Corona Investigative Committee, 139th Session on January 20th, 2023

Jennifer Sey

Former Global Brand President, Levi Strauss & Co.

(Original language: English)

[Transcript from Team + Ed]

Viviane Fischer: [03:07:01]
I hear that our new, next guest is here, Jennifer Sey. Are you with us?

Jennifer Sey:
I am. Can you hear me?

Viviane Fischer:
Yes, hello. Great that you’re here. Sorry it took us a little longer.

Jennifer Sey:
That’s OK.

Viviane Fischer:
We’ve been discussing things a bit more intensely today. So let me just say a few words with regard to your former career. You are a former chief marketing officer and then brand president of the Levi Strauss & Co. company, until January, 2022. And you, before that, you’ve been employed with Levi since 1999.So it’s really, that has been a very long career with them. And yeah, you’re one of the producers of the 2020 Netflix documentary _Athlete A,_ on the Larry Nassar scandal at the USA gymnastics, which won an Emmy for the outstanding investigative documentary. And currently you’re working producing and directing a feature-length documentary film that focuses on the impact to children from school closures and other restrictions during the pandemic. so you have… a substack which is .

So that’s been, you’ve been very active, I see, in a very, in a variety of fields. And yeah, maybe you can give us a bit, I don’t know if there’s something you would like to add to the, to you, your CV. And then I’m also very interested to hear what you, what you’ve been experiencing in both, like school and fashion business, so to say, during the measure crisis.

Jennifer Sey: [03:08:52]

Jennifer Sey

Yeah. I mean, the only thing I would add is: I wrote a book, that came out in the last month or two, called _Levi’s Unbuttoned,_ which really… I mean, it tells the story of… what I went through in my last two years at Levi’s, in standing up for kids, essentially, and the censorship and the silencing I faced internally and externally.

But it also just is about my life and career, as a woman in corporate America coming up. But I’ll… capture a lot of the key points of this book when I sort of tell the whole story.

Viviane Fischer:
OK, so we have to look at that. Yeah, so then just go ahead–

Jennifer Sey:
Want me to begin?

Viviane Fischer:

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah, sure. And you tell me if I’m rambling and going on for too long, then. You know, you hit the highlights. I spent over, almost 23 years at Levi’s. I started as an entry-level assistant and worked my way all the way up the ladder. In October of 2020, I was promoted to Brand President and in line for CEO. I was really proud of that; I loved the company. And, but I ultimately did not become the CEO. I quit. I was asked… well, in January of ’22, I was told there was no longer a place for me in the company because of my outspokenness on the restrictions to children. But I was offered severance. That would come with the signing of a nondisclosure agreement. And I was not willing to sign that, because I wanted to be able to talk to folks like you and tell this story.

Because I was increasingly alarmed at the silencing and the censorship not just as it pertains to covid but, you know, more broadly as well. So I quit in a really public fashion. You know, I quit with an op-ed telling the story, on Barry Weiss’ substack. And I’m going to tell you that story today, of everything that happened in the last two years at Levi’s. But I want to go back in time a little bit, because I think it’s relevant.

As you mentioned, I had a very unusual childhood. I was a gymnast. And for those that don’t know, it can be a very cruel sport. I think a lot of that was exposed with the case of Larry Nassar, which I think probably even reached you guys there in Germany. But I was training six, seven, sometimes 10 hours a day as a 10- and 12-year-old. I was the national champion in 1986. But during my career as a gymnast I’ve come to understand this is true around the world, not just in the United States. But I endured a forced-starvation diet. Food was taken from us. We had to subsist on less than 400 calories a day. We were fat-shamed. We were weighed in twice a day; it was announced on the loudspeaker.

I mean, it just goes on and on and on. And I trained on serious injuries like a broken ankle for two years. Still, it was all very difficult at the world championships in 1985 in Montreal. I broke my femur on the last event, and I came back in less than a year to win the USA championships, which sounds quite brave. But in fact, it was pretty self- destructive, as you as you might imagine, to not allow oneself to heel and come back and do that.

And you know, despite my successes, I left the sport pretty ashamed and beaten down at about the age of 19. I was depressed and had horrible nightmares and PTSD. And I say all of this because, you know, I mean I was depressed to the point of suicidal ideation. I had no value in the world beyond the sport. And 20 years later I wrote my first book, which was called _Chalked Up_ in 2008. And it was really the first first-person account of the cruelty in the sport. And it was my first experience with being, you lnow, quote-unquote “cancelled”. I didn’t– now it was a much smaller, amongst a much smaller audience than what ultimately I would go through in regards to covid, but it was a good warmup. I… sort of learned to steel myself against the… angry mob. But you know, no one was ready for me to say the things I said about the sport.

And so I was threatened with legal action and violence and all sorts of stuff. And I was not really prepared for that. But I continued to speak out because I wish someone had spoken up for me as a child. You know, and I think this really informs much of what I would do– gosh, how many years later? You know, 12… years later when it comes to covid. I learned very fast that it really stinks to go first, and to stay true things first. But eventually people join you. It took ten years with, in the world of sports. But in around 2018, when Larry Nassar– who for those that don’t know, was the team doctor for USA gymnastics, who sexually assaulted over 500 young athletes– when he was finally sent to prison, everybody was like, “Oh we agree with you, know you, we stood by you all along.” But I, of course, remember that they, in fact, did not.

And anyway I was a hero for about, you know, six months. But then I started to speak out about covid. So in March of 2020 from the very first, from the beginning, March 13th in California is when everything shut down. California went first. The governor sort of prided himself Governor Gavin Newsome, on his leadership here. He really set the stage for the nation, and I was outspoken from day one. I had been studying the data that had already been coming out of Italy, and it was clear that the median age of death was over eighty, which meant that children were mercifully protected and really not at any serious risk. I also, I mean, I went down every rabbit hole. I studied the pre-pandemic playbooks which said never close schools for more than four weeks, even with far higher fatality rates.

And it just all seemed so insane to me that we could, that we would shut down the world like this, think that children would not be harmed, that everyday folks wouldn’t be harmed, that businesses wouldn’t go under, all of this stuff. So I was very outspoken. I don’t think I realized at first how controversial that was going to be. I learned very quickly… that that was very, very controversial. So I lived in San Francisco at the time, which is really a bastion of progressive, they would call themselves progressive politics.

But, and somehow the “woke” stance, the far-left stance, became “We have to shut down until there is–” basically became a zero-covid stance, which seemed lunatic to me. Because all, it seems such a trespass of their own values. Everything that we, I would have considered myself of the left. I used to call myself left of left of center. Everything we said we stood for, you know, championing the rights of lower-income families, inclusion, diversity, all these things, these were the people that we were harming. The schools in San Francisco, my children went to public schools in San Francisco. They’re disproportionately low-income. 60 percent of the kids are low-income children. They were left home alone with no Wi-Fi to do their work. I mean, it was just, it was so clear to me that this was so incredibly damaging and harmful.

