-called variants are spreading, carrying mutations that make the coronavirus both more contagious and in some cases more deadly.
Her piece is full of speculative fears.
Until recently, B.1.1.7’s rise was camouflaged by falling rates of infection overall, lulling Americans into a false sense of security and leading to prematurely relaxed restrictions, researchers say.
“The fact is that we’re still in a position now where we don’t have enough vaccinated people,” said Kristian Andersen, a virologist at the Scripps Research in San Diego. “And if we, like Texas, say we’re done with Covid-19, B.1.1.7 will come in and remind us that we are not right. I have no doubt about it.”
(Texas is controlling the coronavirus very well, by the way.)
The story earned the extended Twitter praise of pro-lockdown fanatic Eric Feigl-Ding.
Her equally fearful March 28 post, “Florida's Coronavirus Cases Rise, Especially Among the Young,” lectured foolish Floridians who had begun to enjoy socializing again:
Scientists view Florida -- the state furthest along in lifting restrictions, reopening society and welcoming tourists -- as a bellwether for the nation.
If recent trends there are any indication, the rest of the country may be in trouble.
It’s been a shade over two weeks (“wait two weeks” being a mantra on the lockdown left) since that ominous post. How is Florida doing now?
Just fine, especially compared to the Northeastern states that are spared Times criticism. Florida’s caseload is rising around the national average rate, with hospitalizations slightly up and deaths on the decline. All while keeping children in school and everyone free to carry on with life, anxious fear-mongering aside.