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COVID Vaccines Are Shots in the Dark

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of
AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File

A friend who's a corporate executive confided in me he didn't want to do it, but his retirement depended on staying at his job. He had no choice, he told me. A family member confided in me she wasn't welcome to a family gathering because she wouldn't do it. Millions of Americans are praying the courts side with them so they won't lose their job if they won't go through with it. 

The American people are being torn apart and vilified, rejected and isolated, discriminated against and mocked. All for a shot barely a year old that – by definition – can't even be called a vaccine any longer. It's madness. 

Worse, our youngest Americans are needlessly dragged into it now, too. Everyone has understood from the beginning that while COVID wasn't fatal for most people, for children, it's rarely more than a mild annoyance. Nevertheless, my wife tells me of mothers using their small children on social media as mini-propagandists to signal their virtuousness to fellow needle enthusiasts, shaming those who may choose a different route for their health. 

These are the same women who posted black squares from their leafy suburban homes last year to show they were "down for the struggle" of the black community in Minneapolis, or some such. "I'm so proud of my little guy. He's being brave and getting the vaccine because he wants to protect his grandma this Thanksgiving." 


Can you imagine placing that kind of weight on the back and mind of any small child, never mind your own? "It's important we stick you with a needle so grandma won't die." If the child had the wherewithal, he might reply, "Wait, doesn't grandma's shot protect her? What's this got to do with me?" 

But as we know, the emotionally wrought in our midst don't want to slow down and allow for questions even a child could ask and understand. We're in a medical era of "just shut up and take it." At its intellectually incurious root is not ignorance. It's fear – sold in the most effective propaganda campaign since the nation's push to buy war bonds during World War II. 

Unlike the war bond campaign when Americans got to celebrate victory for their efforts, COVID has no end. Just more hysterics and new, moving metrics from masks to shots to booster shots and back to masks again. There will be no ticker tape parades celebrating the end of the war on COVID.  Unlike World War II, Americans aren't of a shared mind or goal. Hell, the goal isn't known or understood or even achievable. 

Most Americans initially got their COVID shots in good faith over the last year, thinking they were doing their part to stop the spread and keep themselves well just as they did with vaccines for polio, mumps, rubella, etc. I've had those vaccines, and so have my kids. But we didn't all still get mumps, rubella, and polio afterward. That was kind of the deal when my kids were screaming their heads off as toddlers at the clinic. A one-and-done thing. Maybe a booster as teens or adults, but that's it. 

The COVID shot isn't that. 

Simply stopping to ask questions or deciding to wait leads to shaming from your relatives, your friends, and even some family doctors. A future Hall of Fame football star was treated worse than an accused witch from Salem, Massachusetts, in 1692 simply because he didn't want a shot. At least those women got a trial before their convictions by the unscientific, panicky lunatics of their era. 

Those of us who've endured COVID, never had a shot and lived to tell the story still aren't well known even though there are millions of us. It might surprise you to learn the CDC has no meaningful study of the lasting effects of our natural immunity. Nor do they keep any studies related to spread among that same group. 

Wouldn't that be something we'd all like to know? Given the unbelievably high number of breakthrough cases in Europe and states like Vermont where the overwhelming majority of folks have had the shot – wouldn't we benefit from a study of a control group that has successfully battled it without medicine? 

"The Ottawa Senators Have a 100% Vaccination Rate – and 40% of the Team Has Tested Positive for Covid," screamed a recent Wall Street Journal headline. "…even with blanket immunization, pandemic disruptions are far from over," they reported. Included in the story was a subtle suggestion we should all be nervous as we host our own indoor holiday parties no matter our vaccination status.

Huh? What are we doing? What sense does any of this make? When will the "shut up and get the shot" cult admit what we know is true? This isn't working as sold. There are a great many therapeutics working very well, and more are coming online. In the overwhelming majority of cases, no one diagnosed with COVID needs to die or even see the inside of a hospital – shot or not. Virtually no child will be severely infected. 

These are things we do know for certain. But propaganda is its own kind of drug, and too many Americans are high on the panic the pushers in the media have been dealing. 

So they turn to the warm embrace of the needle. It makes them feel like they're "doing something." Yet still, deep down, they're not confident or comforted by the shot. They're simply gripped with terror, and the only comfort they can find is in their demand everyone around them behave as they do. Group-think is comforting when there's a fear of the unknown. 

But the truth is no doctor or government official or pharmaceutical company is going to rescue you from that fear. You can't control the universe and all the people in it. You can't control when your final day arrives. No, there's no amount of compliance from your friends, neighbors, and social media followers that will ever put your fear to rest.

There is a Good Book that can help with that fear, though. It'll benefit your kids, too. A faith far more powerful than any shot. 

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