Five doctors filed a lawsuit against Newsom and his administration over a law "that empowers the Medical Board of California to discipline physicians who espouse opinions about COVID-19 that are not in line with the mainstream," Fox News Digital reported.
The physicians asked a federal district court in the state to block the law from taking affect, arguing that it violates their First Amendment right as well as their constitutional right to due process under the law. The physician group is represented by the New Civil Liberties Alliance, or the NCLA, a nonpartisan civil rights law firm.
"California’s new ‘misinformation’ law is the result of an increasingly censorious mentality that has gripped many lawmakers in this country," Jenin Younes, counsel for NCLA, noted in a statement to the media.
The law is set to take effect on January 1, 2023. It would allow the Medical Board of California and the Osteopathic Medical Board of California to discipline physicians who "disseminate" information about COVID that departs from the "contemporary scientific consensus."
The doctors, who treat patients on a regular basis, say the California law violates their First Amendment rights because "it impedes their ability to communicate with their patients in the course of treatment."
"In safeguarding Americans’ rights to free speech and expression, the First Amendment applies not only to expression of majority opinions, but to minority views as well," the complaint noted.
"Indeed, it is minority views that need protection from government censorship — as this law shows. Nor is there an exception to the prohibition on viewpoint-based discrimination simply because the law applies only to a regulated profession," it added.
It is plain to see that not only do Newsom and majority Democrats want to craft their own narratives about the virus and subsequent vaccinations, but they want to criminalize disagreement with their policies -- literally "extreme" and "authoritarian," which is what they have accused Republicans of being.
The doctors, in their complaint, point this out, noting that differing opinions on mask efficacy, and post-vaccination risks, like some young adult recipients developing myocarditis, could constitute "minority" views and thus be legally actionable under the law. They also argued that "contemporary scientific consensus" is "undefined in the law and undefinable as a matter of logic."
"No one can know, at any given time, the ‘consensus’ of doctors and scientists on various matters related to prevention and treatment of COVID-19," the complaint read. "And even if such a poll could theoretically be taken, who would qualify to be polled? Only those doctors treating COVID-19 patients? All doctors and scientists, or only those in certain fields?"
"The very existence of these questions illustrates that any attempt at a legal definition of 'scientific consensus' according to which doctors must operate in their day-to-day practice is impractical and borders on the absurd," the complaint went on to say.
Dr. Tracy Hoeg, one of the plaintiffs, noted in the lawsuit that she is "afraid of saying something to my patients that I know is consistent with the current scientific literature but may not yet be accepted by the California Medical Board." Doctors must "feel free to speak truthfully with their patients if they wish to gain and maintain their trust," she said, according to Fox News Digital.
The outlet reported that she has been either the first or the senior author of nine epidemiological analyses, six of which were published in peer-reviewed journals on a variety of COVID-related topics, such as mask effectiveness and a risk-benefit analysis on mRNA vaccines in kids.
She noted that the state law "puts physicians who are simply trying to give appropriate and individualized recommendations in a difficult position, particularly considering they may not know what the California Medical Board’s ‘consensus’ is at the moment or if it also evolves as our understanding evolves."