Disavowing Disinformation

Posted by – August 13, 2021
Categories: General Letter from the Publisher

North Atlantic Books unequivocally disavows the harmful, hyperbolic, and antisemitic essay, “Mob Morality and the Unvaxxed,” penned on August 2 by Charles Eisenstein, an author of four important books we have published over the years.

We are saddened that Charles has chosen to use his considerable platform to spread damaging misinformation about the global pandemic and draw false equivalences between the Holocaust and the alleged “persecution” of the willfully unvaccinated. 

Author and medical expert Dr. Lissa Rankin has written a powerful and compassionate rebuttal to Eisenstein’s essay. We stand in solidarity with her public position and her words, and in recognition of the courage and emotional labor it required.

There may not be much we can do to change Charles’s mind. But as a publisher, we can step into our privileged and resourced position to redress some of the harm his essay is causing. We will donate all net earnings we make from the substantial sales of his books to three organizations committed to the rights and welfare of some of the very people his essay invisiblizes, condescends to, and exploits: 

*The Disability Visibility Project, which works to amplify disability media and culture and dismantle ableism. The project was founded to create a body of history and knowledge about the lives and experiences of those who are disabled;

*The Frontline Workers Counseling Project, which connects Bay Area frontline workers (healthcare workers, first responders, essential child care providers, staff of homeless and domestic violence shelters, delivery and postal workers, and grocery/food chain workers) with free and confidential psychotherapy; and 

*Facing History and Ourselves, which uses the lessons of history to challenge teachers and their students to identify and unlearn socialized bigotry and hate, including antisemitism. 

We hope Charles will wake up, reflect, and take public and private accountability for his actions. To that end, we urge him to match our donation—to add his royalties to the contributions we make to these organizations doing the hard and necessary work in the trenches of change and healing. Repair is possible; we truly and sincerely hope Charles will find the humility to embody it.

—Tim McKee, publisher of North Atlantic Books

About the Author

Tim came to NAB in 2013 and is honored to serve as publisher. Born in New York City, McKee grew up in Los Angeles and received a BA from Princeton University and an MA in journalism from the University of Missouri. He has worked in the nonprofit sector for his entire career, including serving as the long-time managing editor of The Sun magazine, the grants director for a social-justice foundation in San Francisco, and as a writer for several community-based organizations in California. He has also taught college-level writing and journalism. His book No More Strangers Now: Young Voices from a New South Africa (Dorling Kindersley) was an Honor Book for the Jane Addams Book Award and a Los Angeles Times bestseller. He is happiest when bringing necessary stories to the page.