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.
Rob Kuznia, Scott Bronstein, Curt Devine and Drew Griffin, at CNN:
[Dr. Rashid] Buttar has shared all manner of outrageous claims and misleading statements about the pandemic: Most people who took the vaccine will be dead by 2025. It's all part of a "depopulation plan." Covid-19, he wrote on Twitter -- where he has 88,000 followers -- was a "planned operation."
In a recent interview with CNN's Drew Griffin, Buttar stood by it all.
"I've told people the best thing that could happen is you get Covid," he said.
"The best thing that can happen is get Covid?" Griffin asked.
"Of course," Buttar replied. "You're going to build your own innate immune system and then you don't have to worry about it anymore."
He later said, falsely: "More people are dying from the Covid vaccine than from Covid."
Buttar, 55, has long been popular among anti-vaxxers and parents of children with autism. He has reportedly drawn patients from most US states and more than 40 countries. (Buttar puts the country count at 94.) In an especially high-profile case in 2009, then-celebrity couple Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey -- both noted vaccine skeptics -- referred a woman who said that she'd been sickened by a flu vaccine to Buttar for his unorthodox treatments, according to the 2013 book, "Do You Believe in Magic? The Sense and Nonsense of Alternative Medicine," by vaccine expert Dr. Paul Offit.
Buttar is a believer that environmental toxins such as mercury and lead are at the root of many chronic maladies, from autism to heart disease to cancer. He has treated patients -- hundreds of them children with autism -- with a patented cream that he claims removes poisonous metals from the body, according to Offit's book.
Buttar has twice been reprimanded by the North Carolina Medical Board, in 2010 and 2019.