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Follow the Leader

August 11, 2021 - 05:00
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It is somewhat bizarre to consider that a vaccine developed under what could be called the arch enemy of Democrats and hero to many Republicans, Donald Trump, has been spurned by so many avid Trump supporters while uptake by Democrats is robust. There is no getting around the fact that the vaccine became available in record time under Trump’s watch – and justifiably so.

The virus has already killed over 600,000 Americans and lowered the life expectancy statistic in this country by 1.5 years in 2020 (1.2 years for whites, 2.9 years for blacks, and three years for Latinos). I ask you Bandera County residents and friends, does this not sound serious?

With the new Delta variant of the virus attacking the unvaccinated in skyrocketing numbers, it is sobering to consider that this battle against the pandemic continues with growing casualties despite the vaccine’s availability.

This is not to say that former President Trump was not a hindrance to a more robust and timely response to the virus by downplaying the seriousness of the pandemic on numerous occasions and encouraging untested supposed cures like hydroxychloroquine. Even after getting sick with the virus and requiring medical intervention only available on an experimental basis, he did not demonstrate full throated contrition for downplaying the virus.

Consider the risk associated with the experimental treatment Trump underwent when he was stricken the virus. I support the notion that it was much riskier than any reason to pause on getting the vaccine.

Regeneron was the experimental antibody compound Trump used while in the hospital. Preliminary data was released at about the same time as Trump was stricken from a single clinical trial of (at worst) moderate cases of COVID. There had been no results from use in hospitalized COVID patients at that time. The recommended dose by Regeneron that was showing positive results was 2.4 grams. Trump received eight grams. Since it was not an approved drug by the FDA, Trump received it through an “expanded access” FDA regulation which can allow “compassionate use” of experimental treatments.

Trump additionally took the antiviral drug Remdesivir that was available under an Emergency Use Authorization from the FDA (like the COVID vaccines). This drug was considered to have modest clinical benefit. However, the steroid dexamethasone taken by Trump was especially risky in that its serious side effects include agitation, paranoia, and psychosis. It is used in serious situations for those that need oxygen.

Ok, so much for the medical mumbo jumbo. The bottom line is that Trump took risks to stay alive - obviously for his own benefit but, as President, for the country.

Trump was one of about 35 million Americans that have been stricken with COVID. Are those that have had it already protected?

Apparently, Trump took no chances. He and the first lady received the vaccine in January 2021. He even encouraged doing so at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando.

Is he worried about turning magnetic due to 5G telecommunication towers, creating new COVID variants by being vaccinated, becoming infertile, receiving government placed microchips in the vaccine, getting autism, having his DNA rewritten, having vaccine induced long term complications, or the idea that fetal tissue was possibly involved?

He apparently does not buy into any of these myths nor indicate concern about the vaccine’s emergency use status. One could say that he stepped up for the country and his fellow Americans in getting the vaccine. If he happens to be your hero and you are unvaccinated, follow his lead.