Most all of us are tired of COVID in all of its manifestations and variants. That feeling is so widespread that the experts have come up with a term for it: pandemic fatigue.
Those in government and Big Pharma are certainly aware of this phenomenon. They are moving away from using the word COVID. It started with the Delta variant and now the virus is almost always referred to as just Omicron in headlines, news stories and broadcasts.
In the interest of full disclosure, I am fully vaccinated but have not yet had the recommended booster shot. Omicron (see there, I did it, too) has convinced me to get it soon.
As bad as COVID is, the hateful rhetoric that has sprung from it is even worse, in my opinion.
Way out on one side are those who live in absolute fear of the disease, demand that you and I fear it, too, and hang on every word uttered by Dr. Fauci as if he guarded the gates to heaven. These are the fearmongers and they are vocal.
On the other fringe are those who refer to the vaccinated as ‘pin cushions.’ Some believe COVID is just a souped up version of the flu. Some would rather die than be vaccinated. I personally know of two who have.
They believe the virus was created in a Chinese lab and deliberately released as a biological weapon to end the Trump presidency. They are equally vocal.
Strung out along the middle of the spectrum of opinion are those of us who just want COVID to disappear from the face of the Earth never to reappear. Most of us are vaccinated. Some are not. Most tired quickly of masks and no longer wear them where they are not required.
We want to get back to or continue going to work or in-person classes, running our businesses and going to sporting events and concerts, etc. where there are large crowds.
I wonder how much farther along we would be in the battle against the virus if those on the fringes had turned all that hateful energy toward solving the problem rather than adding fuel to the rhetorical fire.
A united citizenry would be much more likely to gain significant wins in the war against COVID than the divided group we have now.
That is my hope for the new year – a kinder gentler COVID world.
I know there is little chance of this happening but a man can dream, can’t he?
Happy New Year!
Walter Geiger is editor and publisher of the Pike County Journal Reporter and The Herald Gazette.