MICHAEL KNOWLES (HOST): RFK Jr. just got in a lot of trouble for a conversation that appears to have been secretly recorded at some kind of a donor political event in which he discusses one theory about COVID.
That's pretty crazy. That's pretty wild, the idea that COVID could discriminate by race and that COVID would most target white and Black people and the groups that are least susceptible to COVID, would be Chinese and Ashkenazi Jews. That seems totally crazy, right? And as everybody was yelling and calling RFK a kook and a nut and an antisemite, before I addressed any of that, I thought, well, let me just Google and see if any of this is true. And then I pulled up this paper. This is a paper that was published in BMC Medicine. It's a real medical journal. This is from people at the Cleveland Clinic. This is people at Columbia University. So, these are serious scientists and scholars. The headline is "New insights into genetic susceptibility of COVID 19: an ACE2 and TMPRSS2 polymorphism analysis." So ACE2 -- I guess that's referring to what Bobby Kennedy Jr was talking about here. And then we've got some numbers here. The background here, the analysis across the different groups, across the different populations, and it -- it finds, well, exactly what he's talking about. It says that for African-Americans and for white people, the risk is much higher. And for East Asians, the risk is relatively lower. And for Ashkenazi Jews, the risk is the lowest among any of those groups. Okay. So that part is true.
Now, there's a flip side of this. I said, so hold on, you're telling me that COVID doesn't affect Jews? I Google that. I said, that doesn't sound right. And I find another study that is from another medical journal and says there's elevated Jewish mortality from coronavirus in England and Wales, an epidemiological and demographic detective story. So, you got the one study, it says because of this ACE2 receptor, or whatever the hell it is, you've got very low Jewish -- Ashkenazi Jewish susceptibility of the virus. And then this other study that says you've got elevated mortality.
So, what does this mean? How the hell should I know? I majored in history and Italian literature. I don't know what an ACE2 receptor is. I don't even really believe scientific studies. I don't -- do I think that Bobby Kennedy Junior hates the Jews or Chinese? I don't know why they didn't say he was -- wasn't anti-Chinese racist or something like that. But I don't know. Is he -- do I think that? No. I don't really think that. He's sort of an eccentric guy. You know what I do think, though? The only thing I can conclude from this whole episode is I don't know anything about the COVID science, or whatever. You know? The main takeaway here, for me, is that the media are going to treat Bobby Kennedy Jr. as a Republican.