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On Wednesday I received the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine. One shot. For those 18 to 59 years old, the vaccine proved 66.3% effective in preventing contraction of the coronavirus in clinical trials.
For comparison, the vaccine effectiveness of the seasonal flu vaccine ranges between 40 and 60%, depending on the year.
The production of the COVID-19 vaccine will be viewed from the perspective of history as a scientific marvel. Right now, it is a lightning rod for political controversy or a thick thread in the weaving of conspiracy theories. After receiving the vaccine, I ventured a few jokes with a friend, including one saying that I now have the strange urge to switch all of my computing platforms to Microsoft.
I’ll admit that one reason I received the vaccine is because I don’t want to contract COVID-19. Another is because I’m ready to enter the post-pandemic reality. I’m ready for leaders to say “it’s over.” It is my opinion that will only happen when the overwhelming public sentiment is that pandemic year measures, like lock downs, distancing, and masking will no longer be accepted or tolerated.
One way to move us a step closer to “it’s over” is to receive the vaccine.
After the State of Texas announced open access and vaccine availability to all people older than 18 years of age beginning March 29, 2021, I got in line. I sent a message to my physician last week and was placed on a list. I put my name on the list at a second clinic—and missed a last minute opportunity to receive the vaccine a few days early when a few extra appointment slots became available. I received a call on Tuesday of this week letting me know that I could receive the vaccine, and on Wednesday it was done.
While waiting for my shot, I was in a room with three young people and two older individuals. One of the young people filling out a form, who I would guess was 18 or 19 years old, asked the nurse, “What is a first responder?” The nurse was flummoxed. I was amazed.
Another woman, who I would guess was in her 60s, told me that she was so excited to receive the vaccine. She was there with her husband. She was a little nervous during our fifteen minute period after the shot—we had to hang around the clinic to make sure there were no side effects. She shared with me that she had feared being last in line. But she called her doctor, and to her amazement she was invited to the clinic a couple of days afterward. She said her daughter was very excited for her. She was Hispanic.
My point is that it wasn’t that hard. I made a call. I prioritized receiving the vaccine. I showed up for my appointment. A three page form, a fifteen minute wait, a sting in my left arm, and it was over.
Are you vaccine hesitant?
Don’t be. Get the shot. Let’s move on.
Still reading David W. Blight’s Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom. I also continue to read John Graves’ Goodbye to a River.
Sights and Sounds
I watched Baylor men’s basketball advance to the NCAA Final Four on Monday evening. On Tuesday I finished watching the 1953 Japanese film Tokyo Story.
We watched another episode of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (Disney +). Like almost everyone, I am no fan of the new Captain America.
Also, today is Good Friday. Tomorrow is Holy Saturday. Then, Easter Sunday. He is risen!
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Be well this week. Bless others.
P. S. - Could be words to live by. But it is the exact opposite of what Jesus did.