As I pulled into the mass vaccination site in Greensboro NC today I was impressed by how kind and friendly the US Army and USAF folks were. They are there for an 8 week stint at least.
Today I could celebrate the triumph of science in developing these vaccines. In the interest of where we are at now, I can see the potential benefit. But as we all pat ourselves on the back for belonging to the species that brought about vaccines in record time…we also belong to the same species that forced the vaccine into creation.
If it proves true that necessity is the mother of invention, then humanity’s collective ignorance, arrogance and hubris created the need for a vaccine.
Our behavior before the pandemic via deforestation and encroachment into places other creatures should be, created the recipe for a pandemic.
Our behavior after the pandemic gave birth to its spread, wide and far, even in the face of utterly obvious public health warnings and solutions. All we needed was for human beings to stay inside and/or wear masks and practice true social distancing for a measly 3 weeks. In 3 weeks we could have knocked it out.
3.Fucking.Weeks. That’s it.
Enough humans couldn’t figure that out. And in one year over 2 million of us have died as a result. We didn’t only die from the Coronavirus. We gave it all the help it would need. We died from how widely we ignored common sense as a group.
Now we look at science as the panacea. On the nightly news it is like: “Wow! Look at how smart we are! We made life saving vaccines for a deadly pandemic in less than a year…why…it’s a miracle!”
So let me get this straight, the same medical science we ignored (because people didn’t want to wear a mask), ironically, we now totally trust as we line up for vaccines? It strains credulity. It’s like a work of fiction. The kind that can make you need a 2 day nap. Because the cost of our ignorance is too high. It’s exhausting.
I for one, am deeply disappointed at how much it illustrated how far we have to go yet, as a species. To truly progress in the ways that we need to progress on topics of race, equality, climate change, pollution…if this was a large scale litmus test for readiness to save ourselves and preserve one another’s lives…what grade would you give us?
I am thinking a solid F.
My worry is that the takeaway lesson from this pandemic is as follows: Science will always save us from ourselves. I hope we don’t fall into that sleep even deeper than we already have.
Tell that to the 536,000 USA citizens who are no longer with us and their family members…or to the 2,670,000 people who are no longer on the planet since this started.
So yeah. I am glad the vaccine exists. But as I sat there getting my shot the irony was everywhere. We created this entire thing.
It all existed in direct proportion to the average intelligence exercised by the self absorbed perspective of most people. And the level at which we are patting ourselves on the back for finding the vaccine instead of focussing on our failure to do what was right for one another in the first place (so we can do better next time)…that shit keeps me up at night.
Human beings…. We are the most inspiring and simultaneously mystifyingly stupid species on this planet-bar none.