I have in the past year and a half had to talk with numerous people who are averse to taking the COVID vaccine. During almost every meeting I have been a part of there have been one or more people going on harangues about the COVID vaccine. The typical official stance is that the vaccine is a good thing and everyone should be vaccinated. Regardless, I have endured many hours hearing about the latest non-medical research or being told some personal advice handed out by a doctor that person happens to know.
I have been vaccinated and have received the booster. I do not doubt the efficacy of the vaccine. Nor am I a believer in the myriad conspiracy theories floating around. I am not afraid of the vaccine. I recall receiving many shots while I was in the military and to this day I am not sure what was shot into me. The idea of being afraid of a shot is ludicrous to me.
There are good reasons not to take the vaccine, I am sure. Just about all of the people I have spoken to on this matter, those averse to taking the vaccine, do not have a good reason not to take the vaccine. However, this is a simple conflict.
I have seen people who, on an average day, are hardly coherent bloviate about the vast conspiracies at work attempting to convince people to take the vaccine. I have heard people who generally appear to be basically illiterate wax on and on about their research. I have borne witness to people who are atheistic or agnostic search for God in an attempt to procure a religious exemption to the vaccine.
All of this comes to my mind because in the last few weeks my employer has started to suspend people for not being in compliance with vaccine mandates. I am a union steward so people come to me thinking I can tell them how to avoid getting vaccinated. What I have told them is that it is time for them to make a choice: get the vaccine or lose your job.
I let them know that if their principles are such that taking the vaccine is anathema to their lifestyle and philosophy then the best choice they can make is to start looking for another job or otherwise prepare themselves for the next phase of their life. I have gotten many concerned looks after telling people this.
This is a simple adult decision, the likes of which we rarely see. The choices are spelled out and the consequences are clear. I have heard a few people express their justified fears about the vaccine. I have still told them if their decision is not to take the vaccine, however justified and logical their reasoning may be, that is still a decision to start looking for another job.
Most of the people I talk to are raging against being forced to make adult decisions.