[COMMENTARY] Vaccinated Americans Angry Over ‘Pandemic of the Unvaccinated’

Almost 58 percent of people in the United States 12 and older are fully vaccinated against Covid, although the rate has slowed since April and the country has fallen short of President Joe Biden’s goal earlier this month of 70 percent of eligible individuals being vaccinated with at least one dose. But even in conservative states where the idea of personal choice is highly coveted — and vaccination rates are lagging — the unvaccinated have drawn resentment.

“It’s the unvaccinated folks that are letting us down,” Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey, a Republican, said last week as her state grappled with having the lowest vaccination rate in the country. “These folks are choosing a horrible lifestyle of self-inflicted pain.”

COVID vaccine distirbution
[Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images]
On Twitter, daily battles rage between anti-vaxxers and those asking their fellow citizens to think beyond themselves and get the vaccine. Misinformation is rampant, and apparently, no amount of reporting to Twitter Safety can stop the anti-vax bots or the actual humans who selfishly and stubbornly remain willfully obtuse human hosts.

In a setback, the Biden administration recommended Tuesday that even vaccinated people continue wearing masks indoors in parts of the country struggling to contain the Delta variant — a regression from two months ago when the fully vaccinated were encouraged to ditch their masks because of the efficacy of the vaccines. Federal health officials still contend that so-called breakthrough Covid cases among vaccinated people are small and that the majority of hospitalizations is among the unvaccinated.

It would be fine if the vaccinated couldn’t get COVID at all, but there is still a risk factor of contagion involved with the Delta variant, and now new lockdowns are happening in places where people were finally enjoying some face freedom. In my state (Washington), we are fully open, but in nearby Portland, Oregon, mask mandates are still in place at certain businesses and restaurants because their cases are higher than ours. This month, public health officials in Los Angeles County reinstated the indoor mask mandate in response to the quickening spread of the Delta variant.

The selfish minority is holding the rest of the country hostage. Short of the government calling for a federal mask mandate or vaccine mandate, there are always going to be those holdouts on the fringe. But the rest of us shouldn’t have to pay for it, especially not with our health or our lives.



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