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Local Paper Editor’s Breakthrough COVID Case Underscores Vaccination Issue

August 3, 2021

There are no mincing of words from this desk concerning the vaccination shots to stem the tide of COVID-19.

Take the shots and thank the powerhouse minds who, in a very short window of time, created this wonderful vaccine.

This week a woman told James and me about her son, who after getting his vaccine shots, pulled over to the side of a road and broke down in tears. The stress of the last year, the emotion of the moment when the shots had been administered, being on the other side of the mountain, and alive all welled up inside him.

I suspect many others have had similar experiences.

The emotions, however, are not limited to the ones registered upon getting vaccinated. They also can appear, and appropriately so, when a vaccinated person has to endure the fear and trauma of contracting the virus due to the ones who still refuse to get vaccinated.

Dave Zweifel, the 81-year-old editor of the Capital Times, wrote about his medical issue without pulling any punches. He took his vaccine shots, but contracted the virus from one who had not cared enough to get vaccinated.

By Monday I was a hurting 81-year-old. X-rays at urgent care revealed that at the least I had a severe case of pneumonia. And then, after an impromptu ambulance ride to St. Mary’s Emergency Room, finally a test revealed the hard-to-accept verdict: My pneumonia was caused by COVID. Within minutes I was whisked to St. Mary’s eighth floor, the COVID ward, and attached to oxygen. All I could think of was, “God, I hope it doesn’t get any worse than this.”

What angers me is that we could be well beyond this seemingly endless crisis if as a nation we would have pulled together and put an end to this awful crisis by using the tools that are available to us.

Instead, a smug cadre of charlatan politicians, think tanks that conclude our “constitutional rights” to get sick and infect our families and neighbors are somehow paramount, and just plain American stupid stubbornness has allowed a variant like the delta to emerge and once again create havoc. And as the doctors warn, if we don’t get our act together this isn’t the end.

I felt very safe returning to “normalcy” earlier this summer — ball games, restaurants, lunch with friends — but have been rudely awakened.

It didn’t have to be, nor should it continue to be. For God’s sake, get your shots.

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