LTE: Kem Phillips in response to Stu Lindberg, on vaccines

Dear Editor,


Stu Lindberg makes several false claims in his June 7 editorial “Big Pharma.” I will address two.

First, he makes the anti-vaxxer claim that vaccines are “experimental.” All science is to some degree experimental, but tens of thousands of subjects participated in the thoroughly reviewed clinical trials of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, showing both vaccines to be very safe and effective, and we have data from over 200 million Americans who are fully vaccinated. According to the NY Times (, the unvaccinated are eight times as likely to die of Covid compared to the fully vaccinated.

Mr. Lindberg makes an even more egregious statement about the numbers of deaths from vaccines. He says that the CDC’s registry of vaccine adverse events, VAERS, shows that “Covid-19 injections have killed 28,312 Americans.” The raw number 28,312 was from the VAERS website, but Lindberg’s interpretation is nonsense.

VAERS accepts and analyzes reports of possible health problems – also called “adverse events” – after vaccination. As an early warning system, VAERS cannot prove that a vaccine caused a problem. Specifically, a report to VAERS does not mean that a vaccine caused an adverse event. If Mr. Lindberg was paying attention, he would have read these very words, which I copied from the VAERS website: Anyone who has ever worked in clinical trials knows that adverse events are not necessarily, or even usually, caused by the drug for which they are reported.

The VAERS website says that “Covid-19 vaccines are safe and effective and severe reactions after vaccination are rare.” Lindberg ignored this, but to support his political position, he made false statements that he could have easily checked even with his own references, not to mention many reports in the responsible media about this false claim. His statements go beyond simple misinformation. They are lies. Lindberg should admit his errors and apologize, both here and in several other outlets where he deposited this mendacious screed.



Kem Phillips

Cavendish, Vt.

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