Vaccine or not is your right but get ready to face the consequences

By Trevor Greyeyes

I urge people to please get vaccinated.

I know those people who question the validity of the vaccine or the mitigation efforts to contain the virus or claim that the virus isn’t that bad because most people recover.

And those same people are now crying about their imagined freedoms being compromised.

I know a First Nations woman who refuses to take the vaccine and is now worried about losing her job because her employer is insisting that only people who have been vaccinated will be allowed into the workspace when the company starts operation again.

Don’t get me wrong because I strongly support her right to express herself because I am not calling for her to be censored. And if she doesn’t want to take the vaccine then I believe she does have the right not to take the vaccine.

However, people in that situation must be willing to face the consequences because your rights end where the public safety of others begin.

I am more than willing to put my mouth where my arm is and if that makes me a lab rat in some people’s books then so be it.

Now, I went and got my vaccine shot at Ma Mawi on McGregor and Mountain on April 30.

Great people there and I had a chance to talk to briefly with a nurse who specialized in clinical immunology.

The nurse was understandably quite dismissive of people who doubt the credibility of medical practitioners and scientists in their efforts to manage and treat the coronavirus that has greatly impacted our lives for more than a year now.

For the last month, I have been, for the most part, calm and lucid in exchanges with various anti-maskers and anti- vaxxers listening to their claims and so-called “scientific evidence” and I imagine it will go on for some time.

Let me begin with the young person who is an anti-masker.

I did nor mock this person but took the few links provided and I must give some credit because unlike others who post dubious sources that agree with a particular point of view.

Remember like that time Donald Trump linked a doctor to his Twitter account who also claimed that demons were having sex with people in their dreams.

And yes, despite this credible and authoritative voice, I went back to what Dr. Fauci said.

Masking up is only part of a mitigation strategy.

Masks were never meant to be a 100% solution.

So, to someone like that I would throw in a mixed martial arts metaphor.

The masks are like teaching someone just a simple block. It’s not 100% effective but using a variety of techniques it will help. Oh, it’s no guarantee that you won’t be hit but it’s better than just doing nothing at all.

The vaccines produced so far are not 100% effective either that will require on-going mitigation efforts.

The doubt about vaccines is a little more complicated and not every First Nations person fits into one category.

Some First Nations people have a mistrust of the government from literally more than a hundred years of broken treaties and promises. Others have embraced traditional culture and reject modern medical science putting more faith in traditional medicines.

And the last group doesn’t trust a vaccine, like many in the public, that seems to have been developed so quickly.

The science, as far as I can tell as a journalist, is there.

The messaging has not been consistent since the beginning of the pandemic but that’s the core of the scientific method in that plans change as more data comes in. It is not a system based on belief or dogma.

If a person doesn’t want to take the vaccine that is a choice but no one if compromising your freedoms.

However, you will have to face the public health measures to keep as many people as possible safe.