You know, I should state that in San Francisco, playgrounds, outdoor playgrounds, were closed for nine months. Skate ramps, you know, like skateboarding, they were filled with sand, so children couldn’t go outside and skateboard. Basketball hoops were taken down or boarded over so kids could not play basketball. They… were told, “You need to just stay home.” So children were totally isolated; children were billed as just vectors of disease. They were demonized and vilified. Meanwhile, golf courses were of open, tennis courts, all the things that, you know, wealthy fancy adults like to do, those were fine. Anything children wanted to do– beaches were closed. I went to a beach, illegally I guess, with my daughter at the time, who was four. And a woman screamed at me that she wouldn’t be sad for me when my daughter died. And I was going to kill all these people in San Francisco.

I had the police called on me and my family because we went to the park. And because they’re– I have four children, the rule or the law, well it wasn’t a law; it was an executive order– was you can’t gather with more than one family outside your household. That because I have four children, we looked like more than one household. And so people called the police on us. And we had to show our identification to prove that we all lived in one household. This is what it was like. And when you live in the city in San Francisco, nobody has a yard. Nobody has anywhere to let their children play, you know, if… the playgrounds are closed. And so it was just, you were literally locked in your home. That was– not only were you locked in your home; you were told that that is what good people did. If you wanted the schools to open, you wanted the playgrounds to open, you were a terrible person who wanted teachers to die. You were a racist, which is what I was called repeatedly. You were anti-science; you were all these things. You were a conspiracy theorist.

So as all this was happening, I continued to be outspoken on social media. But it also– I… appeared on the local news and I wrote op-eds and I attended school board meetings. And eventually my peers at work started to notice. At first they didn’t. I did not have a very large following on social media. But about six months in– I assume they noticed before that but waited to talk to me. In September of 2020 I received a call from our, my peer, the head of corporate communications, who warned me that when I spoke, I spoke on behalf of the company– at the time, I was still the chief marketing officer– and that I should watch it. I should stop saying the things I was saying.

I said I don’t, I’m an individual, I’m a citizen speaking on behalf of the children of San Francisco, the 50,000 children who are locked at home, 60 percent of whom are low-income and have no adult to tend to them while at home. Their parents are essential workers. We were divided into essential and non-essential, as if humans can be divided in such a way. So I was warned to stop.

And I said, “No, thank you. I don’t want to.” And that was not well received as you might imagine. And I… said, “Are you telling me I have to stop?” And she said, “No, I can’t do that.” And that was sort of the end of the conversation. That would be the first of very many. One basically every two weeks, a different call from a different executive telling me I needed to stop. My boss, who was the CEO at the time. I– he didn’t speak with me for quite some time. He likes to avoid conflicts, so…

But around that same time– I should mention that the private schools, so you know, the ones that cost 60,000 dollars a year, that all of my peers sent their children to, those opened in San Francisco. Because they were not subjected to the same sort of state oversight and, quite frankly, interference from the teachers’ union, that the public schools were. So my peers all sent, they all sent their children to private school. I was the only one at the executive level, and even sort of multiple levels below me that sent my children to public school. They continued to tell me, “You have to stop talking about this.” And I would say, “But your kids are in school. Why can’t I have my kids in school?” “Well you can’t. It’s dangerous. It’s not the right thing to say. People don’t like it.”

Basically that was it. People don’t like it. So then employees started to complain. There were e-mails that went to my boss, the CEO. I was accused of being a racist, anti-vax, a conspiracy theorist, all these crazy things. And on it went. But I continued to refuse to stop, because I felt that it was so important. During this time. I did get promoted, so that’s a testament to the fact that I was still doing a good job. Somehow, some way, this view of “We must stay closed until there is zero covid”, a view that honestly was only possible for the very wealthy. And I am not trying to misrepresent myself. I was an executive at Levis. I was well paid. But I felt empathy with all of the people being harmed here. It wasn’t about me and my kids per se, although my kids did go to public school and still do. but it was about all the other children that I was imagining stuck at home, all the other working-class folks who I knew were being harmed through job loss. 25 million people were laid off. And 25 million people who live paycheck to paycheck lost their jobs in the beginning of covid, and yet somehow we said that all of these actions– “we” collectively– were to benefit them, which was a lie. That was false. It was not to benefit them.

We’ve seen the largest upward transfer of wealth in the history of the world. The people that benefited were not just the rich, but the very, very rich, you know, the CEOs of digital companies, people like Jeff Bezos, these are the people that benefited. Everyday folks, this was not for their protection. Somehow this view became the woke view. I’m not sure that the word that translates; you can tell me if… it makes sense, but it just, it became the view of the left, and it became almost religion. The fervor with which this view was upheld, the… woke view– and I… to this day, I don’t think that I understand it, because again, it it seems like such a trespass of their own values. But when I came to understand– and… Levis had been a very woke company, you know. They were sort of the epitome of world capitalism. They– what had started, I would say nobly, in as early as 1853 when Levi Strauss, himself a German Bavarian dry goods merchant who moved to California to seek his fortune, you know his first profits went to an orphanage. He was very much about giving back to the community.

And over the course of our almost 150 years, Levi’s has made it a point to kind of do the right thing and stand by their employees. They integrated factories in the south, black and white sewing machine operators work side by side. Before the law required it, they gave same-sex partner benefits in 1992, before anybody ever talked about gay marriage. I was very proud of these the things. I thought that, you know, they strive to give equality to all of their employees.

But somewhere around 2014, ’15, this whole thing became… abandoned. And it became just the way of doing business. And they sought to take their wokeness and make that about– that was what the brand was about. And I was part of it, I’ll admit it. But it just took over. And it was like, if you did not uphold the woke ideology a hundred percent in how you spoke and presented– it didn’t matter what you did. And I have an example of that. But in how you spoke and presented, then you were… a heretic, and you needed to be banished.

And here’s my view on world capitalism. It is– you guys were talking about the WEF– iI’s the epitome of world capitalism. They stand there and they claim to be saving the world, and all they are doing is enriching themselves. That is really what this is about. So these woke CEOs– it’s not enough to be very, very rich any more. They want to be celebrated as philanthropic heroes. That, and so they wrap themselves in these woke causes. And they serve to sort of bolster their own egos, but it’s also… it serves to deflect any criticism. And I would say it’s Sam Bankman Fried here as the example. For many years, the CEO-founder-boy wonder, as he was called of FTX wrapped himself– he was going to save the world, he stood for environmental causes, he was putting all this money in pre-pandemic planning, he was on the cover of every magazine.

And nobody interrogated the fact that he did not have basic business controls in place and that he was essentially stealing from people. We know that now, but his wokeness is what protected him from any sort of normal journalistic interrogation. He was on you know, fawning puff pieces on the covers of Forbes and Fortune, because he was a “good person”, right? That’s what you were led to believe: he’s a good guy. And he’s even said this in DMs with the reporters. He said, “We woke westerners, we take these stances so people like us.”

