Archive for the ‘Babesia’ Category

CDC: Babesiosis Cases Rise Sharply in Northeastern US

CDC: Babesiosis cases rise sharply in Northeastern US

Cases of the tick-borne disease babesiosis increased sharply in some Northeastern states between 2011 and 2019, according to a new CDC report.

The agency says the infection is now endemic in three new states: Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont.

Previously, the disease was considered endemic only in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Wisconsin.

Humans typically acquire babesiosis from deer ticks, whose bites can transmit Babesia parasites that infect red blood cells.

It can also be transmitted via blood transfusion or during pregnancy, from an infected mother to her unborn child.

For more information:

CDC report

New York Times

ABC News

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She’s Battling Lyme, Bartonella, Babesia, Anaplasmosis, and PANS

Eileen Clossick opens up about her Lyme disease, Bartonella, Babesia, and Anaplasmosis, and PANS in an effort to help others and spread awareness.

The puzzle pieces are finally starting to come together after going through what I now recognize was the perfect storm this past year: getting the Covid vaccine (& subsequently developing paresthesia in my legs), contracting Covid, going through an emotional stressor, and then being exposed to mold (and later finding out I have mold toxicity, or “mycotoxicity”). The floodgates were opened, and my body could no longer suppress the viral load it was carrying.

Experiencing Symptoms

I was experiencing such severe insomnia that I would go days without sleeping, even after taking four or five Benadryl at a time. I was having heart palpitations, night terrors, such severe brain fog that I couldn’t plan my days off of work without ending up in tears, tingling in my head as well as my legs, intrusive thoughts, dizzy spells, tinnitus, and neck stiffness. I was seeing black dots, snowflakes, and stars. I had weird neuro symptoms like dropping things all the time and mixing up left and right. I would wake up at night with shaking episodes because I couldn’t regulate my body temperature. And worst of all, I was experiencing a darkness and spiral in my mind that I have yet to figure out how to explain in words. By nature, I am a very joyful, energetic, and enthusiastic person, so I knew that this was not me, and something was deeply wrong. I was afraid to hurt a patient at work due to my exhaustion caused by severe insomnia, so I started calling out of shifts.

After a boatload of research, and visiting and calling multiple doctors and clinics, I finally got into a Lyme Literate doctor. I explained my story to her, all the way back to the onset of symptoms at 5 years old. She looked at me and said, “this is classic Bartonella,1 I’ll be shocked if it isn’t.” I instantly burst into tears in her office, and the only thing I could repeat was “no one should ever be told they’re just anxious for 20 years.”

Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (PANS)

If it hadn’t been for the flare up this past year, I may have never gotten the answers I needed. I was forced to ask the deeper question of what was really going on.

At the age of five, I had a sudden onset of severe anxiety, OCD symptoms, destructive behavior, night terrors, and sensory issues. It escalated to the point that I needed to be admitted to a children’s psych hospital for a little over a week. My doctors tested me for Strep (for a PANDAS diagnosis), which was negative. Unfortunately, they did not have the knowledge of tick borne illnesses or PANS (Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome). So, I was seen as a psych case, told I had a “delay in my neurological development” and prescribed psych meds at a young age. Over the years, I led a normal life, but always dealt with what I believed was an anxiety disorder. So I attributed other strange symptoms to anxiety throughout my life. There have been periods when it was worse than others, but overall, I tried incredibly hard to hide it from most people, because I hated that I struggled with it. If it hadn’t been for the flare up this past year, I may have never gotten the answers I needed. I was forced to ask the deeper question of what was really going on.

Multiple Tick-borne Diseases

thumbnail_image2 (1)-2-1When the full Tick Borne Panel came back, my doctor was correct in her assumption. I was diagnosed with Lyme, Bartonella, Babesia, and Anaplasma. Along with these tick borne illnesses, I also had the Neural Zoomer Plus test done which identified blood brain barrier disruption2 and demyelination. With that, I was diagnosed with PANS. Along with those diagnoses, I was also diagnosed with 9 new food sensitivities and mycotoxicity. My doctor looked at me and said “you’re one tough cookie for walking around with all of this.”

