I am vaccinated.
And because I am also a teacher, I was lucky enough to be vaccinated early on the process. When the opportunity to get the shots arose, I jumped at the chance. I felt it was the best way for me to be safe and to keep others safe. This blog is not about “to vaccinate or not to vaccinate”. It’s about giving someone the benefit of the doubt.
We live in sad times. Unsubstantiated social media posts, point in time photos, sound bites without complete context, and unmitigated bias have led to a mindset where people are now presumed guilty. The court of public opinion and news channels now supersede our judicial branch of government. If you don’t believe me, talk to the kids on the Duke Lacrosse Team who were called rapists and liars by every news outlet before the full body of eveidence was revealed.
In my opinion Aaron Rodgers’ has not shown himself to be a denier of the virus or its deadly consequences. He sought and received treatment he believed was a better way to protect himself and subsequently those around him. Athletes that have flat out refused to get the vaccine or consider any other treatment (I’m talking to you Kyrie), are far guiltier than QB1. The only thing Rodgers is guilty of is not choosing the way the government, the media and vaccination enthusiasts have deemed the ONLY WAY to achieve the desired result. He is basically being charged with the crime of critical thinking. God help us all.
There is a lot of missing information here starting with the fact that about 90% of the anti-vax shamers don’t even know how a vaccine works. So, let’s start there.
A virus has 3 physiological elements—pathogens, antigens and antibodies.
- The pathogen is the virus itself.
- An antigen is a subpart of a pathogen that creates antibodies.
- An antibody is the “soldier” within your body that fights the pathogen. It stimulates your body’s immune system to battle the invader naturally. The bigger your army, the better chance you have in defeating the enemy (pathogen).
FACT: A vaccine does not directly attack the pathogen. A vaccine does not create immunity. Even vaccinated people are not immune. All a vaccine does is stimulate the production of antigens which in turn will create more antibodies or more “soldiers. It’s a path to antibody creation. It’s not a soldier in the fight. Think of it as an army recruiter if you will.
FACT: Vaccines do not create a specific number of antigens which in turn create a specific number of antibodies. You can’t say “get this vaccine and you’ll end up with a buh-jillion antibodies”. It differs by pharmaceutical brand, and it differs by person. A vaccine may lead to the creation of a buh-jillion antibodies in one person, but only a half a buh-jillion antibodies in another. Also, the number of antibodies needed to defeat the pathogen differs by person. One may only need 83 while another needs a buh-jillion. There is no set number. All we know is the more we have the better the chance of victory.
FACT: Vaccines do not prevent contracting COVID. They just make the fight against it easier. For all we know there could be millions of unvaccinated people with immune systems strong enough to defeat COVID walking right now and they don’t even know they are infected. Are we going to start demanding proof of vaccine cards and if someone refuses to show you that gives you the right to call them unclean, a detriment to society or a “Trump supporter”? The truth of the matter is they may already have enough antibodies in their system and have been defeating the pathogen naturally. But since you can’t see it, you assume they are unvaccinated and attack them.
Now who’s the asshole?
Consider this question for a moment. If you make a statement you believe to be true at the time and later learn the statement is incorrect, were you lying at the time you made the statement? You see, the one variable we do not have is the date he received the denial from the NFL. Having that date will determine the validity of his “I am immunized” comment. Until that date is revealed, I will presume he is innocent on the charge of lying.
If Rodgers received an alternative treatment and was told by the person overseeing the treatment it resulted in antibody levels that are believed to be at a level that fights off COVID, what did he do wrong? He was told he was immunized and in turn told the reporter he was immunized. I don’t see a lie there.
Rodgers’ saying “I am immunized” on August 26th and the fact he contracted COVID does not prove he lied. We don’t know the exact date the NFL denied his petition. All we know is it was “sometime this summer”. If he did not receive the denial until after the time of the August 26th presser, he DID NOT lie or mislead. He simply shared what he believed at that moment to be true. You cannot take knowledge gained later and apply it is statements made earlier. You simply can’t.
In denying his petition the NFL cited one immunologist who said it was “his opinion” that Aaron did not have enough antibodies to fight COVID. Tell you what. I’ll find you 100 other immunologists whose “opinion” was that he did have enough antibodies. Who’s right? Who’s wrong? By denying Rodgers’ petition they in effect are saying they believe their expert is the world’s foremost irrefutable source on antibodies and COVID and all others are false gods. Therefore we all must bend the knee to King Goodell and his sigil. Why should it matter what path you chose if the outcome is the same? It shouldn't.
Granted, Rodgers’ past behavior isn’t helping his cause. It leads people to jump to conclusions. As Abraham Lincoln said, “Reputation is like fine china. Once broken it is very hard to repair”. That’s Aaron’s problem. It's not mine, not the Packers and not the NFL’s.
That said, if Rodgers’s did know the decision prior and chose to keep up his narrative, it’s a big f*cking problem and I will hop on the “mislead and lied” bandwagon with everybody else. Hell, I might even drive the thing. But until I know that for certain, I’m not onboard with the torch and pitchfork villagers storming 1265 Lombardi Avenue.
The truth always lies somewhere in the middle. We may get to it. We may not. But until it is revealed I’m going to live the world of “innocent until proven guilty” and hope the best for Jordan Love this Sunday.
ps. How can three pharmaceutical companies come up with a miracle vaccine for a virus in less than 9 months and they’ve spent 30 years trying to come up with a vaccine for HIV to no avail? I’ll tell you why. The market for an HIV vaccine isn’t big enough. Carry on.