And that is what it is at the end of the day. And they don’t want to be… asked hard questions. They just want you and they insist that you believe that they are, in fact, the epitome of, you know, world-saving goodness. But I would, I will put this forward and ask, you know, our CEO at Levi’s, in the first few months of covid, we, led by him, laid off 15 percent of the workforce. That’s close to a thousand people. These are lower-salaried people, right? These are people without a nestegg to get them through. Of course, business was very difficult. Our stores were closed; 80 percent of our stores were closed around the world. now we said that we lay these people off with empathy. But it, would it _really_ did was bolster the stock price, right? And our CEO was able to cash out 43 million dollars worth of stock, at this, during this same time period.

Is that woke? I mean, come on. But because he stood up and he said, “We’re doing it with empathy, and it’s the right thing to do”, everybody nodded, including those who were fired or laid off, I should say. Everybody just accepted it, hook, line and sinker. But what it says to me is that all of this wokeness is a pose. Its a stance that people take to avoid any scrutiny at all. And what they’re really doing in the end is further enriching themselves. And so the rich, or the very rich just get richer and richer and richer. And everybody else is subjugated [relegated] to the lower class. And if you [ocolded] that, or in any way challenge it, as I was doing around this particular issue with covid and closures, you are a risk to the… charade. You’re a risk to the charade, and you must be banished. You’re… a heretic. It’s cult-like almost.

And I think, gosh, I have a million examples of woke capitalism, but I think that one explains it, explains it pretty well. And I, you know, I will say they believe it about themselves. I do think, you know, the leaders at WEF, they think they are these you know, self-appointed leaders. They’re trying to do an end-run around democracy and appoint themselves as the leaders who know best for the rest of us. And you all just have to kind of take it and like it, and not drink coffee, and not have a gas stove, and eat bugs and, you know, do all the stuff they’re telling you, you have to do, while they,you know, while they fly on their private jets and I’m sure drink coffee and all the other stuff. And people, you know, we just can’t stand for it.

Now I… want to go back and… talk a little bit about what happened. So from the time that I was warned, which was September of 2020, I received a call every two weeks from a different executive, head of HR. At one point, the head of HR, human resources, even said to me, “Jen, I agree with you; you’re right. But you cannot say it”, which just set me aflame. Why… can’t I say it, if it’s true, and I’m right, why? And so many people were cowed into silence. And at a certain point, you know, the dragging that I got, the name-calling that I was, you know, the subject of– at a certain point, it isn’t even about me and keeping me quiet any more. Because it was obvious that I was not going to be quiet. But it was about everybody else. And the social censorship is very effective, because who wanted to go through what I was going through, this public flogging? I was called every unemployable name in the book. Who wants to employ, as their brand president, a racist? Nobody. That’s a terrible… terrible thing to be called. And it didn’t matter that my two oldest children are mixed-race, they’re black. It doesn’t matter. The facts don’t matter. The arc of your life doesn’t matter. They call you these names when they have no arguments, and you’re supposed to shut up. And I refused.

So I continued, and I got louder. And eventually, in March, I actually moved my family out of California so that my children could go to school. I moved to Colorado, which was a much more open and free state. And when that happened, it got some national attention, and I was invited to go on Fox. I don’t know if you guys know what Fox News is. Wow, that really… was sort of the… nail in my… coffin, having agreed to go on the show with Laura Ingraham, a conservative pundit and talk-show host. She invited me on to tell my story. I told it. I said nothing I would take back. I… would say it again, and I would say it to her. I’m certain we don’t agree on everything, but I don’t see why that matters. We should be able to talk to people that we disagree with. We should be able to normalize debate and dissent in this country. And the fact is that she was the first news personality in the United States as early as April 2020 that spoke out and said all of this was wrong.

So to my mind, she was exactly the right person to talk to and tell my story. Wow… having done that really kind of set the employees and the company on fire. All of their complaints about me as escalated. There were external calls to the ethics hotline. I was some sort of walking, talking ethics violation. E-mails to the CEO, to the human, to the head of human resources. It went on and on. And then– this you’ll love– I was told I needed to do and apology tour. So in June of 2021– I see you laughing; I’m glad this is all translating– and I, please keep mind I was trying to keep my job. I am sole breadwinner for my family. I, you know, I was willing to do a lot to try to keep my job. I was not willing to stop talking about this issue.

So– and… the other thing I, point I want to make is: I kept my outspokenness to children, because I thought that was a bridge that could, you know, for the real covid enthusiasts who loved lockdown. I thought children was an area we could kind of find some common ground on. I talked much less and I was very careful about other sorts of mandates, you know vaccine mandates I commented occasionally but my company had a– has _still_ a vaccine mandate. And I felt I should be more careful about, you know, dismissing company policy. But there are no children that work at Levi’s. My peers were all sending their children to school. So I thought this was maybe a safe space. I was very, very wrong about that. I also felt… I can be convincing, I’ll cite data, I’m nice, I’m not too aggressive. I thought, you know, “They’ll come around, I can, if I can just find the right way to say it.” But I was… very wrong about that.

So I was told I needed to do this apology tour. It was all on Zoom, because, you know, there was still no in-person work. I was going to have to apologize for my appearance on Fox News. I was going to have to apologize for my outspokenness on schools and kids and all of this. I did agree. I did not plan to apologize, nor did I. I… agreed because like I said, I was trying to keep my job. I.. planned to just explain myself; that… was my plan. And that is, in fact, what I did. I was prepared up front with a list of questions. These were the questions: Are you with us, or against us? Are you still on our team? Are you a conspiracy theorist? (Like anybody says “yes” to that question. That’s a ridiculous question.) Are you aware how racist your stances are? Are you anti-vax? Is your– your husband is clearly anti-vax. What do you have to say about that? My husband, who did not hold a job, was a stay-at-home dad, was much more outspoken about the vaccine mandates and… the effectiveness of the vaccine. And I was continually called to task for his views. Are you are a Trumper? These questions, it’s like a, it was like a purity test. I mean, honestly. I look now at the e-mail and I– at the time I thought, OK, I’ll just answer these questions. I look back at it now, and it’s so insane to me that somebody wrote that down. It’s like you know, I was going to re-education camp in the, you know, the CCP [Chinese Communist Party] re-education camp or something.

So that was my preparation. It was sent me to be nice, so I was prepared. I basically stood up in front of the 200 or so employees [in] June, and I explained myself and why I took these stances. At this point, it’s June, 2021. Schools have been closed for a year and a half. All the wealthy kids had been in school for a year. And there was no plan to open them in the fall of 2021. The… school board and the teachers’ unions were still fighting it. And yet, I was still considered a lunatic essentially. I explained myself. I was asked two questions: one about going on Fox. The response– you know, I explained myself: I was looking for a platform. The response was really from the audience: “You know, I understand why you did it, but you should not have done it to her, said those things to her. That is, you know, you’re speaking with the enemy, essentially.” As if we can’t speak to people that we disagree with.