Surprisingly, with each new diagnosis came a sense of relief. I finally had proof that everything I was experiencing was real. This illness can be dangerously misleading, and oftentimes cause me to doubt my own experiences, as I look normal from the outside and I have good moments and days when I feel like myself. Because a lot of what I endure is not outwardly visible to others, I have been challenged to put into words what I am experiencing, so I can let others in, especially those closest to me.

My Most Recent Flare

This past spring, I was having flashbacks to my childhood, and experiencing odd bouts of deja vu. My body was trying to tell me I was experiencing a flare, but I couldn’t read the signs. I was begging the Lord to give me sleep, fighting for rest in any way I could: putting my phone away 2 hours before bed, creating a nighttime routine, etc, all to no avail. Even when I did fall asleep, I was awoken by night terrors, pinprick sensations, or shaking episodes and required even more sleep aides to get back to sleep. I didn’t know if I was doing something wrong. All I knew was that I was struggling and needed help, badly. I didn’t know exactly what was going on at the time, but I knew that I was done taking the band aid approach offered to me. I didn’t want to just take more pills; I wanted to know why I was experiencing all of these random symptoms.

Unfortunately, when these tick borne illnesses and other infections have crossed the blood brain barrier and gone systemic after being in the body for years, antibiotics alone do not work. These bugs are quite intelligent. They create a biofilm to protect themselves. So, while I will most likely be on antibiotics and anti-parasitic drugs long-term, the road to recovery involves so much more than just antibiotics. I have yet to meet a single person who healed from long-term Lyme/coinfections with antibiotics alone. In fact, I experienced some of the worst die-off symptoms (herxing) after starting some of the herbal regimens prescribed by my ILADS doctor. From someone coming from healthcare and working with pharmaceuticals, I had no idea how potent and effective some of these herbs could be.

The Healing Process

thumbnail_image0-1In addition to medications and supplements, there are other supportive therapies to help my body and mind heal. Since this has gone undiagnosed for so long and crossed the blood-brain barrier, I will be undergoing treatment for the next couple of years. There are numerous routes to take, so treatment may look different at different points in time over the next couple of years. Because my immune system has been suppressed for years, I need to do everything I can to help boost it. I am currently taking Immunoglobulins. There are many diet and lifestyle changes to make as well to help boost my immune system and decrease the inflammation in my body and brain.

For me, I’ve found that the best medicine of all is being with people. It’s often seeing others and socializing that pulls me out of the never ending darkness or mental spiral that I can’t escape alone.

And, since my body has been stuck in a fight or flight mode (sympathetic state) for so long fighting infection without me knowing, I have to help my body learn how to re-enter the parasympathetic state (or, rest and digest state). For me, I’ve found that the best medicine of all is being with people. It’s often seeing others and socializing that pulls me out of the never ending darkness or mental spiral that I can’t escape alone. When I was a kid, nothing worked, so I am thankful that I have found something that does work. There are other simple things I’ve found effective such as laughter, music, prayer, and being in nature. There are also certain therapies like cold-water exposure, craniosacral therapy, EMDR therapy, & neurofeedback, that help my body shift from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic state. Our bodies heal best in the parasympathetic state. I could create a whole other blog post just on all the treatment and therapies involved. Keeping track of it all is a full time job in and of itself!

And as I mentioned, there is something called the Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction (or “herxing”). I don’t have a worst enemy, but even if I did, I would not wish this on him or her. Basically, as the bacteria die off, they release toxins, so all of the symptoms you’ve experienced come to a head and get worse before they get better. But, as people have told me, even though it’s a living hell, it’s something to celebrate, because you know you’re hitting the nail on the head. Since most of the symptoms I have experienced have been neuro and psychiatric, and because these bacteria have crossed the blood brain barrier and caused PANS, most of the herxing involves worsening of the neuro and psychiatric symptoms. “In PANS and PANDAS, autoantibodies target healthy proteins or receptors in the brain, principally in the basal ganglia, a region of the brain responsible for motor movements, learning, cognition, and emotion.”3 Because I’ve had this for so many years without knowing, there will be a lot of bacteria that need to die off, and lots of herxing to go through, but I am determined to go through whatever I need to in order to get to the other side. It’s taken me years to arrive at this point; I can’t expect to heal in a month or two. As I begin to experience some days in between herxing where I feel like myself again, I am hopeful for complete healing in time and better days ahead.

