So Many Lives Needlessly Lost
Yesterday I lost a brother to cancer.
I thought he was the cat with nine lives. Once he "died" of heart failure and even though the car he was in was in rush hour traffic and it took more than 15 minutes to reach a hospital they were able to restore a heartbeat but gave us no hope he would ever come back. With each passing day the doctors calls grew more dispiriting. After four days I was told that his organs were probably shutting down and to book my flight. On day five his eyes opened, he sat up and demanded to be released.
Two years later he was driving through Detroit en route to some museum that collected vintage Auburn cars and he came down with viral meningitis. More of the same phone calls but, again, he defied the prognosis and was soon in an air ambulance to bring him home. He began to think he was immortal.
Then about a year ago he started having intestinal problems that went misdiagnosed. Everything that was tried failed. His doctors wanted the full deal - ultra-sound, CAT scans, MRI, the lot. So my brother's name was added to the waiting lists and, in this era where Covid cases have left hospitals overwhelmed, those waiting lists are longer than ever.
When the tests were finally conducted they were positive for colon cancer. That's often treatable but not this time. During the delay the cancer had metastasized and spread to his liver, his lungs and his kidneys. He underwent surgery and an intensive round of chemo but that too failed. Finally the cancer reached his brain and he was admitted to hospice.
We've had months to reflect on this sad business and the state of health care in the age of Covid. We've all read the reports of intensive care beds now filled mainly with anti-vaxxers and anti-maskers, the same people who berate nurses and doctors and spread stories of this being a hoax.
We can't say that, but for these social reprobates, his cancer might have been detected early enough to make a difference. We can't say that, regardless, he wouldn't have died. What we can say is that, overall, there are plenty of people dying of cancer or heart disease or any number of other afflictions who would be alive today but for this social scourge.
Mark dodged a couple of bullets, just not the last one. He was a wonderful guy and, throughout his ordeal, he showed incredible grace and, for that, he made me immensely proud of him.
We know, roughly, how many people have died of Covid-19 and how many of those deaths can be attributed to the vaccine hesitant.
Earlier this week Noam Chomsky wrote an op-ed in which he called for these vaccine refusenicks to remove themselves from society."Suppose there are people who say ‘it’s an attack on my liberty to make me stop at a red light. It’s government overreach.’ They don’t want the state to have that power ‘over my private life’ … Well, such people should have the decency to remove themselves from the community,’” he said.
“If they refuse to do that, then measures have to be taken to safeguard the community from them.”
The system allows anyone who has received a vaccine (not just a COVID-19 vaccine) to report “adverse events” (think side effects) that they experience following vaccination. Health care providers are required to submit reports of events that come to their attention even if the events clearly have no relationship to vaccination.
The system serves to alert federal health authorities to potential safety concerns, but it is not designed to determine if a vaccine caused a particular problem. All reports to the system are unverified.
However, that statistic offers no insight into the cause of death for those people. If a 90-year-old nursing home resident got the vaccine and then died days, weeks or even months later of another ailment, the resident’s death would be reported to VAERS.