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Letter: Funny how anti-vaxxers expect medical treatment when infected

Consider what often occurs when a vaccine opposer contracts the COVID virus. Then, they go to the health care professionals, the ones who implored them to get vaccinated. They now want these professionals, who they ignored and even desecrated, to put them at the beginning of the line for health care treatment.

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Some day our history books will report about the COVID epidemic. The human suffering, over 600,000 dead in our country alone, will be depicted as an overwhelming, tragic event, bringing grief and sorrow to millions. There will also be a chapter on the heroic efforts of health care professionals, who worked tirelessly, risking their own health and safety, to help sick and dying virus infected patients.

But there will likely be a separate chapter, one that shows a country deeply divided when it came to efforts to mitigate, control and eventually stop the spread of this deadly virus. This will be a particularly sad record because of what could have been done but was not.

Today, we have a highly effective vaccine, readily available, at no personal cost. All of us should have been celebrating this, rolling up our shirt sleeves, cooperating to stop the spread.

Yet millions of our fellow Americans refuse to take it. They have been poisoned by political partisanship, shaped by myths, and consumed with extreme personal freedom ideologies. Many choose to believe political pundits over health care experts, Facebook postings over career communicable disease experts, conspiracy theories over evidence-based science. The result of such twisted and dangerous thinking has prolonged the epidemic and caused preventable suffering and death.

But consider what often occurs when a vaccine opposer contracts the COVID virus. Then, they go to the health care professionals, the ones who implored them to get vaccinated. They now want these professionals, who they ignored and even desecrated, to put them at the beginning of the line for health care treatment. This is so even if this results in other types of health care being delayed or denied for others, due to an overwhelmed health care system. The toil and danger for health care workers is not considered, nor is the enormous cost that gets spread to others. Apparently, these vaccine opposers, now turned covid patients, have not considered the saying, “you can’t have you cake and eat it too.”

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Now, I do not hate these vaccine deniers. Many are my friends, neighbors, even relatives, and I know them to be good people. But I am deeply disappointed in their reckless behavior, their disregard for others, and their putting falsehood ahead of truth. As Americans, we can and should do better!

Chester Rorvig lives in St. Cloud, Minn.

This letter does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.

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