There is also the issue of mycotoxicity. Who knew mold could wreak such havoc on your brain and nervous system? When not excreted from the body, it gets stored in fatty tissues, including the brain, which explains why everything got worse when I had a new mold exposure. For whatever reason, people with Lyme & co-infections don’t flush out toxins from their body like the average person (many of these people also have an MTHFR gene mutation).

Due to the ups and downs of these illnesses, many weekly appointments, and the financial burden that comes along with all of this, I made the decision to move home to Rhode Island and go ‘all in’ on my healing journey. Although this has felt like rock bottom all around, I am challenging myself to view this situation in a new light. What if this is an opportunity to give my body the rest, space, and time it needs to heal? What if the “falling apart” of my old life, is actually a new path falling together? What if I can use this as an opportunity to spread awareness, and therefore alleviate the suffering of others? What if I can heal completely, and then get back out there, further my degree, and work with the kiddos (& their families) who battle PANS/PANDAS?

Earlier diagnosis = earlier treatment, and therefore, better outcomes.

thumbnail_image3As I’ve mentioned before, I am open about my journey, in order to spread awareness, and to one day fight alongside and achieve victories for others, so that no one will ever go misdiagnosed for so long like I did. Earlier diagnosis = earlier treatment, and therefore, better outcomes. Because of the frequent mental spiral I experience, especially during this past year, I have doubted many of my decisions. However, since I discovered all of this, I have not for one second doubted that I was handed this cross so that I can one day help others with a similar cross. They say people who battle long term Lyme & co-infections with a purpose and reason to get through it, have better outcomes than those without a purpose, and I have most definitely found mine. No one should go misdiagnosed for 20 years, and then have to fight so hard just for a diagnosis. No one should have to go to therapy to process 1) the trauma that comes along with PANS, and 2) the shock of going misdiagnosed for so long. No one should have to pay thousands of dollars out of pocket to regain their health after it was the medical field that missed the bigger picture.  No one should be treated as though they are crazy by certain doctors who have not been trained in or educated themselves on tick borne illnesses (as well as PANS, molecular mimicry, etc), because it’s often a complicated and “controversial” topic.

As passionate as I am about this, I am also realizing there are emotional, spiritual, & mental components to work through as well. I could also write a whole blog post (or book, truthfully) just on those aspects alone. I am learning that I can’t expect to heal while holding onto anger and resentment towards all those who couldn’t help me more when I was a kid, or even this past year. I am also learning to be patient with myself as I process the aftershocks, all the emotions that come with it, and some of the painful memories.

It was only when I came to a place of deep acceptance, that I achieved a sense of peace.

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Patient Contracts Babesia From a Blood Donor: Only 14 States Test For It



Babesia is most commonly transmitted through a tick bite but it can also be transmitted through a blood transfusion. To minimize the risk to the public, blood banks now screen donors for Babesia in endemic states.

In their article “Transfusion-transmitted babesiosis in a patient with sickle cell disease undergoing chronic red cell exchange,” Costa and colleagues describe a patient who contracted Babesia from a donor living in Ohio, a state that is not considered endemic for Babesia

According to the authors, a 30-year-old man with sickle cell disease (SCD) required approximately 10 units of red blood cells every 3–4 weeks throughout his childhood.

Approximately 2 months after a red blood cell exchange, he presented with fever, neck pain, and photophobia. Several days later, he developed a persistent fever, chills, headache, fatigue, and loss of appetite.

He was diagnosed with Babesia through identification of parasites in his red blood cells and positive antibodies. He was also borderline positive on an antibody test for Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis.

“Prior to laboratory-based blood donor screening for Babesia, transfusion-transmitted babesiosis (TTB) was a leading infectious risk to the blood supply in the United States.”

The young man was treated for Babesia with azithromycin and atovaquone for 10 days with resolution of his symptoms. He was not treated for Anaplasma phagocytophilum or Ehrlichia chaffeensis.

The patient lived in a state endemic for Babesia but did not recall a tick bite.

