A Coronavirus vaccination in Missouri, where take-up is surging after one of the lowest rates in the US (Nathan Papes/AP)
UPDATE, AUG 2:
I joined Monocle 24’s Georgina Godwin on Monday morning to talk further about the quest for more Coronavirus vaccinations in the US amid the surge of the Delta variant — and about the obstacle of disinformation, linked to Trumpist politics.
Listen from 5:37:
The underlying factor of vaccine refusal is this poisonous disinformation from the start of the pandemic, reinforced by the previous occupant of the White House.
When people read on the Internet and believe that Bill Gates or George Soros are rolling out vaccines to control them and the world, when they read unfounded claims that vaccines cause mass deaths, when they read beyond vaccines — not only from right-wing attack sites but also Fox TV — that masks are useless, when they read attacks on the public health specialists trying to save their lives, it reinforces vaccine denial.
ORIGINAL ENTRY, AUG 1: I joined talkRADIO’s Claudia-Liza Vanderpuije on Saturday to discuss the push, led by the Biden Administration, for Coronavirus vaccinations as the Delta variant surges across the US.
I summarize President Joe Biden’s announcements, including a requirement for federal workers to be jabbed or observe masking and social distancing; a call on state and local governments to offer $100 to each person receiving the doses, and his warning, “This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated.”
I note signs that the combination of the Delta variant and the campaign may be working: states with the lowest vaccination rate — Alabama, Louisiana, Missouri, and Arkansas have had significant increases in take-up in the past week.
We give a lot of publicity to the anti-vaxxers and the Coronavirus threat deniers, but this is a case of the squeaky wheel getting the grease.
A minority of people believe the conspiracy theories. The majority realize this is still an ongoing threat.