There is more than one annoying viral problem in the United States. Here’s a dangerous one: the spread of neurotic panic, unwarranted, perpetual.
The risk of becoming seriously ill with COVID is, for people who are vaccinated at all, insignificant. Be happy about that! Get out of here! Go to a restaurant! See friends! Hugs Granny!
Instead, COVID’s United States is showing signs of transforming into the Republic of Endless Fear. People with large following paint a nightmare scenario of ongoing misery.
A shocking example is the ironically named MSNBC host Joy-Ann Reid, who turns out to be unhappy about the vaccine. In a tweet the other day, she said he said, “I’m still a vax down, but even when I get the second shot, I’m too ‘exposed’ to be wild outside. No flying and no internal activity for me. No!” Reid is, of course, free to be scared cum she wants everything, and if she stays at home stacked under a blanket with the quadruple door locked for the next six years I care little.
However, Reid has a large number of acolytes (2 million Twitter followers) and his pandering use of black vernacular (“forgotten”?) Suggests that he urges a subset of the population that is already hesitant to be as paranoid as and she. This is bad advice, and combined with hysterical newspaper headlines and a blockheaded FDA decision to instill fear because six people out of 7 million have reported severe blood clots after receiving the miraculous and safe Johnson & Johnson vaccine, will cause more and more Americans to think, “Why get a vaccine that could hurt me if smart people say we should be equally ‘drained’ after receiving it?”
Joyless Reid has many companions in the Panic Caucus: The Washington Post publishes an op-ed by a completely vaccinated writer reading “I’m vaccinated, but I’m not really ready to give up my pandemic cocoon.” CNN posted an insane history (possibly corrected) massively overestimating the COVID risk of flying (which is very, very low, against Joy-Ann Reid) and advising passengers not to use the bathrooms on airplanes. Do you know how many COVID cases were traced in planes last year? Sixty about 1.2 billion passenger flights. And the virus rarely spreads to surfaces.
Yet the newspapers are full of stories about Lockdown Lucies and Quarantine Quentins saying they never want to return to normal. In some cases, they freely admit to having other motives, such as hatred of human interaction or not wanting anyone to see how much weight they put out of the way into a whole closet of pants. Hey, well, folks, stay locked up forever. More room in 5 Napkin Burger for the rest of us.
But it stops spreading irrational fear. High-rope neurotic people are transmitting the microphone at a critical time for America: About 38 percent of adults have been at least partially vaccinated. In the UK, it is about 62 per cent, and the virus is on track to wave the white flag.
Getting the U.S. to pass 60 percent of the vaccine mark (some experts think we may need to go even higher to kill the virus) is going to take a bigger boost. Black Americans, Latinos, and white rural Americans present high rates of reluctance to have the blow. Anyone who refuses vaccination is a potential COVID playground.
Everyone who has a public platform should send the same message: Vaccines work. They are safe. With few exceptions, everyone should take them. And once we do that, life can return to normal.
We are almost on track to reach it. Why do so many people want to stumble upon the home strip?
Kyle Smith is general critic in National Review.