The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms isn't merely a wish list for a free society–it's a guarantee. It demands that our governments demonstrate, with compelling evidence, that there is a pressing and substantial reason for violating any of our fundamental freedoms to move, travel, assemble, associate and worship. Otherwise, they simply can't do it.
The governments' own data and statistics on Covid, compiled across the country over the past 13 months, make it clear that Covid does not justify the past or continuing infringements of our Charter rights and freedoms by federal and provincial governments.
In 2020, more than 309,000 Canadians died, a number consistent with previous years when you adjust for population growth. Of these 309,000 deaths, only about five percent were linked to Covid. Cancer, heart disease and lung diseases continue to account for more than half of deaths.
Of the 22,475 Canadians who died with Covid between March 8, 2020 and March 19, 2021, only 304–1.4 percent–were under the age of 50. In contrast, almost 90 percent of deaths with Covid were over the age of 70. Nearly 70 percent were over the age of 80, which for men is beyond average life expectancy.
In 2018, the average age of death for all Canadians was 81.95 years. Statistics Canada has yet to publish the average age of death of Canadians in 2020 who died with Covid. However, available death-by-age data from Canadian provinces consistently shows that the majority of Covid-related deaths occur in ages older than average life expectancy.
A meta-analysis by Dr. John Ioannidis of seroprevalence studies establishes that the median infection survival rate from Covid infection is 99.77 percent. For Covid patients under the age of 70, the survival rate is even higher, 99.95 percent.
Although there were 572,982 "cases" in Canada during 2020, the majority were not actually ill or experiencing any symptoms. Rather, the "cases" reported on by media refer to people who tested positive on a PCR test, the accuracy of which has been questioned repeatedly by medical doctors and infectious disease specialists, and by courts in Portugal, Austria, and Sweden. Of those Canadians who did show symptoms, most experienced it as a mild or severe flu, and very few required hospitalization.
By March 19, 2021, the total number of positive PCR test results ("cases") had grown to 916,844. Statistics Canada offered detailed information on 71 percent of these. Only slightly more than sevenpercent required hospitalization, and approximately 1.4 percent of the 916,844 were admitted to ICU. As one would expect, nearly two thirds of ICU admissions were above the age of 60.
But panic sells papers, makes for great click-bait, and gets people hooked on the six o'clock news. Don't expect media to stop reporting on meaningless "case" numbers any time soon.
Lockdown restrictions are based on the belief that Covid can be passed from people showing no symptoms–asymptomatic carriers–to uninfected individuals. However, the scientific research tells us that only about 20 percent of people diagnosed with Covid are asymptomatic, and asymptomatic patients passed on Covid to other members of their households in only 0.7 percent of instances. In short, healthy Canadians are not dangerous spreaders.
The New England Journal of Medicine reports that significant exposure to Covid comes only from face-to-face contact within six feet of a person with Covid that is sustained for at least a few minutes, although some argue that more than 10 minutes, or even 30 minutes, are required. There is little risk of catching Covid from a casual encounter in a public place. And if one catches it, the survival rate is 99.7 percent.
Risk is a part of life. Calculating our exposure to risk is something we do all the time.
There are 160,000 vehicle accidents in Canada every year, and around 2,800 people die in them. In addition to these 2,800 annual deaths, a far larger number of Canadians will suffer harms ranging from minor injuries through to brain damage, life-long back pain, and quadriplegia. These 2,800 motor vehicle deaths are distributed amongst all age brackets, with three quarters or more of victims are under the age of 70. Yet, individually, millions of Canadians still decide to get into a car, as a driver or as a passenger.
As a country, we must treat Covid with the same careful assessment of risk that we as individuals apply to our driving habits.
In summary, the government's own data tells us that very few of the 309,000 Canadians who died in 2020 died of Covid. Of 38 million Canadians, very few of us are going to get sick in 2021. Almost all who get sick will get over it, the survival rate being 99.77 percent. Covid has only a negligible impact on life expectancy. Healthy people do not spread Covid, and casual contact is not enough to transmit it. The media's "cases" do not refer to sick people. If you are under 70, you are more likely to die in a car accident than with Covid.
Covid simply isn't the unusually deadly killer that politicians make it out to be. The government's own numbers don't justify ongoing restriction of our Charter freedoms, or the obvious lockdown harms, or the continued fearmongering by media.
Lawyer John Carpay is president of the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms which is suing the federal and provincial governments to end lockdown restrictions.
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