Anti-vaxx chronicles: A redemption story

Anti-vaxx chronicles: A redemption story

Facebook is a menace. COVID is a menace. Conservatism is a cesspool. Together, those three ingredients have created a toxic stew of malevolent death and devastation. We can talk about all those things in the abstract, look at the numbers and statistics, and catch the occasional whiff of seditionist right-wing rhetoric. But I hadn’t really fully understood just how horrifying that combination of right-wing extremism, Facebook, and a killer virus was until I became a regular at the Herman Cain Awards subreddit. This series will document some of those stories, so we are aware of what the other side is doing to our country.

We don’t know the name of today’s protagonist, but it’s a reminder that sometimes, tragedy can have a silver lining. 

OMG, those numbers! Of the 17 who went in the same day as her husband, only he survived? Aside from this story, can you imagine working in these overrun hospitals these days? Just patient after patient dying of an easily preventable disease? Many of these patients undergo multiple procedures to try and save their lives, even amputations. And then, after weeks of caring for them, they expire because this virus wreaks havoc on the unvaccinated. 

“I wish I hadn’t … acted like I knew everything” should be the motto of these unvaccinated. People like these have gone through life believing conspiracy theories without consequences for their actions. This pandemic is now delivering consequences, and it cost 94% of this lucky guy’s hospitalized cohorts their lives. All because of stupid memes spread and promoted by Facebook. 

She was one of the lucky ones. And unlike others, she’s paying it forward, forcefully urging her friends to vaccinate. Yet her pleadings also betray the contours of her world—that the vaccine is “scary,” that it is “political,” and that they don’t know “what to believe.” 

As of today, 2.13 billion people have been vaccinated worldwide, and the adverse reactions are extremely rare. There has been no clinical trial anywhere near this scope in human history. The idea that these vaccines are “experimental” is utter nonsense at this point. The experiment was conducted via traditional trials, the approved vaccines succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest beliefs. That is fact. And there isn’t a hint of politics in that fact. 

It wasn’t liberals that politicized the vaccine, and it certainly wasn’t the medical or scientific establishments. With Facebook at their disposal, it was grifters and nuts who turned what should’ve been a no-brainer into this ongoing mass-death event. 

COVID-19 is scary. The grifters have politicized it. The facts are right there, for anyone who wants to know the truth. This woman knows that because she lived that. It left her and her husband unvaccinated, and he barely escaped with his life. Now she knows, and she’s trying to share that hard-learned lesson with her friends, and still has to offer all the caveats because she knows the resistance she’ll face. 

THIS IS WHAT WE ALL WANT! It shouldn’t take someone dying, or nearly dying, for people to realize that maybe, just maybe, they should take a life-saving jab. But we live in the world we have, not the one we wish we had. And progress is progress. 

“It’s just hitting different this time around,” is correct. And if people don’t vaccinate, this thing will mutate further, and it’ll hit even more different next time. 

Yes!

“Broke down.” This language is noteworthy. These aren’t people that want to be convinced to take the vaccine, quite the opposite. As conservatives, they lack the gene that allows us liberals to fight for people who don’t look like us, who have different experiences than us, merely because we can empathize with the predicaments of others. So “take the vaccine to protect others” is laughed at because they have immune systems, because 99.8% of people survive, because they still think COVID is a disease that afflicts big cities and Black and brown people. It needs to happen to them for progress to be made. But at least it’s being made. 

Well, some of the time. 

Some of these conspiracy theorists have invested too much into building this alternate universe of theirs. They won’t let anything give it up. 

Redemption stories are necessary to get us out of this mess. Sucks that they have to see their communities devastated by death, not to mention the inevitable lingering health problems for survivors and medical bankruptcies. 

But any progress is good progress. We all want life to get back to normal, and that won’t happen until vaccine adoption reaches millions more. 

From Daily Kos at Read More. This article is republished from DailyKos under an open content license. Read the original article at DailyKos.

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