Letter: Let's truly be honest about Covid vaccines

Donald Miller, a professor in the school of pharmacy at NDSU, questions why The Forum would allow columnist Bette Grande to spread false information.

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In the Saturday, Feb. 18 Forum, columnist Bette Grande asks “ are we able to talk honestly about the mRNA shots yet ?

Well, yes, we certainly are! Which brings up the important question of why Grande spews a pack of disinformation in her column.

Grande alleges that Pfizer Pharmaceuticals deliberately lied and concealed information about their Covid vaccine trial. Her source for this claim is a report led by Naomi Wolf, someone Grande implies to be a mainstream doctor.

In fact, Naomi Wolf is a known conspiracy theorist and purveyor of disinformation. According to Wikipedia, “in the January 2013 issue of The Atlantic, law and business professor Mark Nuckols wrote: In her various books, articles, and public speeches, Wolf has demonstrated recurring disregard for the historical record and consistently mutilated the truth with selective and ultimately deceptive use of her sources."

The report by Wolf’s group is published by a well-known conspiracy and disinformation site. It deliberately misrepresents information and takes it out of context to imply Pfizer’s original vaccine was designed to get the result it wanted. In fact, the trial was conducted by standard scientific and statistical standards, the outcome was clear, and the results vetted by the FDA and CDC. But more importantly, the first Pfizer study was only one of dozens worldwide that have confirmed the efficacy and safety of mRNA Covid-19 vaccines.


Given that the North Dakota Legislature is currently considering several bills to restrict use of Covid vaccines, Grande’s false allegations are unconscionable. The real question must be why the Forum gives Grande a continuing opportunity to spread disinformation.

Donald Miller is a professor in the school of pharmacy at North Dakota State University.

This letter does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.

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