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Thursday, January 21, 2021

Antivaxxers at the Insurrection

 In The Politics of Autism, I analyze the discredited notion that vaccines cause autism. This bogus idea can hurt people by allowing diseases to spread  And among those diseases could be COVID-19.

Antivaxxers are sometimes violent, often abusive, and always wrong.

It should not be a surprise that they took part in the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol.

Ellie Rushing and Anna Orso at The Philadelphia Inquirer:

A South Jersey mom who is prominent in anti-vaccine and right-wing activist circles was among a crowd of people barreling into a line of police and attempting to breach the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, video from the day shows.

Stephanie Hazelton, of Medford, who also identifies herself as Ayla Wolf, can be seen among the mob trying to push through the building’s West Terrace entrance. Video shows Hazelton emerging from the entrance to direct more people to help break through the doors.

“More people, we gotta keep going,” Hazelton said as she waved the crowd toward the entrance.

“Men, we need more men,” she said repeatedly, coughing and wiping her eyes while holding up her pink phone to record herself. “Let’s go.”

Michael Wittner at Patch:

A Beverly Hills skincare salon owner and a prominent anti-vaxxer physician and her spokesman appeared at the U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles Tuesday to face charges of participating in the violent takeover of the U.S. Capitol.

Gina Bisignano, 52, was arrested Tuesday morning, and Simone Gold, 55, and John Strand, 37, were taken into custody Monday, according to FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller.

The defendants, all of whom reside in Beverly Hills, appeared Tuesday afternoon before a Los Angeles magistrate judge, who granted each of them bond on charges filed in the District of Columbia.

Bisignano, owner of Gina's Eyelashes and Skincare in Beverly Hills, was ordered released on a $170,000 bond and is subject to home detention. A preliminary hearing was set in her case on Feb. 4 in Los Angeles. She was charged Tuesday with civil disorder, destruction of government property; aiding and abetting; obstruction of an official proceeding; restricted building or grounds; violent entry or disorderly conduct, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Gold, a physician and attorney who has criticized the coronavirus vaccination as ineffective and touted hydroxychloroquine as treatment for COVID-19, was released on a $15,000 bond and is also subject to home detention. Her next court appearance is a virtual hearing with the District of Columbia on Thursday. She was charged Tuesday with restricted building or grounds; violent entry and disorderly conduct.