Facing the Beast: Courage, Faith, and Resistance in a New Dark Age
by Naomi Wolf
Chelsea Green Publishing, 2023; 232 pp.
Naomi Wolf was, until the covid era, “a well-known feminist nonfiction writer for thirty-five years . . . privileged to be part of the cultural ‘scene’ made up of influencers on the progressive Left.” With great courage, she rejected the masks, lockdowns, and vaccines urged upon us by the state, viewing them as totalitarian impositions upon us. Her heroic stance turned her into a “nonperson”: her friends and associates on the left shunned her.
As a result, she has rethought her political alliances and now finds herself in the company of conservatives and libertarians. In what follows, I’d like to discuss some of her insights about covid and then to focus on how she sees the world.
Her study of English literature, in which field she holds a doctorate from Oxford, led her to challenge masks and lockdowns:
I knew from having read my way, as a former graduate student, through many of the last 400 years’ words of English memoirs and novels, that waves of infectious diseases, ranging from yellow fever to typhus to cholera, had passed over both Britain and America, but that these diseases had never been treated as we were treating this purportedly serious infectious disease, COVID-19. Never had multiple generations been advised to crowd together into closed indoor spaces, only to be denied light, air, and exercise, during an epidemic. Indeed, from Florence Nightingale in the Crimean War to the reformers of the Progressive Era, health pioneers knew well that doing this was, in fact, deadly.
The vaccines were even worse, and Wolf views them as genocidal in that they adversely affect women’s reproduction. A group of 3,250 doctors, scientists, and other experts organized by Wolf analyzed documents secured by court order from Pfizer, one the two main producers of the covid vaccine, and the findings are devastating:
I am not saying that this is exactly like finding evidence of Dr. Mengele’s experiments. I am saying that now, with these findings, the comparison is not excessive. These anti-humans at Pfizer, speaking at the WEF; these anti-humans at the FDA, knowing what they knew—targeted the miraculous female body, with its ability to conceive, gestate, birth, and nurture life. They targeted the female body’s ability to sustain a newborn human being with nothing but itself. . . . They targeted the human fetus’ very environment, one of the most sacred spaces on this earth, if not the most sacred. And they knew it.
How was Wolf able to arrive at these insights, when many other well-educated and informed people failed to do so? A vital clue to answering this question, surprisingly, lies in what she says about color perception:
Our western modern culture insists that only phenomena that we can see and explain are real, and that human perception must be contiguous and must universally be the same. But what if that is not true? . . . Could people have actually seen differently than we do, in former times? Cognitive scientists are confirming that this different color palette could be a real thing, and caused by differences in language practices: they are finding that if a culture does not have language to describe a thing, the brain does not perceive it as clearly, or sometimes not at all. (emphasis in original)
Wolf has unusually keen powers of perception, and she is able to perceive things most others are not:
Ever since I was first conscious, I was aware that I perceived some things differently than did many of those around me. In kindergarten, I realized (without, of course, having the word for this) that I had synesthesia—the condition in which one sense spills over into another: people with this form of perception hear colors, or taste sound, or in other ways activate different senses at the same time. . . . Though I managed to censor my synesthesia, my awareness as a child that perception was fluid, and that currents of all kinds were continually flowing around us all—and that the physical world was illuminated and glowing and magical, but also that it contained dark and scary forces—could not be suppressed.
We are now in a position to grasp the relevance of these philosophical considerations to Wolf’s account of covid. She senses that a cosmic struggle is occurring, and it is essential to take sides in it. This she has certainly done:
I reluctantly concluded that human agency alone could not coordinate a highly complicated set of lies about a virus and propagate the lies in perfect uniformity around an entire globe, in hundreds of languages and dialects. Human beings, using their own resources alone, could not have turned hospitals overnight from having been places in which hundreds of staff members were collectively devoted to the care of the infirm, the prolongation of human life, the cherishing of newborns, the helping of mothers to care for little ones, the support of the disabled—into killing factories to which the elderly were prescribed “run-death-is-near” (remdesivir) at scale.
Is she correct in her account of the world? I do not presume to say. To skeptics, the attitude that Immanuel Kant took to the visions of Emmanuel Swedenborg may come to mind; but Swedenborg is not without his eminent defenders, and Wolf’s vision of the world has certainly energized her for battle. Even those who do not accept it must recognize her solid empirical work she has about the dangers of the vaccine.
She stirringly calls us to battle:
Freedom is not free, as many veterans have said. I never understood what that meant except superficially. But you don’t get freedom back so easily if you yourself committed massive crimes. Freedom is not free. You don’t get to take away the freedom of others and enjoy it, without penalty for yourselves. The people you harmed, the parents of the children you burned—they are coming. Not violently, not vengefully, but with the righteous sword of justice in hand. Don’t rest too easy, leaders who did wrong, in this bright American sunlight. You don’t get America back as if nothing had happened.
We owe a great debt of gratitude to this heroic fighter for freedom.