Mask mandates, school closures, and proof-of-vaccine are all in vogue again as the Delta variant and so-called breakthrough cases are causing a coordinated freakout among the media and ruling class of Democrats.
The conventional wisdom is still that everyone needs to get a COVID shot ASAP, but that message is getting muddied. Top health officials are going so far as to say parents, even vaccinated ones, should wear masks when they’re at home with their kids.
Teachers unions and now Gov. Gavin Newsom are demanding teachers be vaccinated — although they might end up shutting down schools anyway. Meanwhile, lawmakers and “the haves” are busy flaunting their perch in the political hierarchy, with Rep. Rashida Tlaib and Barack Obama going naked-faced and buck-wild at elite parties — but it’s OK because they’re “sophisticated.”
Add to this the confusion over so-called “breakthrough cases” and the Delta variant as vaccinated people are still contracting the virus. Messaging has been all over the map: Power-hungry bureaucrats and the corporate media exaggerate the risks of breakthroughs to maintain an air of crisis, only to have other Democrats and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention go into damage-control mode, limiting the data they report to keep people getting the jab. It’s a circus.
What We’ve Learned
One thing we’ve gleaned from all this is that you still can’t hope to go “back to normal” even if you do take the shot. Politicians and bureaucrats aren’t going to relinquish that control until voters make them.
There will always be another case count or terrifying metric they can blast out to frighten people into submission. It’s been the trend of the whole pandemic. That’s why “15 days to flatten the curve” so as not to overwhelm hospitals turned into scaremongering about the level of “community transmission” regardless of health care capacities or fatality numbers. It’s why Anthony Fauci fudged the “herd immunity” threshold and why news of a plummeting death toll was drowned out by shrieks of “Delta variant!”
Another critical thing we’ve learned, specifically with regard to breakthrough cases and the vaccine, is that the young and vaccine-hesitant were right all along. There are reasons to pause and question whether getting the jab is prudent.
Now understand, the fact that breakthrough cases are occurring shouldn’t deter vulnerable people from getting the vaccine. These breakthroughs are rare, and so far, those who do happen to still contract the virus are protected from death, and almost always even hospitalization, by accepting protective treatments.
But there’s a large class of people who were never seriously vulnerable to death and hospitalization from COVID anyway: the young and healthy. These are the people who don’t have pre-existing conditions, maintain a healthy weight, and had a statistically zero percent chance of dying from the Wuhan virus.
I explained back in December the logic for vaccine hesitancy among this resilient group. Before the genesis of the COVID shots, young people wore face masks and stayed home not to protect themselves, but to avoid accidentally infecting someone who wouldn’t be able to ward off the virus. But once elderly people and other vulnerable populations were inoculated with the COVID shot, who else would someone like me be protecting except myself?
According to the CDC at the time, people 85 and older were 650 times more likely to die of COVID-19 than people under age 30. The vaccine was a life-saving development for those elderly groups. But if someone my age contracted COVID without the risk of fatally infecting older, vaccinated loved ones, the worst part would likely be taking a few sick days and enduring tasteless food for a bit — if they got symptoms at all.
For many people in this young and healthy demographic, a 99.998 percent recovery rate (a rate that remains north of 99 percent for people all the way through age 49) was a chance they were willing to take, compared to a vaccine that simply can’t offer any more promising odds. It’s true we don’t know the long-term effects of COVID on the human body. But that’s the thing about the “long term” — there are many things we can’t know how they’ll turn out, including an experimental gene therapy.
What It Means
Many young people were therefore hesitant to get the jab. After being lied to over and over for the duration of 2020 and beyond, they watched those upper-class liars try to bully them into getting a shot and reasonably thought, “Nah, I’m good. I’ll wait this one out.”
For that response, they were chewed out as selfish jerks by other Americans who made a different calculation, misunderstood and slandered by the corporate press, mocked by even President Joe Biden who said they weren’t as smart as he thought, and harassed by the government, employers, venues, universities, and unions into getting vaccinated if they wanted to work and take part in society.
Today, this group of young, healthy people and the group of vaxxed people experiencing breakthrough cases have something in common: They almost assuredly aren’t going to die from coronavirus. The vaccine, developed in record time thanks to Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, has put them all on equal footing.
Two things can be true: First, breakthrough cases are rare and should not deter at-risk people from getting the COVID shot. Second, vaccine risk assessment has always been an acceptable position for young and healthy folks who don’t want to be coerced into putting something into their bodies to protect them from something that doesn’t pose a serious risk to them.
COVID is likely here to stay. Soon enough, it will be just another one of the viruses we have to deal with. But the point of the vaccine wasn’t to eradicate the Wuhan virus; it was to keep it from killing people, and it’s working.
To that end, it’s time for vaccinated Americans to live without fear of the virus — even if they get it. The same goes for young and healthy people, whether they’re vaccinated or not. It’s time for Americans to live our lives as God intended: unmasked and unafraid.