HAPPY NEW YEAR! CRAPPY START!
I hope you enjoyed your new year’s celebration, and we all enjoy saying “goobye and good riddance” to 2021. We’re hoping for much better in the year 2022. So I’ll be that jerk who starts the year by telling you some bad news.
2022 might turn out to be a wonderful year — but it will start horribly, because the omicron variant of COVID-19 is so astoundingly contagious, the rate of infection is “through the roof” — i.e., faster than ever before in the USA.
In fact the rate of new infections is almost twice what it has been before, and it’s all over the country — there’s no place safe, no place immune.
Now for the bad news that some might think is good news: The death rate has not shown a similar dramatic increase, at least, not yet:
That’s because there’s a nearly three-week delay between peak infections and peak deaths; in about 20 days we can expect the death rate to reflect the dramatic increase in infections.
Remember that for two years, America’s health care system has been strained to nearly the breaking point by the demon of COVID. The next month will be worse, especially since only 62% of Americans are vaccinated. It’s not for lack of availability of vaccine … it’s because too many Americans aren’t willing to help themselves, help their neighbors, help health care workers.
Now — finally! — for some good news.
Although omicron is incredibly infectious, the vaccines seem to work well against it. They even provide longer-term protection than previously thought; the antibody response fades quickly, but the next line of defense (the “B” cell and “T” cell system) is still on the alert and ready for battle. So, IF YOU ARE VACCINATED you have a lot less to fear: less chance you’ll get it, less chance of severe if you do.
How hard the next month is, and the next month after that, depends on us.
We are all sick of this shit, we’re mad as hell and not going to take it any more. Guess what? Health care workers — doctors, nurses, orderlies, technicians, custodians, receptionists, ambulance drivers … they’re all sick of this shit too. More than we are. And for the next month or two, their lives will be even worse than they have been.
So here’s my appeal to everyone: PUT YOURSELF ON LOCKDOWN.
Even if you’re vaccinated and boosted, stay away from people. There are still “breakthrough cases” where the vaccinated get infected — and although if you do, your case will probably be mild, you can still pass it on to others and you’ll still be a strain on the health care system.
And, wear that damn mask. I feel as though I don’t need one, but it’s my “flag” that I’m on team Faucci — and I’ll wear it proudly, I’ll do whatever I can to protect my fellow citizens and ease the strain on those who have fought so hard to keep us alive, even while so many of us refuse to do the simplest thing to make their work easier.
THIS IS NOT OVER YET. THIS MONTH MIGHT BE THE WORST YET.
So swallow that bitter pill.
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