Call me crazy, but I understand the mentality of the anti-vax crowd.
Let me be clear upfront: I’ve been fully vaccinated for a long time so I’m not saying the idea of a COVID-19 vaccine is a bunch of hooey. When I read comments pertaining to shutdowns and restrictions, I wonder why I rushed to get a vaccine if I’m still subjected to so many restrictions. Yes, the vaccine supposedly keeps me safe but the incentive to be vaccinated is so I can live a free life.
For me, the privilege of being allowed to go to a concert isn’t motivating. The privilege of being allowed to go to a sporting event isn’t motivating. The privilege of being allowed to go on an airplane isn’t motivating. (I hate wearing a mask and if I need to wear one for any of those activities, I’m not interested.)
It’s the use of that word — privilege — that makes me want to rebel, much like the anti-vax crowd. In Canada, while those activities are considered freedoms, we’re seeing now how they’re actually luxuries of being part of a first-world society.
The debate is about rights: If you’re not vaccinated, it’s said you’re putting public health at risk and people should have the right to be safe from the virus. The other side — the one where people say, “Because I’m not putting this in my body, you’re taking away my freedoms” — also makes sense to me.
I agree that people are, to a certain extent, being given a choice about getting the vaccine, but they’re also kind of not given the pressure put on them. They take the argument one step further by pointing out how people who are double vaccinated still test positive and get sick.
The numbers are lower, yes, but people contract the virus if they have both shots yet they’re allowed into a restaurant and the un-vaxxed aren’t. If both people — vaxxed and un-vaxxed — can both test positive after a restaurant visit, what’s the difference between the two people? They’ll both carry and both spread the virus, if I understand the science correctly.
I acknowledge that variants are emerging and the situation is changing, so all I’m saying is the position anti-vaxxers take makes sense to me and I’m willing to hear them out.
Switching gears slightly: When basketball star LeBron James told reporters that it’s not his job to tell people to get the vaccine, I agreed with him. On my radio platforms, I had several stations pressuring me to tell people to get vaccinated. I refused to do so. It’s not my place to tell people what to do with their body. I can suggest doing the research to make the best decision for themselves, but who am I to say, “You should do this.”
Admittedly, James’s words would have more clout than mine, so I’m not suggesting I’d influence the masses. His argument is that he’s a basketball player and he’s not there to preach at people — he just wants to be an athlete. People should have a choice to decide what’s injected into their body.
(Reminder: I’m fully vaccinated.)