Anna Merlan's posts - Chinese uPOST

Legislative Staffer Describes Meeting With Jessica Biel and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. as They Lobbied to Kill a Bill Tightening Vaccine Exemptions Legislative Staffer Describes Meeting With Jessica Biel and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. as They Lobbied to Kill a Bill Tightening Vaccine Exemptions

On Wednesday, a series of photos posted by activist and vaccine “skeptic” Robert F. Kennedy Jr. showed him and actress Jessica Biel lobbying California state lawmakers. Those lawmakers later confirmed that the duo were there to advocate against SB 276, a bill seeking to introduce more oversight into the process that…

Well, Here's Jessica Biel Apparently Lobbying California Lawmakers Alongside Anti-Vaccine Activist Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Well, Here's Jessica Biel Apparently Lobbying California Lawmakers Alongside Anti-Vaccine Activist Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is a formerly well-respected environmental activist who has, in recent years, begun making a variety of extremely dubious claims about vaccines, and working hard to influence public vaccine policy through both lobbying and lawsuits. Jessica Biel is an actress married to another famous person,…

Jenny McCarthy's Controversial Autism Charity Seems to Be Rebranding Away from Autism Jenny McCarthy's Controversial Autism Charity Seems to Be Rebranding Away from Autism

Generation Rescue, the charity whose public face and board president is actor Jenny McCarthy, and which promotes debunked and sometimes dangerous treatments for autistic children, seems to rebranding away from the subject of autism and towards a much more broad set of medical issues. Sometime in May, the Generation…

Dozens of English-Language News Sites Are Misreporting That a 17-Year-Old Dutch Rape Survivor Died by Euthanasia Dozens of English-Language News Sites Are Misreporting That a 17-Year-Old Dutch Rape Survivor Died by Euthanasia

Dozens of English-language news sites, including the Washington Post, the Daily Beast, the Daily Caller, Newsweek and The Sun falsely reported that a 17-year-old girl from the Netherlands was legally allowed to die by euthanasia. Most of these outlets are reporting the same basic story: that Noa Pothoven, who was a…

Satanic Artist and Activist Jex Blackmore on Her Controversial Role in the Documentary Hail Satan? Satanic Artist and Activist Jex Blackmore on Her Controversial Role in the Documentary Hail Satan?

Jex Blackmore is a Satanic activist and performance artist whose work— focusing on reproductive rights and the struggle for bodily autonomy against an increasingly draconian state system—couldn’t be more timely. She’s also, in a recently released documentary, a bit of an unexpected villain.

Women's Coworking Space The Wing Has a Pretty Stiff Non-Disparagement Clause in Their Membership Contract Women's Coworking Space The Wing Has a Pretty Stiff Non-Disparagement Clause in Their Membership Contract

The Wing, a mini-empire of coworking spaces for women that we have discussed a great deal, is facing scrutiny yet again today, this time for its membership contract. A portion of that contract was made public by Study Hall, a New York-based community of freelance media workers that also runs a related online…

Far-Right News Site GotNews Has Filed a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Petition Far-Right News Site GotNews Has Filed a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Petition

The far-right news site GotNews filed a petition for federal Chapter 7 bankruptcy on April 24, court records show.

Hoaxer Behind Fake Anti-Vax Rally Featuring a Sedated Bear Returns, This Time With Child Knife-Juggling Hoaxer Behind Fake Anti-Vax Rally Featuring a Sedated Bear Returns, This Time With Child Knife-Juggling

Earlier this month, a non-existent bear named Ron did not attend an anti-vaccine rally. Neither the bear nor the rally in Hawthorne, Florida, were real, and Wendy Callahan, a local anti-vaccine activist, had no idea her name was being used by a person posing as her to file a permit for the rally. That person was a…

This Was Supposed to Be a Story About a Bizarre Anti-Vaccine Rally and a Sedated Bear. Then It Got Weird. This Was Supposed to Be a Story About a Bizarre Anti-Vaccine Rally and a Sedated Bear. Then It Got Weird.

