It’s time to Break It Down!
Consider this week’s post another foray into to the world of re-stating the obvious. Last week, I discussed the fact that during this calendar year, 99.5 of those who’ve died from COVID-19 have been unvaccinated. For those whom that’s insufficient motivation to get the shot, I’m not sure anything would move the needle. With that kind of compelling data trove, the effectiveness of the composite vaccines is undeniable.
Today’s readily apparent truth is predicated upon the divergent political predilections of those who’ve chosen to get vaccinated versus those who’ve opted out. President Biden set a goal of having 70% of American adults having taken at least one shot by July 4th. We came up short, to the chagrin of vaccine advocates, and to the inexplicable delight of many Republicans and 45 supporters. The final tally by June 30th was approximately 65%. Close, but no cigar. Biden pledged to keep pushing.
As much as Biden promoted the vaccine, 45 and his acolytes protested, pushed back, and derisively skewered those who took the vaccine. In a classic case of mixed messaging, 45 has taken credit for the vaccine rollout, yet he refused to divulge he and his wife were vaccinated. Moreover, he has yet to encourage his millions of disciples to get the vaccine.
Not surprisingly, as a result of their opposing approaches to COVID-19 in general, and to the vaccines in particular, research has shown that 45’s supporters are the least likely to say they have been vaccinated, or that they plan to be. Ironically, 45 was vaccinated before leaving office. A fact that was not reported until months later.
The top 21 states (and the District of Columbia) with the highest vaccination rates, all voted for Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election. Conversely, 45 won 17 of the 18 states with the lowest adult vaccination rates. Many of those states have high proportions of Whites without a college degree, which may prompt some to recall 45 extolling his love for the poorly educated.
In full disclosure however, politics is not the sole determinant of vaccination proclivity. Black Americans, according to CDC data, make up the lowest racial or ethnic group, in terms of those who’ve gotten at least one shot. Young people, like Black Americans, who lean heavily toward Democrats, have also been less engaged in getting vaccinated. More than 80% of people over 65 have gotten at least one shot, while among those 18-24, only 45% have, and among those aged 25-31, only 51% have gotten at least one shot.
This is where the takeaway from last week’s conversation and today’s post converge. The vaccine is an essential element of life. The COVID-19 case rate, which had been consistently dropping, across the country for months, more than doubled over the past three weeks, rising from 11,300 per day on June 23 to 23,600 per day this pass Monday. This trend, in conjunction with the new Delta variant, has elevated concerns about another spike. Deaths have traditionally lagged cases by a couple of weeks. It is said, knowledge is power. To that end, if you know 95.5 percent of Covid deaths are occurring among the unvaccinated, and 45 supporters, Black Americans, and the young are among the least likely to have been vaccinated so far, if you fall in one of those categories, you ought to want to get the shot. “There’s A Great Blue-Red Vaccine Divide…No Schitt Sherlock!”
I’m done; holla back!
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