Guess Who’s Still A Doctor? The Ohio Kook Who Claims The COVID-19 Will Make You Magnetic
We've all had a good time laughing at the anti-vaccine conspiracy theorists who claim that the COVID-19 vaccine will make you magnetic — not in the sparkling personality sense but literally like a refrigerator door that reveals how many states you've visited. However, Cleveland-based Doctor Sheri Tenpenny was a vocal promoter of this nonsense. For reasons that are still unclear, the Ohio state House invited Tenpenny to testify — in public — as an expert witness during a hearing about vaccines this June.
Her comments were a mixture of outright lies and delusional fantasy.
Here's a clip to demonstrate the cognitive dissonance here Again, she spent the early part of her testimony dismis… https://t.co/QPVzhJq54Y— Tyler Buchanan (@Tyler Buchanan) 1623166106.0
And yet the state of Ohio believes Tenpenny should remain a doctor in good standing. Yes, the Ohio Medical Board renewed her license for another two years. It was set to expire on October 1 and arguably never should've been issued in the first place. Here's a taste of some of her testimony from June:
I'm sure you've seen the pictures all over the internet of people who have had these shots and now they're magnetized. They can put a key on their forehead. It sticks. They can put spoons and forks all over them and they can stick, because now we think that there's a metal piece to that.
There's been people who have long suspected that there's been some sort of an interface, 'yet to be defined' interface, between what's being injected in these shots and all of the 5G towers.
Tenpenny is an osteopathic physician. Osteopathy is a form of alternative medicine that "emphasizes physical manipulation of the body's muscle tissue and bones." Osteopaths are licensed to prescribe medicine and perform surgery. They aren't all kooks, however. The American Osteopathic Association released a statement in December fully supporting the COVID-19 vaccine and rejecting “vaccine misinformation and hoaxes."
The propagation of misinformation and exaggeration of unfounded concerns about vaccine safety in general, results in fear and poses a risk to individuals. It promotes non-vaccination, threatening personal and public health. These unfounded claims result from nothing more than associations of events, without a cause-and-effect relationship. In other words, just because it rains after you receive a vaccination, it does not mean that vaccinations cause changes in the weather.
Similarly, people who are vaccinated will have the same general medical conditions as those who are not. Thus, when someone develops a medical condition, such as autism, it is unconscionable to claim the vaccine was the cause. Extensive scientific evidence has irrefutably confirmed the safety and benefits of vaccination and has definitively debunked these myths.
Tenpenny is obviously an outlier in her field. She actively spreads disinformation that results in preventable deaths. She's free to do that on Facebook but not with the title “doctor."
An anti-vaccine activist since the 2000s, Tenpenny has called vaccines a "method of mass destruction" and "depopulation;" charges $623 for her "boot camp" to train people how to convince others to refrain from vaccination; and sells her book, "Saying No To Vaccines" for $578 on Amazon.
Holy shit! Tenpenny really does sell people her anti-vax book for $578. That's such an absurd price it's almost an honorable con. The book's not even hardback with a nice slipcover, so you can put it on your coffee table and impress your friends when they come over for maskless get-togethers.
When confirming that Tenpenny's medical license was renewed, a spokesperson for the Ohio Medical Board, Jerica Stewart, said the board automatically renews applications because it's apparently real hard to keep up with the 92,000 practitioners in the state.
There are roughly eight million licensed drivers in Ohio, and renewals aren't automatic. You have to at least pass the vision test again.
Stewart claims that a "recent renewal does not prevent the board from taking future disciplinary action," but the Ohio Capital Journal contacted the state medical board directly last week to question Tenpenny's standing. Her license was renewed anyway, even after the Ohio Osteopathic Association publicly disavowed her and her wackadoodle testimony.
"The investigative process to assess complaints regarding a licensee is also defined in law and rule and the Board is required to follow that process," [Todd Baker, executive director of the Ohio State Medical Association, said]. "If other physicians or members of the public contact the OSMA with a complaint about a physician for any particular reason, we refer those inquiries to the medical board."
Yeah, take all the time you need, guys. It's not like vaccine disinformation is killing anyone.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."