So that was one: And then the other question was about my husband who was not vaccinated, still not vaccinated and was very much against the mandates. And he also has a much more aggressive tone than I do. That’s just his way; that’s fine. He can do what he wants; he doesn’t work there. So I was challenged on his view, then his way of expressing himself. It’s like a cold, right? You have to distance yourself from anyone in your family that might hold a view that is outside of “covid lockdown forever”. I simply said in response to the questions about my husband: he doesn’t work here. I support his right to speech just as I support yours. He gets to say what he wants, even if he does work here. he should get to say what he wants. But he doesn’t, so this is a particularly ridiculous line of questioning.

That was in June of 2020. By October my boss the CEO you know, it had continued. I hadn’t stopped, even though schools opened in the fall. The restrictions to children were still quite onerous. And we restricted children more than any other group. So you know, two-year-olds were masked in pre-school. Two-year-olds. Two year olds who wear a diaper and can’t put their shoes on the right feet. Meanwhile adults could go to bars and 60,000-people sporting events with no mask and no nothing. But
two-year-olds and pre-school had to wear a mask all day.

So I was you know, very outspoken about that. These are young children, learning to speak, learning to emotionally engage. It’s undoubtedly harmful, despite what the American Academy of Pediatrics came to say. So I continued– and… the kids were just incredibly restricted. Parents couldn’t attend sporting events. in New York City to this day. And… unvaccinated parent can’t attend a high school basketball game, but they can go to the, watch the Nets, a professional basketball team, with 25,000 people in the audience. They can do that, but they can’t go in a public school and watch a basketball game with 30 other parents in the crowd. I mean, it’s… insane. All of the restrictions that remain are on children, all of them.

So by October, my boss said to me that I was a candidate for CEO. I think he was holding that out as bait to get me to finally stop once and for all. It’s… also worth noting, you know, the… feedback or the belief was that I was causing some reputational harm the company. But a few things: I never identified myself in all of my news appearances, op-eds, etc. as an employee of Levi’s, let alone an executive. I just identified myself as a mom of four. And I don’t see how because you work in a a company, you give up your rights as a citizen. I mean, that’s insane, to think that you do, that you sign your life away in blood because you happen to have a job. And people say, “Well yes, but your responsibility is different as an executive or a leader.”

But if somebody like me, a well-liked employee, of close to 23 years, a beloved employee of close to 23 years can’t retain her rights as a citizen, how do they think a regular everyday manager-level employee is going to? They’re not. And I had signed no cause in any contract saying I couldn’t use social media. And I had been outspoken about politics on social media in the past, but it was in line with woke ideology, and so that was fine. So it was clearly the viewpoints I was expressing and not the fact that I had an opinion about the world. The fact that this ever became political was ridiculous anyway.

Anyway, so in October of 2021 my boss asked to do a background check. He said I was a candidate for CEO, which of course was true, given my seat, you know I was the primary leader on his leadership team. But I think when he was doing was he was doing a background check which would investigate my you know, financial any financial entanglements a criminal record, of course I didn’t have that, and my social media. And I think he did it so that he would have something to say, “OK, now you have to go.” I think that was really it. I think it was a sort of misdirect xxxxxxxx. He also said he needed to do one on my husband, which is bizarre. I’m pretty sure this is not standard operating procedure for anybody in line to be CEO, that they investigate your spouse as well. I agreed. Again, I was trying to keep my job.

It was several months before I heard from him. I assumed the results were what I said to him before he did it was, “This is what’s going to happen: no financial issues you know, no crimes in my past. You will find the social media to be a gray area, that you do not want to stand by me and you will tell me it’s time for me to go. That’s what’s going to happen.”

That is precisely what happened. When he called me in January of 2022, he never showed me the report. And honestly, when he told me that I needed to leave, I was too shaken to ask to see it. I am sort of curious, but there was some sort of dossier about all of my you know, tweets and op-eds and all of the people that… pushed back on me. I think ultimately they tired of employees complaining. I don’t think it was a large group. I think it was a small, very vocal group, a very vocal and punitive minority. And the CEOs and other C-suiters, they cower. They’re afraid of this small punitive minority, when what they _could_ do is stand up to them and say, “Look, I know some, I know this makes some of you uncomfortable, but that’s OK. Let’s just focus on the business. Let’s stop talking about this and move on and focus on the business.” That is what the CEO of Netflix did. Ted Sarandose last year when there was some controversy over a Dave Chappelle special. Employees protested. He said, “We’re going to run a lot of different kinds of content. If you don’t like it, than don’t work here.” And that was the end of the conflict. But so few are showing any sort of moral courage. They’re terrified of these woke empoyees, and so they bow to the pressure every time because they’re terrified of being exposed as greedy corporatists, which is actually exactly what they are.

So they will oust anyone that gets in the way of that. I decided– they offered me a million dollars in severance to walk away and stay quiet. I, which would have made my life and my family’s life a lot easier, as you might imagine– but I did not. It felt so antithetical to everything I’d been speaking out about. Because it a certain point, it wasn’t even just about the children, who I do care deeply about. And to be clear, the children in the US and I’m sure around the world are not OK. Absenteeism is at an all-time high, dropout rates, learning loss, mental health, all of it. It all came true. I was right about every single thing. Doesn’t matter.

But I also became very alarmed about the censorship and the fact that we just have no ability to debate and you know, as, and defend, and have these societal conversations. And as we’ve seen now, it’s all coming out in the press, thtrough things like the Twitter files. Doctors who held opposing views were censored and blacklisted. And the thing is, they manufactured consensus. They got to say– by “they” I mean you know, President Biden, Rochelle Wallensky, the head of the CDC, Dr. Anthony Fauci, now retired– they got to say this was medical consensus, because they simply ousted and silenced and banished anyone who disagreed. And they turned us all into lunatics, even doctors in good standing, the world-class world-famous epidemiologists like Sunetra Gupta from Oxford and Jay Bhattacharya from Stanford. These people were billed as fringe lunatics, whereas they were at the top of their field before March, 2020, and incredibly well regarded. So they manufactured consensus by stifling any debate and dissent.

I’ll say one last thing, and then I’ll… wrap up. I… quit in a very public fashion, with an op-ed in February, I think February 14th of 2022. They were not ready; I violated some code in not taking the money. They couldn’t fathom such a thing, that someone would do that, because they all take the money. That’s how it works. The day after I resigned, three members of the San Francisco Board of Education were recalled by the voters, by a very, very high margin, 75 percent of the voters that voted recalled these board members, because they stood in the way of getting schools opening.

Why did those people not show up when I held rallies and only ten people came? What… that says to me: if 75 percent of voters in San Francisco who voted, recalled these board members for not getting the schools open, they agreed with me, right?, but they were too afraid to say so publicly in the prior two years, but they would do it quietly and anonymously at the ballot box. But this is what the problem is, because they use someone like me as an example or a doctor like Jay Bhattacharya at Stamford. They… publicly flog us and ruin our reputation, our reputations. They ruin prospects for employment in some instances, like… in my case. And they cow everybody else into silence. And… in doing so … it’s this manufactured consensus. This… social censorship creates a false consensus. And they get to make the rest of us crazy, and it’s incredibly dangerous.

