For seven months, the public has been asked to live with an abundance of caution. That’s included quarantining, keeping socially distant, wearing a face covering, and staying home even if one is not feeling ill. For businesses, working with an abundance of caution included more restrictions. It meant closing their doors. For schools, it meant shutting down campuses and going completely virtual. At the time, and based on a virus we knew little to nothing about, some of those precautions made sense.
Seven months later, we’ve gained more knowledge about the virus and which precautions were necessary (and which ones were not). Daily reminders of how to continue to live with an abundance of caution are still being broadcasting on the airwaves, like the ones I heard on the radio last week:
If you have to leave home, wear a mask!
When in public, stay six-feet apart!
No matter what, don’t touch your face!
Later, when one has been fast-tracked and approved, I can bank on this added message…
Get your damn vaccine!
Even though the curve has been flattened, we’re being told to live as if it hasn’t. I’m guessing that’s why the media is keeping that COVID-19 vaccine in their news cycle. Claiming it’ll be the next best thing to counter the coronavirus, the vaccine is getting more airtime than the flu vaccine usually does. As with that typically ineffective flu shot, and other ones manufactured here in the states, it’ll be a liability-free vaccine the public will be offered. That liability-free label means that should something go wrong post-vaccination, pharmaceutical companies do not have to claim any responsibility for it, even if the damage done is a result of their product.
One would hope that those making vaccines would include using an abundance of caution in the process, but they don’t have to do that. The law protects the vaccine industry, not the people being vaccinated. And it seems further protection has been granted for any COVID-19 vaccine, too. Where the manufacturers can throw caution to the wind, the double protection they’ve received for their yet-to-be developed, and minimally-tested, vaccine is red flag enough for me. I’d be a fool to opt for any of them.
As time goes by, we’ll certainly learn more about the coronavirus and any long-term effects it may have. That’ll hopefully include learning about the quarantine precautions we were asked to take, too. Evidence already shows that some precautions have had detrimental effects, including an increase in mental health issues. Based on several observations and data, some doctors and researchers have shared that it’s time to open the world up again, even without knowing all there is to know about COVID-19. Enough is enough.
Recalling that declaration, as well as that growing list of precautions I’m being asked to take, the radio segment I was listening to ended with a teaser, “When we come back, new developments about COVID…”
I can see the logic in some of the safety precautions states are still pushing, but if we’re still learning about the virus, how can we possibly put any faith in a vaccine? A vaccine comes years after studying a virus. Not within weeks to months of its introduction. We’d have to know a lot more about COVID-19, and over a much greater amount of time, to even think a vaccine could be a viable solution. Where many have suffered, and some even succumbed to COVID-19, I’ve read that more have gotten through the illness, and without a vaccine, too. Personally, we got the best news last week when an elderly relative, who’d tested positive, recovered – and quicker than they were expected to as well!
Between segments, I wasn’t surprised to hear a flu shot commercial on the radio. It’s flu season! Get your shot now, especially you seniors out there. Your health depends on it. Sandwiching fear before and after news stories is not a bad strategy. Fear sells news. It also help sells liability-free vaccines. Fortunately, I’ve not let fear be my guide during the last 7 months. While it’s good to be cautious, I find that it’s always much better to have an abundance of hope, even during a pandemic.
Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.