Cuomo’s MO is often to deflect, divert, distract

Jerry Moore

WATERTOWN — There’s a lot of talk about how divided we are as a society.

It’s true that many issues prove overly contentious. We seem split virtually in equal halves on numerous topics.

But we’re much more alike than we want to admit. One trait we share is our propensity for finding problems we can pin on others.

The latest blame-game topic is vaccinations for the novel coronavirus. The vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech was rolled out nearly two weeks ago, and Moderna made its vaccine available last week.

After such a long period during which we’ve been besieged by grim news regarding the death and illnesses caused by COVID-19, seeing vaccines being administered is wonderful. There is light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to this pandemic, which should be a source of joy for everyone.

Vaccines often take years to make accessible to members of the public. The coronavirus vaccines, however, took less than a year to develop. This is an extraordinary accomplishment for those in the field of medical research, and it will eventually reduce the fear we’ve all experienced for nine months.

But many people are turning this medical triumph into an opportunity to castigate others. This detracts from a landmark moment in world history and unnecessarily puts others on the defensive.

With such a limited supply of vaccinations at this stage, the primary issue is how we should prioritize any list of those who receive them first. It’s sensible to put people who are most vulnerable to the debilitating effects of COVID-19 at the top. Until an adequate supply becomes available, rationing vaccinations for individuals with increased risks (senior citizens, for example) is our best option.

Given their essential role in tending to the well-being of others, health care workers must be first in line for vaccines as well. They come into contact with people who are infected with the coronavirus every day, so they need this protection.

Naturally, some Americans have enough influence to get in on the first round of vaccinations. And many are already hurling darts at them for “cutting in line.”

Those accused of needlessly skipping ahead include government officials, celebrities and wealthy individuals. They may not have any underlying conditions that make them more vulnerable. But they have the proper resources and know the right people to get what they want.

Sure, this isn’t appropriate. If they adhere to all the safety protocols, they should be fine until these vaccines become more widely available. Tisk tisk.

But some people are losing their heads over what’s going on, and this isn’t necessary.

I agree that some people must wait their turn. It’s not the major problem that some individuals are trying to create, however, and many of the accusations lobbed are pointless. It should be our goal to ensure that everyone is vaccinated, so I’m not overly concerned about those who find ways to do so at this stage.

It’s true that members of some demographic groups have a greater chance of remaining asymptomatic if they are infected (children and young adults come to mind). They’re also less likely to develop serious side effects if they become ill.

But this isn’t a certainty with every member of these demographic groups. No one knows precisely how they’ll react to the coronavirus until they become infected, and it could be perilous for them.

So there is a risk of horrendous illness or death for anyone who catches the virus. This means that all of us should be vaccinated, and I can’t really blame people for taking advantage of an opportunity to do so now.

If we truly care about the well-being of others, seeing them receive the vaccination shouldn’t make us go crazy. And this goes for people who expressed doubts about the health ramifications of the virus. If we screamed at them to wear masks and practice social distancing so they would stay safe, we should want them to be protected no matter what political views they hold.

Public health authorities should stick to the list of people who have a priority for vaccinations, and others need to respect this process. But we have more important things to worry about than conducting trials on social media to condemn those who obtain the protection they deserve in the early going.

Jerry Moore is the editorial page editor for the Watertown Daily Times. Readers may call him at 315-661-2369 or send emails to jmoore@wdt.net. They also may follow him on Twitter: @WDT_OpEd.

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(8) comments

Mallow53

I agree, everyone willing needs access but the protocols should be followed. I do not begrudge waiting my turn if I feel they are being fair in the distribution. That being said it make me angry when rich or powerful people assume they can jump the line. Healthcare workers, nursing homes, Native people, Black people and elderly with underlying conditions should all go as quickly as possible. I also know a lot of younger people with serious underlying conditions that put them at high risk. I do not think it is possible to pull out of line the deniers or people who ignore the recommendations.

Let us help each other through this dark time.

zeitgeist

Since the two vaccines have become available, there have been relentless images of people on TV getting vaccinated. Every time I see one, an electric shock surges through my body. I feel faint. I feel sick. I lie down because I am shaky. Even when I turn my face away from the images, the idea stays with me. I see the inoculation in my mind. I feel it in my body.

I'm shot-paranoid.

My paranoia developed when my father herded me and my siblings into the kitchen every June, on the last day of school, inoculating us with the polio vaccine. Everyone was screaming, crying and fainting. Oh my!

While I'm shot-paranoid, I will, without question, get my COVID shots when my time arrives.

In the meantime, is there a cure for shot-paranoia (that's not a shot)? If so, could someone write about it?

KRobbins

If getting people upset about others cutting in line is enough to get the vaccination rate up then maybe it’s worth it.

I see that Marco Rubio was getting roasted for getting a shot. If Republicans are going to act irresponsibly then it’s probably better that they at least get the shot so maybe they don’t spread the disease to innocent people.

Holmes

I also saw where 31 year old Sandy Cortez was getting roasted for getting a ‘shot’. The hypocrisy of the left is truly immeasurable.

KRobbins

I agree that AOC should not have received a shot and neither should Rubio. OTOH, I think it’s fair to point out that her message to people has been to wear masks and follow health protocols and she’s pretty much followed them herself. Rubio has done the opposite and has played the usual Republican lap dog to Trump. The tweet is evidence of his sycophancy. The Twitter Kids think he’s scared of Ivanka primarying him. 😆

KRobbins

Please explain exactly where the hypocrisy is.

KRobbins

After Rubio cuts the line he tweets this. It’s hard to be forgiving.

Dr. Fauci lied about masks in March

Dr. Fauci has been distorting the level of vaccination needed for herd immunity

It isn’t just him

Many in elite bubbles believe the American public doesn’t know “what’s good for them” so they need to be tricked into “doing the right thing”

JohnMcElroy

It is being reported Parcare Community Health Network, (according to ABC News Sasha Pezenix and Aaron Katersky) diverted Covid-19 vaccine to the Orthodox Jewish community directly contrary to New York's current plan to get it to health care workers first. There has been no comment by Parcare according to the news report.

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