Several weeks ago when I went to see relatives in another part of Virginia I chose a back route that took me close to where an old college friend of mine lives. Before I left I called him up and asked if he wanted to meet up for a cup of coffee.
This fellow is a liberal, like most of my college friends, but he’s not woke or progressive or anything; he’s just a standard-issue liberal. It doesn’t bother me; I just avoid political topics as much as possible when I talk to him. However, I knew he was worried about the Wuhan Coronavirus, so when I called him I asked if we could meet outside somewhere, wearing masks and sitting six feet apart.
“No,” he said, “I can’t risk it.”
“But why?” I responded in bafflement. “You’ve just had your booster.”
“Yes, but I’m a smoker and have high cholesterol, so I’m at risk. You’re unvaccinated. I just can’t take the chance.”
I was very disappointed, to say the least. He said something about maybe getting together “when all this is over.” I didn’t tell him that Corona is here to stay. He’ll keep getting boosters every six months until heart disease or the prions finally get him. The Zeta, Omicron, Upsilon, and Omega variants will continue to rage through the population like clockwork, also every six months, and be blamed on the unvaxed. And I’ll probably never see my friend again.
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Needless to say, all this seems like complete insanity to me.
When you parse what’s going on, it makes no logical sense whatsoever. If Our Savior the Vaccine is as wonderful as proclaimed, why doesn’t it protect my friend enough for him to be willing to sit six feet away and talk to me when we both have masks on?
He’s not stupid. He graduated from William and Mary with a degree in computer science. Intelligence is obviously no guarantee against being possessed by irrational fears. In fact, higher education may even help enable the condition.
My friend acknowledges that the vax (including the booster) doesn’t prevent the recipient from being infected by or transmitting SARS-CoV-2. But he says it reduces his risk of hospitalization or death. That is, it serves a protective function for him — it doesn’t protect anyone else from being infected by the Corona if he has it.
Well, then. How could it be that the selfish, filthy unvaxed like me are the cause of all the variant surges?
He has an answer for that, too: If he gets COVID, he will carry less of a viral load in his mucous membranes, which will make him somewhat less likely to infect others with it. But the data don’t support that assertion. I emailed him several references from reputable sources (including the CDC and Yale*) to studies indicating that there is no significant difference in viral load carried by the vaxed and the unvaxed when they are infected with the Wuhan Coronavirus. He didn’t reply; I’m not even sure he read my email.
I didn’t tell him that according to the latest data from the NHS in the UK, the percentage of those who die from the WuFlu after being “vaccinated” is roughly the same as it is for the unvaxed. And I especially didn’t tell what the experts say all those boosters will eventually do to him after he’s had enough of them. I don’t tell any of my vaxed friends about those things — since they can’t do anything about it once they’re vaxed, why would I want to ruin their day?
I refer to my friend’s syndrome as “Corona Psychosis”. It’s completely irrational, recognizes no evidence that might contradict it, and is clung to with a ferocity reminiscent of a religious mania.
It should have its own entry in the DSM-5.
There is a lot of variation in the severity of Corona Psychosis. My first thought was that my friend is at one extreme, but after pondering it for a while, I realized that some people are even more Corona psychotic: even if they’ve been vaxed, they stay shut up in their homes, don’t socialize except on Zoom, order necessities online as much as possible, and sanitize every item that comes into the house. I know some people like that, but obviously I don’t see them anymore.
People at the opposite extreme — and I am one — don’t observe any of the restrictions and prophylactic measures except to the extent that they would for a flu outbreak or something similar. Prudent caution, in other words. Live your life normally, insofar as it’s possible to do so these days. Stay home if you have symptoms.
Some people have milder versions of the Corona Psychosis. They wear masks when they go to the grocery store. They don’t hug anyone except immediate family members. They wash their hands more than they used to. But they don’t live in constant fear.
Almost everyone I know is vaxed, so I’m praying that all the horror stories about it are wrong. Some of them got the jab for the sake of expediency, not because they were afraid of the dread Corona. One guy wanted to go on a cruise, which required the vax. A woman got the jab because her much older husband was afraid he might catch COVID from her. And so on.
Interestingly enough, most of my college-educated friends fall into the “very fearful” category. All of them have been vaxed, and some of them are more relaxed about the whole thing now. But others are afraid.
Another data point: all but two of my college-educated friends are retired employees of the federal government. So there’s a correlation there, but that doesn’t imply causation.
I also find it interesting that the federal government lures people with college degrees like a Venus fly trap draws in flies. I’m the odd one out — virtually my entire cohort spent their careers working for the feds and are now reclining on the luxurious retirement cushions provided by FedGov.