The Half Enlightened

Every time I hear somebody say “I’m not getting the vaccine because I don’t trust it or I don’t need it,”  I think of my father-in-law who was crippled from polio at age 3, and underwent a dozen operations during his childhood, and years of recovery afterwards. 
 
Half of my extend family has failed to get the vaccine, even though there is a family history of high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, asthma and cancer. I have nearly quit trying to convince the ones who tell me the vaccine killed Hank Aaron and a bunch of other people.
 
What slays me is these same people got vaccinated against polio, measles, mumps, and rubella. When they traveled overseas they got shots for things they didn’t even know about. Some served in the military and got vaccinated for malaria, yellow fever, and a host of other potential diseases. And they did all of that willingly, without nary a word of protest. 
 
Did they know what was in these vaccines? Nah. They only knew it was supposed to protect them from getting ill and having bad things happen to them. They trusted that medical professionals wouldn’t tell them they needed the vaccine if they didn’t. But now they have Google and, I swear to the barefooted Jesus if every single non-vaxxer  in my family hasn’t become an online physician.
 
They swap out facts for the anecdote:
“I have a friend who knows somebody’s cousin who died of the vaccine. Last week I read that nearly a 1,000 people have died from getting the shot, but the media is covering all that up.”
 
“Really, where did you read that?”
 
The Epoch Times.”
 
“Figures. You do know that CDC says the vaccines are safe, and that you are 3x more likely to get struck by lightning than to die from a Covid shot, right? How many people do you know who’ve been struck by lightning and died?” 
 
“I don’t trust the CDC.”
 
“But you trust The Epoch Times? You trust your girlfriend because, tell me again when she got that medical degree?”
 
And so it goes. Just yesterday, I heard a man in his 60s say he’s not getting the vaccine because he’s healthy. “It’s just like the flu,” he declared.
 
Only deadlier.
Death rates in the US usually fluctuate 2% year-to-year. In 2020, those rate jumped almost 25%. In math terms, that’s
E-X-P-O-N-E-N-T-I-A-L-L-Y.

For you Fundies, think in terms of discipleship. You disciple one person. They disciple another. Then you have two people discipling two more people. Then you have four people discipling four more. Then eight people discipling eight more. And so it goes. It’s the same concept with Covid. Only you are applying the multiplication concept to killing people, instead of saving them.

“Well, God has my days numbered. If I die of Covid, I die. I’m not going to worry about it.”

“How come you underwent chemo then? And what’s the point of taking that diabetes pill everyday? I mean, if God’s got your days numbered, why seek medical treatment for anything at all? Why get that double-hip replacement? Why bother working out or dieting or generally try to improve your health at all, since, you know, we are all going to end up dead anyway. Shit. Here, have another smoke. Lung cancer is a much better way of dying than Covid. With lung cancer, your family can at least be at your bedside.”

“That’s the problem with you vaccinated people. You are all so mean. You quit wearing masks. You don’t wash you hands. You don’t socially distance.”

“I still do all those things and I’m vaccinated. Unless, of course, I’m with other vaccinated people, then I don’t have to wear a mask or socially distance. I can actually hug them without worrying about whether we are giving each other a virus that might kill us.”

“I wasn’t talking about you. I know you do all those things but a lot of people don’t. A lot of vaccinated people are just being careless. And mean.”

“Mean because they want you to get vaccinated?”

“Yes.”

“Uh, okay. Have you ever considered that the thought of losing you to a deadly virus scares them? Maybe they are just scared of losing family needlessly.”

“They should have more faith.”

“Maybe. But you do know that until you get vaccinated, we can’t hug each other and we can’t be in a room together unmasked, right?”

“I am not going to be manipulated into getting a vaccine.”

“But you’ll be manipulated into not getting a vaccine?”

“Nobody has the right to tell me what to do with my body.”

“How odd to hear those words out of your mouth. Speaking of reading something, I came across a passage out of 18th Century Scotland that you might relate to. This man was sent out by the country’s agriculture board to report on why a particular town was facing famines and suffering so. Here’s what he reported back:

Prejudice stood as another insurmountable bar to all improvements. The ambition of the people, at that time, was not to improve the soil, but to reform the church – not to destroy weeds and brambles; but to root out heresy – not to break up the stubborn soil, but to tread down the whore of Babylon, and the Man of Sin. Their attachment to every bad habit, and aversion to every improvement in agriculture were strong and deeply rooted. In agriculture, as in other sciences, ignorance is the mother of devotion; innovation is always dreaded by the half-enlightened; and the force of prejudice is generally wrong; in proportion to the absurdity of the tenets adopted, or the barbarity of the practices followed.

 

“Funny, isn’t it? How applicable the words of an 18th Century Scotsman are to 21st Century Americans? It’s almost like we never learn anything.”

Karen Spears Zacharias is author of Will Jesus Buy Me a Doublewide? ‘Cause I need more room for my Plasma TV (Zondervan). 

 

 

Karen Spears Zacharias

Author/Journalist/Educator. Gold Star Daughter.

2 Comments

AF Roger

about 8 months ago

Other old quotes come to mind, the first from an original comedy routine in the annual youth group talent show at my church in Nebraska in the 1950's: "You can't pound sand into a head with a sledge hammer." Uh-huh. The second from Joseph Sittler written about the time of the hostage crisis in Iran: "Twenty million Iranians can be just as wrong as one Ayatollah." Substitute "Americans" and "ex-president" for the nouns in that sentence... Uh-huh. I really like: "Nobody can tell me what to do with my body." Really? What if you're in the military and ordered to "destroy the village in order to save it"? Before the last U.S. president even took office, I listened to some of the stuff he said--and kept saying. I came to this conclusion: He thinks what he thinks because HE thinks it. Total mental feedback loop impervious to reason or fact. It seems to be contagious.

Reply

TWayne

about 8 months ago

Well said babe! I’m so sick and tired of willful ignorance. What a waste of a life my education career has been! Apologies to all! 😥😡

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