Archived Opinion

Maskless, unvaccinated bear a responsibility

Maskless, unvaccinated bear a responsibility

To the Editor:

In the Aug. 11 edition, a letter from a Franklin man was posted in both print and electronic editions of The Smoky Mountain News. In addition to false information, the writer wants to absolve the unvaccinated from any accountability about the current pandemic.

The writer claims that 99.7% of those who get COVID achieve a full recovery. This is false. The fatality rate in the US for those who get COVID is currently just under 2% according to ourworldindata.org. That means that for every 50 to 60 people who get COVID, one dies. Also, according to several studies, between 25% to more than 30% of those who have COVID become “long haulers” who have a variety of symptoms from shortness of breath to “brain fog” for months after they supposedly recover. Does being concerned about contracting COVID sound like fearmongering? 

Then there was the contention that masks don’t work because they didn’t in 1918. This is just plain stupid. In general, the data clearly show that masks reduce spread of COVID, but not all masks are created equal. Cloth masks and bandanas are not as effective as the N95 and KN95 masks, according to the Mayo Clinic. 

Then there are the unvaccinated. They are largely responsible for the continuing spread of the virus, especially the new Delta Variant. They are the vulnerable pool of individuals susceptible to infection where the virus can mutate as it spreads. The vast majority of individuals currently spreading and getting infected are the unvaccinated who refuse to wear a mask.

The maskless and unvaccinated are not just making a “personal decision” about their own heath. They are choosing to put everyone they come in contact with at risk. No, I will not “lay off” the unvaccinated. They are accountable for the continuation of the pandemic and its restrictions. As someone with an immunocompromising condition, they are the reason I now still need to protect myself from them by wearing a mask.

Norman Hoffman

Waynesville

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7 comments

  • My comment is edited to correct my grammar:

    Reply to comment by Horace, which states in part: "Listen up you stupid people... I know all you vaccinated people are worried because in the back of your minds, you think the unvaxxed might be right. And that little bit of doubt is driving you guys crazy ..."

    Mr. Horace, I speak for myself when I say that I do not subconsciously harbor the doubts you describe we stupid people having. Rather, my hope is that the deaths of all militant and staunch never vaxxers would happen more quickly so the rational among us can get on with life.

    I believe your sentiments would be more aptly characterized as "projection", a psychological defense mechanism.

    posted by Teri D

    Saturday, 09/04/2021

  • Reply to comment by Horace, which states in part: "Listen up you stupid people... I know all you vaccinated people are worried because in the back of your minds, you think the unvaxxed might be right. And that little bit of doubt is driving you guys crazy ..."

    Mr. Horace, I speak for myself when I say that I not subconsciously harbor the doubts you describe we stupid people having. Rather, my hope is that the deaths of all militant and staunch never vaxxers would happen more quickly so the rational among us can get on with life.

    posted by Teri D

    Saturday, 09/04/2021

  • Sorry Mary Jane but there are no refunds for Biden voters.

    posted by Otis

    Thursday, 09/02/2021

  • Here's an especially heartbreaking example of what the benighted, brainwashed anti-vaccination, unmasked (in both senses now) are doing to innocent people: a double-tour-of-duty veteran who died because COVID patients took up every bed in the medical center he should have been admitted to for urgent treatment:
    https://twitter.com/DavidBegnaud/status/1431683077349068808?s=20

    posted by Mary Jane Curry

    Thursday, 09/02/2021

  • Listen up you stupid people... I know all you vaccinated people are worried because in the back of your minds, you think the unvaxxed might be right. And that little bit of doubt is driving you guys crazy, an itch that you cannot scratch. If it turns out that the vaccinations are deadly, you guys will want to take as many others with you as possible. We all know human nature.

    posted by Horace

    Thursday, 09/02/2021

  • Norman:
    God bless you for telling the accurate truth! Reliable data is available from nearly any medical source--personal doctors, CDC, hospital agencies, etc. I have a friend who observes that "if reason did not plant a false idea in one's head, reason will not take it out."
    Your message will be appreciated by the already informed but will fall upon many deaf, ignorant ears. These irrational people DO have the right to commit suicide by their uninformed opinions, but they do not have right to commit murder by infecting me and all those whom I love dearly.

    posted by George E. Thompson

    Wednesday, 09/01/2021

  • Such an honest piece on this virus. I agree I do want to say a lot about the unvaccinated. As they have their rights they are taking life and living from others. Something is wrong with a system that allow some the right to act in such a way that can kill others. Let’s look at driving a car 85 miles per hours which endangers others - so the law gives the person a ticket in hopes of slowing them down - protecting them and others from getting killed. The same should be for the FDA approved vaccine and wearing mask. I think people who are harming others by not doing both of these should get a ticket to get their attention. I bet if a person got a few 100.00 tickets you would see a change. A change that will protect them and others.

    posted by Peggy Melville

    Wednesday, 09/01/2021

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