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Herd immunity not a possibility for Americans.

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Herd Immunity against COVID-19 is not possible in the US because in this country we have a deadly mixture of stupidity, exceptionalism, individualism, and Republicanism.

Stupidity:

On the whole, Americans are not that bright. It is what it is. Our educational system sucks, especially in math in science, compared to other highly developed nations. The average American does not understand how science works or how new information means adjustments to previous theories.

Exceptionalism:

We are all fed a steady diet of “America is the best!” from the time we’re born. Thinking you’re the best, when you’re actually not that bright, makes it easier for misinformation to take root. “I’m smart, and if I believe this, it must be true.”

Individualism:

MY FREEDOM! MY LIBERTY! The US is will never work as a collective because of class, racial, and religious divisions, but also because we prize individual freedom over the common good. You cannot convince selfish people to inconvenience themselves to save others.

Republicanism:

Republicans politicized A VIRUS. It’s objectively impressive to sit back and watch the GOP work on their faithful followers, but this is the result. Scientific truths about COVID are just lies cooked up by Liberals, thanks to Trump’s America.

So there it is. Herd Immunity is impossible because the United States is a stupid country with selfish people who all believe they know better, and the biggest chunk of them are Republicans being spoonfed lies for the political aims of their elected officials.

I hate it here.

 

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WaPo: Coronavirus infections dropping where people are vaccinated, rising where they are not, Post analysis finds

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Today in “Duh!”…

States with higher vaccination rates now have markedly fewer coronavirus cases, as infections are dropping in places where most residents have been immunized and are rising in many places people have not, a Washington Post analysis has found.

(cont.)

Who knew having people get vaccinated against a disease would ((checks notes)) prevent people from getting that disease? What a shocking development. I wonder if they’ve studied the link between drinking water and not being thirsty anymore…

 

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NYT-Yahoo: They’re Vaccinated and Keeping Their Masks On, Maybe Forever

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Whenever Joe Glickman heads out for groceries, he places an N95 mask over his face and tugs a cloth mask on top of it. He then pulls on a pair of goggles.

He has used this safety protocol for the past 14 months. It did not change after he contracted the coronavirus in November. It did not budge when, earlier this month, he became fully vaccinated. And even though President Joe Biden said on Thursday that fully vaccinated people do not have to wear a mask, Glickman said he planned to stay the course.

(cont.)

I guess I have a toe in this camp? I think it’s just polite and considerate to wear a mask when you’re feeling under the weather, especially in a city like New York with packed subways, so I won’t be throwing my masks away.

Flu deaths dropped by 90-something percent, because masks keep other people from getting sick and the simple act of taking it off keeps you cognizant of why you’re doing it in the first place, which makes you wash your hands more.

So I’m keeping mine nearby, in case I have a sniffle and still have to go somewhere.

 

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We should be vaccinating the dumb and the selfish.

It feels counterintuitive to give people the vaccine who didn’t stay home and suffer with the responsible folks, but the vaccine isn’t a reward.

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So. A lot of people are asking questions like:

How did Chet get the vaccine so early?

Why did Chet get the vaccine and my grandmother still has to wait?

I see Chet and some of my friends flashing their vaccination cards on social media and going out to eat — who is letting them skip the line?

Where is Chet getting the hookup to get himself and his friends vaccinated?

Listen. Chet is probably selfish and dumb and he needs to be vaccinated.

A side-point real quick: asking someone how they got the vaccine early is none of your business because people don’t owe you a conversation about their medical history. It could be that Chet pulled some strings because he knows people, or it could be that Chet has a pre-existing condition that puts him at high risk that he hasn’t told you about because he doesn’t want anyone to know. If someone you know got the vaccine early, let them volunteer the information on how they did it. Otherwise, you’re basically asking “oh what disease do you have?”

Anyway, the vaccine rollout sucks, because this is the United States, and we don’t do anything without a high level of messery. We have 50 states with 50 different plans, so when you’re mad at Chet in New Jersey for jumping the line because your Grandma in Nebraska still can’t get one, you’re mad at two completely different administrations. Right now, I could drive across the George Washington Bridge from Manhattan into New Jersey, give my friend’s Jersey City address, and tell Dr. Pandy with the Vacky that I’m a smoker, and they’ll give me a shot.

If you want to be upset, be upset at the system, not at the individual person, because if someone looks for a way to get their shot early, they should get their shot! There are doses going to waste. A doctor was fired because he took the rest of an open vial that was he was going to have to throw away and used it to vaccinate his family. The system is imperfect and poorly thought out, and I think a lot of people who are upset aren’t looking at the picture as a whole.

Vaccinations should work like airport boarding. Priority Boarding is called, and all the Priority people who are in the area go get on the plane. Then, Section 1 is called and they get on the plane. If someone from Priority comes up, they just get on the plane. Then, Section 2 is called and they get on the plane. If someone else from Priority shows up, they get on the plane. That’s how the rollout should work, but y’all want everybody from Priority to get on the plane even if some of them are still in the parking lot while Section 1 and 2 just stand around and wait.

There’s no “fair” way to make sure everybody gets vaccinated in the proper order. When you have the opportunity to get your shot, go get your shot. If you’re the type of person who wants to find a loophole to get your shot before other people do, then go get your shot too. Truth be told, I want Chet to get vaccinated because he never stayed at home anyway, so now he’s less of a danger to the public. All those people who couldn’t stop travelling and partying? I want them vaccinated! As soon as possible!

Nobody wants to say it out loud, but the fastest way to make the country safer is to keep the dumbest, most selfish people from spreading it so quickly. I’m sorry Granny has to stay in the house a few months longer, but she’s not the reason we’re in this mess. She stayed home and did her part. It feels counterintuitive to give people the vaccine who didn’t stay home and suffer with the responsible folks, but the vaccine isn’t a reward. It might feel like you deserve the shot because you did your best to keep the pandemic under the control, but it’s not actually a prize for good service to your community. The vaccine is a safety measure, and those people looking for loopholes because they never stopped partying anyway? Those people are unsafe and we need to be protected from them.

 

(Also: when your time comes for whatever reason, age bracket or medical history or profession or whatever, just go get it. You’re not more noble or responsible for delaying it because you feel others deserve it more. Every shot is a step closer to herd immunity.)

 

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