The Pandemic: 2 Years Later

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We are approaching 2 years. In a post from October 2020, eight months into the pandemic, a time before there was a vaccine, a time when we were still learning about this virus, the death toll for the coming few months was estimated to reach 200,000 in the US. At the time, the US Administration was declaring this a positive achievement, when it could have been a minimum of 1.6 million, had they done nothing. The problem however with that assertion was that 1.6 million number was one that would be realised after 2 years (not just the few month period they were estimating).

So, after two years, the US is approaching a death toll of 900,000. That the current figure is less than the minimum cited above is a testament to the efficacy of the vaccine. In December 2021, the Washington Post reported a study estimating that vaccines had saved 1.1 million lives. Yet, that the number of deaths continues grow at an alarming rate due to the resistance of nearly 35% of the population to take the vaccine, a stance that confounds many.

While I am pointing to the US, here in this country we have a similar problem of resistance, and in fact it can be seen world-wide. Who would have known? Who would have known that the occurrence of the pandemic would expose such opposing points of view. But what is also interesting is how strongly held are these points of view. This resistance to be vaccinated asks us to clarify the boundary between individual and social / community rights. Whose rights reign? Does the right of the individual’s sanctity of the body out weigh that of the public health of the social body?

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Protesters in front of Toronto City Hall, September 1, 2021


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