And the only way to stop it is everybody who’s sitting there quietly and afraid to stand up, they have to do it. They have to join you, because we’re the majority. That’s the thing. And if… the majority stood up and said– well, either said, “This is crazy. Our children are hurting.” Or they said, “You know what, I don’t totally agree, but let’s have a conversation about it. I don’t agree, but I support your right to say it.”

If that happened, in a big, broad way, none of this would have happened. You know, the schools would have opened, the kids would have gone back to school, the businesses would have opened, all of it. Butt because of this … just vilification, demonization and censorship, they were able to get away with it. They, leaders like Gavin Newsom, Joe Biden all the rest of them, Fauci. Yhey were able to get away with it and pretend the rest of us were crazy.

And so my point in walking away in a very public and loud fashion and then in writing a book, was to say, “You’ve got to stand up. You got to use your voice. You cannot let this happen. I know it’s scary, but if we do it together, it, this won’t happen again.” And our freedom of speech, our civil liberties are slipping away. I cannot imagine… a more egreious violation of our basic civil liberties than what we’ve experienced in the last two and a half years. We were locked in our homes. We were told, “You can’t go in places unless you show your papers.” We were not permitted to see family outside the state. We couldn’t take our kids to a playground or get them an education. We couldn’t visit old people in you know, nursing homes. We couldn’t visit family members in the hospital. People died alone. Women gave birth alone. We couldn’t move freely. These are the most basic foundational human rights. And everyone accepted it because they were scared. And it, you just, you can’t be scared. You got to stand up and you got to use your voice. This happens with a virus with a, you know, I don’t even, I can’t count the number of zeroes in front of the infection fatality rate. And certainly for children even lower. And so I did not sign the NDA because I wanted to be able to tell the story, to talk to folks like you, and to encourage those who have stood silently in the background to stand up. Because you have to– we are going to lose the opportunity if you don’t do it soon. That’s the whole story.

Viviane Fischer: [03:50:15]
Wow, that’s a very impressive report. I was… wondering when you were so outspoken at… Levi’s were there any people in you team, anyone like, I mean, approaching you, like do you know, in… silence or so, saying, “I appreciate what you do”?

Jennifer Sey:
The short answer to that is no. Most people tried to really distance themselves from me. I became quite toxic. You know, they would pretend they didn’t know what was happening, one or two. And it was very hurtful. I mean, as someone who had been at the company for close to 23 years, I had what I thought were real friends there. You know, I’d been to weddings and baby showers and funerals, all of it. And yet you– they knew me. They knew the arc of my life. I had four children there. I, you know, I lived a whole life there. And yet you– the only, a couple of people, there were two, who approached me and said, “Why are you doing this? It’s not worth it.” And I said, It is. It is. I just, I can’t really think of anything more worth it. And if I had to give up a job that I loved, then that’s… what it is. But no. No one did. No one was supportive.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
So thank you very much for the impressive story. And congratulations for not taking the money. Respect for this. What I wanted to ask: if I understood it right, private school has been open all the time. That’s right, or…?

Jennifer Sey:
It… closed in the very beginning. So it was closed from March, 2020 to June, 2020. Then summers are off, but it opened in September, 2020. So it had a short period of closure, and then the privates opened.

David Jungbluth, PhD:

Jennifer Sey:
And then publics would stay closed for a full year longer.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
OK. And beside of the official reasons, what do you think what has been the reason for open the private schools? I don’t understand, because it’s
[attack] for the narrative if they open it, yeah?

Jennifer Sey:
They… there were certain places where most privates didn’t open. So I think in Los Angeles they actually didn’t open. But as privately-run entities, the state couldn’t really … they could really do anything. And the fact is, it was the teachers’ unions in America, or at least in the very blue left-leaning cities, that refused to go back, essentially, to school. And private schools are not staffed by union teachers. The teachers’ unions in America were marching with coffins. They were saying, “Opening schools is rooted in racism and misogyny.” They were demonizing all of the parents like me, if you showed up at a school board meeting and advocated for schools to be open. I mean there were some parents who were billed as terrorists by the FBI.

There was a… it’s like, it’s… crazy, but the teachers’ unions in blue cities and states have a lot of power. They influence– there are e-mails that show that the head of the American Federation of Teachers, Randi Weingarten, had direct communication with the head of the CDC, Rochelle Walensky and influenced the opening guidelines that were issued, which ended up essentially being “Just stay closed” guidelines. Because the restrictions were so onerous that no school was able to xxxxx. So because the public schools are, you know, state-run and staffed by teachers’ unions, they were subject to the state- or city-led public health guidelines, whereas the privates weren’t. They operate like private businesses, and, you know, frankly the… private schools if they didn’t open the parents weren’t going to pay. Right? Who’s gonna pay 60thousand dollars a year for a closed school? Probably no one. They’re going to take that money and they’re going to go to another school that is open. So you know, it is a case where you know, I think capitalism has some– there’s some bad things, but in this particular instance that competition and the need to serve the patrons of that school, they got them open.

They got the open, whereas the publics– where are you going to take your money? Where are you going to take your child? You have no choice but your local public school. I moved my family out of state, because I had the means to do that. But obviously for far too many, they did not. So I don’t know if that answers your question, but yeah, the private schools were open the majority of the time. I will also add, the private schools had sports. So even after public schools opened, there were no activities, after-school activities, no sports– that was “too dangerous”.

I mean, so the private school children, who have means, were able to play sports. They were able to get recruited for colleges and college scholarships. The public-school students without means had no sports at all for two years, were unable to get recruited into colleges for scholarship. So again, to add insult to injury, the poorest children lost these opportunities to go to college, literally. Only the rich kids got recruited. How crazy is that? So all it did was create this, you know, greater division in terms of opportunity, you know, division between the very wealthy and those without means.
And it’s just made it worse and worse. And these children in public school– the learning loss. I mean, it’s at a 30-year low, in terms of how much learning was lost. And it’s worse amongst lower-income students, amongst black students, it’s exacerbated. And I would say the scores that are being reported are better even than what they are, because you have the kids who dropped out or just don’t go to school not even participating in the testing. So if _they_ had, it would be even worse, of course.

And then you have the scores in, for instance, Catholic schools, which are… also private. No learning loss; those kids are just fine and right on track.

Viviane Fischer:
Oh, that’s really creepy.

Jennifer Sey:
So … yeah.

Viviane Fischer:
Terrible results. I have a– so we have a question from the audience. So if… what you experienced in, at Levi’s, was that, this the way things were done also in other companies? And if so, do you think that like size, influence, network or industry– did any of that matter, or was just all over the place?

Jennifer Sey: [03:57:26]
I think in corporate America, there’s been a… pretty dramatic shift in the last, I would say, 5 to 10 years. The assumption used to be that corporate leaders were … Republicans, basically; that they were, you know, of the right. They were capitalists, they liked to make a lot of money. And that was fine, you know. Greed was good and… in the last five to ten years, there’s been a real shift in… I won’t say all, but many companies, on the coasts in particular, in places like Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York, they take these very woke stances and left-leaning stances and it accelerated in the summer of 2020, with the murder of George Boyd. Every company across America started saying, “We’re in this fight to– we’re going to fight racism.” And they were posting black squares on instagram and making all the employees do anti-racism training.