“A donor lookback investigation was initiated with the blood supplier,” the authors wrote. They found that in the preceding 6 months, the patient had received 65 units of blood, with 58 units screened for Babesia.

Unfortunately, “One of the donors of the 7 untested units was B. microti seropositive,” the authors wrote. The donor lived in a state not requiring Babesia screening.

“Our case demonstrates the continued vulnerability of the US blood supply to Babesia.”

“The seropositive donor had not had any symptoms of babesiosis; he lived in Ohio and reported being very active over the past year, including hiking and camping in several states (Ohio, Tennessee, and North Carolina),” the authors wrote.

In 2019, the FDA recommended testing of blood donors for Babesia in the 14 states where almost all cases of Babesia have been reported. “The policy confined to 14 states (Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin),” wrote the authors.

Authors Conclude:

“Heightened awareness and health care provider education are imperative, especially in non-endemic [states] where clinicians may not be accustomed to diagnosing community-acquired or TTB, placing transfusion recipients at risk of delayed diagnosis and severe disease.

  1. Costa V, Mercure-Corriveau N, Gourneau J, et al. Transfusion-transmitted babesiosis in a patient with sickle cell disease undergoing chronic red cell exchange. Transfusion. Jan 13 2023;doi:10.1111/trf.17244



Once again, the madness of limiting potential infection to certain geographical areas despite the ability of people, animals, and bugs to move around is completely asinine.  Yet, here we are – still in the madness.

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How Serious is Babesia?


Woman sick in bed with Babesia infection.
In some individuals, a Babesia infection can be fatal or cause serious complications in immunocompromised patients. In others, it can be asymptomatic and go unrecognized. In this study, investigators demonstrate how difficult it can be to eradicate Babesia.

By Dr. Daniel Cameron

In the article “Failure of an Approximately Six Week Course of Tafenoquine to Completely Eradicate Babesia microti Infection in an Immunocompromised Patient,” Prasad and Wormser describe a chronic relapsing Babesia infection in an elderly woman.¹

The 74-year-old patient was admitted to the hospital in August 2021 with a 2-day history of fatigue and fevers. She was immunocompromised and had a history of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma treated with chemotherapy, polymyalgia rheumatica treated with low dose steroids (prednisone 5 mg/day, plus a short trial of a tocilizumab [a disease-modifying antirheumatic drug]), and cold autoimmune hemolytic anemia.

“A peripheral blood smear was positive for B. microti (0.2% parasitemia),” according to the authors. Her Hgb dropped as low as 6.5 g/dl. She received 10 units of blood.

She was initially treated with a 7-day course of azithromycin and atovaquone. She was also prescribed steroids. Her parasitemia resolved.

However, the woman developed recurrent fatigue and fever with a recurrence of parasitemia (0.3%).

The clinician planned to retreat her with a 6-week course of azithromycin and atovaquone, but added clindamycin due to a persistent parasitemia and fatigue. She was subsequently switched to quinine plus oral clindamycin.

READ MORE: Tafenoquine: Treatment for relapsing Babesia

“This antiparasitic drug regimen was discontinued on 20 January 2022, because she developed symptoms consistent with cinchonism (hearing loss, vertigo, tinnitus),” wrote the authors.

Cinchonism resolved after stopping her quinine plus oral clindamycin.

“She then developed severe fatigue and subjective fevers on 22 February 2022 with a recurrence of the babesia parasitemia (<0.1%), along with evidence of worsening hemolysis,” wrote the authors.

She was retreated with oral clindamycin along with a reduced dose of quinine. Her parasitemia continued.

The woman was then prescribed off label tafenoquine, as she tested negative for glucose-6-phospate dehydrogenase deficiency.

“She was started on oral tafenoquine 200 mg once a day for 3 days (loading dose) from 7-9 March 2022, and then 200 mg once per week thereafter starting on 16 March 2022,” wrote the authors. The Hgb rose from 6.5 g/dl to 13.3 g/dL without transfusions.

Tafenoquine was stopped after 6 weeks due to neutropenia. “The neutrophil count reached a nadir level of 325 cells/uL,” wrote the authors.

The woman’s severe fatigue, parasitemia (<0.1%), and hemolysis recurred.

