Want to Help Out? Get the Vaccine or Get COVID

Humans keep taking the road to nowhere

It may not be as simple as my title implies. After all, when it comes to solving problems, humans end up on the road to nowhere more often than not. Suffice it to say, however, as people continue to get vaccinated, COVID should become less of a problem. Furthermore, if you’ve had covid, apparently, you’re helping out, too. The more people with antibodies, the fewer hosts the nasty virus can invade.

That all sounds pretty easy, doesn’t it?

I mean we all know someone who has either had COVID or had the vaccine. Most of us know someone who has died from COVID, too, if not personally then at least a famous person. Shouldn’t we be over the hump by now? Yet, the problem isn’t as easily resolved as we’d like to think.

There are so many variables when it comes to personal choice about not only how to protect ones self from getting COVID but what we choose as an individual to believe about COVID. This inability to reach consensus has kept people confused, resistant, and unwilling to cooperate. Every group mistrusts the other group.

I’m your run of the mill science believer.

I’ve followed the protocol by social distancing, wearing a mask when around people, and getting vaccinated. I even received the booster a few days ago. In spite of my vaccinations, I choose to continue to wear my mask when at indoor public places. When I see another masked person, although that’s far less common these days, I smile beneath my mask. It feels good to see someone like myself.

However, the unmasked don’t all agree with one another either.

At first glance it might appear that they are the biggest tribe, but they are not one and the same. Here’s a few groups that I’ve been able to identify.

People who fear COVID but also fear the vaccine.

People who believe in most vaccines but not the COVID vaccines

People who fear all vaccines

There are also those who are anti masks and anti vaccines

We mustn’t forget the tribe that still believes COVID is a hoax

Or those who believe the vaccines may be a secret weapon

I’m certain that there are people who think they are safe because they eat the right foods or take specific supplements

And, there’s those who believe that a god will protect them

We mustn’t forget the tribe that thinks they’re invincible because they’re young

I’m sure that the above is a very short list of COVID belief systems. Almost every day, I hear another twist on the pandemic. So, if your tribe isn’t on the list, I apologize. I must point out that we have, in my opinion, blamed republicans for being resistant to the vaccine, but the original anti-vaccine group was started long before the pandemic by liberals and attracted a tribe that I often refer to as the woo-woo crowd. That tribe tended to seek all natural remedies like colon cleanses or supplements, nutrition, or other “natural” unregulated treatments.

Not that a significant portion of the vaccine skeptics aren’t republicans, because they are now even though they didn’t use to be. However, many of the woo-woo crowd haven’t changed their tune either. The return of measles a few years ago was precipitated by this tribe much to the chagrin of my tribe.

Yeah, we’re as tribal as our ancient ancestors.

Like our ancestors, modern tribes still have trouble cooperating with one another even if it kills us. I coined a phrase for our lack of conflict resolution skills. We’re “cavemen with cell phones”.

I’m only pointing all of this out because as usual when dealing with humans nothing is EVER simple.

We don’t have a great track record for solving problems without lots of conflict. So, if you’re thinking this is a battle between liberals and conservatives, or trumpsters and Bideners, or science and superstition, well, everyone is right to some extent, but clearly it’s much more complicated than that.

When the vaccine came out I had fairly high hopes that people would jump at the chance to kick this virus in the ass.

Boy was I wrong! It soon became apparent that the scientific approach, trying to reach herd immunity before another variant popped up, was not going to happen. It made me mad. I’m still mad. However, as I saw more and more people getting COVID, I became slightly hopeful again. Don’t take that last statement in the wrong way. I prefer the quicker method of squelching COVID, vaccination. I’m a pragmatist, however. I’ve never gotten 100% of what I want, but what pragmatists want most is a solution to the problem. So if we can get 75% of what we want, then we’ll count that as good. We freaking hate kicking a problem down the road over and over again wthout finding a solution.

If that means that unvaccinated people get COVID, then I’ll still think they were foolish, but at least they contributed more antibodies and fewer hosts for this dang flesh-eating, hateful, shit-storm of a virus.

I’ll add one more thing before I sign off. We don’t know how long the antibodies stay strong or if and when they wane over time. Can a person get COVID more than once? Will I need a booster every year? Those are unanswered questions in this pandemic that requires scientists to be on the ground relentlessly gathering data at all times and updating their new findings.

Don’t ask for their names.

Scientists have never been rock stars. They work behind the scenes to solve problems without getting rich or receiving much attention for their contributions. In the end, if answers to problems are discovered, nine times out of ten it will be the scientist not the rock star, preacher, priest or layperson who saves the day.

I know it’s likely that there will be another variant and the battle may intensify.

I also understand that we’ll probably never reach consensus on how to combat a virus or for that matter many of the big problems the world faces today. That would be too easy. For some reason when humans have a choice between choosing the hard road or the easy road to solving problems, they tend to choose the hard road.

At least I know what to expect if and when the next pandemic comes along or when we’re threatened by a new world problem. This may be as good as it gets. Still, I’m a pragmatist. I’ll stay on the lookout for solutions regardless of how much conflict a problem stirs up.

You’re welcome!

Teresa Roberts is a retired educator, writer, world traveler, and professional myth buster. You can purchase her books on Amazon.



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Teresa Roberts

Teresa Roberts


Teresa is an author, world traveler, and professional myth buster. She’s also a top writer on climate change and the future.