University of Waterloo professor calls pandemic 'COVID fake emergency'
Michael Palmer distributed course outline referencing 'the COVID fake emergency' to students
A chemistry professor at the University of Waterloo has distributed a course outline to students, saying his in-class exams aren't mandatory "because of the COVID fake emergency."
The goal of Michael Palmer's biochemical pharmacology course is to "gain an in-depth understanding of the biochemical principles of drug action."
Palmer received a medical degree with a specialization in microbiology from a university in Germany, although he said in an email to CBC he has "not sought or received accreditation in Canada."
The course outline was posted on social media after it was distributed to students this week.
In a statement to CBC News, University of Waterloo's Dean of Science Robert Lemieux says Palmer's opinion doesn't align with the university's perspective.
"The University of Waterloo respects the academic freedom of our faculty to express their opinions. This representation is not, however, shared by the University of Waterloo or the Faculty of Science," said the statement.
"Our response to the COVID-19 pandemic will continue to be based on the best available advice from public health officials," the statement went on to say. "In this case, the professor has elected to move the course online."
This isn't the first time Palmer has expressed his views on the pandemic. In an email from June obtained by CBC News, Palmer sent to the entire faculty a message intended for a colleague about the pandemic.
"The real cheating going on is this fake Covid epidemic," wrote Palmer. "Yes, there is a virus and it kills some people, but the panic around it is created with fraudulent data. If you look at real data, it turns out that it is no worse than a flu."
"The faked-up scare is used to defraud the economy and rob the people of their freedom," he wrote.
He later sent an apology email to the faculty, saying the message was meant for one person. The dean then sent an email to the faculty saying Palmer's views don't represent the university and he was disappointed by the tone.
Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 1480 cases of COVID-19 in Waterloo region and 43,685 cases in Ontario.