It's sad but also true that, in the United States, getting or not getting vaccinated has become a political statement. Paul Krugman writes:
As Aaron Carroll pointed out Tuesday in The Times, Covid is now a crisis for the unvaccinated. Risks for vaccinated Americans aren’t zero, but they’re vastly lower than for those who haven’t gotten a vaccine.
What Carroll didn’t say, but is also true, is that Covid is now a crisis largely for red states. And it’s important to make that point both to understand where we are and as a reminder of the political roots of America’s pandemic failures.
I’m not saying that only Republicans are failing to get vaccinated. It’s true that there are stark differences in attitudes toward the vaccines, with one poll showing 47 percent of Republicans saying they are unlikely to get a shot, compared with only 6 percent of Democrats. It’s also true that if we compare U.S. counties, there’s a strong negative correlation between Donald Trump’s share of the 2020 vote and the current vaccination rate.
It's clear that public health disasters happen where Trumpists are in charge:
There are regions in America where large numbers of people have refused vaccination. Those regions appear to be approaching the point we feared in the early stages of the pandemic, with hospitalizations overwhelming the health care system. And the divide between places that are in crisis and those that aren’t is starkly political. New York has five Covid patients hospitalized per 100,000 people; Florida, where Gov. Ron DeSantis barred businesses from requiring that their patrons show proof of vaccination, has 34.
When getting a vaccination becomes a political statement, the real virus is insanity.
Image: The Toronto Star