- Apr 18, 2013
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
GOP wants to drag out lockdowns to hurt Biden's economy
Vaccination rates are improving at a steady clip. As of Wednesday afternoon, almost 124 million Americans have received at least one shot and over 76 million are fully vaccinated. There have been no meaningful bad effects from either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine and only a handful of extremely rare incidents that have forced the FDA to temporarily pause the administration of Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The vaccines are safe, effective, and well-documented on social media. These are the exact conditions — basically, other people getting it first and proving it's safe — that many vaccine-hesitant Americans were telling pollsters that they wanted to see in order to convince them to get the vaccine. And yet, a new poll released Wednesday by Monmouth University shows the number of Americans — 1 in 5 — who refuse to get vaccinated has barely dropped from where it was in polls conducted in January and March. The only thing that's really changed is the excuse people are offering for why. In the past, 21% of Americans gave the "let others do it first" answer. Now only 12% of people are even bothering to pretend that condition hasn't been met yet. Instead, what's becoming ever more clear is the reluctance to get vaccinated is about one thing and one thing only: Owning the libs.
The number of people who have been skittish about the vaccine has dropped as more Americans line up for the shot, but the hardcore group who want to avoid it at all costs has barely budged. The reasons for this are not mysterious. Right-wing media networks like Fox News and various personalities have gone out of their way to signal to conservatives that refusing the vaccine is a way to demonstrate tribal loyalty and, even more importantly, demonstrate contempt for liberals. The anti-vaccination sentiment is clearly building on a tendency on the American right to define "manhood" as an unwillingness to act like an adult who can handle even basic responsibilities, which is no doubt one reason why women are more likely to get vaccinated than men. Tucker Carlson, who Media Matters' Senior Fellow Matt Gertz says "has become perhaps the nation's most prominent coronavirus vaccine skeptic," has taken to portraying vaccines as a massive hoax. On Tuesday, for instance, Carlson suggested that the vaccine "doesn't work and they're simply not telling you that." Conservatives who refuse to get vaccinated are going to spread disease — indeed, that's what right-wing media is counting on. So anything that can be done to reduce the political salience of vaccination, to make it seem less "liberal" and more like regular health care, can benefit us all.
You can bet your Trump flag that media personalities like Tucker Carlson have already received both shots of the COVID vaccine.