LOS ANGELES, May 18, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — Comedian Bill Maher’s weekly HBO show was canceled last week after the host tested positive for COVID-19 despite having received two doses of a COVID vaccine weeks earlier.
A statement from HBO said Maher was the only staffer on production of his show who tested positive at a weekly staff PCR testing. He is “asymptomatic and feels fine,” according to the statement.
Last Friday’s episode of “Real Time with Bill Maher,” which was to feature guests including astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and “Hardcore History” podcast host Dan Carlin is to be re-scheduled after Maher is finished isolating.
New York Yankees
Maher is just one example of what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are referring to now as “breakthrough cases” of COVID in fully vaccinated people.
At least nine members of the New York Yankees have tested positive for the virus after having been fully vaccinated, as well, including third base coach Phil Nevin, first base coach Reggie Willits, pitching coach Matt Blake, and four support staffers, as well as infielder Gleyber Torres.
Torres was “fully vaccinated and previously had COVID-19 during the most recent baseball offseason,” a statement from the Yankees said. “All of the positives are breakthrough positives, occurring with individuals who were fully vaccinated.”
All those testing positive had received the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine last month, according to CBS sports. Team members and staff met an 85 percent vaccinated quota and were no longer required to have to quarantine if they came into close contact to someone who tests positive without symptoms.
At least 5,800 “breakthrough cases”
Last month, the CDC told CNN that it had received 5,800 reports of COVID infections in people who have been vaccinated against coronavirus, including 396 people who required hospitalization and 74 people who died.
Nearly 124 million people in the United States have been fully vaccinated as of May 18, according to the CDC. Nearly half of the population over age 18 (47%) has been fully vaccinated, and nearly 60% has received at least one dose of vaccine. The agency states that “no vaccines are 100% effective at preventing illness in vaccinated people.”
“There will be a small percentage of fully vaccinated people who still get sick, are hospitalized, or die from COVID-19.”
Breakthrough cases occur “even though the vaccines are working as expected,” according to the CDC. “Asymptomatic infections among vaccinated people will also occur.”
Positive test is not disease
Questions have been raised about the accuracy and validity of PCR testing for coronavirus, particularly in asymptomatic individuals. Testing positive only equates to disease in a minority of cases, yet even doctors and public health authorities, let alone the media, are treating positive status and disease status as equivalent.
Breakthrough cases are nonetheless being used to justify continued testing and masking of the population, though the CDC’s director Rochelle Walensky reversed the agency’s prior statement and said last week that if you are fully vaccinated you do not need to wear masks at “indoor and outdoor activities, large or small.”
Reactions to Maher’s show cancellation reflect the confusion in the general public about CDC messaging and questions about the vaccine’s declared 95% effectiveness.
“So if he’s vaccinated, how did he get the rona?” Wen Wimmons tweeted. “And if you can still get it when you’re vaccinated, then what’s the point?”