Witch Hunt: Blame the Unvaccinated
The political witch hunt is an American tradition. Sometimes the witch hunt really does blame the appropriate people for the appropriate thing. Most often the political witch hunt is used to hide the sins of those engaged in the witch hunt.
Is Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. a scion of the right wing? Robert Kennedy has led opposition to vaccines, most notably measles vaccines, as a cause for autism. The anti-vaccine movement is an outgrowth of crunchy granola back-to-nature activism on the left end of the political spectrum. The back-to-nature activists oppose pesticides, genetically modified organisms, feedlot farming, adulterated foods, and big pharma medicine. And opposition to vaccines is part of that back-to-nature activism. Those advocating an all organic vegetarian diet, natural remedies, animal rights, and pre-industrial lifestyles are more susceptible to anti-vaccine messaging.
Those on the right end of the political spectrum oppose mandates. Those on the left end of the political spectrum oppose the commercial science and only accept science that aligns with their beliefs.
We're also being told that this is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. The reality is that none of the variants of concern originated in the United States. The SARS-Cov-2 Alpha, Beta, Delta, and, now, Lambda variants did not originate in the United States. This is a pandemic of infected people entering the United States. And once a variant has been introduced by an infected person entering the United States, the variant spreads by infected people traveling around inside the United States.
The reality is that this is a pandemic of uncontrolled borders and unenforced quarantines. If we'd spent more time and effort enforcing quarantines than arguing about mandates we could have brought the pandemic under control a lot faster.
So, now we are seeing a political witch hunt against the unvaccinated. That witch hunt has all the hallmarks of CYA, shifting blame, and targeting political opponents for purely political reasons. Blaming the unvaccinated is easy, quick, and emotionally satisfying. But the anti-vaccine movement originated on the left end of the political spectrum; notoriously among Hollywood liberals. And those on the left end of the political spectrum have adamantly opposed targeting infected individuals entering the country as cause for spreading the virus. So don't assume that the political witch hunt against the unvaccinated is rational or based on facts.
(Disclosure: The image selected for this blog is from an anti-vaccine rally that took place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in October, 2019 (before the pandemic started). The anti-vaccine movement is international.
Also as disclosure, I am fully vaccinated with two doses of the Moderna vaccine. While patriotism and community support did influence that decision, I readily confess to purely selfish motives. The COVID disease can be very serious and I simply did not want to get sick.)