Thomas Oatway | Buying into COVID-19 Misinformation

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

The omicron COVID-19 variant is running rampant across the country and filling hospital beds needed for other medical emergencies. Yet there is a segment of the population that still believes the misinformation and jeopardizes themselves and others who may need medical care. About 60% of Republicans deny vaccine effectiveness, whereas 95% of Democrats embrace the vaccines. Is there a comprehension problem in one of these groups? Well, 54% of Republican voters prefer Donald Trump as the 2024 Republican candidate for president. That may explain it.

Here is an example of submissions to The Signal’s online commentary that illustrates the thinking of many Republicans: “Reports are coming out that neither the Pfizer or Moderna (vaccines) will protect you from the omicron variant.” 

The factual truth is this: The vaccines will NOT fully protect you from getting the COVID-19 omicron variant. It is possible to get a “breakthrough” infection even if you have two shots plus a booster. On the other hand, vaccines are capable of protecting from serious illness and death. Compared to the unvaccinated, you will have a 1/20 chance of dying of COVID-19 if you are fully vaccinated. 

Some still believe the Trump fable that COVID-19 is like the regular flu. No, it is much more deadly. The flu kills 10,000 to 50,000 in a typical year. COVID-19 has killed almost 830,000 in less than two years. 

The omicron variant may be the final solution to getting this pandemic under control. It is so contagious that it may infect nearly every unvaccinated American in the next year. Those living in their mom’s basements will likely survive, and they will continue to contribute to the online misinformation about vaccine effectiveness. The other Republicans who deny COVID-19 danger will get the virus and many will die. It is just bad timing that the census was taken prior to 2020, before the death toll could change the demographics to favor Democrats who are vaccinated.

Thomas Oatway


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