It would seem appropriate to disclose to the reader that I am in no way shape or form a medical expert, much less one versed in epidemiology and immunology. I don’t dare to flaunt my medical expertise here. I am simply responding to the arguments and references provided through a critical lens — if you take issue with my counterpoints, it is at least public and has room for correction. I also recognize that talk about the current Covid-19 pandemic — the disease, the vaccine, the lockdowns, and mask mandates — is a highly charged topic of discussion. This post is not really written to convince the reader of something they have no desire to correct. This is mainly for those who would probably consider themselves as being “pro-vaccine” and wish for some common sense responses to the disinformation around. But, if this post convinces those belonging on the “anti-vax” side, that is welcomed. Note, this post is also not written in a way for true publication, it may have some snark (sorry), but I hope nothing is mean-spirited — exasperation is a more apt description of my tone at certain points. Credits to a good friend, who actually has a background in parsing medical studies, in helping me bounce my impressions and providing helpful commentary on the sources.
I recognize that some individuals are critical of moral dimensions of the government’s response to the pandemic. These moral concerns may include forced vaccines (de jure/de facto), tight lockdowns, mask mandates, etc. However, my response is not targeted toward those moral arguments. The current rhetoric discussing the pandemic presumes a moral shade to their respective positions — for example, if you are vaccine hesitant, you are a selfish person or, if you a pro-lockdowns, you are anti-civil liberties. That is the realm of public policy which may be restrained by constraints other than just science. For example, you can simultaneously believe that the vaccine is effective in saving lives and at the same time disagree that the government has a right to physically coerce an individual to take the shot against their will. That is beyond the scope of this discussion. Thankfully, Dr. Stock’s argumentation is absent this moral argument and is a discussion about the science behind pandemic restrictions and the vaccine.