“She was started on a new drug regimen of oral azithromycin 1000 mg once daily, atovaquone liquid suspension 750 mg once daily, and four Malarone® tablets once daily (each tablet consisting of 250 mg atovaquone plus 100 mg of proguanil) on 2 June 2022,” wrote the authors.

By the end of June, PCR testing for Babesia was negative.

However, “It was planned to continue treatment for at least 12 weeks,” wrote the authors, “and even to consider chronic suppressive therapy going forward.”

Prasad et al. described two previous cases where tafenoquine was effective for Babesia.

The authors concluded:

  • “Therefore, based on available data, tafenoquine as a single agent may, or may not, be curative of B. microti infection in a chronically immunocompromised patient.”
  • “Clearly, more clinical studies and more studies conducted in animal models are needed to optimize the use of tafenoquine in order to prevent a relapse of B. microti infection in chronically immunocompromised patients with babesiosis when the drug is discontinued.”
    1. Prasad, P.J. and G.P. Wormser, Failure of an Approximately Six Week Course of Tafenoquine to Completely Eradicate Babesia microti Infection in an Immunocompromised Patient. Pathogens, 2022. 11(9).

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3 Reasons Lyme/MSIDS Patients Remain Sick: Dormancy/Persisters, Biofilm, Co-Infection

Metamorphoses of Lyme disease spirochetes: phenomenon of Borrelia persisters


The survival of spirochetes from the Borrelia burgdorferi (sensu lato) complex in a hostile environment is achieved by the regulation of differential gene expression in response to changes in temperature, salts, nutrient content, acidity fluctuation, multiple host or vector dependent factors, and leads to the formation of dormant subpopulations of cells. From the other side, alterations in the level of gene expression in response to antibiotic pressure leads to the establishment of a persisters subpopulation. Both subpopulations represent the cells in different physiological states. “Dormancy” and “persistence” do share some similarities, e.g. both represent cells with low metabolic activity that can exist for extended periods without replication, both constitute populations with different gene expression profiles and both differ significantly from replicating forms of spirochetes. Persisters are elusive, present in low numbers, morphologically heterogeneous, multi-drug-tolerant cells that can change with the environment. The definition of “persisters” substituted the originally-used term “survivors”, referring to the small bacterial population of Staphylococcus that survived killing by penicillin. The phenomenon of persisters is present in almost all bacterial species; however, the reasons why Borrelia persisters form are poorly understood. Persisters can adopt varying sizes and shapes, changing from well-known forms to altered morphologies. They are capable of forming round bodies, L-form bacteria, microcolonies or biofilms-like aggregates, which remarkably change the response of Borrelia to hostile environments. Persisters remain viable despite aggressive antibiotic challenge and are able to reversibly convert into motile forms in a favorable growth environment. Persisters are present in significant numbers in biofilms, which has led to the explanation of biofilm tolerance to antibiotics. Considering that biofilms are associated with numerous chronic diseases through their resilient presence in the human body, it is not surprising that interest in persisting cells has consequently accelerated. Certain diseases caused by pathogenic bacteria (e.g. tuberculosis, syphilis or leprosy) are commonly chronic in nature and often recur despite antibiotic treatment. Three decades of basic and clinical research have not yet provided a definite answer to the question: is there a connection between persisting spirochetes and recurrence of Lyme disease in patients?




Lyme borreliosis (LB) is the most common tick-borne disease caused by the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi in North America and Borrelia afzelii or Borrelia garinii in Europe and Asia, respectively. The infection affects multiple organ systems, including the skin, joints, and the nervous system. Lyme neuroborreliosis (LNB) is the most dangerous manifestation of Lyme disease, occurring in 10–15% of infected individuals. During the course of the infection, bacteria migrate through the host tissues altering the coagulation and fibrinolysis pathways and the immune response, reaching the central nervous system (CNS) within 2 weeks after the bite of an infected tick. The early treatment with oral antimicrobials is effective in the majority of patients with LNB. Nevertheless, persistent forms of LNB are relatively common, despite targeted antibiotic therapy. It has been observed that the antibiotic resistance and the reoccurrence of Lyme disease are associated with biofilm-like aggregates in B. burgdorferi, B. afzelii, and B. garinii, both in vitro and in vivo, allowing Borrelia spp. to resist to adverse environmental conditions. Indeed, the increased tolerance to antibiotics described in the persisting forms of Borrelia spp., is strongly reminiscent of biofilm growing bacteria, suggesting a possible role of biofilm aggregates in the development of the different manifestations of Lyme disease including LNB.


