I need to start this post by premising the fact that I’m not a doctor, I’m not a health specialist nor do I have any formal medical training. What I do have is a lifetime of knowledge and skills accumulated through trial and error. And if you read that sentence in Liam Neeson’s voice from “Taken,” I applaud your imagination because that’s what I did as I wrote it. But I digress… You know that if I’m starting my post with a disclaimer, it’ll be something special. But what’s more is, this will be strictly my opinion and should be digested as such. What I want to talk about today is vaccination… (ducks and covers head, realizes no stones are being thrown and gets back up) Alrighty then, here we go!
There’s a significant amount of controversy surrounding the COVID-19 vaccine. And with good reason. With the internet making the world’s news and information literally available at one’s fingertips, everyone researches and “investigates” just about everything in their daily lives before making any sort of a decision. And what’s worse, people have a tendency to suddenly turn into armchair warriors that have a loud and prominent (and oftentimes annoying) voice that would generally be silent if they had to face people in person. And that’s a problem, because these folks are contributing to the dissemination of misinformation, which is often from sources that are offering opinion based on their own experiences and not necessarily hard science.
This is one of the reasons why I take pains to cite my sources when I can and otherwise only speak to my own experiences as they relate to the content I write. But this line in the sand with the COVID-19 vaccines is something special. Given the state of the world and the situation we face, the majority of governments have made it clear that they want a certain percentage of the population to be vaccinated against COVID-19 before lifting all restrictions and allowing the return to some semblance of normalcy. At least, that’s the state of things in Canada. I can’t speak for what may be happening in other countries. Personally, I’m of the opinion that the pandemic has irrevocably changed us all. The world may never go back to what it once was. Between the acknowledgment that many if not most jobs can be performed from home, people suddenly shifting gears in their lives and changing careers, leaving their spouses and all around deciding to live it up as there’ only one life to live (according to them), the world has changed in a way that may never go back to what it previously was.
And that’s fine. Moving forward is the only way to go in life, and is important if one intends on accomplishing anything. But the choice whether to get vaccinated or not is a personal one. For example, I’ve been getting the flu shot for over ten years. Having Type-1 Diabetes means my immune system is rocky at the best of times, so it’s a smart move for me. So, here are some thoughts on the flu vaccine…. If I don’t take it, I can POTENTIALLY get sick. That illness can POTENTIALLY be fatal to me. If I catch the flu, I can without a doubt transmit it to others, who may face the same consequences as I do. People have died from taking this vaccine and others. It all depends on a person’s specific body, biology and overall health. The flu vaccine is not a GUARANTEE that I won’t get the flu; it simply helps my body to create the antibodies that will help to overcome the flu, should I catch it.
Sound familiar? It probably should, because this is all the same shit that applies to the COVID-19 vaccine. It doesn’t GUARANTEE that you won’t catch it; it simply prompts your body’s defences against the virus if you get it. Yes, there are people who have died AFTER taking the vaccine. The question as to whether it was a direct result of the vaccine or not is debatable. It’s right up there with number of deaths due to COVID-19 being argued and disputed because some of the deceased had a pre-existing condition. The internet went nuts when the Provinces were calculating and gathering their numbers, claiming that they were using death due to heart conditions, cancer and other ailments as an umbrella to claim it was COVID-19.
But I’m getting WAY off topic, here. My point with today’s post is that there has already been a shift or a societal trend, where people are beginning to ask the question; “Did you get vaccinated?” Honestly, when you get right down to it, this is almost akin to asking about ANY private, medical history. There are issues arising where employers are starting to test the waters in regards to requiring people to be vaccinated and asking about it. All of that is private information. If someone WANTS to share the fact they’ve gotten vaccinated, good for them. But people honestly shouldn’t be asking others. The other issue is the CHOICE to get vaccinated. I know plenty of people who choose not to get vaccinated against the flu. But you won’t see them posting every five minutes about how the flu vaccine isn’t guaranteed, how it’s ineffective and how it can potentially kill. But this is true of any and every vaccine. One needs to make the personal choice between choosing one path over the other. For myself, contracting COVID-19 will almost assuredly end my life. Taking the vaccine has an infinitesimal chance of being lethal to the person who takes it. So ultimately, I had to make the choice…. Go with the thing that is likely certain to kill me, or the thing that almost impossibly but could possibly kill me.
All life is choice. We choose to get up in the morning, face life and deal with the issues of the day. The big secret is that most of those choices should be kept to oneself. If you choose to get vaccinated and want to let people know because it’s something you’re proud of having chosen, fantastic. If you choose NOT to get vaccinated and want to let people know because it’s ALSO something you’re proud of having chosen, good for you. But the propaganda and misinformation should be kept out of it. Make your choice, stand by it and move on. An import aspect to consider is that since most governments require we reach a certain vaccinated level before re-opening society, some may say that refusing to get vaccinated is contributing to the problem as opposed to proposing a solution.
As I said in the beginning, this is simply and strictly an opinion. I believe in having the choice. There are a lot of aspects of the pandemic that I feel could have been done differently, perhaps even better. But as I also mentioned, I’m not a doctor. And if we stop trusting the professionals, we may as well ditch society as a whole and just go live off-grid in a cabin in the woods. Granted, some weeks that feels like the ideal solution. All I can do is make the best informed decision for me and my family and stick to it. At the end, that’s pretty much all anyone can do. ☯️