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Created on: 2021-07-30

Deadly Drug, or Unrecognized Saviour?

Since early on in the COVID situation, hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) has been claimed by some as a likely cure, and others as a dangerous mistake.

If you mention HCQ to most people, and ask for their next thought, it's usually one of the following:

  • That medicine that Trump's into. (Followed by a long diatribe about Trump.)
  • The guy with the fish tank cleaner, who died.
  • A really dangerous drug.
  • They tested it and it didn't work.

Let's take these in turn.

Firstly, Trump. It's an age old error, shooting the messenger, and ignoring the message. If we rely on a witness for a statement, then we should check their credentials and biases. But if we don't rely on them, then it's irrelevant who said it. Let's say, hypothetically, Trump's guilty of everything that's said about him. What of it? HCQ was not Trump's idea, nor is he responsible for any of the science behind it.

The guilt by association argument has been played up by the media, but with conspicuous selectivity. As proof of this bias, did anyone ever say, "Vaccines? That's a really bad idea - Trump likes them!"?

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