Serological and PCR evidence of Infection in 105 Patients with SPPT

Alexis Lacout1*, Marie Mas4, Michel Franck2, Véronique Perronne3, Julie Pajaud2, Pierre Yves Marcy5, Christian Perronne3

*Corresponding Author: Alexis Lacout, Centre de diagnostic ELSAN, Centre Médico–Chirurgical, 83 avenue Charles de Gaulle, 15000, Aurillac, France

Received: 11 December 2020; Accepted: 22 December 2020; Published: 05 January 2021

Citation: Alexis Lacout, Marie Mas, Michel Franck, Véronique Perronne, Julie Pajaud, Pierre Yves Marcy, Christian Perronne. Serological and PCR evidence of Infection in 105 Patients with SPPT. Archives of Microbiology & Immunology 5 (2021): 139-150.


Introduction: The main aim of this study is to determine the nature of the exposure of patients presenting with polymorphic signs and symptoms to the parasite Babesia, through the study of serology. The secondary aim is to report the different serological or PCR results observed in these patients.

Material and methods: The following serologies were performed in all patients looking for: Babesia divergens, Borrelia, Bartonella, Coxiella burnetii, Anaplasma phagocytophilum. The following PCRs were performed looking for: Borrelia spp, Babesia spp, Bartonella (Bartonella spp, B. quintana, B. Henselae,) Coxiella spp, Anaplasma spp, Ehrlichia spp, Rickettsia spp, most often on several matrices (venous blood, capillary blood, urine and saliva).

Results: In this study, 105 patients were included, 62 females and 43 males, sex ratio F/M was 62/43 = 1.44; mean age was 45.5 year old (range; 5 years, 79 years old).

  • Of the 105 serologies for B. divergens, 41% were found to be positive.
  • Of the 104 serologies for Borrelia, 19.2% were found to be positive.
  • Of the 95 serologies for Anaplasma, 27.3% were found to be positive.

Borrelia spp, Babesia spp, Bartonella spp, Coxiella spp, Anaplasma spp, Ehrlichia spp, Rickettsia spp were found by using rtPCR.

Conclusion: Our study has shown that patients with SPPT/PTLDS, a syndrome close to fibromyalgia, could harbor several tick borne microorganisms. Microbiologic analyses should thus not be merely limited to Borrelia’s research alone.



These relatively recent studies (within the past few years) reveal what Lyme literate doctors and their patients have been experiencing from the beginning.  They also reaffirm what many independent researchers have globally been writing about for years.  There are many other reasons patients remain ill as well but these three are biggies.

Yet, reality is best summed up by the following quote from the first study listed above:

Three decades of basic and clinical research have not yet provided a definite answer to the question: is there a connection between persisting spirochetes and recurrence of Lyme disease in patients?

Isn’t that sad?

The same, of course, can be said of biofilm and coinfections as well. Decades have gone by with no definitive answers because The Cabal doesn’t want the truth to be known. Why? Quite simple: a chronic, relapsing illness doesn’t fit their “vaccine” narrative which is the favored golden calf and cash cow of research institutions and our government, which have a cozy relationship with Big Pharma and Big Media.  This is quite convenient for all of them as they control all the messaging as well as threaten, censor, and ban doctors who dissent.

This has been blatantly exposed during the time of COVID but is nothing new.  Lymeland has been riddled with the exact same issues for 40 years.  Unfortunately, even well-meaning advocates and patients evidently can not see this and continue to demand more money and become giddy when they get it from the very agencies behind this debacle, who are incidentally profiting from it.

It’s a hot-mess for sure, but one thing is certain: we must stop playing into their hands by being ignorant or filled with “hopium,” a term I use to describe how hope can become a drug that stops you from thinking critically, logically, and honestly.

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