Personal response to COVID vaccine concerns for any anti-vaxx friends

What I did below (indented) was first to free write this once, and then loosely edit it ~2x. There are whole pages more I could say, dozens of links I could provide, and extra super-conspiratorial objections like those of some baby-boomers I could also respond to… stuff like A) the vaccines are made from aborted fetuses and B) these companies are trying to put little microchips in us with the vaccine to track/even control our movements and behavior and decisions!
So with that in mind, the main objections a friend voiced this past weekend:
  • Spike protein objection, “because the spike protein is what causes the damage.”

    • I don’t know enough about the full (small!) DNA>RNA>Proteins of this virus (but I studied MCB…). The spike protein is likely (without having reviewed this) what causes the virus to attach to our cell’s receptors and . No in a normal viral infection, the spike protein is not the “one specific part” that causes more damage than the rest — it’s the whole process of viral replication that’s terrible. If we had to choose one specific part that’s “the worst” or “most damaging,” it would be the part where the virus takes over our cell’s machinery to make a million copies of itself… or the part where the viral copies explode the human cell!
    • But the “damage” is exactly what we want: we want an immune response by the body’s defenses. However, there’s not a complete set of DNA/instructions to make the entire self-replicating virus, so no one can fully get COVID from the vaccine. As you’ve surely heard, though, some people feel pretty crappy, especially after their 2nd vaccine response: my wife felt terrible for ~24 hours, I was fine as are most, but a double-digit number of people have general aches/fever/etc.: see the “tracking side effects” red/blue graph a page or two down at @ https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-00290-x , showing most have a worse response after the 2nd shot. That makes total sense, and again, that’s good, as it’s the point of the vaccine…. Vaccine immune responses are better for individuals and societies than the full contagious pathogen’s response we are trying to prevent!
  • Metals like mercury as preservative :

    • So while it’s hard to know what’s in a given vaccine’s list of preservatives from one few-year-period to another, and I don’t know how often they change what they use for preservatives, the concern comes from a preservative called thiomersol. This does indeed contain mercury, but I don’t know how much mercury and I’m skeptical of it all — but even if it was high, a) while these metals are terrible, we did evolve for chronic stress like an occasional high dose of toxins (as opposed to chronic exposure in food), and more importantly, b) it’s not used any more, and it’s certainly not used in the COVID vaccines.
      • (it is basically the essential origin of the auti– link — I won’t even spell that word in connection with vacc—s, because there are a ton of factors in our modern world behind the spiking in auti–, and no one factor is primarily responsible (chemicals from food/water/environment, decrease in sperm quality, EMF damage, lower breastfeeding, and on and on…).
    • Sure, preservatives suck in vaccines. But no company wants to be the subject of the (legitimate!) anti-vaccine arguments against their formulation, and for that reason companies have every incentive to make sure the preservatives are as safe as possible. For that reason egg proteins are used both to assist in the efficacy of the vaccine itself and to help as preservatives… what happens when individuals are allergic to eggs? They are more prone to a potential allergic reaction, obviously… Without looking them up, I am pretty sure you can search for “pfizer COVID vaccine ingredients list” and find the actual ingredient list yourself! Let me know if it includes thiomersal.
    • On that note, I recently had my own “Heavy Metals II” blood test (after both my COVID shots), because of another heavy metal concern: dark chocolate, which is often high in cadmium/lead. The cacao fruit tree uptakes those metals via the soil, and I consume a lot of it! The blood test also tested for mercury and arsenic. All were non present (cadmium) or extremely low (the other three). I’d prefer zero for all, and I’d prefer a hair trace minerals analysis, but am not quite ready to pay for that. But I have two older silver/mercury amalgam fillings that I’m getting removed later this month, which may (or may not) account for the low mercury. Not the vaccine though – hah!
  • “it’s in experimental status and not actually FDA approved”

    • Before I read this myth: Perhaps the official FDA status may be experimental. We’re in a pandemic where over half a million Americans have died: that’s more than the deaths from all our Wars since after the Civil War combined! The FDA granted — appropriately! — emergency use authorization so they could get certain things done more quickly than usual. But this is a ridiculous safe group of vaccines! Studies abound on both their safety in adult humans and their efficacy in preventing COVID infection. (Of course, even 95% efficacy means out of 1,000 vaccinated people exposed to COVID, 50 will still get infected! Scale up those numbers…) And the whole process is so geared towards being safe/conservative that when ~6 out of MILLIONS of people with the J+J vaccine had blood clots earlier this yea, the FDA pause for several weeks of their vaccine is a massive testament to how conservative the government is being (rightly so) towards the safety of vaccines. They are ridiculously safe, and far more so than COVID, which itself is very unlikely to be serious in us young folk, but increasingly likely to be dangerous as the person’s age rises.
    • After I searched for common myths: https://www.reuters.com/article/factcheck-covid-vaccines-idUSL1N2M70MW So nope — it was pushed through the bureaucracy faster because of the political pressure resulted in the so-called “Operation Warp Speed.” That makes sense, and the same thing happened in ~1918.
  • GENERAL stuff:

    • Do you really think there’s a global conspiracy between tech companies’ executives?
      • I think here you should read more books on business, entrepreneurship, and leadership. The poor farmer in rural India and rich CEO are the same humans at their core, both doing what they think is right — we all are! But the CEO’s decisions might shift the direction of the world much faster than the latter. Most conspiracies vanish — either on close examination, or once the believer steps back, breathes, and considers, with compassion, the real likelihood that all these people are acting in a malicious manner.
      • I don’t doubt most of these companies overall did this in an attempt at profits from a vaccine — but you MUST separate the company from the individuals within them: individuals actually working for the common good, to help people via a vaccine, etc.
      • Conspiracies generally help our primitive brains us make sense out of a ridiculously complex, interconnected world, overflowing with information and distraction. But they are rarely true.
    • Do you doubt that over half a million Americans have died of this? That the numbers are all false and nobody has died at all?
    • COVID Deaths of the sick being vaccinated people:
      • Didn’t take the time to respond to this one yet…
      • “…early in 2002, together with some medical students, he conducted a survey of 225 people who had escaped from the Twin Towers. Asked what had been most helpful in overcoming the effects of their experience, the survivors credited acupuncture, massage, yoga, and EMDR, in that order.”
    • Don’t fall into the trap of misinformation common to many working in the “alternative healthcare” space. Chinese medicine helps our society and heals some things for some people, but so does western medicine, which has clearly made more progress in the past few centuries than certain “traditional” medicine. We wash our hands because doctors — moving from touching corpses to delivering babies, and killing them because of the resulting infections! — realized the importance of germs and hand washing. Germ theory obviously doesn’t account for every disease, but it’s a major “win” of western science/medicine, like getting rid of the practice of leeching. Does Chinese medicine still support leeching, if it ever did? Acupuncture, chemotherapy, meditation/yoga, surgery, chanting, drugs, exercise, fasting, Chinese herbs, … all these forms of healing have their pros and cons, some techniques work more for certain individuals/ailments than others. And never discount the individual’s belief/confidence in the treatment! See Jo Marchant’s book Cure for more on this @ https://www.amazon.com/Cure-Journey-into-Science-Mind-ebook/dp/B00WPQ98X2 .
      • Case in point that Chinese medicine is not a panacea: The herbs I tried for months failed to make any real progress with my pterygium! Worse, the students and practitioners there never really seemed to believe it’d help, and their eyes lit up whenever I said I thought my eyes were indeed a little whiter — taking pictures for their own evidence. But it didn’t really make a dent. I’m confident a strict form of intermittent fasting would be far, far more productive to healing! I believe almost anything can be healed via diet … but even I admit it: discipline is far more potent than diet.
    • Contribution to society:
      • TWEET freewrite idea: I see this a lot like taxes and roads and noise and not littering in public parks: very often in the modern, connected, overpopulated world, we have infectious diseases spread. We all enjoy the ability to quickly travel the world, communicate via the internet, and having all the world’s products, spices, foods in our individual homes, don’t we? Well, infectious diseases come with this connected world, and one of the ways we combat these diseases is via vaccines. Sure, they suck, and most healthy young-ish persons would individually be better off, short-term, without them. But the best thing for society is for the most people to get vaccinated — and in the case of the COVID vaccine, as quickly as possible! Part of being a responsible member of our modern society is to — when there’s a safe, effective vaccine — get vaccinated. (For comparison, these COVID vaccines are far, far more effective than the general-not-sure-which-flu-strain-this-year annual flu vaccine. I don’t know about the typical safety of the annual flu vaccine, though, but I bet the COVID vaccine is safer than the annual flu one, too.)
      • The above freewrite led to this tweet, which I’ll leave you with:
        • With this pandemic, today’s anti-vaxxer becomes the draft-dodger of the 60s/70s: happily accepting the gains of our society without contributing their share; leeching without pitching in; taking without giving.

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