After two and a half years of dodging the highly infectious SARS-COV-2 virus, it’s finally caught up to President Joe Biden. As of Friday, he is reported to be experiencing “mild” symptoms, including a runny nose, fatigue, loose cough, and slightly elevated temperature. The presidential physician, Dr. Kevin C. O’Connor, has prescribed him the emergency-authorized antiviral drug Paxlovid made by Pfizer.
It’s unknown whether Biden will experience the now well-known “Paxlovid rebound” that recently afflicted the double-boosted, N95-wearing Dr. Anthony Fauci. Regardless of how his clinical course of Covid plays out, his symptomatic infection is another reminder to Americans that all the masks, Covid testing, social distancing, and vaccinations can’t prevent Covid infection, no matter how religiously they’ve been practiced and promoted by government officials.
Biden’s statements in favor of vaccines, in particular, are as ubiquitous as his party’s mandates and often aggressive in tone, and they’ve aged about as well as his administration’s predictions about inflation. He’s spent considerable effort demonizing the unvaccinated. Yet when White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was asked where Biden could have contracted the virus, she replied, “I don’t think that that matters, right?”
Last winter he prophesied a season of “severe illness and death” for the unvaccinated. Winter wasn’t so easy on the vaccinated, though. A February report from the U.K., which has produced more transparent and reliable data than the U.S., showed nearly 4,000 deaths among the boosted occurring within 60 days of a positive Covid test during the 4-week long reporting period (see page 44).
In December, Fox News put together a list of other histrionic quotes and false claims made by the president in defense of ensuring every eligible American is maximally jabbed. In September, he said “our patience [with the unvaccinated] is wearing thin” and that their “refusal has cost all of us.” Last July, Biden claimed during a presidential town hall event that “You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations.” He also claimed elsewhere that “vaccinated people do not spread the disease.”
These statements have been known for some time to be false. The CDC acknowledged in the spring of 2021 that “fully vaccinated” people can still get sick and possibly spread the virus. This was an understatement; viral spread among the vaccinated is even more apparent since the extremely infectious Omicron variant became prevalent. We all know vaccinated people who’ve been infected.
But the boosters advocated by Biden, CDC Director Walensky, and Dr. Fauci don’t seem to be helping matters much; boosted people are getting infected, too. Recent trial data funded by the National Institute of Health shows booster-induced neutralizing antibodies to Omicron wane substantially by three months. President Biden received his second Pfizer booster on March 30, nearly four months ago. His boosters were administered according to the CDC-recommended schedule.
Mainstream media outlets are downplaying Biden’s symptoms as “mild” and repeating the claim that vaccinations, especially boosters, are still effective at preventing severe illness and death. The fact that the president is taking Paxlovid, which is prescribed to people at risk of progressing to severe illness, undermines this claim.
At every step of the way, Biden and his administration have supported failed medical products, refused to denounce harmful interventions like lockdowns, school and business closures, and promoted misinformation about Covid-19. His administration has stoked fear of Covid-19 infections in children and promised a vaccine for babies and young children despite extremely low risk from the virus and a lack of knowledge of potential risks from the vaccine.
The invasive and authoritarian Covid mitigation tactics supported by Democrats have failed to suppress the spread of Covid, yet many Americans still cling to the myth Biden has perpetuated: If they just take the right precautions, they can avoid getting Covid.
Adding to the anxiety and resentment roiling our society is the way the president has pitted Americans against each other by falsely claiming the unvaccinated and unmasked are a threat to public health. Yet if even Joe Biden, with his frequent masking and his four mRNA jabs and his strict Covid protocols at the White House cannot avoid symptomatic infection, then no one else can prevent it, either. In her press briefing on Thursday, Jean-Pierre admitted that “At some point, everyone is going to get Covid.”
If this is the case, why are vaccines being required and promoted as a public health measure to “slow the spread” and “protect those we love?” If someone thinks the shots will protect them from a severe Covid case, the shots are available (for better or for worse). It doesn’t matter whether the infection comes from someone with or without a jab or a mask. These are personal choices, and Biden’s infection should humble his administration to finally accept this.