An italicized response to the points raised a letter published September 16.
I was angered when I heard someone say that the unvaccinated spread the virus. COVID-19 can be carried and spread by anyone, vaccinated or non-vaccinated. Anyone can come down with COVID – vaccinated or not.
This is true, but fully vaccinated people are less likely to suffer serious COVID symptoms, be hospitalized by the virus, or die from it. Vaccinations reduce the load on healthcare workers and hospitals — keeping nurses, physicians, ERs and ICU beds available for you, your family, friends, and neighbours who have other life-threatening illnesses and conditions — such as cancer, childhood diabetes, heart attacks, kidney failure, strokes — and catastrophic injuries from accidents. A high rate of vaccination helps protect children and the immunocompromised, who are currently not eligible or may be permanently unable to be effectively vaccinated.
Every transmission of the virus provides an opportunity for a new, more dangerous and contagious variant to develop.
Who are the people refusing the ‘shot’?
• Those who have had immediate and long-lasting illness due to past flu shots.
All people and all flu shots are not created equal.
• Those who have had life-threatening nosebleeds.
This would certainly be of concern to anyone who might refuse a life-saving blood transfusion containing “contents” (see below) from an unknown source that might pollute their bodily purity.
• Those who have already had COVID-19 and believe they have some immunity.
Belief is not evidence; it is faith-based not fact-based.
• Those who have analyzed the contents of the vaccination serums and deem them dangerous.
Unless “those” have many years of education in epidemiology, biomedical science, and vaccine expertise, they are not reliably able to accurately “deem” anything about the “contents”, safety or efficacy of any vaccines. (Hours spent at Google university or with your Facebook friends don’t count.)
• Those who believe that enforcement of vaccination passports is infringing on human rights – preventing free travel within Canada, attendance at sports events and theatre productions, and attending restaurants.
No one has an inalienable unqualified right to attend any event or enter into any premises to pursue his or her recreational interests. No shirt, no shoes, no service.
• Those who believe vaccination passports are similar to the star the Jews were forced to wear in Europe, the tattooing of incarcerated persons in prison camps in World War II, and the control that Communist China has over its citizens through technology.
Drawing a moral equivalency between public-health measures — designed to protect the common good in an interconnected world — with the attempted genocide of European Jewry and the actual annihilation of six million Jews, gays, and other fellow human beings of all ages — is a choice to engage in a special and despicable kind of willful stupidity.
And — unless someone “believes” that COVID vaccines contain tracking devices (and does that someone carry a cellphone?) — why would China’s surveillance technology enter into a discussion of COVID vaccinations?
• Those who have seen family or friends become ill or have long-lasting effects after the vaccine.
This statement offers anecdote not evidence.
It is heartening to learn that the unions of Toronto Police and TTC Toronto are opposing mandatory vaccinations. A computer site: Action 4 Canada can provide a worker a form which will require an employer to sign a notice of liability if physical harm is caused by the vaccination for COVID-19.
Employers and government commonly set conditions of employment and safety in the workplace. This saves lives. “Heartening” is in the eye of the beholder.
Government and Doctors should be required to issue EXEMPT certificates for those whose health is threatened by vaccines for COVID-19.
The Government of Ontario will issue medical exemptions for individuals for whom the vaccine is contraindicated. Its website states, however, that “True medical exemptions are expected to be infrequent and should be supported by expert consultation.”
I support and practise the protocols in place: wearing a mask as required, hand sanitization, and recommended distancing.
Speaking for Many,
Patricia Kortland, Meaford
I sincerely hope that you are speaking for “some,” not “many” or “most”. I hope that most of us realize that successful societies are based on trust in science and our collective hard-won knowledge, respect for our fellow citizens and their rights and responsibilities, and the willingness to make sacrifices to our unfettered freedom — such as paying taxes, stopping at red lights, not shooting bullets across our neighbours’ yards, not using wetlands as dumpsites — for the well-being of the other living creatures around us.
Your letter reminded me of the “many” Canadians of my parents’ generation who sacrificed not only their freedom, but their dreams and years of their youth — along with their limbs, lives and loved ones — to protect the lives and freedoms of people they would never meet — including you — during the Second World War. Yet some of us are unwilling to engage in this current battle against a deadly worldwide pandemic by simply taking a life-saving vaccine, either for their own sake or for the health of others. But — yes — we all have the freedom to be selfish and shortsighted — and to believe that leprechauns live in the garden.
Jo Calvert, Bognor
Editor’s Note: Hear, hear!