It started around 4 p.m. on a Friday. I noticed unusual tightness in my chest and feeling a slight fever and body aches. I knew exactly what was happening.
An hour earlier an attorney called me to share that the night before he developed a high fever and feared he may have COVID-19. Two days before, that same attorney and I were together interviewing a possible victim in an assault case.
I knew the phone was not the cause of my symptoms. I was detecting something in me that was real.
By midnight I had body aches, chest congestion, and a fever.
On Saturday the attorney confirmed he had tested positive for COVID-19. On Sunday, my Saturday’s test came back COVID-positive as well.
The speed of my symptoms was a surprise. Just 50 hours after exposure, I manifested the virus.
This despite having the Pfizer vaccines in January and February. By Saturday morning, I had a high fever, a sore throat, body aches, chest congestion and sinus irritation.
These more serious symptoms lasted a week. The second week it felt more like a mild chest cold that would not go away.
In my prior 30 years on the job, I had never missed three consecutive days due to illness. With COVID-19 I had missed three weeks of work. It took 21 days before I tested negative and was symptom-free.
COVID-19 is no joke. It is not a hoax. It is not a Democratic plot.
To date more than 636,000 Americans have died of COVID-19. Another 39 million Americans have tested positive and likely millions more never knew they had it.
I am convinced that, without my vaccinations, I would be in the ER right now.
It doesn’t matter if COVID-19 originated in a lab or was a natural phenomenon. What matters is that we recognize its deadly and disruptive consequences, prevent its spread, inoculate ourselves against serious illness and death, and act to protect each other.
The COVID-19 vaccines are the most studied in human history. With 5.2 billion doses dispensed and one-quarter of the world population having received at least one shot, we know these vaccines are safe and prevent death.
The Centers for Disease Control estimates that, without the vaccine, 2 in 100 with symptoms may die of COVID-19 and of the vaccinated only 2 in 400,000 might die.
Nevertheless, idiots insist on avoiding vaccines proven safe and effective in favor of horse deworming pills, ingesting bleach, and injecting questionable monoclonal anti-bodies simply because the former president and conservatives hinted to do so.
As my father used to say, “America is known around the world as the country where you have a right to be stupid.”
The truth is that Fox News and other right-wing media platforms create a following by opposing logic and cuing up wild alternatives.
Their audiences have been cultivated to follow counter-science, counter-intuitive and idiotic directives. Their message is to defy logic and view any non-Republicans as the wicked enemy.
Fox News hosts Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham, and numerous other conservative personalities, have “mentioned” ivermectin as a drug that “could be used” to treat COVID-19, yet treat with suspicion FDA-cleared and scientifically evaluated medication and protocols.
Masking is proven to add a layer of safety. But these conservative hosts argue governors should prevent local schools from enforcing safety measures.
Lockdowns curb virus spread. Of course, they are opposed to lockdowns.
Vaccines prevent death, so they question life-saving vaccines.
We have observed that Fox and others argue that preserving personal freedom regarding COVID-19 is more important than saving lives.
So, why not extend this same logic to everything in American life?
Why not protest stopping at a stop signs on our roads? Having to stop at stop signs inhibits personal freedom.
Why not consider cancer treatment an inconvenience preventing freedom? Should we put a clump of rosemary on our heads and count backwards from 10? If Fox says so, some in their audience will certainly try.
The conservative playbook is to argue against logic by proposing insane and often unsafe alternatives while blaming Democrats/liberals/socialists as promoting evil.
Sadly, millions eagerly follow conservative media suggestions like horses and cattle moving into the slaughter house.
As the FDA says, don’t be a horse or a cow.
Please get vaccinated. Wear a mask to protect others. Ignore conservative platforms that feast on rebellion and counter-science advice.
Remember, we are the U.S., states “united.”
Let’s not become the RIRP GSS — Rebellious Idiots who Resist Prudent Governance and Sound Science.
Jonathan Kraut directs a private investigations agency, is the CEO of a private security firm, is the COO of an accredited acting conservatory, a published author, and Democratic Party activist. His column reflects his own views and not necessarily those of The Signal or of other organizations.