It has been 18 months since the pandemic gripped the United States and every day the full toll the virus has taken on the country becomes clearer. A new analysis by the Washington Post shows COVID-19 has claimed the lives of one in every 500 Americans. This staggering number becomes even more shocking when broken down across demographic lines.
One in every 480 Black Americans, one in every 390 Hispanic Americans and a horrifying one in every 240 Native Americans have been killed by COVID-19. In contrast, only one in 1300 White and Asian Americans have lost their lives to COVID.
The breakdown by age range is equally stunning. More than one in every 150 seniors (age 65 or older) have died, including one in 35 people over 85.
Recognition of these numbers come as the nation rapidly approaches 700,000 deaths since the pandemic began.
As more Americans die, some politicians continue to spread lies.
Last week, President Joe Biden issued a forceful condemnation of those who continue to spread misinformation about the vaccine. The President also issued a directive requiring companies with over 100 employees to require their staff to get the vaccine. Staff members who do not must receive a weekly COVID test.
The harshest critics of Biden’s plan are the very leaders who have frequently peddled lies about the vaccine.
Just last month, disgraced former president Donald Trump claimed COVID booster shots were a scheme for pharmaceutical companies to increase profits. They are not.
Yesterday, Florida-man-turned-Governor Ron DeSantis refused to correct absurd misinformation at his own press conference Monday. When one of DeSantis’s speakers said he opposes the COVID shot because it “changes your RNA”, the governor said nothing.
For the record, the vaccine does not change one’s RNA. It simply helps the body identify the virus as a threat so the immune system can respond.
Vaccines are the best defense we have against COVID
The vaccine has proved to be an effective tool at protecting Americans from the virus. Recent studies suggest that vaccinated people are more than 10 times less likely to be hospitalized or die from the virus.
Just like deaths and infections, disparities in vaccination rates persist across racial and socioeconomic lines. Continued efforts to deceive Black, brown, Indigenous and low-income communities about vaccine effectiveness is deadly.
The Black Wall Street Times is committed to reporting the facts about the vaccine. We continue to urge community members to get their shot as soon as they can. COVID-19 has killed one in every 400 Oklahomans and the vaccine remains the best defense against the virus. They are safe, free and effective.