No Mask Can Protect You From Rand Paul’s Lethal Stupidity
By the time you read this, it's possible that the United States will have passed 400,000 deaths from COVID-19. The virus is still spreading almost unchecked, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) claims the virus's new, more transmissible variant could become dominant in the US by March. This is all very bad news, but Kentucky GOP Senator Rand Paul appears to be telling people to break out of their mask prisons and breathe in the fresh Covid.
Paul, who is trying his damndest to win the title of Kentucky's worst senator, was on Laura Ingraham's white power hour Friday and denounced Dr. Anthony Fauci's oppressive voodoo science.
PAUL: What I tell people is use common sense.
This is when you know he's about to cough bullshit on you.
PAUL: If you've had the disease or you've been vaccinated and you're several weeks out from your second dose, throw your mask away and tell Dr. Fauci to take a leap because once you have immunity you don't need to do this.
Once again Rand Paul spreads medical disinformation. He's up for re-election in 2022. If COVID vaccine manufacturer… https://t.co/Xu6VaPMPLc— Max Kennerly (@Max Kennerly)1610816208.0
It's unclear if Paul is knowingly lying or too stupid to walk upright. It's a distinction without a difference, though, because if you listen to this asshole, you're going to get people sick.
The Moderna vaccine reported a protection rate of 51 percent two weeks after the first immunization and 94 percent two weeks after the second dose. No one here at Wonkette is a doctor, but we're fairly confident that neither number is 100 percent. Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center, agrees with our findings.
That's not 100 percent. That means one out of every 20 people who get this vaccine could still get moderate to severe infection.
New York Democratic Rep. Adriano Espaillat tested positive after taking his second dose of the vaccine. It's reasonable we'd continue to wear masks and social distance until herd immunity is achieved, but more than that your own dumb ass is at stake. We aren't sure the vaccine prevents you from spreading COVID-19 to others, which is a concern when half the country possesses the same selfless consideration for their fellow man as Ayn Rand.
Before approving the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, the FDA asked the vaccine manufacturers only whether their products protect people from COVID-19 symptoms. They didn't ask if the vaccines stop people who've been vaccinated from nevertheless spreading the virus to others. The emergency authorizations by the FDA that have allowed distribution of the two new vaccines cite only their ability to keep you — the person vaccinated — from becoming severely sick with COVID-19.
We won't know for a while if vaccinated people can still spread COVID-19. Until then, it's reckless to “throw your mask away" like Paul suggests, and if we learn otherwise prior to reaching herd immunity, you should still wear a mask, because the cashier at the grocery store has no way of knowing if you're vaccinated or not.
Paul also promotes the myth that if you've had COVID-19 previously, you're permanently immune. Dr. Frank Esper, a pediatric infectious disease specialist, said, “It's very premature to make the assumption that just because you had COVID-19 that you're safe from it." This is why Dr. Esper encourages everyone to get vaccinated, even those who've recovered from the coronavirus.
"The vast majority of individuals who have effective antibodies against this virus are probably protected for several months. But like with many coronaviruses, these antibodies just don't seem to last very long. So we expect that immunity to wane over time," says Dr. Esper.
Dr. Esper said it wouldn't surprise him if we have to receive annual COVID-19 vaccinations, like we do with the seasonal flu. Nothing's certain yet, but that's why we should remain cautious.
Paul also told gullible Fox News viewers that lockdowns and masks had done nothing to slow the trajectory of the virus in America. This isn't the biggest lie Republicans are pushing, but it's a strong runner-up.
Wear a damn mask. The end.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."