Mass hysteria and psychosis can be inflicted upon humans under a variety of circumstances. Both develop and are prone to spread when individuals and groups are suffering severe anxiety of stress. Circulating content that invokes anxiety and stress can impact mass hysteria symptoms:
COVID and Office of War Information Propaganda
The Office of War Information was established by President Franklin Roosevelt during World War II. The OWI utilized the media, including movies and television shows, to spread pro-war propaganda among American civilians.
The following are examples of propaganda posters the OWI produced during World War II:
On the bottom left is a CDC COVID-19 poster. On the right is an OWI Rosie the Riveter WWII propaganda poster:
Not only does the CDC emulate and copy OWI World War II propaganda, the CDC has a “See Something, Say Something” category on their blog. The Department of Homeland Security also has a “See Something, Say Something” webpage and graphic:
Below are graphics and COVID-19 misinformation content from CISA, which is under the Department of Homeland Security:
Below are current graphics available on the CDC’s website to promote vaccination:
Below is an example of methods in which CDC graphics provoke an emotional response that conflicts with facts and reality. Among over 265,000 delta variant COVID-19 cases in individuals under 50 years old, the fatality rate was 0%:
Despite the Delta strain having a 0% fatality rate among individuals under 50 years of age (among over 265,000 cases), the CDC produced this graphic warning of the transmission of Delta strain:
FEMA recommends individuals stay calm during a crisis, meaning that unnecessarily raising alarm to a situation that may not be a real emergency is ill-advised:
Effective propaganda provokes a strong emotional response. The strong emotional response is intended to have the audience answer the “call to action.” The CDC is recycling propaganda the United States military released on American civilians during World War II demonstrates the American government is using military information warfare techniques on American civilians during the CDC’s “War on COVID-19. Sharing slogans with the Department of Homeland Security, which has a COVID misinformation toolkit shows the CDC and DHS are working in “lockstep” to “fight” COVID-19 information. Which is concerning when the DHS is equating potential COVID-19 restrictions as a trigger for violent domestic terrorism:
If public health is utilizing military information warfare propaganda during the “war” on COVID-19, perhaps the threat is being slightly exaggerated. And finally, why does the CDC have quotation marks on its Getting Back to Normal graphic. Is “back to normal” different than society before COVID-19?