Pandemic: Light at the End of the Tunnel

From today on, everyone age 16 and older in California is eligible for a free vaccination against COVID-19. That finally includes me, and I  begun “the hunt” on last night, from where I was able to schedule my first shot for April 28th. YEAH!!!

I would’ve actually preferred to just get the single-shot Janssen vaccine (Shuwen already got vaccinated with it) because I didn’t want the hassle of finding another appointment for the second dose, but Janssen vaccinations are paused (for similar reasons as AstraZeneca is paused in Europe: a few extremely rare cases of sinus vein thromboses).

Luckily, Rite-Aid pharmacies automatically schedule you for the second shot when you get the first one, so that’s the place that I chose to get vaccinated at. I’m counting the days!

While I do wish the overall planning and organization of vaccinations would be more centralized so that one does not have to hunt down an appointment by jumping from one site to the next, looking for available time slots, I have to say that I’m impressed with how America is doing with regards to the vaccinations, especially when compared to — and I would never have expected that — my home country of Germany. It restores my faith in the United States a little bit. With the right leadership, this is a capable country.

People in Germany meanwhile are beginning to wonder whether they’re living in a Kafka novel: coronavirus-related restrictions are all over the place, fought in court, rescinded, reinstated, and whatnot; a faction of idiots that call themselves “Querdenker” has been protesting and still protests in the streets, all while the country is pretty far behind in vaccinating their population (my older sister in Germany is still not even eligible), and the EU as a whole does not seem to be willing to emergency-accelerate the approval process for an additional vaccine, made by CureVac. Uhhhhhm.

Plant Filtered Light
Morning sunlight, filtered by bushes and shrubs, falls through a window into an empty corner of a room. April 2020.

Despite my general happiness about this light at the tunnel, it’s impossible to not mention the different kinds of “vaxholes” that can be observed right now:

  • first, those who say “oh no! Janssen is not as effective!” — aren’t they the worst?! If one of your friends says that to you when you tell them that you’ve got an appointment and will be vaccinated with Janssen: congratulations, you’ve got a vaxhole! Janssen is, just like the other vaccines, 100% effective in preventing serious illness, and keeping people out of hospitals. That’s what matters!
  • there are the vax-hesitaters/resisters: they’re just not sure if they should get vaccinated, or they think that the entire virus and pandemic are just a hoax. Fucker Carlson (not a typo) on Faux News (also not a typo) told them the vaccines don’t work, they believe Bill Gates will inject them with nanoprobes, or whatever else. It makes one want to throw the hands in the air in despair. Needless to say, the overlap between these people and the ones who complained the loudest about the “restrictions of their freedom” during the various lockdowns is probably pretty, pretty high too…
  • and then there’s the general anti-vaxxers of course — those who reject all vaccines. They are simply anti-social and do not comprehend the role that they play in the very society they live in and benefit from, at all. They lack the ability to comprehend that THEIR getting vaccinated will help society as a whole, no matter if it’s COVID-19 or any other disease. I don’t know what failure in our world produced these people. ~65 years ago, people were less backward than they are today.

The best thing that could happen with regards to the hesitaters, resisters and anti-vaxxers would be that businesses like pubs, restaurants, airlines, gyms etc. etc. (ie. everything where people are together for longer periods of time, indoors) will require a proof of vaccination. These people are actively preventing or slowing down our society’s return to some degree of normality — it seems justified to me then that we in exchange lock them out of whatever normality we can achieve through vaccination.

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One thought on “Pandemic: Light at the End of the Tunnel

  1. Glad you’re scheduled, Alex…and I too have been surprised at what’s happening in Germany – my friends are fed up. Nice to know a little faith in the US was restored for you, but I bet there are plenty of people who will mess that up soon.

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