And meanwhile, the most structurally classest and racist thing we could do is keep the public schools closed. And yet, they were silent on that matter. And… this was a point of… conflict in the company, as well. Now do they believe these stances or not, you know, these very wealthy business leaders? I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. It’s the… stances that are demanded, right?, by the young employees, and the… leaders take them.

And so I would say, in most companies across America, unless you were in Florida or Texas, this was the stance that was required of you. And what we see now– and most companies across America closed. You know, people worked from home, virtually, for over two years. They’re now refusing to come back to the office, which is insane. And you know, CEOs are now sort of tired of it and demanding employees come back. Not going very well; there’s a standoff. People are not wanting to come back to the office. So I would say it was not just Levi’s, to answer your question. But I think Levi’s is sort of the pinnacle of wokeness in American companies. And so the fact that their bran president, not just the leader, but the one that’s really like the face of the brand, took this stance, was unacceptable to them. And it didn’t matter how well-liked I was or how good I was. And our business was performing really well, after lockdowns. None of that mattered. I was basically a traitor to the Democratic Party. They wouldn’t have said it that way.

Although I was told– so in the fall of ’21, there was a recall election for the Governor of California, because there were a lot of frustrated Californians who were unhappy with Gavin Newsom’s leadership. He… was not recalled. He won by a very large margin. But I had posted an article about the recall. I didn’t even commrnt. But somehow posting that article was like an endorsement of recalling. And I was told directly not to post anything about the recall of Gavin Newsom, which is clear political speech censorship, which is protected in the bill of rights. But it didn’t matter. There’s a close relationship between the majority shareholders of Levi’s, the Haas family, and Gavin Newsom himself. And I was told basically I could not criticize the governor.

Viviane Fischer:v
And now when you– so, the situation today… like when you… say like… 75 percent of these… people who could vote on the school officials– so there seems to be like a giant silent crowd basically, maybe opposed to the measures and the whole corona narrative. But what do you think, I mean how do they react to these vaccine injuries, I guess that are now also surfacing in the US? And so what is the… generals mood or attitudes right now?

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah. I think, on schools in particular, there is a general fairly widespread agreement that it was harmful and perhaps a mistake. But nobody that also sort of generally-held widespread belief it. It was a mistake, and it just happened that no one did it, no one’s responsible, and we shouldn’t blame anyone, because we need to just move on. So there needs to be amnesty, because you know it might have been a poor decision, but it was done with the goodness of you know, one’s heart. None of these people should be held accountable. And at the same time, everybody’s trying to pretend they had nothing to do with it. Fauci says he had nothing to do with it. Walensky, everyone says, “It wasn’t me.” Well, then who did it? I mean, somebody did it, because there were certain states like Florida that opened the schools, because the governor there demanded that they open.

So you know, there’s some progress, in that people think it was bad, but there is no accountability. And without accountability-= in my mind, those people should not have their jobs, the people that made these terrible, terrible decisions. Because they will do it again. And so– but there is a real reluctance to sort of hold anyone accountable. That’s on schools. I think on lockdowns, the general feeling is, I think, leaders are afraid to ever do them again. I think that they would face widespread pushback.

But there is a strong feeling in this country, from the left, that the only reason, you know, covid spread is because dissenters, horrible people like me, wouldn’t follow the rule of the lockdown. And if we just stayed home forever and were sealed in our homes like they did in China, obviously it would have worked.

Which is obviously ridiculous and not… true. They sealed people in their homes for two years in China. They let them burn in fires, and still covid spread. Vaccines are the untouchable. Even people who are anti-lockdown and anti-school closure, they will not for the most part touch the vaccine. It is an article of faith that vaccines work, that these vaccines are a miracle, and you make yourself, even me, already toxic, you make yourself even more toxic if you dare question the efficacy, let alone ponder the danger and harms being done. So it is unacceptable to question vaccines. It is somewhat acceptable to question mandates, vaccine mandates, which are clearly a challenge to bodily autonomy and I believe are wrong, even in if it works, even if it works. To discriminate against a class of people based on what medicine they take or choose not to take– is grotesque. But in this particular case, where they do not prevent infection or transmission, it’s particularly egregious to then separate the unvaccinated as an unworthy class of people.

And that is exactly what happened. Doctors refused to treat unvaccinated patients. But this idea, there’s you know, you can’t question the safety. And that’s really kind of put me in hot water all over again, because now I’m freer to speak about everything, and it seems so patently clear to me that we have been lied to repeatedly. I don’t understand– even people that still sort of champion the vaccine (I’m not talking about doctors, but like regular people like me) who still sort of hail it as a miracle– I don’t understand like, we were lied to about everything. they said it prevented transmission and infection; it didn’t. It’s clear at this point they _knew_ they never tested for that, but they said it anyway. They… there were all these lies. They… said there were no harmful side effects; we know now myocarditis and stroke are _absolutely_ side effects. We don’t know the degree, but we’re all seeing these athletes around the world keel over. And yet, if you question and challenge– that is… the off-limits thing. You cannot do that. You are a villain if you do that.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
OK one more question also. And you will get a good explanation for the reasons, referring to the reasons for the re-opening of the private schools, it’s the money, It’s almost always the money. xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx. So what I don’t understand, you spoke about woke capitalism. So if understood it right, wokeness is a kind of attitude in first line. So at least in the USA I think there were lot of “Trumpers”, how you call it, or Levi’s call it. And I think there were not so woke. So if I would be a CEO of Levi’s or another company, I want to sell a lot of stuff. Yeah?

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah it’s a good question.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
So why is…

[Both trying to talk at the same time, for about ten seconds!]

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah it’s a great question. And for brand like Levi’s, which i’m sure you all know well, Levi’s has a great business in Germany, it is a very– like _everyone_ wears Levi’s. I mean it’s the cowboy brand, it’s the red-state brand, it’s the flyover-state brand. Like it’s– there _are_ certain brands that are very coastal, you know. That is not Levi’s. Really, it’s literally worn by everyone. So your question is a good one. Aren’t they sacrificing business by taking these stances? I have a sort of two-part answer.

One: they’re so isolated in their bubble they don’t really understand that. They think everybody agrees with them and the only people that don’t are these fringe lunatics. That’s kind of what they think. Like they don’t _know_ people that disagree with them. They don’t know people in, you know, red states who believe this stuff. They– in San Francisco, I think 96 percent of voters are registered Democrat. Like they just don’t know these other people. They don’t know people who think differently than them. They don’t have conversations. They clearly think if you _have_ a conversation with someone that thinks differently than you, you’re evil, right? That’s what they think. So they’re isolated from it. And so they think, they sort of think those people don’t exist, in a weird way.

