Nearly half of Americans now believe Covid-19 vaccines may be to blame for the uptick in unexplained deaths, and more than a quarter say someone they know could be among the victims, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports national online and telephone poll.
Alaska lost a number of healthy individuals — many of them young or middle-aged men in the prime of their life dying from unexplained heart attacks — in 2021. Just like other Americans, Alaskans are are showing concern about the number of high school, college, and professional athletes who are dropping dead from heart ailments at rates much higher than seems normal.
Dr. Peter McCullough, a cardiologist who is among the leading critics of the still-experimental Covid vaccine, and who is usually referred to by mainstream media as a spreader of misinformation, commented on NFL player Damar Hamlin’s mid-game heart attack, which occurred Sunday: “Sudden cardiac death should be very unusual — Covid-19 can cause heart damage, but I think the leading concern is vaccine-induced myocarditis.”
(Read what the Mayo Clinic says about young athletes and heart attacks. FactCheck.org, a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center, says there is no reason to believe Hamlin’s collapse is related to the vaccine.)
In 2016, the American College of Cardiology reported there were approximately 100 to 150 sudden cardiac deaths during competitive sports each year. The estimated incidence of SCD among athletes versus non-athletes was found to be 0.44 per 100,000 person-years, and 13 per 100,000 person-years, respectively, the medical group said at this link. Must Read Alaska was not able to quantify how many of these deaths occurred in 2022.
Also last week, former Jacksonville Jaguars offensive guard Uche Nwaneri dropped dead of a non-game-related heart attack at the age of 38. He had been a strong advocate for the Covid vaccine and had said people unvaccinated should be jailed. Last month, well-known media and political personalities dropped dead of heart attacks in their 30s and 40s.
Are these sudden cardiac deaths related to vaccines? Neither social media nor mainstream media are reliable sources of information on this question. But that does not stop the Washington Post from quickly debunking any links between vaccines and heart attacks:
“Here’s the rub: This claim has been debunked repeatedly. The story of athletes dropping dead from coronavirus vaccines has its roots in mysterious Austrian websites with ties to that country’s far-right populist party, the Freedom Party. Those stories were then recycled by right-wing media in the United States and then eventually came out of the mouth of a U.S. senator,” wrote Washington Post fact checker Glenn Kessler in this story about how, as the writer implied, Sen. Ron Johnson was repeating right-wing misinformation.
But Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin says he has heard too many stories from athletes, many of whom signed up for the vaccinations to do their part to end the Covid pandemic. Read more about his research and watch his press conference from July 2, 2021 here.
The Rasmussen survey finds that 49% of American adults believe it is likely that side effects of Covid-19 vaccines have caused a significant number of unexplained deaths, including 28% who think it’s very likely.
Thirty-seven percent don’t say a significant number of deaths have been caused by vaccine side effects, including 17% who believe it’s not at all likely. Another 14% are not sure.
Twenty-eight percent of adults say they personally know someone whose death they think may have been caused by side effects of Covid-19 vaccines, while 61% don’t and another 10% are not sure, the poll showed.
“The documentary Died Suddenly has been criticized as promoting “debunked” anti-vaccine conspiracy theories but has been seen by some 15 million people,” Rasmussen Reports said, hinting that the documentary may have influenced people’s views on the Covid vaccines.
Forty-eight percent of Americans believe there are legitimate reasons to be concerned about the safety of Covid-19 vaccines, while 37% think people who worry about vaccine safety are spreading conspiracy theories. Fifteen percent are not sure.
The Rasmussen Report poll was of 1,000 American adults and was conducted between Dec. 28-30, 2022. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.
Seventy-one percent of those who took the poll say they have received a Covid-19 vaccination, while 26% have not.
Concerns about vaccine safety were much higher among the unvaccinated. Seventy-seven percent of adults who have not gotten Covid-19 vaccinations believe it’s at least somewhat likely that side effects of Covid-19 vaccines have caused a significant number of unexplained deaths. Among those who have gotten the vaccine, just 38% consider unexplained deaths from the vaccine at least somewhat likely.
Read more about the poll at RasmussenReports.com.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has disputed the claims that the vaccines are causing deadly myocarditis, and has this summary of its findings.