Facts often seem superfluous these days. People often say and believe whatever they want, no matter how ridiculous. There is a rumor circulating across the country about Anthony Fauci and Beagles that is absurd. Some of what is talked about is dangerous.
A recent post by the Gateway Pandit caught the attention of my son Milos. “Huge: CDC and Big Pharma data confirms more children will die from a COVID vaccine than from a COVID virus” was the very long headline of the conservative website that has provided misinformation about COVID-19 more than once .
More than 700 children have died from COVID-19, according to the CDC. However, there is not a single documented case in which a child was killed as a result of the vaccine.
We are free to vote in America. Each of my four children is vaccinated. If you choose not to get vaccinated, it is your prerogative as there is no mandate to get a Pfizer or Moderna vaccination, but in reality, COVID-19 is the seventh leading cause of death for children ages 5-11 and still higher than that for kids 12-18.
COVID-19 is much more dangerous than the flu. This is not about politics, but about life and death. One argument against vaccination is that the vaccine has been rushed and we just don’t know enough about what is being injected into our bodies.
Well, we still don’t know all about COVID-19. Scientists discover more every day. Could it be like measles, which can cause fatal complications 20 years after a person develops the disease?
We have no idea if COVID-19 will have similar long-term effects on children. The vaccine minimizes the risk of infection. For those who are afraid of side effects, no vaccine has had any side effects more than two months after vaccination.
Some children have needle problems, but the shot doesn’t hurt. “All of the needles I had during my 11 years of existence (doctor visit) were much more painful than my COVID vaccination,” said my daughter Jane.
Jane, 12, had no side effects. This is not surprising as children receive a lower dose of the vaccine than adults. Side effects are minimized and still offer protection.
“Besides being safe, there are things you can do after vaccination,” said Milo. You don’t want your kids to miss anything. During the summer in California, vaccination cards were required to enter concerts, restaurants, and museums.
A month ago, one of Milos’ hockey teammates fell ill with COVID-19. The only players eligible to play the following weekend were those who were vaccinated.
“We get it,” said Milo. “That’s how it goes. Those are the rules. The guys who weren’t vaccinated and couldn’t play wish they were vaccinated.”
In other words, Milo’s teammates asked their parents if they could be like Andrew Wiggins, who hesitated to get the shot but decided to join the majority as he could play at the Golden State Warriors again. And then there’s Kyrie Irving, the Brooklyn Nets security guard, who refuses to submit and can’t play for his team that could use him.
“That’s interesting because Kyrie is a role model for a lot of kids,” said Milo. Irving is a role model for many adults too. Many of them were at an anti-vaccine rally in Brooklyn last month outside the Nets’ arena, the Barclay Center, singing Kyrie Irving’s name.
The future is uncertain. COVID-19 has blinded much of the US. Many thought life would be back to normal in a week or two when life as we knew it changed drastically in March 2020.
“That may not go away,” Milo said of COVID-19. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we had to live with that. If you look at history, there are turning points. “
Milo, 16, who has finally embraced academia, knows that we need to know our history in order to plan our future. “One of the most important things to us is the ability to adapt,” said Milo. “We have to do what is necessary to move forward.”
Part of moving on is getting back to facts, rather than blurting out blatant, outrageous falsehoods. Can we ever unite for the common good, as my parents did many moons ago?
Unity is essential in this fragmented country, as is security. Our children are indeed our future. Let’s make sure they have the opportunity to change the world.