By Jim Towey
The news that fully-vaccinated-and-boosted Dr. Anthony Fauci and President Joe Biden both had Covid is notable. They now know the limitations of the shots they got, the power of natural immunity (which to date they have stubbornly ignored), and the inevitability of Covid infection. If those two guys living in bubbles surrounded by the vaxxed and boosted, could get Covid, then anyone can. The “pandemic of the unvaccinated” gospel once preached is gone now that they number among the 90 million-plus cases of infection in America. It is a pandemic of the vaccinated and unvaccinated alike.
I am happy these two elderly Americans got over Covid. But will they learn any lessons from their unfounded trust in Big Pharma solutions? All of the assurances that the vaccine would protect Americans from Covid have vanished in thin air. We are left with the pledge that the Covid shots increase the likelihood of contracting a milder case of the virus, a far lesser upside. Of course, Big Pharma is doubling down with new promises of even better meds, despite the scientific fact that natural immunity will always be the backbone of America’s survival, just as in ages past.
Living life, powering though
The pandemic isn’t over and won’t be any time soon. Those who have fragile health must be cautious. One million Americans died with or from Covid and many other serious cases took their toll, and we mourn that. But Americans are dealing with Covid. People are living their lives while powering through the illness, just as they had to do with other previous infirmities. They’re getting shots if they want, managing the risks, and moving on, just as our country should.
But before we turn the page on the 30-months of Covid immersion, there is some unfinished business. We have to undo the damage inflicted by the drumbeat of social distancing messaging in grocery stores, airports, businesses, schools and elsewhere. Those messages must now be renounced. Prudence and reasonable hygiene measures can be taken without sweeping social distancing and mask mandates and the mental health harm, social isolation, drug abuse, employment stoppage, delayed educational development, and other consequences they foster.
Even though Americans have learned to live with Covid, social distancing has become endemic, and it is tearing our country’s social fabric apart. People work at home and don’t want to return to the office. Some are terrified to go outside at all, seeing that government still has “emergency” measures in place. Has germaphobia become an American governing principle? Nowadays getting on an elevator with a stranger is deemed dangerous. Greeting the stranger on the plane in the seat next to you seems verboten. I still see people who are double-masked and keeping their distance in lines, as if the science that shows that these measures are basically ineffective is irrelevant. Can such persons be blamed after what some in government and the major media outlets did to frighten them? These same folks are gearing up for vaccine mandates for returning school children and such.
Now that we are witnessing the dreadful mental health, economic, educational and social carnage that unnecessary masking, lockdowns and social distancing measures helped inflict, it is time to renounce them for the menaces they are.
Fully human vs. socially distant
I don’t expect grocery stores will pipe in messages like “Don’t fear your neighbor. It is safe to be around other people. We need each other. We can manage risks safely and be together.” But I do believe our leaders, starting with President Biden and Dr. Fauci, must work in earnest to encourage citizens to resume pre-pandemic social behaviors that made life fully-human, not socially distant. We should start with a campaign to urge nursing home, ALF and hospital visitation. If the resident or patient wants you to wear a mask, wear one, but otherwise, show them your smile and give them a big hug. Hold their hands. Spend time with them.
Social distancing is a disease that can be eliminated with booster shots of reason, courage, compassion and the conviction that life is beautiful even in a world with Covid.