Op-Ed: The insensible sense of rights
We have seen a significant percentage of the population behaving with an insensible sense of rights. Some people believe they deserve privileges above anyone else; they do not care if their actions impact others and are often brazen and arrogant in their activities.
We have in the U.S. 182,012,343 Americans fully vaccinated, just 54.8% of the population, according to the Centers for Disease Control’s data. However, in Puerto Rico, we have 2,182,396 citizens fully vaccinated at 66.41% of the total population, or 11.61% more than the US.
We live in a dysfunctional culture, especially when considering these so-called anti-vaxxers, who express dysfunctional values with their unacceptance of any scientific data that points out that the COVID-19 vaccines save lives. These citizens lack the values needed to live in society amid a crisis.
Allow me to highlight some of the dysfunctional values: acceptance; comfort; control; freedom; happiness; entertainment; entitlement; and expression.
Meanwhile, the solid values are: attitude; courage; responsibility; commitment; integrity; humility; hope; kindness; perseverance; teamwork; gratitude; and self regulation.
As we researched for this column, we investigated the 1918-1920 Spanish Flu pandemic and found some stark contrasts with COVID-19. But, there are stark similarities.
It developed in waves: after the first wave in the US, the virus abated, and like now, most Americans were anxious to have businesses reopened and for social life to resume. Then several other waves happened, and more and more people lost their lives, similar to the Delta variant.
Then like now, there was a movement for people not to wear masks; the masks had become like now second nature to wear them. The Anti-Mask League of 1919 was born, and their argument was very much like today’s because public health ordinances requiring them to wear masks violated their liberty. Similarly, the anti-vaxxers have spread falsehoods to prevent millions from seeking the live-saving COVID-19 vaccines.
That insensible sense of rights then, very much like now caused in the successive two waves. The Spanish Flu, which became deadlier between the following two waves, killed more than 675,000 U.S. Citizens. Similarly, since the Delta variant began, the death rates in the U.S. increased 14.01%, reaching 678,407 deaths. Upon further analysis, we conclude that the resistance to get vaccinated caused 200,000 deaths.
The insensible sense of rights mixed with a dose of stubborn ignorance will result in millions losing their lives. Every single one of those deaths was avoidable.
As we review all available data and the areas of the U.S. where the COVID-19 Delta variant has come back with a vengeance, we note that the sunbelt of the U.S. sees the brunt of the rise in cases. Notably in Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Idaho, Texas, North Dakota, Georgia, Wyoming, and West Virginia.
Also, all these states have the worst vaccination rates in the US, with less than 45% of the total population vaccinated.
The arguments and protests in many of those states claim that Face masks & vaccine mandates are unconstitutional and a violation of their civil liberties.
There is a troubling similarity in the arguments of the Anti-Mask League of 1919 that caused hundreds of thousands of deaths then and will cause thousands more in 2021.
In conclusion, if you find the face mask uncomfortable, you will have the ventilator in the Intensive Care Unit.
Also, if you do not believe in the life-saving effect of the COVID-19 vaccine, if you become very sick, the unvaccinated are 32 times more likely to die from COVID-19.
The Insensible sense of Rights can cost you your life and the lives of others that matter to you.