And they have their kids who are woke, and went to woke private schools. Telling them, “This is what you have to do” and they want their kids to really like them. I mean it’s all so stupid. right? So that’s… I… think that’s part of it. They don’t really know them. They’re also courting at least for Levi’s, which is a fashion company, they’re courting the young. Young people buy more, they spend more on apparel. You know, old people like me, we stop buying so many clothes at a certain point. And so they just see younger people as a bigger financial opportunity, which is true. They do buy more, and they have longer years of purchasing ahead of them. And so they just feel they need to kowtow to those younger cohort, who by and large is more woke. Not exclusively, but more.

And then, the other piece is: the Trumpers or the red-staters or whatever– you know, a lot of people threaten and they get really angry. they take these stances, but at the end of the day, they still buy the stuff. So it doesn’t end up really even having that dramatic an impact. You know. look at the controversy with Disney. If you’re a parent of young children, even if you’re mad at their policies, you kind of want to go to Disney World and watch Disney movies. And so they don’t end up really boycotting, or you know, it just doesn’t really end up manifesting as any … with any impact. And it’s true on the other side, too. There’s a shoe brand called New Balance. I’m sure you have it there. When Trump was elected, their CEO and their head of com, you know, they said something like they were glad about Trump being in office because of his, you know, manufacturing-at-home policies. They’re a made-in-the-USA brand. And all these liberals started burning their New Balance shoes in protest. But that same year, the… company grew eight percent. So– and it’s kind of a hipster coastal brand, so … it’s a big show. Everybody just buys the stuff they like anyway, which I’m not saying is bad. I mean, buy the stuff you like. But if you wanted to have an impact on the company’s policies you actually have to follow through, because they will listen to the bottom line, to your, to your point.

David Jungbluth, PhD: [04:10:33]
So in the the and, it’s both. They want to make profit, but also they believe a little bit in this wokeness scene.

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah, yeah. That’s a… it’s a little bit of both, right, like they– at the end of the day, business is the same as it ever was. It’s about making money. That’s the fiduciary responsibility. They want to make money, but they want to be beloved for being, you know, philanthropists and altruists. And they mostly think they are. They believe their own line of bullshit, as I like to say. And yet they know somewhere deep down… it’s a little bit of a lie. And so anyone who risks exposing that needs to be shunted [sic].

David Jungbluth, PhD:
I think it’s little bit similar to the green party, yeah? Because they are believing what they are doing, this “bullshit”. Okay, thank you for the explanation.

Viviane Fischer:
So is there–

Jennifer Sey:

Viviane Fischer:
Is there a way out?

Jennifer Sey:
I think the way out is, you know, you, the way I see it is: there’s, you know, a fairly small percentage of people who are willing to kind of stand up and say the thing and call a lie a lie. And it’s… in all sorts of areas, not just covid, you know. That’s where I ran into it. But won’t get into some of the other controversial categories, but there are plenty where we’re asked to believe a lie is true, and further that lie. 10 or 20 percent of as are willing to stand up and say, “I’m not going to believe that. I’m not upholding that lie. I’m not going to get boosted 77 times, when I see what’s happening. Like there’s a small percentage.

There’s another group, let’s call it, you know, 40 percent in the middle– I’m making up the percentages– that are, they see it, but they’re afraid, and they’re quiet. And then there are the true believers, who just– they believe all the bullshit, right? It’s the 40 percent or the 30 percent or whatever that silent minority is, we need them to stand up and speak up. And it can happen. It _can_ happen. If I go back to the… gymnastics story that I told. Again, I was alone in the beginning and standing up. These women all knew it. They knew what happened to them. They knew they were emotionally, physically and sexually abused in the sport. But they were told,

“This is what it takes, and if you don’t, if you’re not willing to endure it, then you’re weak and you’re bad. And you can’t violate the sort of code where we, you know, all stay quiet.”

But over time, over the course of a decade, first I came forward, then another woman came forward, it– courage begets courage, and all those other athletes, not just in America but around the world including in Germany came forward and demanded change, and demanded change from the governing bodies in their sports. Those are the people we need to kind of come out of their shell, from, you know, out from behind their their silence. Because _that_ creates a majority. So that’s… the only way out that I see. I think there are a lot of people in companies across America who are like, “This woke stuff is bullshit.” Like I really honestly think that there’s no– I mean, I know they’re so afraid to say anything; they’re so afraid to say the wrong thing. But if they did, if they just said, “Why are we doing this?” Well you don’t even have to– I tell people all the time, “You don’t have to blow your whole life up like I did, which I really did. I mean, I live in a different city, I don’t have a job, I don’t have any of my friends from the past.

But just ask a question, just say one thing, you know, to the parents in New York City who can’t attend a basketball game for their child. Don’t accept that silently. Call the school and say, “Why can’t I come? I want to come and see my kid.” Because if you are silent, they think everybody agrees, and it really is the consent of the governed. And so I tell everyone, “Just challenge every day in your life, in your own way. If your school– there are schools in America that do parent-teacher meetings, conferences, virtually still; they won’t do them in person. It’s, they say it’s too dangerous. That’s unacceptable. We’re three years into this. Tell the school you don’t accept it.

I mean, i’m just giving a couple examples, but imagine if everyone asked those questions… they… wouldn’t be able to get away with this any more. And so that’s my hope, is that enough people start to push back and challenge and ask questions.

Viviane Fischer:
You know, I think it’s–

Jennifer Sey:
I don’t know what else.

Viviane Fischer: [04:15:17]
Yeah. I think it’s really also a question of, like a turn of the tide, you know, like when you think about this “Me too” you know, campaign–

Jennifer Sey:

Viviane Fischer:
–do you know, then it’s all of a sudden, it becomes hip to be on the other side. And then it’s…

Jennifer Sey:
That’s right.

Viviane Fischer:
–a dam break or whatever, you know. Like it’s–

Jennifer Sey:
That, yes.

Viviane Fischer:
–you can’t do, just can’t do anything any more, and then, do you know, that’s I think why we also see this Klaus Schwab guy talking about, you know, this, that they’re in the middle of a storm, kind of, you know. It’s so much like, I don’t know, a storm pushing against them. And so I think that’s also the way we have to really take it, you know. It has to be–

Jennifer Sey:
I think–

Viviane Fischer:
also become maybe hip to say, “I’m so sorry. I did something wrong. I vaccinated like a lot of people, and I thought I was doing the right thing. But in fact, I _didn’t_ do the right thing, and now I realize it, and I would like to speak out, you know, about it, because it’s… almost like– what do you call this in English, when to go to church and you confess, you know. your sin. I think that should be like something that… people should do publicly. And then it maybe becomes also a–

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah. Yeah, I mean I think the only way that happens is like it happens slowly, and then all at once, as you described. Like enough people get sick of it and fed up, and they see, and it’s a drip, drip, drip. And that all of a sudden, it becomes the cool thing, right? to stand on principle and to say, “This is wrong. Everything was wrong. We shouldn’t have closed the schools. We shouldn’t have locked down. We shouldn’t have mass vaccinated, causing harm.”