This world is full of surprises, some of them involving anti-vaccine activists, sedated bears, and the small-scale production of literal fake news. A couple of weeks ago, I thought I was working on a quick, weird story about an anti-vaccine activist in Florida who was attempting to hold a rally in her hometown…

A Group of Anonymous Parents Is Suing NYC's Health Department Over Emergency Vaccination Orders A Group of Anonymous Parents Is Suing NYC's Health Department Over Emergency Vaccination Orders

A group of anonymous parents in Williamsburg, Brooklyn has filed a lawsuit in New York State Supreme Court over an emergency order by Mayor Bill de Blasio mandating that unvaccinated individuals to get their shots. The lawsuit claims the parents all have a religious objection to vaccines; it also cites notorious and…

Responding to a Measles Outbreak, NYC Mayor Orders Mandatory Vaccinations in Some Neighborhoods Responding to a Measles Outbreak, NYC Mayor Orders Mandatory Vaccinations in Some Neighborhoods

On Tuesday morning, responding to a growing and serious measles outbreak in largely Haredi Jewish areas of Brooklyn, New York City mayor Bill de Blasio declared a public health emergency. He also ordered all unvaccinated individuals in those neighborhoods to receive a measles vaccine, saying in a press conference,…

Pizzagate, Satanic Panic, and the Power of Conspiracy Theories Pizzagate, Satanic Panic, and the Power of Conspiracy Theories

In my forthcoming book Republic of Lies, I spent a lot of time thinking about the primacy of conspiracy theories in America, and talking to people involved in a variety of conspiracy communities. In this section, I attended a rally for Pizzagate believers across the street from the White House, and talked to them as…

What Is a 'Female-Owned' Tattoo Shop, Anyway? What Is a 'Female-Owned' Tattoo Shop, Anyway?

Nice Tattoo, a tidy blue-trimmed shop tucked on a picturesque corner in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, is the kind of place whose brand is immediately legible: It’s nice. It’s a tattoo parlor where “everybody is nice to you,” as their tagline goes, and it looks nice too—airy, bright, and impeccably decorated, looking less…

Instagram Influencers Are Wrecking Public Lands. Meet the Anonymous Account Trying to Stop Them Instagram Influencers Are Wrecking Public Lands. Meet the Anonymous Account Trying to Stop Them

At this very moment, Southern California is full of poppies, and the poppies are full of influencers. The superbloom—a fun word for a particularly riotous profusion of wildflowers—has brought thousands of tourists flooding into areas across the state, like Lake Elsinore, where access to the Walker Canyon poppy fields…

We Should Probably Talk About Lauren Duca We Should Probably Talk About Lauren Duca

In the thousand years since Donald Trump sailed down an escalator and crash-landed with a wet thump in the Oval Office, a lot of Americans have changed, for good or ill. Many of us are more political or more cynical, impassioned or deflated, hopeful or entirely gutted. The time before this presidency can seem…

Jenny McCarthy's Autism Charity Has Helped Its Board Members Make Money Off Dangerous, Discredited Ideas Jenny McCarthy's Autism Charity Has Helped Its Board Members Make Money Off Dangerous, Discredited Ideas

Camel’s milk. B12 lollipops. Hyperbaric oxygen chambers. “Ion-cleansing” foot baths. Chelation therapy. Gluten-free diets. Casein-free diets. Massive doses of nutritional supplements. All of these products and services have two things in common. First, mainstream (and widely trusted) medical bodies don’t recognize…

Dozens of Rich and/or Famous People Have Been Charged in an Alleged College Admissions Bribery Scheme  Dozens of Rich and/or Famous People Have Been Charged in an Alleged College Admissions Bribery Scheme 

Fifty people, including actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, have been indicted in federal court over allegations that they paid large bribes to get their children into elite colleges, both ABC and NBC News are reporting. As everyone else on Earth will joke today: Whatever happened to just buying a wing of…

You Can't Keep Glenn Thrush Down (Because the New York Times Keeps Handing Him Plum Assignments Despite His Losing the White House Beat Over Sexual Misconduct Allegations)  You Can't Keep Glenn Thrush Down (Because the New York Times Keeps Handing Him Plum Assignments Despite His Losing the White House Beat Over Sexual Misconduct Allegations) 

In November 2017, Vox published a story in which Glenn Thrush, then the White House correspondent for the New York Times, was accused of sexually inappropriate behavior towards female colleagues. Thrush, who’d been one of the most visible Times reporters in DC—he was frequently seen in the White House press briefing…

What Exactly Is Legally Imperiled Conspiracy Peddler Jerome Corsi Retracting From His Reporting on Seth Rich? What Exactly Is Legally Imperiled Conspiracy Peddler Jerome Corsi Retracting From His Reporting on Seth Rich?

Jerome Corsi is an author who can politely and credibly be described as a conspiracy theorist. He’s the former Washington bureau chief for InfoWars, and he’s written for other conservative-leaning conspiracy sites, like Human Events and WorldNetDaily. On Monday, Corsi formally retracted a year-old story he wrote for…

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