But I think we’re a ways from that. But that’s why I say, just like one person at a time, you stand up, and suddenly that becomes the majority. And you’re completely right about “Me too”. It was unacceptable to speak on it and then all of a sudden it was like if you didn’t … challenge and take the side of women, and you didn’t do anything, that was the bad way to be. And honestly the situation I described in gymnastics was happening at the same time as Me too. That is why people listen to these young women, even though they’d been speaking out, some of them, for 20 years. It was pre-Me too. Then suddenly you had to listen to all women, believe all women. That became problematic, and it’s all right. But we don’t need to talk about this.

But yes, you need to get that critical mass. But critical mass happens one person at a time, and I think eventually, you described it well, the dam breaks. And it becomes the only acceptable position. And we’re a long way from that.

Viviane Fischer:
Who knows? I mean, it can–

Jennifer Sey:
You’re right.

Viviane Fischer:
We don’t know how many do you know, drops are already. like kind of moving in that direction. And maybe it’s just a few more people we have to convince, and then boom. You know, who knows? We don’t know. We don’t know.

Jennifer Sey: [04:18:04]
I think… the, that’s… correct. We have no idea. And I, you know, as I was being outspoken that was my belief, you know, because I lived through it in gymnastics. I went first, and everybody hated me, but then eventually they didn’t. And then they were like, “Oh, you’re a hero. We always stood with you.” I went, “No you don’t.” “Yeah, I remember.” But that’s why, welcome to the fight. It took ten years, but I [put] that in my mind. And I thought, “Well I can be part of changing the hearts and minds if I just say it in the right way, and I just do it calmly and with data.” But I didn’t get here fast enough for me, obviously, I lost my job. But now I’m free to say everything. So you know, that’s why I… did what I did.

But you’re right; you never know how far. You could be very, very far, or we could be inching close to it. But in the US, the vaccines in particular are still a quite untouchable thing, even for those who are, like in my cohort, who were anti-lockdown and all of this from the beginning. They still are quite worshipful of the vaccines.

Viviane Fischer:
Yeah, but I mean, do you know, that’s also changing. We produced a film kind of. It was one of the first ones coming out, where it says… you know, I’ve been vaccinated, and now I’m talking, you know. What you saw in that movie, a lot of the people even, you know, still were… wearing masks and confessing, I mean not confessing, but like admitting that they’ve been hurt by the vaccines, you know, and that also they, the situation now in looking for help from the doctors. It’s very unfortunate, because they are being made fun of, or like–

Jennifer Sey:
I know.

Viviane Fischer:
–like … told that they have like, psychological issues or whatever. And but then all of a sudden, you know, more and more films popped up, and now we have, it’s… quite… a few self-help groups like physically, like meeting in a… town, opening up. So I think it’s becoming also more and more that people are, at least behind closed doors also saying, “Oh it’s kind of weird you know like it’s… another funeral, and this guy was really healthy and now we have another, do you know, one of these coincidental deaths.”

And so, so I think that’s becoming also more and more. That’s maybe also going to happen in the US, although on the surface, you know, it’s still showing this “Yeah, it was the greatest thing ever.”

Jennifer Sey:
Yeah they’re still trying really hard to silence– I mean, it’s so sad. There’s a… film here called _Anecdotals,_ which is a story about– which I highly recommend. You can find it on YouTube. It doesn’t even have a covid warning on it any more, though it was taken down by YouTube the day that it… launched. There was sort of a campaign to get it back. And it’s people telling their stories of vaccine injury. But you know, some of the stories they tell are as they started self-help groups or communities in… their community, Facebook would take down– they’re like, they’re… not even permitted to– and the craziest part of, they’re considered anti-vaxers, but the reason they’re injured is they got vaccinated. So they went and like, it’s like, it’s so crazy. Or they’re considered antivaxers, and some of these people, they put their children in _trial._ Like you can’t really be more enthusiastic about a vaccine than to put your own child in a trial. And now they’re told, to your point, they’re, they have mental issues or whatever. Or that it’s a lie, it’s not true, and of course the pharmaceutical companies are protected from liability. And these people are really suffering. But I think at this point, I think you’re right. There are sadly going to be so many of them that there’s not really going to be a way to ignore it any longer. Though I do think again, in the US, we’re… quite far from that. The… demonization campaigns are generally effective here, so far.

Viviane Fischer: [04:22:03]
Well, do you know, thanks so much for sharing, I mean, really like three stories with us, you know, so it’s… very impressive. I think it’s… great that you have, you know, such a strong … back, basically, you know. Like you are just not, [are] standing by your convictions basically. I think it’s very good.

David Jungbluth, PhD:

Viviane Fischer:
Yeah, maybe because of that, yeah. I think it’s great, and also that’s basically it’s a story of hope, also, what you, you know, told us, about your, the future endeavor with the gymnastics Zoom, do you know, this…

Jennifer Sey:
That’s, yeah, I mean I know, that’s why I started with that. Because, I know it’s off topic, but it’s it is… sort of glimmer of hope, like the whole world can change overnight, to your point. Like if you… are staunch and steadfast and clear, you can bring people around, you know. One person really can inspire others. And so it’s really just a sort of urging to those who are silent, to join… us and… speak the truth that you see with your own eyes. Don’t let them tell you a lie is true. You can’t.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
Everyone can do this, huh? You have not to be a famous person or something like this, or gymnastic star. Rveryone can do this, yeah, every day.

Jennifer Sey:
Everyone. Everyone can do it. Everyone has to do it. And you can do it in your everyday life.

Viviane Fischer:
Well, thanks so much, fantastic.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
Thank you very much.

Viviane Fischer:
Keep up the good work.

Jennifer Sey:
Thank you for having me.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
Best to you. Good luck.

Jennifer Sey:

Viviane Fischer:
I think that the grass is so much greener on the side of truth. So…

Jennifer Sey:
That is a good way to put it. I like that. I might steal that. Very true.

Viviane Fischer:
You are welcome.

Jennifer Sey:
Thank you.

Viviane Fischer:
Thanks a lot.

Jennifer Sey:
Have a great day.

Viviane Fischer:
You too.

David Jungbluth, PhD:
Thank you.

Viviane Fischer:
[continuing from German via simultaneous translation]

Wow. That was Jennifer Sey. She used to, up to recently, be marketing officer at Levi’s. And then she had to give up her position because she positioned herself against the closing of public schools and…

David Jungbluth, PhD:
Just one thing. You know, I said that there are all kinds of things that you can do. And… what she did was open [her] mouth. That makes sense, but it’s even easier than that. Because there is a poem by Wolfgang Borchert. He died very, very young. He died shortly after the war. And he says– there’s a poem that’s called _Say No._ Say no, because you see, the next round of people is at the starting blocks already. Who knows what _they_ are going to say. I’ve been in many countries in the east of Europe, and the further east you go, the more people say “No”. And then you don’t need to write any letters to the prosecution office. You just, _they_ just simply didn’t put on the mask, or took it off. And so I just say, “Say no.” “Say no.”

Viviane Fischer:
Great, I like that.


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